I'm on the plane heading back to Toronto as I jot this down. The Kentico Connection Boston 2013 just wrapped up a few hours ago and, although physically tired, my brain is dashing around chasing all the pretty new Kentico features and ideas that were presented.
We were platinum sponsors for the event. Along with the usual bonuses of having your company logo displayed here, there, and everywhere, we also got to introduce ourselves to everyone during the keynote. Who better to do this than our very own Keith Durrant? A suitable geek joke, a few slides to correct company name spelling and pronunciation (it's "e centric arts" not "eccentric arts") and finally a fantastic short video that gave everyone at the conference a feel for the unique and innovative culture at ecentricarts. With the feedback we got we can be pretty confident that the video hit the mark. What do you think?
This year we gave a one hour presentation on the partner track entitled "Stories from the Trenches." After having completed close to 100 Kentico sites, you tend to have a few of these. Mark Staplehurst (Director of Innovation) and I put this together — Mark leading the way with his usual high quality creative flair, and yours truly stuffing it full with technical Kentico goodness. The presentation came complete with video interviews from our incredible staff. Nerves were low — considering I was on stage with basically fifty percent of the office. Thanks, folks!
This is our third time at a Kentico conference. New to the format was a dedicated marketing track alongside the usual technical and partner tracks. Similar to last year, there were also a couple of workshops. I attended the e-commerce session (along with a lot of developers looking to request new features). This was hosted by Petr Vozak, who is the product manager for Kentico e-commerce. Many great ideas came out of the session. Given that Kentico is moving to a more Agile development and release workflow, it shouldn't take a whole year to start seeing these ideas roll out. Between Keith, Sean, Sarah and myself, I think we pretty much attended all the sessions available.
Meeting up with other solution implementation partners is always a real highlight — so, too, is attending some of the partner presentations. The guys at BizStream presented their internal development process and best practices with Kentico. We had more or less presented our own the day before during my discussion on an appropriate development pipeline with Kentico. There was a lot of overlap, which I think was reassuring for everyone. I get the feeling that other partners would love some help in this area so it is great that we are all sharing.
To the folks we met who were investigating Kentico CMS for their own business — we thank you for stopping by and chatting with us. You are certainly asking the right questions and looking in the right direction. Our bias towards Kentico comes from all that time in the trenches. Expect to hear from us soon.
To the ecentricarts creative team that put the video and presentation artwork together — a huge thank you. The bar has been set. I fear next year might require acrobatics and choreography!
This year I tweeted like a madman in the hope of winning the prize of "top event twitterer." Nothing was off limits. Introductory slides on a presentation? I tweeted that. The shocking lack of cucumber sticks in the individual cups of hummus? I tweeted that. I would totally have won that prize... had they actually decided to award it this year. Damn.