The European Acquia Global Support team had an onsite week in Reading the week after Drupal Camp London 2015. I got the chance to see a number of them there and sit down with two of my friends from "Supporta!"–Daniel Blomqvist and Henk Beld. We talked about remote teams and helping others succeed with Drupal, while also paying it back/forward by sharing and teaching what they learn and what they know.
It was great to get the chance to sit down and talk with Jordi Boggiano at SymfonyCon Madrid 2014. Jordi is responsible for Composer, one of the most important pieces of technology that is driving PHP interoperability and the PHP "renaissance" of the last couple of years. He's also on the Symfony2 core team, "and bad about telling things about myself."
If only non-Finns could easily pronounce it, I think "yhteisöllisyys" would be a perfect motto for Drupal. To explain what it means, I dragged Lauri Eskola, Drupal Craftsman from Druid.fi, away from the contribution sprints at DrupalCamp Brighton 2015 long enough for him to fill me in on that, as well as his trip to Drupal Camp Delhi 2015, what he's excited about in Drupal 8, and how doing business in the Drupal world–based on values like sharing and openness–must seem strange and different to outsiders.
I sat down with Karen Grey at Drupal Camp Brighton 2015 to find out more about who she is and what she does with Drupal. I apologise for taking her out of the code sprints for that time! Since we spoke, Karen has taken on a position as Senior Drupal Developer at i-KOS in their Brighton office.
Beth Tucker Long, PHP Developer and Advocate at Code Climate, and I got in front of my cameras at the 2014 PHP World conference and got to talk about her history and priorities in development, PHP, and open source; her welcome into the PHP community, the culture of sharing and teaching in PHP, her work and the mission of Code Climate ... including how she got hired as a Perl programmer right out of college and was handed a PHP codebase to fix. "So I had to learn PHP really, really fast." When she had to ask some questions the weekend she learned PHP, the welcome the PHP community gave her convinced her to stay and inspires her to this day to give other just as warm a welcome to the project.
Ronald Ashri, former CTO at BlueSpark is now a Founder at Roomify - a Drupal-centric startup focusing on online reservations. Here, Ronald presents an enjoyable and valuable session about content strategy and Drupal, full of practical and actionable advice – worth watching in full for all strategists, site builders, and anyone who wants to know how to build a better content-oriented site.
Looking back on 2014, it was a great year of events and conversations with people in and around Acquia, open source, government, and business. I think I could happily repost at least 75% of the podcasts I published in 2014 as "greatest hits," but then we'd never get on to all the cool stuff I have been up to so far in 2015!
Nonetheless, here's one of my favorite recordings from 2014: a terrific session that will help you wrap your head around developing for Drupal 8 and a great conversation with Frederic Mitchell that covered the use of Drupal and open source in government, government decision-making versus corporate decision-making, designing Drupal 7 sites with Drupal 8 in mind, designing sites for the end users and where the maximum business value comes from in your organization, and more!
While speaking with Melissa Anderson about behavior driven development (BDD) at BADCamp 2014, she suggested I get John Bickar from Stanford Web Services in front of my cameras to talk about his experience during last year's "Drupalgeddon" security vulnerability. The result is this podcast and some great insight into how this kind of testing can significantly improve initial, ongoing, and emergency delivery of software. As John puts it, using BDD means: "delivering better software, delivering it faster, and knowing that it is delivering the value that we have promised to our partners." I would have named this episode of the Acquia Podcast more in the spirit of Dr. Strangelove: "Behat tests mean death to Linky-Clicky or how BDD helped Stanford Web Services recover fast during Drupalgeddon," but reason won out.
PHP security expert and member of the Global Cybersecurity Group at Hewlett Packard, Chris Cornutt and I had the chance to meet in person at PHP World 2014, in Washington, D.C. We compared notes on the "PHP Renaissance", looking over other projects' shoulders, sharing code, and PHP security basics.
Tips and tricks for getting the most out of simplytest.me – Patrick Drotleff is a passionate contributor to the Drupal project whose work – including simplytest.me, pareview.sh, and the tongue-in-cheek BreakingHead card game – often centers around building tools that help others contribute to Drupal. Within minutes of Drupal 8 beta being announced at DrupalCon Amsterdam, I saw a tweet saying it was available to try out on simplytest.me. Though I had used the service before, I wanted to know how it actually worked and Patrick was kind enough to agree to show it off here on jam's Drupal Camp.
Eric Mandel, CEO of infrastructure provider Blackmesh, and I got the chance to speak at PHP World 2014 (where I was also a keynote speaker). We spoke about his history with development, open source, and Drupal. I also had the chance to ask Eric about how Blackmesh has become a leader in the area of corporate contribution to Drupal, employing Cathy Theys to work on Drupal core, mentor new Drupal contributors, and help out at code sprints around the world.
Part 2 of 2 – I ran into Elia Albarran, Four Kitchens' Operations Manager at BADCamp 2014. She mentioned she'd read my blog post 10 Tips for Success as a Remote Employee; we started exchanging tips and ideas until I basically yelled, "Stop! I need to get this on camera for the podcast!" She graciously agreed and brought along two Four Kitchens developers for the session, too: Taylor Smith and Matt Grill, whom I spoke with in part 1.
Presenter Brad Czerniak caught my eye with a blog post entitled "10 things I learned using Drupal at a hackathon," based on his experiences taking part in the #hackDPL (Detroit Public Library) competitive hackathon. In our podcast interview we talk about that – before moving on to Brad's session about the Drupal development best practices he and his team use at Commercial Progression in Michigan.
Part 1 of 2 – I ran into Elia Albarran, Four Kitchens' Operations Manager ... ahem "Funmaster", in the inspiring atmosphere of BADCamp 2014. She mentioned she'd read my blog post 10 Tips for Success as a Remote Employee; we started exchanging tips and ideas until I basically yelled, "Stop! I need to get this on camera for the podcast!" She graciously agreed and brought along two Four Kitchens developers for the session, too: Taylor Smith and Matt Grill.
I met Ian Read, Front End Development Team Leader at TSO/Williams Lea Public Sector at Drupal Camp Brighton, where I found out that he has recently been involved in a subject close to my heart: Drupal and government. He was part of the team that designed and built the attractive, responsive, and very functional London Borough of Croydon's new council website. In our conversation, we touch on the value that the Drupal community provides to everyone involved; Drupal and innovation in government digital services; the thought process, needs, design and more that went into the new Croydon Council Drupal website; and more!