[tpm] Kick starting a london perl mongers

Abram Hindle hindle1 at ualberta.ca
Wed Nov 30 09:34:43 PST 2011

I've got a bit of rambling to do about the subject. I have some 
experience organizing groups as I helped out with the Toronto Ruby Users 
Group, Victoria Perl Mongers, KW Perl Mongers, Toronto Perl Mongers, 
Toronto Lisp Users Group, Victoria Open Source Users Group, etc. to 
different extents.

Organizing is hard work and you're going to do have do a few hours of 
leg work to have a successful meet.

My recommendation would be to start a temporary meetup.com meetup group. 
The software is irritating and the service annoying but at least you 
advertise your group there. The cheapest long term platform beyond the 
PMs is twitter and github. Make a twitter and github.

I recommend starting a lonon perl blog and getting on planet perl so 
perl bloggers will notice you.

I recommend finding the london on reddit and announcing there.

Get on the london linux users group list, ask the moderator if you can 

Find any other form of "nerd church" even other languages like the 
python group or ruby group.  Be prepared to volunteer a tutorial.

Also UWO is a good resource. Try to find a computer science club or 
group there and advertise with them and get their permission to post a 

Once you get the word out I recommend finding another keener (not Jim 
Keener necessarily) and make them 2nd in the command. You need someone 
to do things when you're too busy to.

Free food is helpful. I recommend following Kitchener Waterloo 
(KW.PM.ORG)'s methodology. Anonymous donor donates pizza at the start of 
the meet. First 15 minutes of a meeting are news and eating pizza. 
Eventually people are ready to pay attention. This allows you to have a 
6:30-7:00 start time and not stress people out because they know they 
are going have food. Then afterwards fine a nearby establishment that 
isn't too loud (Burgundys was actually really nice for not being 
excessively loud for a pub) and stay out and visit.

You probably need to decide if you want to just do social meets, or have 
some kind of formal lecture structures. Formal lectures need chairs, a 
quiet room and a projector. This is where finding UWO people will help out.

If the Perl Mongers doesn't pan out, try a dynamic languages group or an 
open source software developers group.

Regardless, be creative at the start, provide people with some structure 
to latch on to and once you have people they will probably help you 
direct it.

* Social Networks in the real world are important but the virtual social 
networks can help you advertise [twitter, reddit, pm, github, etc.]
* Free food is good at the start
* Social or Formal
* Find a 2nd organizer :)
* Latch onto UWO, Computer Science undergraduates are both interested 
(they should be!) and useful (room booking and projectors). A faculty 
sponsor is better because their power to book rooms is much stronger.


On 11/29/2011 05:07 PM, Matthew Phillips wrote:
> The first step would be finding anyone else interested in Perl in 
> London interested in meeting monthly.
> Having gone to Western, I sadly can't name any companies that use Perl 
> in the general area, nor any mention of Perl while I was at school. So 
> that doesn't bode too well.
> Cheers,
> Matt
> On Tue, Nov 29, 2011 at 6:27 PM, Kartik Thakore 
> <thakore.kartik at gmail.com <mailto:thakore.kartik at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     I was thinking lonon.pm <http://lonon.pm>
>     Sent from my iPhone
>     On 2011-11-29, at 5:22 PM, Jim Keenan <jkeen at verizon.net
>     <mailto:jkeen at verizon.net>> wrote:
>     >
>     >
>     >
>     > On 11/29/11, Kartik Thakore<thakore.kartik at gmail.com
>     <mailto:thakore.kartik at gmail.com>> wrote:
>     >
>     >> I am a londoner and would like to kick start a London perl monger
>     >> group. What should I do? Any ideas?
>     >
>     > First, get into a tussle with London.pm (UK) over naming rights ;-)
>     >
>     >
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