Communities are powerful resources to learn about anything you want. They can be defined as a group of people who share similar interest and get together to talk about those topics that fascinate them the most.
But not only that, very often communities offer opportunities that you wouldn’t find without getting in contact with others. For Android developers that could mean job opportunities, meeting different people or even starting a new personal project.
Instructor Isabel Palomar told us about its importance by saying that communities are places where you can learn from people but also teach to people.
For beginner developers this is really important to know, as they will find in the Android community solid documentation and a group of people willing to help them.
Communities help you to learn
When we interviewed Miguel Morales on How to get the most out of your online education, he told us one of the advantages of e-learning are the connections it generates.
When the learning experience is focused on the learners, instead of being focused on the teacher, there is a significant improvement. This is because students have many ways to learn about what they want.
They watch videos, read texts, do exercises and learn from what other classmates share on discussion forums. That way the learning process gets diversified.
“We need to socialize and reflect from the community itself in order to learn”, Miguel said.
Android Communities and How to start your own
For Adrián Catalán, the role of communities can be summarised as a social capital and everything that this implies. He once heard someone saying: “Your networh is your network”, meaning your value as a professional is given by the contacts you have.
He believes this is what matters most about communities because they create learning methods, job opportunities, friendships, and the knowledge you gain goes further compared with the one you get when working exclusively by your own.
No matter what you are looking for it is highly probable you’ll find it in the community. Adrián told us:
“All the instructors participating in this course will speak well of communities because they have helped us improve our knowledge. Whether we talk about meeting, events or reunions of multiple communities from the region. This cultural exchange is enriching”.
But, what about those who live in countries where communities are not that common? Adrián suggests to start one. Someone told him once that the only thing you need to start a community is to start a community.
And he know what´s he is talking about since he helped founding GDG Guatemala. Soon he realized conferences were needed in the community, so he started those too.
“It’s not necessary to have large groups, it can be a couple of people who get together to talk about Android; eventually it will grow. However, there are online communities as well”.
In relation to that last part, the Professional Android Developer course could be a great place to start knowing people and start a community.
A community that keeps growing
Android community has grown in a natural way, due in large part for being an open source code platform. For instructor Noe Branagan, now there are more people collaborating on projects than before.
As he told us on an article about best practices for Android App development, Android only suggests things you should do as a developer, they are no demands.
Given his experience gathering people for creating community, he said:
“Each region of the world has its own peculiarity based on the community. In Latin America, for example, it is growing due in part to the need we’re having: Companies have realized they need mobile tools, it starts as simple as generating an online presence but then they realize that it´s good for their business”.
There you go, this is why communities are so important for Android developers, we encourage you to join one and get most out of this experience.