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New online vJUG born to connect all Java developers far from local meetups

We’ve always tried to go the extra mile with communities, none more so that with our long-term JRebel sponsorship for Java User Groups (JUGs). After all, we are a company of Java developers with JVM bytecode rushing through our veins!

Did you know that inside ZT we have many developers who themselves own or lead JUGs and many more who travel to present at them?

We believe that JUG meetings and other physical get-togethers (e.g. events/conferences, hackathons, BoFs, meetups and hangouts) are truly the greatest form of collaboration, community and content, but if you can’t be there then you lose out big time. If don’t live near an active JUG, or your time schedule is challenging, or you’re lazy, then you really lose out. Even though there are tons of JUGs around the world, there are a million reasons you might not make an in-person meetup…

So what can developers interested in being involved in this awesome global community do if they don’t live near a JUG? This is the issue our Technical Evangelist, Simon Maple, has been having and he’s on a mission to make things easier.

Introducing virtualJUG (vJUG)–a totally online Java User Group

Simon has launched virtualJUG, or vJUG for short, this week and will look to emulate aspects of JUGs in the online initiative. We know that there are clearly things which you can not imitate, such as the face to face meetup, or beers afterwards, which Simon describes in his recent blog post.

As our goals are closely aligned here, we’re giving Simon the necessary time to run this new JUG as well as provide the infrastructure he will need to run sessions, and generate the interaction needed to make the vJUG a success. ZeroTurnaround is proud to be named as sponsors for the vJUG and of course will be making JRebel licenses available to members as a monthly draw like we do for every JUG around the world. (Didn’t know about that? Ping Simon for more details). The only thing to hold you back would be…..NO INTERWEBZ!

Important note: This is for any JUG leaders out there getting heartburn about now, let me reiterate that vJUG wants to work with you, not compete with you! Your JUG and vJUG have totally different goals and purposes. Think of it as a vitamin boost for your JUG–one that only works if we collaborate together, one that brings all the benefits of an online, elective global community to your local JUG.

So what should you do to support this initiative?