Why you can't afford to miss "Daj się poznać"

This time, instead of a typical blog post, just a short advertisement / announcement. It's not that someone asked me for it or I've promised it to someone - it's just about the idea I like & find beneficial for the whole software developers community in Poland.

As some of you may know (especially the PL-based people), 2 months ago Maciek "Procent" Aniserowicz has given up his job to become a full-time communist, I mean - 100% focus on his community-related activities :) As he takes it very seriously, he's become truly hyper-active & it's one of his recent ideas (I think that the original idea was someone else's & Procent has just resurrected it or sthng) I'd like to write about today ...

"Daj się poznać"

To keep the long story short - "Daj się poznać" is a competition for programmers. Participants will:

  1. start or continue to contribute actively to an Open Source project
  2. document their learnings (at least twice a week) on their blogs

That's all. For circa three months (10 weeks). Not a rocket science. There's one more thing: registration ends TODAY, so you need to decide quickly (if you didn't yet).

But why do I find it important & why I'd like to encourage you to sign up? Not because of the prizes (tbh, I don't even know if there are any, but I guess they are) or the challenge ("Prove that you're worthy! Step over defeated opponents, left in the dust and blood!") - there are few far more valid points:

  • it's a good trigger to start something - to ignite the passion, to make the first step - regardless of whether you're a greenhorn or you've already cut your teeth on this craft; sometimes people just need this trigger, positive boost to wake them up - here's your wake up call then, don't waste it
  • you've always wanted to contribute to Open Source project, but you never did - due to lack of courage, time, confidence; this competition is all about writing code in an open & transparent way (which may be something totally different when compared with what you do in your daily job or during your studies) - who knows what will happen & how it will end, it may be the very beginning of a long & beautiful journey ...
  • it's not only about writing software, but also about blogging about writing software -> not only a good way to document your findings, but also a way to open yourself to the community: spark & encourage the discussions, maybe inspire someone or attract other people with similar opinions, needs, interests
  • do you remember what I've written about ritualization? For many people "starting something" isn't a big problem, keeping a sustained discipline is (aka "lackluster enthusiasm"); this competition is about regular work on the pet project & regular blogging about this work - this may help you to develop good habits, even if you've failed many times before
  • my personal advice to you is to use this opportunity to try & learn something new ("new" like "totally new") that has hooked you on; don't try to "build another .NET micro-ORM, but w/o Dapper flaws" or "build another JavaScript SPA framework, but w/o React flaws", unless you're really into these things; in other words - don't get over-ambitious, the goal is not to create the best product in the world, the goal is to have fun while learning something - if the fun part is lost when you're half-way there, to last until 3 month period is over will be a huge pain
  • at last but not least - "Daj się poznać" may entirely change your professional career. If you approach it seriously, if you put a real effort & energy in it, you may really get noticed - by peers, seniors, employers, everyone. Regardless of you age, experience, place you live, technology you use - all have the (sort of) equal chance! Personal branding is everything today & events like this one may be true elevators for your career.

You just can't miss it. You already know you can't.
Good luck.