DrupalCon Recon: Nashville 2018 DrupalCon Recon: Nashville 2018 Apr. 15th, 2018 Taylor Smith

DrupalCon Recon: Nashville 2018

April 15th, 2018

This blog post was originally published on Taylor’s website. There, you can read Taylor’s full review, including his learnings from all sessions he attended. Trust us, you’ll want to read the detailed review

Many thanks to all for a great week in Nashville. Learned a lot and got excited about a few things. I haven’t done a trip report before, but here’s my long-winded rundown of my experience.

Four Kittens Chickens

This is what you really wanted to know: the annual Four Kitchens Four Kittens shirt is on temporary re-brand for cultural relevance: may I present to you Four Chickens! Hope you got one at the booth because we’re fresh out.

* Nashville’s primary culinary export is its famous hot chicken. It’s damn tasty.

Booth Time

Four Kitchens was the Drupal Games Sponsor again this year, so when visitors weren’t playing basketball and ping pong, we had lots of demos to show and some experts to talk to about our recent web shenanigans.

VR, AR, and WebVR

360° imagery and 3D models can be created easily with relatively inexpensive technology and displayed on the web using open source libraries, built-in browser APIs, and devices that many audiences will find approachable if not already something they own.

We had a few scans from our own Web Chefs over the past few weeks, I’d even 3D printed a few of them. I’ll be selling limited edition Todds and Aarons on Etsy*.

* No. But I might write a blog post on it.

Scanning Guests and 3D/VR Postcards

We had two iPads to scan interested visitors with itSeez3D. Behind the scenes, the models were emailed to an endpoint which would receive the OBJ file, upload it to our Drupal 8 (Contenta distribution) site and compose it into a little virtual postcard.

EditVR

Four Kitchens also unveiled EditVR, a decoupled, Drupal-backed React-fronted VR editor to combine 360 photographs, annotations, sounds, and images into experiences which can be delivered in the browser, on mobile devices using Cardboard or Daydream, or on desktop computers with VR hardware.

It’s currently a closed beta, but I’ll update when public guests can create accounts. In the meantime, the same technology and libraries that power EditVR are also in use on some of our projects: the Meredith Farming Shop Tour and Working with the Web Chefs.

Aerate

We also debuted Aerate, our frontend performance auditing tool. Evan Willhite, its maintainer, was also at the booth ready to talk, but I think with all the hubbub over the VR demos, Aerate didn’t get as much attention as I wish it had.

An Experiment

This conference, I used a paper notebook during every session I attended.

What follows is the translation of those notes into digital form while I can still read them. My handwriting is slow and bad (also painfully cramp-inducing) but I found the effort worth it. I paid more attention to what was presented when my laptop wasn’t in front of my face with notifications and the temptation to “let me Google that thing the presenter just said.”

I use a RocketBook notebook so that I can take a quick picture with my phone and the page lands in OneNote with a dated backup in Google Drive, hence the QR code. Also apparently I still write on my hand.

Four Kitchens Sessions

I didn’t present this year, but plenty of us did! Speaking to packed houses and even some standing-room-only crowds, congratulations to Patrick Coffey, Mike Minecki, Joel Travieso, Jeff Tomlinson, Adam Erickson, Trasi Judd, and Randy Oest (top-left to bottom-right).

Check out We’re Going to Nashville! Web Chefs Heat Things Up with Talks at DrupalCon on the 4K blog for a summary of all our sessions.

Action Items

Conferences always get me excited about stuff, but accountability helps make sure I follow through. So here’s what I want to do:

  • Write about 3D printing the models from the 3D scanners
  • Write about 4K’s business intelligence application
  • Install Ask and fiddle with it
  • Look at Talk as an alternative commenting system
  • Download and fill out the Adobe Check-in toolkit
  • Research OG Menu’s new equivalent
  • Propose a session to DrupalCamp Colorado in Denver this August

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