After four TYPO3camps I attended my first TYPO3 Dev Days. They took place this year in the modern youth hostel of Düsseldorf, Germany.
What are the TYPO3 Dev Days?
Die Dev Days differ from the various TYPO3camps in several aspects:
- they are an official event of the TYPO3 Association
- they last up to four days (Thursday afternoon until Sunday noon)
- the sessions are scheduled in advance (speakers are able to to submit their talks beforehand)
- they are an English speaking event, as the participants come from Europe and around the world
The event takes place once a year and is considered as the highlight of the year by many TYPO3 developers. A special feature is the traditional Coding Night on Friday evening, where many developers get together and jointly improve the TYPO3 core, extensions or even the typo3.org website. Tickets are processed, reviews performed and features implemented.
In the morning before the Dev Days officially started, experienced developers held a workshop where new participants were able to set up the TYPO3 Contribution Workflow – which is the basis for working on the TYPO3 core. As the official wireless LAN wasn't established yet, the current version of the git repository was distributed via flash drive. With the help of Daniel Goerz I reproduced the well documented steps of the setup, followed by a test run including a review with Gerrit. This really is no obstacle to contribute to the core!
At the same time, the certification exams for the TYPO3 CMS Certified Integrator, Developer and Consultant were held. You had to register separately for this.
The Opening Session began at noon to welcome the approximately 200 participants and to introduce the event organizers and sponsors. Afterwards Christian Kerschbaum (specialist lawyer in IT Law) held his keynote. Unsurprisingly, the General Data Protection Regulation and its consequences for web developers were the major subject of his talk. But copyright and documentation was brought up, too.
In the afternoon I decided for the talk Frontend Prototype Integration by Hannes Lau. He presented the way his company uses supplied frontend templates in TYPO3 without the need to replicate them in Fluid. A frontend developer could use e.g. use PatternLab for prototyping with Twig as a templating engine. In TYPO3 the result is then integrated via especially developed content controllers and data converters. Due to the high demand on Thursday, the talk was later repeated again.
For dinner we had burger in the outdoor area of the youth hostel. Everyone could prepare their burger with ingredients of their choice. After the first day that was a welcome boost, especially for the social event following in the evening.
Because of the world cup game with German participation on Saturday evening, the social event was held already on Thursday. Anyone who was in the mood for karaoke was invited to sing punk, rock and metal songs with the live band "Karaoke Till Death". I was unsure how well this would be adopted by us developers – it was a great party. We seem to have quite some vocal talents among us. I never sang in public before, but with a real band behind me and the TYPO3 community as an audience it's been a blast!
For me, Friday's general theme was design – somewhat surprising at a developer conference. British graphic designer Piccia Neri spent the day holding three talks on design principles in web design, the "design thinking" process and colors. These sessions were also heavily attended.
At 9 pm the Coding Night finally began. The ageny Marketing Factory offered special stickers for various objectives (Wrote Patch, Code Review, Core Commit, Coding After Midnight, ...). Whether we were particularly productive that evening, I can not say. At the end, my personal contribution was the correction of a typo in the Install Tool and the review of a change which already had been committed in the meantime. :D
At least! It certainly motivated me to get more involved in contributing to the TYPO3 core.
composer! The omnipresent theme of recent years. Due to my background, a proper training in this PHP package manager was still on my todo list. At the last TYPO3camps there always were other sessions which were even more important to me and for my daily work. Here I finally took the opportunity and followed the basics talk by Florian Wessels.
This was followed by Michael Oehlhof's introduction to DDEV: he first presented an overview of various local development environments (XAMPP, virtual machines, ...), then he did a hands-on demonstration how to use DDEV to create and manage Docker environments easily.
Finally, Thomas Löffler presented a selection of browser tools, desktop apps and PhpStorm features that can help you a lot with your daily work. His collection is also available on GitHub.
Football fans could watch the world cup game between Germany and Sweden in the evening. When Kroos shot his dream goal in extra time, the cheers were loud. Well, we know how it went for the German national team eventually.
Actually, I wanted to attend the session how to better maintain (public) extensions by Nicole Cordes. In the end I talked extensively with Josef Glatz about the CKEditor, which we both want to improve where possible.
As the final talk I chose TYPO3 Performance by Marcus Schwemer, who found seven layers to solve performance issues, from frontend to backend to server hardware.
As it's always the case: afterwards you come home exhausted, satisfied and highly motivated.
I would like to thank all participants for the many nice and helpful conversations. Further I thank of course the speakers, the organization team around Andrea Herzog-Kienast as well as the sponsors jweiland.net, bitmotion, Browserwerk, internezzo, Marketing Factory, mehrwert, Nitsan, Syzygy and Oliver Thiele for the live stream.