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If you want to know what’s happening in the Tampa Bay tech scene, or want to know what tech, entrepreneur, or nerd events are happening in and around the Tampa Bay area, it’s easy: just subscribe to the Tampa Bay tech, entrepreneur, and nerd events mailing list!

It’s got the same content as the weekly post here in Global Nerdy, but delivered straight to your inbox! It’s free of charge, “all ham and no spam,” and I don’t sell your email address (I’ll explain why below).

Why do I make these weekly events postings and the mailing list?

According to the 2019 edition of the annual tech talent report [PDF link] put out by CBRE, Tampa is the top small tech talent market in North America. Our tech talent population grew by over 10,000 people — an increase of about 28% — between 2013 and 2018. With techies in leading markets becoming less available or moving to smaller markets or the Sun Belt, our small but scrappy scene is in a position to put the area on the larger tech map — if we’re willing to put in the work.

Doing the work we do for a living is only part of the job. The other part — and it’s a crucial one — is building a lively tech scene that extends beyond office hours. We need to get together, make friends, share ideas, find work, form clubs, start businesses or side hustles, and do all those things ordinary cities into tech powerhouses. I was there when Toronto was a tech backwater in the early 2000s, but by teaming up with other community-minded techies who brought back their experience from working at tech centers during the dot-com bubble, we built it up into one of the top 3 tech cities in North America. I’d like to help to make the same thing happen here.

Hence my weekly “tech events” post, and thanks to a suggestion by Justin Davis, it’s also available as a weekly email digest.

I don’t charge anything for the list, nor will I make money by selling your email addresses. I plan to profit from the list by helping to make Tampa Bay’s tech scene an active, lively, and prosperous one. So please — subscribe to the list, find some events that interest you, go attend them, and go forth and help build the Tampa tech scene!

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I get asked this question two or three times a week

by Joey deVilla on November 20, 2019

Sometimes, when it comes up in conversation that I know how to program Android and iOS applications, someone will say “Hey, I have an app idea — do you want to make it for me?” That’s why I laughed so hard at the most recent episode of Rick and Morty.

Here’s the opening scene from that episode:

In most cases, I politely demur — I can quite truthfully back out by saying “I’ve already got a lot on my plate right now.” Does this happen to you, and what do you do?

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Coming soon…

by Joey deVilla on November 20, 2019

Cover of “iOS Apprentice, 8th edition”

Take note of the first author in the list!

The early access edition is available now, and the finalized edition is coming out very, very soon. Watch this space!

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Every week, dedicated individuals and organizations in around the Tampa Bay do more than just their “day jobs”. They get involved in events where they share their knowledge, make connections and friends, and gather together to build strong tech, entrepreneur, and nerd communities. That’s why I do this every week: I put together a list of tech, entrepreneur, and nerd events to make sure that they can be found and you can attend them!

Here’s what’s happening in Tampa Bay this week!

This weekly list is posted as a voluntary service to the Tampa tech community. With the notable exceptions of Tampa iOS Meetup and Coders, Creatives and Craft Beer — both of which I run — most of this information comes from Meetup.com, EventBrite, and other local event announcement sites. I can’t guarantee the accuracy of the dates and times listed here; if you want to be absolutely sure that the event you’re interested in is actually taking place, please contact the organizers!

Monday, November 18, 2019

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Inno on Fire is Tampa Bay Inno’s inaugural awards ceremony recognizing the region’s entrepreneurs, executives, startups and tech businesses that are on fire. The event will feature “networking, tasty bites, cocktails, craft beer and wine, along with the very special announcement of the ‘Inno Blazer,’” where one standout company or individual from each category to be honored as a blazer, which will be announced at the event. Blazers will receive, yes, a red blazer. Tickets are still available at $55.

We’ll be celebrating the individuals, companies and organizations that are driving innovation across a variety of categories, including…

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

At Wednesday’s Tampa QA Meetup, Jeff Fudge of Green Pages Technologies will present DevOps 101, where he’ll answer questions such as: What is DevOps and why does it matter? What problems will DevOps help testers solve? How do I set up CI/CD pipelines for automated tests? What mistakes can I avoid? Why is continuous testing important?

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Thursday’s Women in Technology International meetup’s topic is Your Lion Inside Rewriting the Narrative for Women. This event will feature Kim Faith, an award-winning author, speaker, trainer, coach, and consultant who has worked with over thirty-thousand corporate leaders from companies including Amazon, American Airlines, Boeing, GE, Lockheed Martin and Target.

Friday, November 22, 2019

Do you have an idea you’d like to pursue? Do you want to work with a passionate startup team? Don’t know where to start or who to start with? Startup Weekend Orlando is THE place to look for a team, create a prototype of your idea, validate your business idea, and receive feedback from experienced entrepreneurs, all in one weekend. This is no exaggeration — Orlando teams won the Global Startup Battle across 150 cities and 15,000 participants in 2017 AND 2018. That’s the last 2 years in a row! Help them make it a 3-peat!

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Do you have an upcoming event that you’d like to see on this list?

If you know of an upcoming event that you think should appear on this list, please let me know!

Join the mailing list!

If you’d like to get this list in your email inbox every week, enter your email address below. You’ll only be emailed once a week, and the email will contain this list, plus links to any interesting news, upcoming events, and tech articles.

Join the Tampa Bay Tech Events list and always be informed of what’s coming up in Tampa Bay!


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Tweet of the day: “Me reviewing pull requests”

by Joey deVilla on November 16, 2019

Let’s all be a little more careful than this, shall we?

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Thursday is World Usability Day, and what better day for the Tampa Bay UX Meetup? Want to shape the future of one of Tampa Bay’s biggest meetups? Come tomorrow and take part in Designing for the Future of TBUX!

The event details

Here’s what they plan to do:

It’s time to celebrate in Tampa Bay with a workshop focused on designing the future of TBUX! The Tampa Bay UX 2019 Theme is Designing for the Future We Want. Design has a huge influence on people’s lives. What we design today can have a lasting impact on the world. Let’s use this year’s theme, “Design for the Future We Want”, to focus our work to improve the world through better experiences and create a better future together.

How do we design and build the future of the Tampa Bay UX group? What does UX look like in Tampa Bay? This event will be interactive and we’ll use the design thinking process to discover and test solutions to how we can better educate our communities about the value and craft of User Experience.

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If you’re looking at “write once, run on Android and iOS” tools, you’ll want to check out Flutter. If you’re in the Tampa Bay area tomorrow evening, your chance to get an intro to Flutter is at the Tampa Bay Full Stack Meetup, whose topic will be Introduction to mobile development with Flutter.

The event details

  • When: Wednesday, November 13, 2019, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.
    Networking and food from 6:00 – 6:30
    Presentation starts at 6:30
  • Where: ClearlyAgile’s 4th floor conference room, 201 E. Kennedy Blvd (Fifth Third Bank building)
  • Where to register: Introduction to mobile development with Flutter Meetup page

Here’s what they plan to do:

In this meetup we will go over the basics of this framework created by Google which uses Dart as its programming language. We will learn how to install Dart and the Flutter SDK and start creating a basic app. You will see how easy is creating a Flutter app (really fast process) using either the CLI or Visual Studio Code’s Command Palette. We will know how the file structure in the solution looks like and understand its architecture.

Want a head start? Try installing Flutter and deploying your first app.

Why Flutter (say, vs. React)?

You can’t talk about Flutter without talking about the 800-pound gorilla in the cross-platform app development sphere: React Native. Both are trying to solve the problem of developing apps for the two very different platforms of Android and iOS without having to write two different applications using two different SDKs and two different languages.

React Native enjoys a number of advantages, including the first-mover advantage, being a Facebook project, the use of the most popular programming language in the world (JavaScript), and a strong development community. On the other hand, Flutter has a couple of challenges, including:

  • It’s a Google project: While Google is one of the biggest names in Silicon Valley and probably won’t be going away anytime soon, they have a reputation for abandoning projects, including AngularJS, whose end of life happens in June 2021. The farther away a project is from their core cash cows of search and advertising, the more precarious its position.
  • It uses Dart as its programming language. Dart is a Google project, which means that it’s in the same precarious position as anything not directly tied to search or ads. It’s also not as well known or supported as JavaScript.
  • It doesn’t have the maturity of React Native. React Native’s just been around longer, has more developers, and a much bigger community.

So why Flutter?

  • Excellent documentation. The Flutter team have done an amazing job here. React may have more third-party tutorials, but when it comes to direct-from-the-source docs, Flutter beats React Native.
  • Performant architecture. Flutter has native mobile OS components built into its framework as opposed to React Native, which uses JavaScript bridges to connect to native components and modules. Flutter apps have better performance.
  • On-par support for both Android and iOS. React Native is considerably better for iOS app development than Android app development, while Flutter builds Android and iOS apps equally well.
  • Faster development. With “hot reload”, you can make changes and test them almost immediately without having to restart the app. If you’ve ever had to tweak the look and feel of an app, you’ll appreciate the speed of hot reload.
  • Better-looking apps. Flutter makes use a widget sets to get the look and feel you want, with Material Design widgets, Cupertino widgets, and even the capacity for you to roll your own widgets.
  • And finally…

I’ve taken the approach of balancing my skills in the same way financial people balance their stock portfolio:

  • I invest the majority — about 70% — in “sure thing” skills, such as mainstream platforms, programming languages, and technologies. In my case, this is Android and iOS, C#, JavaScript, Kotlin, Python, and Swift.
  • I invest 10% of my time in skills that I consider to be longshots. For me, this is blockchain technology.
  • The remaining time — about 20% — I spend on “maybe” technologies, and one of these is Flutter. At the very least, its in-language reactive way for building UIs mirrors SwiftUI in the iOS world.

See you at the Full Stack Meetup!

 

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