I gave a talk about getting involved with the D3 community at Trulia for the Bay Area D3 User Group, with Scott Murray and short talks by Jérôme Cukier, Santiago Ortiz, Jyri Tuulos, Alex Johnson, Amelia Greenhall, Mike Travers and Péter Boda. My slides are here and it was recorded on video. I launched my alternative D3 gallery made with D3 and based on a Google Spreadsheet.
Here is the talk in a blog post format. It is mostly a collection of links for getting started with D3 and contributing to this awesome community.
D3.js stands for "Data-Driven Documents", as you can easily see on the official website and the academic paper.D3.js Website
It is a library to bind data to graphics. What does it means? In short: give shape to your data by using some data elements to set some attributes of your graphical elements. The long answer: read "The Grammar of Graphics" by Leland Wilkinson.The Grammar of Graphics
Other web technologies
But it will get you nowhere if you are not interested first in visualization.Visualization books
D3.js is not a shim to help with cross-browser issues (like in JQuery). It is not a graphical abstraction like Raphael or Dojox.GFX. It is not a chart library like Highcharts, even if nice chart packages has been built on top of it.NVD3
It is a set of helpers (reusable components, helper functions) to help you build visualizations using web technologies.
Where to start learning it? It depends on what's your favorite way to learn.Books
Personally, I prefer to look at the source code or read examples.API on the Wiki
That's probably why I launched an alternative gallery, giving you more freedom to filter and explore more than a thousand examples.Alternative Gallery
You can contribute to this gallery by asking for administrative rights on the spreadsheet used as a database (or by sending me a tweet at @d3visualization).Alternative gallery spreadsheet
You can contribute to the D3 community in many ways.Show your examples
If you need help, we are never far away.Google Groups
BTW, If you want to stay up to date with new D3 examples, events and releases, follow my twitter feed exclusively about D3.@d3visualization
Thanks for being part of this awesome community!