Monday, September 6, 2010

Where have all the St John's LUGs gone?

Where have all the St John's Local Users Groups gone?

At one time there was no less than two major technology groups meeting regularly in town (The St John's Linux and Dot Net Users Group respectively). These gatherings generally occurred on Memorial University campus, to a mixed crowd of students, professional practitioners, and hobbyists. Information and experiences would be shared, and networks established - the same as seen in LUGs for various technologies in many other major centers (Yes St John's is small, but it is the largest population center on the island). In recent years however these groups have effectively disappeared...

So I'd like to know what happened to these groups. Did the need for local support networks decline as software documentation improved? Has the ecosystem of platform user groups expanded to the point where there is not enough community to effectively have meetings (Apache, Linux, Java, .Net, BSD, Oracle, IBM, Mac, et al)? Have online communities replaced the need for local user groups?

Personally I found these groups very useful when I was just beginning my studies in Computer Science. I learned new technologies and networked my way into my first professional job. Not having these groups now I wonder how and where the local IT industry manages to trade stories and network like we did not too long ago.


A reader sent along the following link to NL IT Pro as one of the very few active IT oriented groups in town. Thanks for the link!

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