More than code
"Code Sprints" are quite common for Open Source projects. We decided some time ago to just call it a "Sprint" because at a Neos Sprint is much more going on than just coding. For instance, it is a very good opportunity to get a feeling about how the community is ticking and experience first hand why all that talent and enthusiasm are based on values that are not related to code at all.
Of course, a big focus during a sprints is to work on tough technical challenges with very talented members of the Neos community. But it is also always a great pleasure to welcome first time attendees at sprints and help them to get up to speed. In Vienna we had two people joining for their very first sprint: Christoph and Fiach. To ensure that they had a productive week, we assigned a mentor to each of them who helped them get on board.
David and Roland also made sure we had opportunities for socializing and to see some parts of the beautiful city of Vienna. On Sunday, Roland took a group of sprinters on a city tour. On Tuesday we had self-made pizza and an incredible Neos cake! On Wednesday a whole group of people went bouldering in the evening and on Thursday we went to a restaurant and had original Wiener Schnitzel.
The technical part
Besides improving Neos by working on bugs and solving problems we of course also did work on new Features: the Event Sourced Content Repository made progress, we discussed how to improve our documentation, neos.io, the reference link editor and the media module, worked on Fusion Forms and discussed how to use Neos as a static site generator.
Some additional technical details on what we worked on and the related repositories:
- Improved review workflow in combination with Slack for community contributions to docs.neos.io
- Neos.io will soon receive a Neos service provider listing
- Lots of refactoring and improvements on Neos.io to make contributions much easier
- Batch operations on nodes in the UI.
- Lots of improvements to Fusion Forms
- Ideas for a JSON dsl in Fusion
- An audio plugin for Neos
- Kickstart of the new Neos Media Module (not usable yet!)
- The module will be installable next to the existing one until it's feature complete and can replace the old one
- Use a headless Neos with Gatsby (basically works, find the experiment here)
- A distribution with community plugins and boilerplate gatsby code to create a static site
- The start of an official extendable GraphQL package for Neos (find the early testing distribution here)
- Full page cache package for Neos (mostly done)
- Allows delivering cached pages without accessing the database -> huge performance benefit
- (Very) Experimental static site export for Neos (find the PR here)
Many of those packages are still work-in-progress and the goal is to refine them together with the community to create actual core features. This process makes it essential to have some code to test and (re-)views from as many people as possible. Feel free to get in touch, check them out and contribute with feedback, sponsorships or code.
Inside a Neos sprint
The following is the personal account of Fiach, who attended his first Neos sprint.
I’m a passionate software developer currently working for 1und1, where I first encountered Neos.
I have respectable knowledge of Enterprise Content Management Systems and I was very eager to develop my understanding of Neos.
The opportunity presented itself and allowed me to attend a Neos sprint in the marvelous city of Vienna, where I got the chance to make the acquaintance of the minds and people behind Neos. My time at the Neos sprint was very enjoyable and prosperous. I had the pleasure to meet several people with diverse characteristics. The best way I can articulate my experience is through another passion of mine: science.
There’s an amazing property know as Emergence which has many definitions in its respective field of science. I’m going to use the more commonly known definition “higher-order complexity arising out of simple interactions among diverse entities of a system.”
The higher-order complexity is Neos and the simple interactions among diverse entities are the individuals working together: the Neos community.
It always amazes me what can be achieved with motivated and competent people. It does have its challenges to find one’s purpose in such a large project, but the flexibility of Neos comes in handy here. There are various areas available to become a part of and contribute to. Ideas emerge from having open-minded talks and conceptualizing solutions for problems whether they be technical, organizational, strategic or transformational. Each person has an individual perspective, their knowledge and critical thinking and contributes to the best solution. This is what Neos and the people behind it are for me.
I was able to discover more about Neos in my week here through actively participating in meetings, talks, and general discussions about the challenges and goals of the project. Working on the backend and frontend layers of Neos also helped me to develop a better understanding of the technical level.
Through the multitude of interactions, I’m very pleased that I joined the Neos Sprint and I recommend it to everyone who can find value in my description of this experience.
A final note to the Neos Team: “Thank you!”
I hope I’ve been able to capture in words the great time I had with you all.
Fiach signing out, till next time!
Retro and Neos Foundation 2.0
As every 6 months we also had a retrospective during the sprint. Sebastian H. and Christian had prepared the topics and flip charts. Read about our retro on discuss.
Also during the sprint, we had the founding session of our Neos e.V. Read about it in our separate blog post.
Thanks to our supporters
A sprint like this is so much better when we can fully concentrate on our work for Neos and Flow.
So a huge thank you goes to our host and sprint organizer David Spiola! ❤️
Thank you also to our food and drink sponsors:
- lunch: Flownative, unikka, Sandstorm and Gerhard Boden
- food and drinks: web&co, SKiLLDiSPLAY, yeebase
And of course great thanks also to Roland Schütz for his city tour through Vienna and for taking us bouldering.