Saturday, October 11, 2008

Day 2 of the 2008 Plone Conference

I was very rested by the time I arrived. I had slept well.

So you want to be a consultant by panel

No, I'm not looking to leave NASA these days. However, I do some side consulting, and even in my day job there are good project control lessons you can learn from the consulting crowd. For example, ideas on recruiting, customer relations, and how to handle billing when you need time to boost skills. There were 5 plone board members in the panel, and much wisdom was shared. Plone board members there:
  • Nate Atune
  • Gaer Baekholt
  • Calvin Hendryx-Parker
  • Jon Stahl
  • Matt Hamilton
What makes a great development team by Mike Robinson

He can code, he can manage, he can cycle, and he has the most awesome Irish accent, and he taught us about agile programming. And he explained why and how it works in a great fashion. I'm completely sold. I have been for some time, but he gives great arguments for it, or at least on evaluating on how to best handle this sort of thing.

Future of the Plone user experience by Alexander Limi

Limi has strong opinions and what he said may not reflect what ends up happening. He wants deliverance, strong media handling, more widgets, deliverance, better kupu, z3c form improvement, better validators, and an easier way to handle templates. All good stuff.

And he had a much, much better version of what I've been aiming at with my customer editor view in NASA Science. Great minds think alike, although I must admit his method is much better than my own.

Simplifying Plone by Martin Aspelli

He wants to do it with a chainsaw and make Plone more approachable from a developer's point of view.

Plone has a number of embarressments, with issues ranging from rich media support to import/export problems with the database. It is hard to learn and skinning is a challenge. He thanked Lennart for pointing out what Zope did wrong, and how developers expect things to be easy.

Wants to revamp much for Plone 4. Some quick bullets:
  • Follow the guiding lights shown by some of the other Python web frameworks.
  • Make learning follow a constant set of humps, not huge ones followed by a plateau followed by an insurmountable wall.
  • make certain things real easy to do (logo, branding, content types, etc)
  • Create one true way and remove the other ways
  • embrace through the web but allow filesystem round-trip for deployment and collaboration
NASA Science case study by Katie Cunningham and Daniel Greenfeld

Yes! I helped present!

So we presented and apparently did very well. We had a few luminaries in the room, including a couple Plone board members. I think we nailed all the points we wanted to make, which was a very awesome thing to do. We plan to send the slides off to Alex Clark shortly so we can have them on line for everyone to see.

Please go to NASA Science and leave feedback asking to release Umlizer to the world!

Evening Agile Development workshop by Mike Robinson

Two more hours of the awesome Mike Robinson ended the day for me. He gave a rock-solid lecture and then we played a game to support his statements. It was a fun game and learning was had by all. That said, I think this would have been better done as part of a day-long class, not at the end of a long day of conferencing.

General Socializing

Where to begin? I had great fun with so many incredibly awesome people. The quick and dirty list:
  • Vernon Chapman
  • Tarek Zaide
  • Alex Clark
  • Amy Clark
  • Matt Bowen
  • Jon Stahl
  • Nate Aune
  • Katie Cunningham
  • Gary Burner
  • Joel Burton
  • My whole agile development "team"
If I missed you, let me know!

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