One of the great things to come out of this past Saturday's Vermont Code Camp was the opportunity for people from various local technology user groups to connect with one another. People from the Vermont.NET User Group were there (the .NET group spearheaded organizing the event) and I also saw some friends from the Burlington, VT PHP Users Group. Based on turnout at the Ruby on Rails session, it looks like the Vermont Ruby On Rails User Group may be restarting soon. The Vermont Area Group of Unix Enthusiasts (VAGUE) was represented as well as the Green Mountain Oracle Users Group, the New England Adobe User Group, the VT SQL Server Users Group and the Vermont Software Developers' Alliance (vtSDA).
User groups are a great way to meet new people, learn new skills and keep up with the latest trends in your field. Sometimes you'll even be treated to pizza and swag. Whatever technology you work with, I hope you'll find a local user group that you can attend — or start one yourself!
On a related note, the upcoming (10/26) Vermont 3.0 Innovation Jam looks like it will be a lot of fun:
[Showcasing] the coolest companies in the Green Mountains[, this is] not just a job expo. The event will examine the uniqueness of the state’s entrepreneur-founded creative technology companies while acknowledging the start-up drive that lives within each and every one of us.
Update (9/15): To clarify, the Vermont Software Developers' Alliance (vtSDA) is not a user group but instead, "create[s] collaborative and knowledge sharing opportunities that promote and grow Vermont software businesses." They are also a primary sponsor of the aforementioned Vermont 3.0 Innovation Jam.