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After one full month working at Tomitribe, I could not pass up on the opportunity to share my experiences and impressions with the world. I’d like to step back for a moment and reflect on the situation of how I arrived to be where I am now.

Perfect way to enter the game with my first Tomitribe blog entry.

Thanks Theresa for taking time to read it carefully.

My first experience

In the first part of my career, I worked in Paris with blind and visually impaired people. Aside from being my first real job, it’s been one of the best human experiences I’ve had in years. I worked on XML, XSL, and hardware devices to create electronic content, with audio synchronization. This was a very interesting and great way to get in touch with real life beyond technology.

The best human experiences I’ve had in years

The big company

On my next journey, I joined a well-established company named Worldline (an Atos company). Worldline and the overall groups within have been renamed and refocused over the years. This provided a huge opportunity to work on a plethora of projects, topics and technologies in addition to many different domains. I originally came aboard as a simple Java developer working on tasks as they fell my way. As I transitioned to being a Java web developer, I worked a lot with the Spring framework. Later I joined a lateral unit where I was able to work on more technical aspects of projects including implementing the brand new OpenEJB 3.0 (a part of Java EE 5). This was when I started working on Apache TomEE and discovered the Tribe, beginning with David Blevins.

The energy and good vibes exuding from the Open Source community was highly contagious and addictive. After some months of interaction with the community, I must admit, I fell in love with Open Source and the Apache spirit.  Was it related to David and other members who were already on the project?  Probably or most likely “YES”. But as I further expanded into other projects, I came to the understanding of what Open Source and the “Apache Way” really means.

What Open Source really means

Years later, I was finally appointed as Team leader. A nice personal accomplishment but unfortunately I was starving for time to contribute more efficiently, at least in terms of code.

I evolved into a speaker at the company,  evangelizing Java EE, Apache TomEE and Open Source technology. That’s where Romain appeared. He joined my team and the community. I think everyone who’s reading this article knows him, so it might be safe to say we can skip the introduction. Thanks Romain for all those years working with me 😉

One Open Source project snowballed into a career as an Open Source champion. With much anticipation to have yet another awesome experience, I eagerly joined the JCP to participate in the EJB 3.2 specification. This opened the floodgates to joining more Apache projects.

During this time, I decided to leave all management activities at Worldline to focus only on software and technical architecture. After almost 10 years at Worldline overlapping several years talking with David Blevins, and all those in the community (Amelia, Jon, Romain, Thiago, Andy, Mohammad, Daniel, Mark, Gerhard, just to name a few), the dream became a reality. Tomitribe was created and announced at JavaOne. With very little to no discussion, I decided to jump ship and join the “Tribe”, or shall I say the “Family” (because it’s not that far from reality).

There’s an expression

“It takes a village to raise a child”.

Can’t forget that expression. It was in 2009. Alone anything would have been possible nor that enjoyable.

The easiest professional decision ever

The decision was swiftly made; I submitted the resignation letter this last December, right after my son’s first birthday month. And now here we are, a Tomitribe member as of March 16th, 2014.

To just summarize one month, I would need another article. Looking ahead, there’s much interesting discussions, exciting challenges, professional travels and much more to be had.

Interesting discussions, exciting challenges, technologies … the Open Source way

Before joining Tomitribe, I had to combine two days into one. The official day job and the Open Source one ;-). Today, as it needs to be said, I have only one job! This is extremely important, as now I can work on something I love, Open Source, and with an open-minded company. That’s my daily work! I know I’m a lucky guy, as you can imagine, this also improved my personal life.

Yes it really did change my life. Working remotely with a flexible schedule makes it possible to enjoy more quality time with my family, especially the children, an adorable son who’s 5 months old and a sweet daughter who’s 4 years old.

Thanks to Tomitribe I can also continue with my absolute passion, handball. I’m a national referee and it makes me travel all over France during weekends. Having an adaptable workday makes life less physically exhausting.

To conclude, I would have titled this small article “while(true) {}” because I’m actually looking forward to meeting more people and getting more challenges all the while still enjoying my sweet family.

The dream has become a reality. Looking forward to welcoming more to the Tribe.

This first post is dedicated to my family who always provided me with support.

Jean-Louis Monteiro

Jean-Louis Monteiro

Jean-Louis is the Director of Engineering at Tomitribe. He is passionate about Open Source, an active contributor to Apache projects, a Java Community Process (JCP) member, and both the EJB 3.2 and the Java EE Security API expert groups. Jean-Louis loves speaking at Java User Groups, ApacheCon, JavaOne and Devoxx.

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