SANDCamp 2016 Splash
February 18, 2016

For the past few years, we’ve gotten into an amazing habit - traveling to San Diego to learn about and discuss Drupal for a few days by the ocean. It’s time for SANDCamp 2016, the annual Drupal camp!

This year, Four Kitchens has a strong presence along with many other great people and organizations. SANDCamp starts with two days of training on Wednesday and Thursday, then two days of sessions. Here’s a selection of sessions from the Four Kitchens’ Web Chefs:

Built it, but nobody came: Avoiding overengineering

Designing and building something that people need is completely different from implementing what they asked for. Engineers don’t like to say no; helping is empowering and pride makes it difficult to back down. Product owners don’t always have the context to understand how hard it is to implement a feature and a throwaway request can add weeks to a project. We’re all limited by our perspective, so the trick is to recognize what should be built practically. The goal shouldn’t be to say no, it should be to empower. Learn from our successes and mistakes! Presented by Jon.

Why we fell in love with DrupalVM

Four Kitchens engineers recently standardized on using DrupalVM for local development. In this session we’ll give you the skinny on why we dug it so much and how to get the most out of it. We’ll cover:

  • Basic setup and requirements
  • How to get the most out of the great development tools it comes bundled with
  • How to use it for Drush Make/Aquifer workflows
  • How to use it with the Drupal site you have locally right now
  • How you can use the same tool to spin up a staging site or even a production site

Presented by Mike.

Getting Hired: The Candidate, Managers and HRs perspective

Ever wonder what the person sitting on the other side of the interview table is thinking? Now’s your chance to hear from people typically involved in hiring as they give you their perspectives on the process. In this unique format a recently hired Web Chef and his hiring manager will dive deep into their own experiences in one particular hiring process. This session will give you deeper insights into what it takes to get hired at a top Drupal shop and what it takes to hire top Drupal talent. Presented by Mike and Luke.

Become a Better Developer With Debugging Techniques for Drupal (and more!)

What is debugging? Why should you bother with server side tools like the Devel suite, krumo, xdebug, or client side debugging using Firebug and LiveHTTPHeaders? We’ll give you a tour of useful debugging tools and techniques that can help you start to see into the inner workings of any version of Drupal, and give you a look behind the curtain at just what the browser is doing while the spinner churns. Presented by Dustin and Rob (alumni).

Intro to Singularity

Singularity lets you toss out your old, stodgy grid system and create a system of columns and gutters that actually works with your content, allowing different layouts at different breakpoints, a visual order that isn’t tied to your source order, and no more terrible class names. Singularity is a Sass plugin which can be used on any Sass/Compass project (or LibSass!) and frees you from needing to use a grid-specific theme for your Drupal site. This technology is CMS/theme-agnostic and can be used successfully with many Drupal base themes or even on non-Drupal projects. Presented by Taylor.

Nearly Headless Drupal

There are some things Drupal is great at, and some things it is, well, less great at. With years of hard work, Drupal has become a pretty strong content manager. You can build robust data models, easily enable content revisioning, and build out a publishing workflow complex enough for even the strictest of editorial standards. In this session we’ll take a look at how you can build small custom modules to leverage the content management strengths of Drupal while taking advantage of the latest advances in front-end technologies to build more interactivity into a Drupal website with minimal effort and maximum portability. Presented by Dustin.

Introduction to Aquifer, a Build System for Drupal

Don’t work harder; work smarter, because laziness is a virtue in software development. You’ve heard it a million times, but what do this look like in practice? In this session, we’ll talk about a new tool called Aquifer that can automate parts of the Drupal development cycle. Aquifer is a command line interface that simplifies the process of scaffolding, building, testing, and deploying Drupal websites. It’s been an extremely valuable resource on several large-scale projects at Four Kitchens, and we’d like to share it in hopes that it will be useful to others. Presented by Patrick, Luke and Jon.

How to audit Drupal Sites for performance, content and best practices

Ever wanted to know if a Drupal site is configured correctly, is secure and uses best development practices? Want to integrate those tests into your continuous integration setup? What about providing Drupal audits as a professional service? Join Jon Peck, author of Site Audit, as he discusses what static analysis is and why we should analyze sites. Then, explore how to use dozens of industry recognized code analysis tools on Drupal 7 and 8 sites. Presented by Jon.

Join us for a couple days and share your stories and knowledge. See you on the coast!

Jon Peck is a senior engineer focused on back-end architecture, optimization and performance. Originally from Upstate New York, Jon currently lives in Castro Valley, California.

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