A couple of days ago a friend of mine told me that “the year is finally about to start”. He was repeating a popular saying that we have in Brazil, that the year only starts after Carnival. That is, today. It is true that the period between New Years and Carnival tends to be slow for projects and activities. But, when my friend said that, it got me thinking… So many things already happened in 2014! The year started with such high energy, that I’m really impressed that we’re just after Carnival!
Start with videos…
January started for me as a crazy time, because I had launched a series of videos to push developers to use better tools for software development. The initial idea of recording 3 videos ended up growing to 6 videos, 2 webinars, 2 interviews, many external participations and several side activities like events and discussions (sorry, those were all Portuguese!). In the end, more the 1500 people followed the “New Year, New Project” series, it was quite a start of 2014!
Add some JCP face to face discussions…
Right in the middle of this, the JCP face to face meeting happened, together with the User Group Summit, in California. At the JCP meeting it was great to work together with Mohamed Taman and Badr Elhouari, representatives of Morroco JUG, the new elected JUG that joined the JCP Executive Committee and also with Jim Gough, London Java Community’s new JCP representative. Together we presented new ideas for more community activities around Adopt-a-JSR and other cool things that companies can do to engage better with JUGs worldwide. For JUGs, there are great ideas on the presentation that will surely help to improve existing or new Adopt-a-JSR efforts.
And several Java User Groups!
In the same venue, and basically at the same time of the JCP meeting, was happening Oracle’s User Group Summit, with a large presence of Java User Groups. So, it is not surprising that many of the conversations during the summit were around Adopt-a-JSR. Besides getting to know what is being done by other groups, we had a great discussion about using Gamefication (led by Jim Bethancourt) and how we are seeing a stronger interest from developers on interactive activities. It was the general feeling that JUGs should consider implementing Hackatons, Competitions, and similar activities for their Adopt-a-JSR efforts and also during events and monthly meetings, that this will help grabbing developers attention.
Insert barbecue here…
Right before the JCP and JUGs meetings, I joined Stephen Chin in hosting an amazing barbecue at his house. I came straight from the airport, with a brand new Brazilian rotating rotisserie grill, and landed in Steve’s house just minutes before the crowd arrived. Steve and Sharat had amassed an incredible list of typical supplies, from Brazilian cuts to sausages, famous drinks (both alcoholic and non), deserts and more! With the help of Jim Weaver and many others (not to mention the infinite support and patience from Steve’s family!), we sprung a full, authentic, Brazilian barbecue in the hearth of Silicon Valley. That’s Steve’s “Chinascaria”, and you should come if you ever have the chance!
Sprinkle some hackatons and a very very very large event…
And talking about hackatons, this is exactly what we did right after the Summit! I’m the President of the Campus Party Institute, and help organize one of the world’s largest gathering of Internet geeks and nerds, the Campus Party Brazil event, in São Paulo. Campus Party is a 24h, non-stop event where thousands of Internet enthusiasts camp for a full week to discuss and experiment the Internet.
During the event, SouJava organized and run a RaspberryPi hackaton, supported by Oracle. The competition highlighted the benefits of doing an around the clock event, and the teams worked for 3 days, with little sleep, to produce some incredible applications! It was great to work with Vinicius and Yara Senger, and all the SouJava team, on making this happen!
The RaspberryPi challenge was just one of dozens of activities I was part of in Campus Party. Besides giving several talks, about Cloud Computing, Application Lifecycle Management, Open Source and Startups (talks in pt-br), I’m also responsible for the main stage of the event, and this year I got to receive some great speakers. It was nice to meet Bruce Dickinson, lead singer of Iron Maiden, and watch his must see presentation about entrepreneurship. Another speaker that I really enjoyed watching and talking with was Silvio Meira (talk in pt-br), one of the great promoters of technology and startups in Brazil. There are many things that need to be done in this country to support new ideas and innovative companies, and Silvio knows them all. Very inspiring!
After 7 days living inside Campus Party, I was really ready for the year to end… How come it didn’t even start yet?
But there was more things happening! Adopt-a-JSR activities are picking up, and CloJUG did a nice hangout with a few JUGs, to share experiences, organized by Alexis Lopez. Most of it was in Spanish (bad Portunhol in my case), but Jim Gough spoke in English. I also added some English notes in the link above. SouJava also started 2014 reinvigorating its Adopt-a-JSR efforts, and with more then 100 participants on the program, we are now running by-weekly meetings, that are going pretty well, thanks to SouJava’s JCP EC representative Fábio Velloso rounding up the participants!
And more hackatons!
Proving that developers are interested in more hands-on activity, I helped in one more hackton, this time supported by IBM. On the Mobile Hackaton, developers worked to create mobile applications for large events, like the World Cup. The applications created in 3 days were pretty impressive, and the judges had a though job! The event was masterfully organized by Yara Senger, from Globalcode.
Even a new application server?
SouJava also hosted RedHat’s WildFly launch. We had presentations from Fábio Velloso, SouJava Director, and Arun Gupta, RedHat’s Evangelist. The event was transmitted live (partially in pt-br) from inside the Free Software Competency Center of the University of São Paulo.
Startups! Don’t forget the startups!
Another topic that is attracting a lot of developers lately is the discussions around entrepreneurship and startups. Campus Party had a large area dedicated to the topic, and
every hackaton ends up agitating this discussion also. Recently I was invited to talk about my experiences at StartupWorld, an event hosted by Sebrae, the Brazilian Service of Support for Micro and Small Enterprises. The energy and interest of the startups was very exciting, and I talked about how Cloud and Internet technologies can be effectively used to support and foster innovation.
And now, the year can really start!
Looking at my friend, I wasn’t sure exactly where to start explaining to him how many things already happened in 2014… So, I told him that I’m looking forward for the year to start, because it looks like it will be really really busy! And I’ll jump start it by submitting a talk to JavaOne! That should be a good first move!
So, how does your 2014 looks like? Maybe we can meet somewhere for a barbecue?