First two day Drupal Camp in Skopje, Macedonia was held od May 2nd and May 3rd at Faculty of Computer Science and Engineering.
The creation of a Macedonian Drupal Community has just begun. In the previous years, this CMS has not been popular among the local developers and there have been very little examples of Macedonian site using this technology. In the past years, we have been witnessing increased usage of Drupal in the creation of local web sites, among which a larger number of government sites.
The idea for Drupal Camp floated nearly two years. In 2014 and 2015 after couple of meetups and presentations of the Drupal awareness in our country we decided that we have "critical mass" for organizing this first Drupal Camp in Macedonia. As our first camp, the goal was to get the developers familiar with the power of this platform and the possibilities/ benefits of using it. Web as a technology is very popular in Macedonia and we wanted to show how Drupal will help them win.
After our participation at multiple Drupal Camps and Cons in the region and Europe, our affection towards Drupal has increased among our team. We decided not to keep it only to ourselves, but to spread the word and introduce this platform to more Macedonian developers. Therefore, we have been carrying out a few presentations about the opportunities and power of Drupal as a content management systems on different developer gatherings in Macedonia. We started creating the network and connected individuals and companies that develop using Drupal, in order to work together on joint project initiatives. We have created the community web page http://drupal.mk and the Facebook Page- Drupal Community Macedonia and decided to take an increased number of field activities.
The camp was meant to have sessions in beginer|intermediate|advanced level. This camp had a goal towards awareness of the existence and benefits of using this platform, developing the community, expanding knowledge and presentations of news for Drupal, exchange of experience and networking.
At the camp 14 speakers from 7 different countries from region and Europe shared their knowledge with the community. There were different session tracks: Development, Dev Ops, Front-end and Marketing.
We had two keynote speakers:
Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire & Michael Schmid
As big part of the Drupal community our keynotes brought the Drupal energy with them and they quickly connected with the Macedonian community not hesitating to answer evrey questions they were asked. We also had a great Panel Discussion with both of them on the topic Why Drupal 8? Why now? PS - Drupal 7 is still awesome.
As our "google hangout" guest we had Dave Hall from distant Australia who talked about Deploying Drupal.
Sessions were divided in two amphitheaters in order to satisfy attendees needs based on their expertise level. All attendees listened the Keynote speeches together.
After the opening session our first keynote Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire started the inspiration speech about Idealism Embodied: Philosophy, Code, Empowerment including lots of aspects of Drupal development.
There were many interesting sessions for beginners who learned what is Drupal and what does it have to offer, how to develop first Drupal site, how to develop theme from scratch and what does Drupal mean for the programmers. There was a great interest for the session about Drupal Commerce which is getting very popular in our country. Also the attendees learned how to deploy Drupal on OpenStack and how they can promote their product from marketing perspective. First day ended with the Panel discussion of out two keynotes.
Second day started with our next keynote Michael Schmid who did Deeper Dive in Drupal 8. He talked about deeper changes in Drupal 8 and also how the experience is to use Drupal 8 for developers and site builders that have a long experience with Drupal 6 and 7.
Dave Hall remotely talked about his frustrations with deploying Drupal before he settles down and talks about challenges developers and site builders face when trying to build sites that are easily deployable.
Day continued with Dev Ops session how Run your own server on cheap like a pro with BOA and how to develop Drupal theme from scratch. After a short brake there were two more sessions about how to scale large Drupal sites (best practices) and session about how can Freelancers unite.
We had 67 attendees from 7 countries including Macedonia, 8 staff/organizing members and 4 volunteers.
Thanks to our sponsors we had the camp covered with food and drinks. We organized a party on Saturday in order to relax and have informal community time.
Also, we had great communications over the social media. Thanks to our volunteers everything was set and ready to go.
In order to celebrate the Labour day on May 1st, we had a community BBQ and socialization. Attendees and speakers came to the IDEA's office backyard and we all had great time.
Macedonian Drupal community is at its beginning, but showed very big interest for Drupal as a technology which will make their development easier. There were compliments form the attendees, even form the experienced ones. Also we are very glad that our sponsors were satisfied with the organization that we've done. Big thanks to our Platinum Sponsors ProPeople, Event Sponsors FINKI, Community Sponsor Drupal Association and other sponsors and supporters
We will continue with the awareness for Drupal in our country with one reason WE LOVE IT.
See you in 2016!
- Drupal Camp Skopje team
Vasil Grozdanoski, Filip Dzukleski, Daniel Janev, Natasha Petkova, Vladislav Bidikov, Marjan Stojnev, Mite Kuzevski, Ljubica Dimishkovska and Goran Igikj.