Juha-Matti Santala
Community Builder. Dreamer. Adventurer.

We’re building community for Python developers

It’s been 8 years since I started Turku ❤️ Frontend community. I had always been more of a backend developer but as I transitioned into a non-developer role as a community manager, I wanted to stay updated with everything happening in the fast-moving frontend developer in case the community career didn’t pick up.

8 years later, we’ve organized over 50 events and have had 500+ developers and nearly 30 companies involved in the community. And it’s been a lovely journey and I’m very happy with the community we’ve managed to build.

Personally though, I’ve always found the most enjoyment in the Python community. I’ve spoken in Python conferences and meetups across Europe and always look forward to traveling to Python conferences and hanging out with fellow Python developers.

I’ve wanted to do something in the local Python scene as well but the timing hasn’t been right. The past 5 years, I’ve lived in Helsinki and Berlin and even though I managed to keep Turku ❤️ Frontend events running thanks to our great team in Turku, it didn’t feel right for starting a new community.

Now I’m back in Turku and for the entire year, I’ve been pondering about starting a Python community here. A month ago I had lunch with Dan and that lunch turned into an afternoon brainstorming session and we decided to start the community together.

Dan came up with a great name: archipylago which is a combination of archipelago (a very Turku thing) and Python. I like creative names and once we hit that, we both knew it was the right one. I bought the domain, built a website, set up a Meetabit group and started spreading the news.

Our first events will start in January and we’re planning to do regular meetups every other month and hands-on programming sprints every other. Doing more sprints and workshops - anything where we can come together to actually write code and learn together - was one of the discussion points we had at the end of PyCon Sweden in November.

You can read more about our plans in our introductory blog post from turku import archipylago.

I’m very excited to kickoff this new community. I hope that eventually over time, this will lead to us bringing back PyCon Finland conferences.

If you’re interested in getting involved, I quote the aforementioned blog post:

If you're a developer interested in Python, join us in TurkuDev discord's archipylago channels and register in Meetabit to make sure you don't miss out when we start sharing information of the upcoming events.
If you work in a company that uses Python, how about you host our meetup? Get in touch either in Discord or via email (juhamattisantala at gmail.com) and let's chat!
And if you'd like to share something in an upcoming meetup or sprint, get in touch too! You don't need to be an expert presenter or a seasoned senior developer: everyone's welcome and we can help you with your presentation too.


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