MadridJS was founded in August 2011. The main organizers at that point were Israel Alcázar and Enrique Amodeo. In 2014 I started helping, and in 2015 I became the main organizer. Manu Fosela and Javi Vélez joined later and have been a great help.
How many people are part of the community in Madrid? Are there a lot of Java developers?
How often do you meet? Where?
We usually meet once a month, with a summer break from July to August. At this point we have done 99 Meetups. We don’t have a fixed place; we get offers all the time from friendly companies, bootcamps and coworking spaces, and use whatever place is more adjusted to our needs.
How many people are participating in the MadridJS? What is the ratio of men: women?
The number of active members is usually around 500:
Meetups usually gather between 30 and 80 attendants.
The ratio of women is one of the sore spots in our Meetup: they are hardly 10~15%. We have tried hard to have more female speakers and attendees but have not been too successful
Do you think that people from your country are accustomed to the existence of such groups? Are they interested in them?
Yes, there are many groups where anyone can learn about anything, from WordPress to Vue.js. Our main problem is to keep doing interesting things and to make people actually go to events, because we are all so busy, but I guess that is the case everywhere
What’s new in your community? In terms of technology and around you?
In terms of technology we are following closely on the recent developments in the language and in Node.js. Our colleague (and ex-organizer) Pablo Almunia is cooperating with the EcmaScript committee in the new specs.
In the personal space, precisely this month I am quitting as main organizer, and leaving the group in the capable hands of Manu and Javi.
What was your most popular / most attended meetup ever? What did you talk about? Who was the speaker?
It was a 2017 event about Vue.js where our friend Rafael Casuso told us about this emerging (at the moment) framework. We gathered around 150 attendees.
Are you organizing events or other initiatives?
I helped organize JSDayES from 2015 to 2017: it grew from nothing to an event with more than 700 attendees. I’m an organizer of Node.js Madrid, our sister meetup where we gather monthly to learn about Node.js Madrid. I’m also in the Program Committee for Codemotion, one of the largest technology conferences in Spain.
How do you maintain the user group – who finances you? Is there a membership fee?
We are a grassroots group led and organized by volunteers. We have an open GitHub repo where anyone can propose talks, for maximum transparency with the community.
I pay personally for the Meetup subscription which is not too high, around €50 per year. Membership is completely free and we don’t charge for meetups. We have had many sponsors that have offered mainly facilities, but have also paid for food and drinks after gatherings.
Is everything self-initiative? Do you plan to become part of a global unit of such a community?
What events and big conferences do you follow and try your best to attend?
I help Codemotion with program selection and thus follow them closely. I like attending other international conferences like FullStack London.
Do you plan visiting Bulgaria?
I would love to! But unless some conference invites me, I’m afraid I cannot justify the trip with my family
How can people join your user group or keep in touch with you?
You can also follow me on Twitter.
We will need some 5-7 HQ pictures from your meetups, photos of people from the community, etc. Thank you for your time!