You're right about the Princeton group: it's dead. We had a couple of starts, but never got going regularly.
in reply to Re^2: In Need of Mentoring
in thread In Need of Mentoring
I know there are active Perl programmers in NJ. Up until a few months ago, I worked with a handful of them, in Middlesex county (about 1/2 hr from Morristown). I know some who live in NJ and work NY city, too. I think the tough thing is finding people who are interested enough in taking time out of their schedules at night to get together and talk about Perl. So many of the Perl people that I've had in-person relationships with have moved to other primary languages, and though they still use Perl they are not passionate about keeping up with it. I myself am not doing hands-on development at my job anymore, but Perl is still my most familiar and reliable language when I do need to get something done.
I just moved up to North Jersey, I'm about 15 minutes NW of Morristown now, and I've started looking out for any kind of local programming or development meetups. There are a ton in and near NYC, but I haven't seen much around here. I'm toying with trying to start one. If you start one first, I'll join it :) ... I don't know if you do web development, but there's an active OWASP chapter in Bridgewater. I've been to a couple of their meetings before, and found them very interesting.
Something I came across today, which is both relevant to your situation (wanting to surround yourselves with great people to learn from), and geographically relevant: http://www.cs.virginia.edu/~robins/YouAndYourResearch.html
-- it's long, but I found it very inspiring.
I was lucky enough to be a full-time Perl developer for many years. It was my first programming job, and I had no good Perl mentors when I started. I really have to credit this site for my success and growth as a developer. There was such a great community here, and the ratio of real interesting discussions vs. name-calling and infighting was lower than I've ever seen anywhere on the internet before or since. We grew to a pretty big team of Perl people at my company, which was great to have in-person, but I guess what I'm saying is don't discount the online community.