Attended a meetup of the Miami Ruby Brigade last night. It has been a while since I've been to a developer's gathering. Two interesting observations.
First, this was a really interesting and smart bunch of people. Now, I say that's interesting because coming from the insular Microsoft Universe one has no idea of how much creativity and energy exists in other communities.
Second, this meetup was about Patterns, as in the Gang of Four (G.o.F) Patterns. And that is also interesting and surprising. The mid and late nineties were a Pattern-rich time for me and many developers in the Microsoft Universe. The ATL or Active Template Library used by many of us had interesting patterns (e.g., the Upside Down Inheritance). Similarly, MFC had its good share of them as well. But, about 10 years ago, Patterns and its vocabulary seem to have disappeared from the typical Microsoft developer's vernacular. Whether an artifact of the .Net/ASP.NET framework and the prescribed implementation "anti-patterns" advocated by pundits or caused by the effect of cosmic rays, I can't really explain this disappearing act. The fact is that aside from the venerable Singleton, I have not heard about Patterns for quite a while. Hence, it was fascinating to see a community of developers who not only cares about them, but embraces them.
I am looking forward to other meetup.