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Jared Richardson works at Logos Technologies As a recognized expert in the software industry, Jared has worked with both start-ups and software giants. He's been involved with various open source projects, with roles from contributor to founder. Jared co-authored the best selling book Ship It! and Career 2.0, and founded the Agile RTP user group as a local outlet for the agile community in North Carolina. His personal blog is Agile Artisans Jared has posted 52 posts at DZone. You can read more from them at their website. View Full User Profile

Code and Coffee: Save Yourself!

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Code and Coffee is a simple idea. Once a week, get together in the morning, grab a shot of caffeine, and write some code. Pair with an old friend or a new one, but come willing to learn.

Tim Wingfield, a coworker of mine, started the code and coffee meetings in central Ohio. They've done Katas, had special events, and more. (They use the code and coffee hash tag search feature on Twitter to coordinate.)

So why am I posting this? Is this worthy of a DZone article? It's a bit short for DZone, but the idea is not. Tim has leveraged his local network, from within his company and from other companies, to learn. They work on each other's pet projects. They write automated tests. They write code and they help others write code.

At the end of the day you can either wait for some company or magical opportunity to show up and save you, or you can look around, realize you want more, and make the opportunites you want. Tim created the very opportunity he wanted. The best way to live in the future is to create it.

So what have you done this week? Are you sitting at your desk, hoping a cool project comes down the pipe and lands in your lap? Or are you getting up early once a week and honing your skills? Have you attended a user group this month? Read a book?

Don't wait for someone to come save you. Go to a code and coffee group and save yourself.




Published at DZone with permission of its author, Jared Richardson.

(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)



Jon Kruger replied on Tue, 2010/04/27 - 8:00am

Code and Coffee is an awesome way to meet people in the software development community. I like it because I get to sit and talk to people about what they're doing and I'm exposed to whatever those people are learning. Since we do it in the morning, I also don't have to be away from my family at night like I do with user groups.

Shawn Wallace replied on Tue, 2010/04/27 - 8:09am

I can certainly attest to the value of Code and Coffee. As a team member on a geographically dispersed team, it's hard to find a way to collaboratively learn. User groups are nice, but not as interactive as I would like. Code and Coffee has helped to fill that gap for me. I'm able to sit with some smart people from many different places and experiences and write code or discuss a wide-range of topics in a very informal setting (and drink coffee too). Sometimes we talk about trends or tools in software dev. and then try them out in the same sitting. Some discussions last for several weeks as we research topics in between Code and Coffee sessions.

Himanshu Gupta replied on Mon, 2010/05/03 - 2:08pm

I like your idea to take initiative to do something good to learn rather than waiting for some good project to fall in your lap someday. I surely want to attend Code and Coffee if time permits. Anyways thanks for sharing this cool idea.

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