First up, WordCamp Boston. This was my first WordCamp so I didn’t really know what to expect. Watching videos from previous events really doesn’t do it justice. It’s all about the community and meeting people, and that I did. I’ve attended Microsoft TechEd events in the past, and the “programmers are introverts” stereotype is pretty much fact. I sat at many a lunch table and no one spoke. WordCamp was quite different, and maybe that was because there were extroverted designers around to engage the developers in conversation.
I was there for two of the three days and sat in a number of interesting sessions. Ethan Marcotte, who coined the phrase “responsive web design”, gave a great talk about maps and how to use the medium to convey a message. Andrew Nacin’s talk about the new auto-update features of WordPress 3.7 was mind blowing. I’m truly impressed with what his team was able to accomplish, and hope that other CMS’s like Joomla! follow suit.
Speaking of Joomla!…
I was there for my “day job”, to find Joomla agencies that could help with some large projects we have coming up, and only stayed for Friday’s sessions so I missed out on the more exciting developer focused sessions on Friday. Rod Martin’s keynote “Live Long and Prosper: 10 Business Tips from Star Trek” was hilarious (nothing like Star Trek jokes to liven a room full of developers), and Kevinjohn Gallagher’s “Something, Something, Something… Web Site” keynote was insightful and made you think about the people you’re creating your website experience for, and how many people outside of that audience may not get the experience you’re shooting for.
An interesting vibe I picked up was when I mentioned that I also create websites in WordPress. It reminded me of the days of Java vs .NET. Two religions, and you needed to belong to one or the other. I got the feeling that they felt WordPress was still just for creating blogs. I work in both worlds, and I like that I can pick the right tool for the job, versus trying to bend a single tool to do what you want.
Next WordCamp, I’m going to mention I also work with Joomla and see what reactions I get.