Those with a sweet tooth found the Code Enigma booth at this year's DrupalCamp NW an excellent source of nutrition. Find out more about what was a truly excellent event.
Code Enigma was proud to be a Gold Sponsor of DrupalCamp North West 2012. The event began on Friday, with a Business Day for local business people and entrepreneurs interested in Drupal, then Saturday was a set of planned talks and Sunday was a mix of code sprints and Unconference sessions. The setting was the University of Salford's fabulous MediaCityUK campus, right in the heart of Manchester's exploding TV land beside Salford Quays. It was a 5am start for Matt Fielding, Steve Cowie and myself, to haul ourselves from Bradford and Leeds over to Manchester to set up the Code Enigma stand, but it was well worth it. What a fantastic event it was! We set out our stall, quite literally, bringing the Code Enigma sweet shop on the road for the first time. Armed with fried eggs, liquorice, dolly mixtures, teddy bears, jelly babies, vanilla fudge and much, much more, we set about raising the blood suger numbers of the Drupal massive to fire them up for the days ahead. The photo features Chris (in full costume, as ever), Alasdair and Dan having a laugh with Morten. We were also giving away free Drupal 8 managed hosting accounts for interested developers, as part of the launch of our newly unveiled hosting and support wing, Freshbridge. Huge thanks to Matt and James who worked tirelessly to get everything set for the event, and also big congrats for the Freshbridge site, which is truly a cutting edge example of responsive design in Drupal. They'll be blogging and talking about the way they achieved theming Valhalla in Drupal 7 very soon. The Business Day keynote was Martin Bryant, co-founder of TechHub Manchester, tech journalist for TNW and thoroughly nice chap. It was great to hear about all the innovations going on in Manchester at the moment, the new TechHub, the open source communities and lots of other cool stuff besides. After the keynote there were several business-oriented sessions, some great demonstrations of world-class client projects from all of the event sponsors and a real feeling of excellence we were proud to be a part of. Steve Cowie and I did a short talk on our practical experience implementing Agile project management (specifically, a hybrid of Scrum) in a commercial environment, which seemed to go down well. Agile talk slides are attached, for those who are interested. On Saturday, having been fired up by the unstoppable force that is the (almost) undisputed King of Denmark (in the Drupal world, at least), Morten himself, who had lost some of his rage thanks to Twig going into Drupal core, we launched into more great sessions. I personally watched our own James Panton do an excellent talk for beginners to the Git version control system to start, Git slides here if you're after them. Next I saw our another one of our senior developers, Chris Maiden, do a great Coding Kata talk about self-improvement and Test Driven Design alongside Mark West from i-KOS. Their slides on how Drupal meets Karate (seriously!) are here. Then I saw Rachel Lawson from Napp Pharmaceuticals present an excellent Agile project management talk based on the DSDM Atern framework. What was really nice about that was to learn a few things we don't do and should do, but also to discover our ISO 9001 Quality Manual covers off many of the aspects of project management and quality management that DSDM Atern addresses where Scrum has a few gaps. I then got drawn into a very long conversation about the UK community with Robert Castelo, Morten and Adam Hill, which didn't do my session attendance any good, but was fascinating and useful all the same! Sunday set a much more relaxed pace, an interesting set of Unconference sessions, including one on Minecraft led by the camp's youngest attendee (12 years old!) and Morten's Twig sprint. There was also a teddybear parachute workshop led by Tom which was extraordinarily successful - thanks for the guinea-bear, Pulsant! This photo, taken by Paul Johnson on the Sunday, shows the Code Enigma team sprinting alongside Alex Burrows. (We secretly think he was just hanging around for the sweets though...) For more information, the event Flickr pool is online here, Twitter account is here and the official hashtag is #dcnw12. And so there you have it, I'm now back home, back to reality and there is nothing more to say except huge congratulations and thanks go to the organisers who made this fantastic event happen. We truly had a blast, so thank you (in no particular order) Mike Bell, Philip Norton, Steph Hosny and Paul Johnson. Another one next year?