Online Communities

An “online community” is a Web site devoted to a specific area of interest, such as game development or PHP programming. People pursuing computer jobs can find online communities helpful, as they can provide a network of people with whom to interact.

Some online communities are part of a computer organization membership, such as the computer game artists’ online community and the Computer Graphics Society’s http://forums.cgsociety.org/ online forum. Others are independent of any association.

Some online communities are free, with no registration required; some require registration (which means a bit of junk e-mail, usually); and some have membership fees.

Common attributes of many online communities include event and meetup announcements, articles, code samples, forums and blogs (sometimes called “journals”), coding competitions, marketplaces, resources (such as wikis, eBooks, etc.), e-mail newsletters, real-time chat, and industry news.

Not only can online communities offer technical advice and assistance, but they are also a way of connecting with other individuals in the often impersonal world of computer programming and information technology.

Here is a brief sampling of some of the computer-related online communities that are available, organized by type of community.

Programming Competitions: TopCoder (www.topcoder.com) and CodeChef (www.codechef.com)

Technology Information Blogs: Tech Guru (www.techquark.com), Tech World (www.techworld.com), TechNewsWorld (www.technewsworld.com), and SlashDot (http://slashdot.org)

General Programming and Information Technology: Stack Overflow (www.stackoverflow.com), AllSyntax (www.allsyntax.com), Technical Talk (www.technicaltalk.net), and TechRepublic (www.techrepublic.com)

Web Development: SitePoint (www.sitepoint.com/forums), Dream in Code (www.dreamincode.net), and JavaLobby (http://java.dzone.com)

Information Security: SearchSecurity (www.searchsecurity.com)

Last Updated: 04/26/2014

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