my weekend at DrupalCamp Bristol 2017

I was glad to get a chance to be able to go down to DrupalCamp Bristol this year as it's been on my list of things to do for a while. It was good to have a catch up with a few old friends and also I met a whole load of other interesting people as well. I haven't been to Bristol for at least 10 years so it was great to get two nights out in a row.  Lovely city!

I attended the CXO day Friday, at which I was speaking and also the developer day on the Saturday.

CXO day

I have to be honest and say I always find CXO days a little bit hit and miss. I’d much rather see the focus of business days be one where we look at trying to grow the overall Drupal community, perhaps by trying to encourage more of our customers to come and talk and to also impress on them the role that they potentially play within community and the opportunities that community offers for them. Instead though they can often seem like a bit of an echo chamber.

So, what I liked about the Friday at Bristol was that there were a couple of customer-centric talks: the case study by Jon and David about how YHA and Microserve had worked together, and the presentation on a project for the GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museums) sector by Ian and Alison. What I particularly liked about the second presentation was in the Q&A when Chandeep talked about how potentially the community might help get that sector get some of its projects off the ground. That helpful ‘can-do’ attitude is one of the things I like most about the Drupal community.

Beyond that you can only judge CXO days on the quality of their content. Rather than hear jam espouse the benefits of open source to a committed church, it was well worth hearing his thoughts on how the Drupal Community establishes its ‘why’ going forward.

Rob Humphries’ excellent ‘Get ready for GDPR’ was a real wake up call (as if we at miggle needed that….). This was worth the admission money alone, in that there were a load of really great succinct takeaways on this subject, which will be useful as we get our ducks in a row on this: May will be here before we know it. I really appreciated the level of effort that went into researching this talk.

Luke gave a great talk about how Drupal isn’t what we sell, but the benefits it offers. He gave a potential rallying call we can all work to ‘No one ever got sacked for using Drupal’ and suggested some ways in which we can co-operate to make Drupal a no-brainer choice, which are worth further exploration.

dev day

On the Saturday, it was great to see some first time talkers, including Louis from miggle who was coached through his first presentation by Adam. Ross Gratton was another solid debutant. He gave a straightforward presentation around how he deals with challenges within his work – challenges no doubt our team face too, so it was great to get that insight, in a very engaging, often humorous way.

George Boobyer has spoken a few times before – but it was the first time I’d ever seen him, as I generally consider his area of expertise to be way over my head. His talk on web insecurity was more at my level – which I guess was the point. If the recent cyber attacks have taught us anything it’s that security concerns are all of our responsibility if we want to work within a safer web – and as such there are a lot of people who’d benefit from seeing George’s overview on this. So much food for thought!

and in other news...

The two evening socials were a lot of fun. Especially zerodegrees and their hangover-proof beer!  Got to meet loads of new people on both nights – even some friendly locals who had nothing to do with the camp – which for a miserable south-easterner like me is really quite something!