My personal journey with programming started more than two decades ago. Back then, the one language that I was very passionate and determined to master was Java. Early in my career, I would find any opportunity to attend a Sun Microsystems event like the Sun Tech Days, where I had the opportunity to learn about the constantly evolving platform that went from desktop, to enterprise and then on mobile devices. I can still remember watching the cool things you could do with Lego Mindstorms and an embedded Java runtime, and the vision that JXTA was going to revolutionise the Internet of Things with its state-of-the-art, peer-to-peer technology.
More importantly though, I was inspired and even as a noob, I got involved in the community through the Singapore Java Users Group. While there have been many incarnations of JUGs in Singapore, SJUG was the group I grew up with. I am grateful to have been involved and the opportunity to get to know luminaries like Dennis Lee (a.k.a. smallfry), Chew Boon Hong and Chang Sau Sheong.
Then there were the Sun Evangelists who travelled to the lesser known place where I spent my growing years. As I watched them on stage, I admired, and perhaps envied them. And it became my dream that some day, I too could be travelling around talking about what I am passionate about. Always being at the cutting edge of technology, trying out cool new toys and then proudly showing everyone else what you can do it. These were my notable few:
- Sang Shin a.k.a. javapassion
- Chuk-Mun Lee
- Simon Ritter
- Rags Srinivas
I never got to be a Sun Evangelist, but I did find a similar path and earned my spades!
As we commemorate the 25th anniversary of a technology that helped shape the Internet, I wanted to honour the people who inspired me and were in many ways, a role model to me. I will attempt to reach out to you and hopefully be able to send you a Java Challenge Coin as a little token of appreciation.
From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU for sharing your knowledge and passion.