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DrupalCon 2016 New Orleans: A Retrospective

DrupalCon 2016 in New Orleans exceeded expectations. NOLA played an incredible host to Drupalers from around the world. Just as importantly the Drupal community banded together with energy and creativity to establish a vision for how the open source software could change the world. 

Here are a few of our favorites from the 5 days extravaganza.

Favorite DrupalCon Developer Session

Our development team also enjoyed the pace and quality of information in the Druapal 8: Kickstart session. Fast paced and information dense, exactly what a session should be. They didn’t walk away knowing what I needed to know to write Drupal 8 modules, but at least I walked away knowing what I didn’t know.

Favorite New Orleans Brewery/Taproom

On the first night of DrupalCon, Rootid organized a pub crawl that was surprisingly successful – both in number of beers tried, and number of attendees. Our motley successfully crawled to 3 venues that showcased the rich variety of beers available across the city.

When the foam settled, our favorite was Avenue Pub. They had a great selection of beer (make sure you check upstairs!) and it was great to have a lot of space in the patio area to sit around and talk with some of the people people at the conference.

Favorite DrupalCon Front End Dev Session

Drupal 8 is here. It’s been the buzz of DrupalCons in the past, but this year you really got a sense that the community was actively using it for client projects. One of the heralded aspects of Drupal 8 is the use of Twig for front end development.

Our favorite session, “Drupal8 Theming – Am I doing this right?”

Favorite New Orleans Music Venue

You can’t go to New Orleans without checking out the live music scene. Frenchmen street is a great place to check out live delta blues and some southern Jazz. After searching several of the local establishments, we loved the Spotted Cat. If you’ve been to NOLA, then you probably have heard of it, you may have even been there. 

This local legend is understated when you walk in, but the free music that comes through here 7 days a week will blow you away.

Favorite DrupalCon Business Session

One of the biggest trends in business is distributed or remote employees. Rootid is a distributed agency, and have found huge benefits from this structure. However, there are definitely challenges too.

Our favorite session, “Live the Dream, Work Remote: Building a Successful Distributed Drupal Shop.”

Favorite Birds of a Feather (Breakout Session)

Because Rootid works in the non-profit space, it was great to attend the Birds of a Feather breakout session that brought the non-profit community together. Engaging with the non-profit Drupal community is always a fun time. Talking with other shops doing great work with their clients, and talking to organizations about their challenges puts our work in context. Our little round table talked about CRM-Drupal integration, Drupal 8 in the land of non-profits, and the challenges around resource allocation to website projects.