DrupalCamp Scotland 2015: A Review

9th November 2015
DrupalCamp Scotland 2015 Logo

DrupalCamp Scotland 2015 consisted of a Friday training day, followed by a day of talks and sessions on the 6th and 7th November.

The training day was based around Drupal 8 and had us looking at installation, configuration, and development. In the morning we set up a couple of Docker containers (on a Digital Ocean box) to run Drupal 8 from and then looked at the Drupal command line tool when setting up the system. Once installed we looked at the system structure and how the configuration management system worked. In the afternoon we created modules and themes, also using the Drupal console to generate some of the code fragments. I think the use of Docker on a remote server was a good idea in getting everyone up and running on the system without having to rely on local LAMP stacks or whatever. The training day was really good and I was able to swap lots of ideas and techniques with the trainers and other attendees.

Saturday began with the Keynote from Jochen Lillich, who talked about Content, culture, community. Jochen told us his story of setting up his Drupal hosting company called Freistel IT and about how they work as a company. They are a remote working company and as such have their own challenges surrounding communication and teamwork but it was good to see that they are completely open about everything they do.

After a quick coffee break I headed over to the Deeson room to listen to Manos Riglis talk about Scaling glasgow2014.com through Content Delivery Networks. Manos when through the technology they used to serve the large amounts of traffic during the Glasgow 2014 commonwealth games. Some of this was very familiar to me as I have had similar experiences with my own Drupal clients.

Becoming A Drupal Master Builder

Next up was Michael Trestianu, who talked about his experiences with Hydrant Apprentices. Michael talked about how Hydrant partnered with The Drupal Apprenticeships scheme to set everything up and mentor the apprentices hired by Hydrant. I have been in talks with the Drupal apprentices scheme to get one up and running in Manchester so it was good to see a success story and to get some helpful advice from Michael about being an effective mentor.

After lunch I had my own talk on Becoming A Drupal Master Builder where I detailed some of the things that I have found to be good practice during my time with Drupal. If you are interested in knowing more about what I talked about then the slides can be viewed on Slideshare.

After being introduced to Docker on the training day I was interested to see another session on Docker during the camp. So after my session I went to see Jochen Lillich talk about Less setup, more development: Drupal and Docker containers. Jochen talked about (and actually demonstrated) the use of Docker to develop websites. I have heard a little bit about Docker recently and after these sessions I'm much more interested in the system that I was before. I'll definitely be giving Docker more investigations.

The final talk of the day was Mission (Im)possible: Quality Decoupled Code with Drupal 7, given by Marek Matulka. This was a fairly technical talk describing the approach taken in joining up a Magento site with a Drupal site using a decoupled library of classes. This involved using a framework of classes to pull data from a Magento site and create a few thousand nodes within a Drupal site.

Once we finished the Drupal Scotland association AGM and the Drupal Scotland Awards we headed off to the social at the Hemma bar where there was a lot of discussions and drinks. DrupalCamp Scotland was a really good event and it was great to meet some interesting people from around Scotland, the UK and even Iceland. Huge thanks to everyone involved in the camp and everyone who attended and made it such a great event.

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