D'Arcy from Winnipeg
Solution Architecture, Business & Entrepreneurship, Microsoft, and Adoption

Reflections on INETA

Monday, May 4, 2015 4:23 PM

It was announced this week that INETA, the International .NET Association, was shutting down operations. While some of us knew it would come to this eventually, its given many of us pause to reflect on INETA and how its presence impacted the developer community worldwide.

I would not be where I am today if not for INETA.

Strong statement, but true. In 2005 I submitted an essay about my role in the community as a user group lead to a contest where INETA would send selected individuals to Tech Ed 2005 all expenses paid. I was picked and off to Orlando I went. There I met lifelong friends for the first time, and through them more people who are still lifelong friends. I was going to list them all but it would end up being you reading a list of names, so let me name the 5 who were part of the infamous “There’s only room for 5 but there’s 6 of us” drive in Orlando: Chris Williams, Rob Zelt, Caleb Jenkins, Matt Ranlett, and Brendon Schwartz.

Through INETA and becoming a Membership Mentor I connected with User Groups across Western Canada and made more friendships that have endured: Jennifer Pearcey in Saskatoon, Gary Pronych in Regina, Don Belcham in Edmonton, Nolan Zak in BC.* It was because of INETA that I drove out to support a guy named James Chambers in Brandon who was starting a .NET UG there.

While INETA would eventually cut off funding speakers for Canada (its a long story, find me and we’ll talk over beers), they were responsible for top talent like Rocky Lhotka coming to Winnipeg, Kathleen Dollard doing a tour across the Canadian prairies, and Andy Dunn doing an XNA talk in Calgary as just some examples. INETA *did* support Canada and was a huge part of the Canadian user groups’ growth and success.

INETA afforded me opportunities to meet fantastic people passionate about technology and software development communities, and for that I will always be grateful for my involvement with INETA. It’s legacy is definitely being carried on.


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