WrocławJUG, or Wrocław Java User Group, is a group of programmers, architects and Java enthusiasts based in Poland. The goal of this tech Community is to deepen the knowledge, get to know new technologies, frameworks and methods of application development on the JVM platform. They also take care of other competences needed in professional life (eg software craftsmanship or related technologies). WroclawJUG organizes Meetups and Workshops on a regular basis.
Let’s have a chat with Marcin Stachniuk, one of the leaders of this incredible Tech Community.
Hi Marcin! Glad to meet you! How did you start your adventure in the world of tech Communities?
While I’m the organiser of WroclawJUG where I’m mainly engaged, I also attend other meetings and local communities.
I took part in local community meetings and saw great value in this – you can learn something and talk to people similar to yourself, including community leaders.
The previous leader found it difficult in finding time to organize these meetings and not wanting the community to die, I took matters into my own hands and transferred them, of course with the consent of the previous leader.
What are the main activities of your meetup?
So far, in 2018, we organized 24 meetings …. and it’s not the end of the year yet! Three of them were workshops, then there were meetings, lightning talks, and regular presentations.
Of course, we focused on what is related to JVM (Spring, OAuth 2.0 in Spring Boot, memory model, JNI), but there are also databases (Cassandra, MongoDB, Spark Core), general topics like API, SOLID, DDD and quite soft (Leader be, Blockchain, how to sit at the computer).
This is the knowledge we get given on a tray in an affordable form. For me, it is often faster than searching for information on a given topic.
What does the Community mean to you?
To me, this is an opportunity to prove myself as an organizer, also it’s a truely satisfying feeling that I am doing something good for others.
From University to Company: what has been the road that brought you here?
After my graduation in Information Systems Engineering (INS) at Politechnika Wrocławska, Widział Elektroniki, I started working for Collibra as a Backend Engineer. In Collibra we do not have divisions for mid, senior, expert, etc
I found an ad on https://nofluffjobs.com/ where the price range was given and I appreciated it very much.
I liked the approach to programmers. Collibra is a product company (ie it works on one product that makes money for the company‘s maintenance) and the developers are considered a very important part of the company.
Do you feel supported by your Company in the growth of your professionality? Do you enjoy your company culture?
Absolutely! Every 2 weeks, we have Innovation Day – all day we can learn something new, check out an interesting tool, which can later be used in the project.
Furthermore, every two weeks we have a shared dinner that we eat together, an annual team building trip for the whole company (eg Lisbon, Las Vegas, Malta) and smaller team integrations.
In addition, on the daily basis, we have Ping pong, Playstation, stick, chillout room, in order to take a break from our continued work in front of a screen.
What I like the most about Collibra, is that it supports local initiatives like conferences (eg SegFault) and meetup groups: ReactJS Wrocław, WroclawJUG and it permits developers to devote some of their working time in preparing a presentation for other conference.
Which technologies do you use for your work?
Java, PostgreSQL, Spring, Hibernate, TypeScript, React, Redux, Relay, GraphQL.
Have you ever considered the chance to change your role or your Company?
Being in IT I will definitely want to be close to the code, so perhaps an architect, expert or trainer. Outside of IT, I would like to be a snowboarding instructor. Or a snowboard guide who gets up in the morning, checks the conditions on the slope, whether it is safe, whether they can go down an avalanche and decide which lifts to run. Then it leaves the first trace in fresh snow.
Apart from programming, how do you spend your free time?
I like to Snowboard, Splitboard, Wakeboard, bike and seam (swimming in ice water). So well I like to do some outdoor activities when I leave my keyboard 🙂
When did you meet the computer for the first time?
I was about 14 years old. Computers slowly appeared in Polish homes and they fascinated me from the very beginning. I started reading as many books as possible because I wanted to become a hacker, and I read that a Hacker was basically an outstanding programmer. So I learned C, which took me some time. I also started to look into Assembly. After a while, I was surprised by how much I could already do using these, so I decided to carry on that way.
Are you involved in any Open Source project?
I try to support Open Source projects as much as my free time allows me. I contribute to shipkit.org which is a plugin for Gradle, which easily provides us with a continuous delivery environment for Java libraries and Gradle plugins. Recently, I’m also writing a tool to help you to migrate from the Code First approach to Schema First in GraphQL: https://github.com/mstachniuk/graphql-schema-from-introspection-generator
How do you keep yourself updated when it comes to the last technologies?
Participation in local communities, conferences, watching presentations from the conference, reading and testing new technologies.
In your experience, what are the pros and cons of Java?
Java is a good programming language and a large company cares for the development of this language. JVM is very polished and optimized, thanks to which other languages operating on JVM were created like Kotlin, Scala, Groovy, Clojure, Gosu …
It is currently the most popular programming language and it will remain for a long time.
The downside is that once Java may become the current Cobol.
How do you think or hope it will evolve in the future?
New constructions will be added to the language to satisfy the community, but I would prefer to leave Java as it is, and instead use Kotlin, for example
What has been the biggest challenge you have ever met?
Transferring some functionality from one system to another, where no one understood how it works, and the business did not know how it should work in a highly corporate environment, where no one wants to help you … But it eventually succeeded.
Thanks Marcin! WroclawJUG is one of the communities supporting Codemotion Berlin! Come to meet them on November 20-21!