I always wanted to share my thoughts about the importance of the tech meetups in Kerala and how developers, the companies and the tech industry in Kerala can benifit from this gathering. But I think most of the people who attend the meetups have an idea of that. If you ask me why I'm specifically talking about Kerala; all other cities in Inida have very active communities on different technologies. There are lot's of events going on in other cities like Banglore, Pune, Delhi, etc but it's difficult to bring a similar one in Kerala, although there are a lot of tech companies here. Any way, sharing some of my random thoughts below.
The advantages for the developers are quite obvious, we are learning new stuffs and meeting people who've good experience in different tools and technologies. Meetups provide a platform for us to share our experiece and knowledge with people who need it. Most importantly, it's a really good place for people who want to get more exposure in this industry.
Industry currently require a newer breed of developers who can work on multiple platforms and even on designing part. Software development is not just about programming, developers should know about the tools that streamlines development process and make them more productive. It's difficult for us to gain knowledge on this kind of stuffs, while we have to work under tight schedules. But we get to introduce to new tools and technologies in meetups and other events. What the we really need is a cultural change which we can achieve through the meetups and discussion groups. We need to be enthusiastic about technology passionate about what we do. We should also help/guide those who are new to programming, including students, to break the barriers they are facing.
Kerala, especially Cochin and Trivandrum are becoming a really great place for start-ups and small scale tech companies. The only thing that we'are in short of is talented and experienced developers required for implementing innovative ideas. If you ever tried to hire a good developer, you know how difficult is to get one. At the same time, they might have a good number of developers who are not focused on latest technologies.
This is where companies can make use of meetups like KeralaJS and KRUG. Meetups provide a place for companies to train their existing employees in new/existing technologies, with free of cost. Companies need to encourage their employees to be a part of this community and participate in events. They can host meetups or other events to promot this culture among their employees. Many companies are already a part of this community and and help us in organizing our events. Unfortunately, there are lot more who are not even aware of the meetups happening around Cochin.
When we have more and more expeirienced developers who are expertized in different technologies, companies can work on more challenging and innovative ideas. When we grows, our companies will grow and the industry will grow along with it!