Hey guys,

Despite Martijn allegedly being on holiday in New Zealand for the month (though still keeping to roughly 100 emails a day), the LJC had a cracking month – one of the best yet!

We had 94 people sign up, (a new record), reached over 2200 members and had over 600 active members for the first time, including a massive 672 RSVPs. All of these figures dwarfing previous records. It’s worth checking out the stats page for the LJC as our popularity is certainly increasing and we’re reaching new corners of the market every month! Well done to Andrew Smithson for winning the EuroClojure raffle. As always we’ll keep our feelers out on other give aways that we can get for you, if anyone knows of upcoming conferences we could sponsor/promote to get a free ticket for you just let me know. We also received some feedback from Casper MacRae who you may remember won last months JFokus event and wrote this write up. We have reached out to more communities too to bring you more events through Aaron’s LJC Partner Event email – as always if you know anyone that we should add let me know.

Events

February 1st saw our first event on Xtend and Xtext some feedback: “Xtend was more interesting than I thought it would be as it actually produces Java Source code instead of its own byte code. This effectively means that it is safe to use in traditionally conservative environments.” Thanks to Sven and Sebastien for the event. If you’re interested the link for the video can be found on the SkillsMatter page here

We then had our regular code share. This time on Dependency Injection or “DI another day”. Some great feedback as usual for Ged and Daves event: “First time I attended. Interesting presentations and discussion. Really liked the idea.” You can read more about it and get the supplementary material here.

We then had a pretty special event with Fabianne, Yara and Vinicius from SouJava. For those that don’t know SouJava is a 15 year old renowned Java User Group in Brazil. We had some pretty awesome feedback “It’s cool to have so big and active community. Was pleased to see guys from Brazil community. Yara and Vinicius Senger’s presentation about Arduino with JHome was just amazing!!!” It was interesting to hear their thoughts and genuine appreciation of the LJC. How they have watched us coming up as a younger JUG, and starting to make a lot of noise, the work that Martijn, Ben and our other organisers have done overseas has been incredible for our international profile. More info and round up here.

That night we combined to also have our developer sessions. It was a different venue, despite the postcode leading people to the wrong place (sorry). We had a good combo of grads and those from the event, so it lead to some interesting discussions and I was able to recruit a few people into our new Meet a Mentor program.

Our final event, technically in March, was Trish’s QCon Disruptor talk. For anyone that still doesn’t know what the Disruptor is it’s worth checking out the video of the presentation. The talk and the project have won several awards. “It was a great talk and I will definitely be having a play with it next time we need to implement a quick multi-threaded pipeline.”

JCP news

This month’s JCP activities were focused around several JSRs:

JSR 331: Constraint Programming API
We weren’t sure about this one at first, but the spec lead went above and beyond to improve transparency, bring in other experts and generally do all the things we look for in a JSR. This was a final vote, and we’re pleased to announce that JSR 331 is now an official standard.

JSR 354: Money and Currency API
This is an approval ballot – this means that the Exec Committee is asked to approve a proposed standard before the technical work has started. This is a steering activity – we’re ensuring that the standards body is heading in the right direction, by gating ideas for standards before they start work on them. JSR 354 is an idea which has a lot of support from financial companies and ordinary developers. It
also has a lot of people on the Expert Group that the LJC knows well (including our very own Ben Evans). So it was a relatively easy decision to vote YES on this one.

JSR 355: JCP Executive Committee Merge
The LJC is all about involving the ordinary developer as much as possible in the standards creation process, and removing unnecessary bureaucracy. So, this JSR (which is the 2nd of 3 “reform” JSRs) makes perfect sense to the committee. Java is one platform, and we should have one committee governing it. This was an approval ballot, but we’re hoping this JSR will progress very quickly to implementation.

That about wraps it up for this month. As a reminder, the LJC JCP Committee is always on the lookout for additional volunteers and helpers. If you’d like to participate in the standards work of the LJC, please contact one of the Committee (Martijn, Ben, Trish, Richard, Mike, Somay, Simon or Barry) – we’d love to have your support.

Sponsors

Jobs – RecWorks

Firstly a word from myself and RecWorks, the founders of the LJC. For those that don’t know RecWorks is my company, we are a specialist consultancy working as an integral part of the London Java Community. We are hoping to reinvent the Java recruitment industry by blending Recruitment and social netWorks. Our intention is to integrate ourselves within the fabric of the community in the hope of building long term trusted relationships to source talent, whilst developing talent in everyone from students to senior developers. One thing that we have been working on this month as part of the Graduate Developer Community is the Meet a Mentor program, an effort to get experienced developers into universities to help students decide on their path through software, experiment with open source software and find their passion. You can read more about this on the GDC Blog

As for the recruitment side we work with many of the best Java employers in London and cover every sector from investment banking to social gaming, working with blue chips to startups. We are currently recruiting for a few positions and for those that think recruiting tech talent is tricky, I invite you to hire a good honest sales person and come back to me. We have met a great candidate though, and will keep you posted.

Thanks from all the continual support from LJC members, any feedback or anything we can do for you let me know. Here are our latest positions:

We have a few roles involving low level multithreaded programming and concurrency. The first is within the financial industry: http://jobs.recworks.co.uk/online/ViewJob.aspx?JobId=864 the next in a gaming company: http://developercareers.recworks.co.uk/online/ViewJob.aspx?JobId=725 Previous financial or gaming, domain experience is not necessary, just a high level of interest in writing low-level multithreaded code. The roles are both permanent and paying £40-£70,000. If you’re interested let me know.

Interestingly this month we have started to get a lot of interest for candidates with a combination of development and operations/testing interest. Some may have read about our Developer in Test position, we also received a junior role and have a roles for an Automated Operations Engineer – The salaries are fairly open as the company are more interested in candidates with an honest interest in this area. Let me know if you’re interested.

We have also had a bit of interest for Java Developers looking into NoSQL technologies. We have an ecommerce travel company, and a gaming company interested in Agile Java developers. Ideally candidates with a classic Spring/Hibernate that are either using NoSQL products on a daily basis or just have a passing interest in Cassandra, Mongo or any of the NoSQL data stores.

PLEASE NOTE: As always we are most interested in candidates that contribute to open source projects or have their own pet projects on the go, are involved in the LJC or another user group. It’s worth noting that almost every company we are invited into asks for our services because they are struggling to connect with passionate candidates who are engaging with collaborative projects in some way – I stress this to almost every developer I meet, working with open source projects, blogging or getting more involved with the LJC will have a deep impact on your career. We will offer constant opportunities to make this as easy as possible, see below for a list of ways you can get involved.

Training – Skills Matter

SkillsMatter are the premier European training organisation who run courses in Central London. They host many of our free evening events. They have upcoming events on a host of technologies including Spring, TDD, Groovy and Grails. More details can be found about all their courses here

Member benefits

As always, you can check out our growing list of benefits of being involved in the LJC including the Aggrity site, the LJC Book club and discounts to conferences. This month we started working with the O’Reilly User Group, meaning we can get free review copies of books, all you need to do is speak to Anji at ac@recworks.co.uk and she’ll sort it for you. For more information see our Benefits Google doc

Coming this month

Please check out our events email which should be with you later this week, it will have details not only of our events but the others going on with other communities. Our NoSQL panel is about to be announced for May. We have our event tomorrow night at QCon and an event from Jan Machacek and Oracle’s Simon Ritter in the pipeline so stay tuned.

Final note

Over the last four years, we have watched as the LJC has developed and even transformed the careers of developers in London. There is a long and growing list of speakers that did their first lightning talks with the LJC and are now being invited to speak at international conferences, we have people that are organising their own user groups, starting businesses they love or working within OSS projects they would never have known about. Software development is a career like no others, you can have a massive effect on your career in your own spare time and we are happy to make it as easy as possible. We are always looking for more of you to get involved with what we are doing so if you would ever like to get involved in:

- Organising an event,
– Giving a lightning talk
– Adopting a JSR
– Contributing a book review
– Attending a mentor event

…or just being an opinion for which direction we should take the LJC in next then let us know. At the very least, please forward this post on to anyone you know that may get some value from our events.

We are looking forward to seeing you soon.

Warm regards,
Barry Cranford, Martijn Verburg & Ben Evans

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