Mixing warsaw.ex

Mixing warsaw.ex

This blog post is all about: what's warsaw.ex and what kind of gap it will try to fill, why you (and any other software engineer) should care (about Elixir, even if you're specialised in a different tech already), who is behind that & who's invited and why I'm quite certain it will succeed this time ...

Few days ago I've published an enigmatic tweet:

As it's REALLY coming (soon), it's a good moment to share a bit more information.

warsaw.ex

Yes, Warsaw will have its Elixir meet-up again. After few attempts that didn't really make it, another crew will try to make it happen for good. You can track the record of their mission :) here and/or here.

why?

Because the community is small, but very scattered. There are companies who work in Elixir (here in Warsaw), there are successful products brewed using Elixir, yet very few know about them - a meet-up is a good opportunity to speak/listen about war-stories, exchange experiences & opinions ... and at last but not least - to meet people who share your interests!

but why (should I care)?

OK, so let's assume you're a .NET, Java, C++, Scala, whatever-else engineer - you already know your specialty very well - what would be the point of spending time on a little known, relatively new hipster thing that is barely recognised in a job market?

There are several reasons:

  • shaping your career to be E-shaped person instead of I-shaped one, becaise you'll never know what the next 1-2 years will bring, so don't close yourself within a narrow niche
  • to become a better engineer - learning about how particular problems are being solved using a different paradigm (e.g. FP vs OOP, static vs dynamic typing, w/ or w/o metaprogramming, stateless or stateful, different concurrency models) will broaden your perspectives & expand your engineering toolset
  • especially if you're coming from more "traditionally enterprise" kind of tech stack - Elixir is heavily influenced by Ruby-esque  emphasis on DX (Developer Experience) - minimal friction, very limited boilerplate, important role of conventions, high adaptability to your local project's/product's specifics
  • Elixir may sound like a relatively new language, but in fact it's just a new dialect of Erlang - they are very different at the first glance, but they are also fully compatible, so what's running under the hood is Erlang's virtual machine (BEAM) - rock-solid & battle-hardened in massive, global solutions that handle hundreds of millions of users for over 30 years!
  • what I personally love about Elixir is that it's not-compromising: being functional is not "an option", but an inherent property of the language (hence its benefits are utilised in 100%); its "actor model" implementation (Erlang processes) is foundational to the way you build all Elixir apps; in basic words: you'll either follow idiomatic Elixir principles & succeed or you'll try to copy other languages patterns & inevitably fail
  • everything about Elixir is lightweight - no heavyweight IDEs, no massive SDKs, no gain in increasing the complexity of your solution by introducing patterns like microservices - trying this new paradigm of concocting software is very refreshing & atoning experience (at least it was in my case ...)

who (is behind that)?

Bunch of engineers. Technical fellows who are really hooked on both - the modern, developer-friendly language created by Jose Valim & rock-solid, robust BEAM platform behind it.

No, I am not organising it (but I'll do whatever's needed to support it!), I'm just passing the message here - because I consider it both valuable & important :) There are no Managers, no HRs/Recruiters, no Sales/Marketing behind it - it's a purely engineering initiative & (IMHO) only such ones have a high chance of a long-term survival.

who (is invited)?

Everyone is welcome. Regardless of whether you already are an Erlang/Elixir/LFE/OTP/BEAM enthusiast or just a wannabe-one :)

where & when & what?

As far as I know, the agenda is being finalised, the place is already arranged, date is just to be confirmed with all the involved parties. The orgs will publish the details (on meetup.com & Facebook fan-page) in the forthcoming days.

will it succeed?

I've seen too much to tell you straight away: "Yes, it will!".

It depends on too many factors:

  • energy & passion of the orgs - yes, plural form is crucial here - a single person will inevitably fail, this has to be a group effort
  • ability to reach the community - how to reach & attract attention of potentially interested individuals: a bit of marketing & understanding what may be worth people's time is essential
  • content quality & the feedback of the community - is it good value for time spent, do topics match the interest of attendees, is content relevant
  • logistics & annoyances - sometimes even tiny details can wreck massive efforts: poor location, technical difficulties, over-promising, enthusiasm not backed up with organisational skills, etc.

In this case, I've committed myself to make sure that the guys do keep their feet on the ground & remain realistic :) I am therefore strangely calm when it comes to the foreseen final effect ...

Keep your fingers crossed.

And stayed tuned (by joining the group on meetup.com or liking it on Facebook fan-page).

warsaw.ex is coming.

About Sebastian Gebski

Geek, agilista, blogger, codefella, serial reader. In the daylight - I lead software delivery. #lean #dotnet #webdev #elixir. I speak here for myself only.

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