I have been following the ALT.NET group for a while now. The tech talk is great, although a lot of the threads get bogged down with topics around the group’s identity, leadership, direction etc, which can become a bit distracting.
One of these posts was around Martin Fowler’s suggestion that the group consider writing a manifesto to act as a guide for the community. I like the idea for the primary reason that it may cut through the identity crisis that keeps coming up in threads (and have lead to suggestions of splitting the group). I ended up suggesting one:
“We are a group of people who are passionate about improving the way we develop software.
We recognise there is no single solution, but instead there are multitudes of alternatives that can be applied to different situations.
Our community is a place for sharing these alternatives, so that together we can learn, teach, and encourage new ideas.”
That pretty much sums up what ALT.NET is about to me – constantly learning and finding new ways to improve the way we develop software. Whether these alternatives are TDD, BDD, DDD, IoC, MVC, mocks, WebForms, Silverlight, WPF, or carrier pigeon doesn’t matter. The important thing is that people are talking about them and making informed decisions that suit them and their requirements.
I ended up getting a couple of positive responses to it, including from notables like Ayende, Justice and Bil (1, 2, 3). It’ll probably get lost in the flood of posts to the group, but I like the idea that anyone can contribute and potentially make a positive difference.
UPDATE: This ended up on the ALT.NET wiki, thanks to Bil (until someone decides to remove it :-) ). Now if only I could make a contribution with my 1337 technical skillz instead of my Dilbertish mission statement generation abilities ;-)