JDSB End of Year Update - 12/29/2019

Let's take a moment.

December 29, 2019

We have one last Wayward event for the year; for the decade, in fact.

The Junior Dev Struggle Bus. We should ask for a show of hands from those who followed the MeetUp group or attended an event because of the cheeky moniker and run a FizzBuzz on those digits — pun absolutely intended. Who wants to do something clever with that idea?

The name tends to draw a smile and put people at ease. While the modern resources that are available to take the first steps towards becoming a developer are abundant, one could even say accessible, it is still an intimidating field to approach.

That’s the power of a name. JDSB has drawn people in from all walks of life and levels of experience for a broader spectrum of reasons than most would assume. In scarcely a year’s time, this community has grown to a MeetUp member count of 800 going on 900. After some calculation with data pulled from the MeetUp API, we realized that at least 250 of us have shared code and conversation with each other at events.

Oh, and our little Slack workspace? Just shy of 350 members, with 75-100 of us active weekly — quiet or verbose, a lot of us are in there lurking, memeing, and coding. We’re approaching 40,000 messages, mostly from the back half of the year.

These are fun statistics to see. We are coders and designers, artists and analysts. Developers. Data is part of what we do. However, the human element is what calls for pause and reflection. The discussion and laughter between a generous, compassionate group of people that somehow all ended up occupying the same space over one common interest and struggles as varied as those that experience them.

We’ve all been a part of something great this year. Formed friendships and bonds, whether fleeting or life-long. Solved problems, given a rides, shared drinks, inspired and listened. You’ve done all this and more for each other. That is humbling and not to be taken for granted. That deserves recognition. Thank you.

Know that those of us behind the organizing appreciate you all for making this an amazing community to be a part of. It’s been fun. It’s been an honor. To co-opt an apropos and personal favorite lyric: Grab the bourbon from the shelf, this moment needs to be cemented.