This year is the tenth birthday of the release of Clojure.
Although Clojure is gaining momentum and the community is growing at a steady pace worldwide, after ten years the number of places where active communities have formed is small and Clojure enthusiasts are still struggling to use their favorite language professionally.
In Europe for instance (which is my point of view), I can see strong communities have formed in northern Europe, in London for example, Finland, Netherlands or Germany, with conference taking place every year and companies supporting them and the Clojure job market.
In France however, the number of “Clojurians” is pretty small. There is a Clojure User Group in Paris with really active people, which is great. Other than that I don’t hear a whole lot about Clojure around here.
Earlier this year I was listening to Mohit Thatte’s conversation in this episode of Functional Geekery. He has created a Clojure conference in India, from scratch (!), in order to spread the word about Clojure and:
“nurture the small but growing community of Clojure programmers in India”.
This inspired me a lot and the fact that I couldn’t attend the seventh conj, for Clojure’s tenth birthday, added on top of all the frustration generated by having to use other technologies and programming models all day long made me decide to take actions.
I have made a proposal to talk about Lisp and Clojure at our local (Toulouse) Java User Group. The talk got accepted and I tried (more on this in a next article) to express the fundamentals of Lisp, Clojure and the way we treat information in our systems.
This talk was also a perfect tribune to announce the creation of the Toulouse Clojure User Group.
In 2013 when I was forced by this guy
(he was my boss) to adopt a Lisp, it felt like my brain was melting.
Now I’m frustrated almost every day I have to use anything else (which is part of why I don’t do frontend development anymore, all the other tech stacks in this field feel hostile and complected in every possible way).
My goal with this user group is more or less the same as any user group creator: to spread the word about a subject I am really excited about and nurture the community that will form around it.
I also want it to be a place where programmers can come and talk about other
functional programming languages: Haskell, Scala, Elixir, Erlang, Idris,
PureScript, Elm, Kotlin, Agda, Coq, etc.
There is no “functional meetup” around here and I think we could all benefit from cross pollination and sharing ideas, just expect me to be advocating for Clojure a little bit more.
Local user groups are local by definition, so I don’t expect people coming
to work in the area from more than 20 to 40km to attend an afterwork meetup.
But if you are in the area, and are interested in Clojure or in functional programming, let’s meet.