Work usually keeps me busy and if I do development outside of work it has to be fun and/or teach me something (preferably both). If both the previous requirements are met then I can find that doing more development after a hard day of developing is refreshing. Often I have gravitated towards other programming languages for recreation and language related problems (human languages).
I already have a community of my wife and three children with whom I absolutely do not spend enough time with, then add extended family and friends/associates added over the last few decades, I am an active member of the Bristol (UK) Drupal community. I have a large time debt accumulated in most of the areas mentioned.
I probable need to master Drupal 8 to keep the money rolling in and increasingly work depends on being an active member of the Drupal community and having things online that act as an extended CV.
Contribute or be damned
Although not quite "publish or die" not contributing to the Drupal community may be a severe career limiting move, I do get the community and open source ethos but surely it extends across a wider scale sometimes, perhaps someone is contributing to another community? Or just has a rich life outside of work? Going forward hiring a Drupal developer with no drupal.org id and a strong involvement in the Symfony community may be a good idea? There are lots of reasons why a good developer may not have contributed even down to working in a company that expects 12 hours a day.
I have seen one or two very short-sighted recruiting strategies, but there again it is human nature to try and find some sort of filtering helper when faced with a wide variety of choice.
Up until now I felt like I had come to the party a bit late, most module ideas I have are already done, and poking around in the issue queues didn't fire me with enthusiasm, remember this is my free time now, in the past I could do anything, it didn't even matter if it was useful to anyone else.
I really don't fancy hanging around in IRC in my spare time (guess I won't be getting my 'I did stuff on IRC' badge then ;)). Currently I regularly meet up face to face with some great Bristol Drupal devs, a much better option in my opinion.
Finally I thought why not do what has alway worked in similar circumstances, self directed play. Start a Drupal 8 site and try to help with issues and problems that I find whilst actually using it.
Early days but so far I have learnt a lot, been having fun and this post is written in the blog module that works again (much more to do though) thanks to the patch (not committed yet) that I wrote to fix multiple errors and misconfigurations.
Looking forward to getting a handle on Drupal 8 and just possibly contributing something useful back to the community.