On to part 5 of my Magento Imagine 2017 retrospective! Now all the talks are covered it’s time to look at some of the community activities that went on during the event (note for community events prior to Imagine itself see part 1 of my recap)

If you missed any of the other articles see the links below:

 

Increasing Diversity in Tech

This session took place on day 1 of Imagine and I was sad I couldn’t attend due to a clash with another talk I needed to be at.  However, given the importance of the topic and it being a trending theme in the Magento community of late it seemed remiss of me not to mention it.

Given I wasn’t present I can’t go into detail or provide my thoughts on the session, other than I felt it was a great move by Magento to host this event and from the feedback I’ve seen on Twitter and elsewhere has seems to have had a positive reaction.  It’s clear (or at least I hope it is) that this an area we can all do more to push forward and promote and by doing so it benefits us all.

The panel of experts for the session included:

Following Imagine, Alessandro also wrote a follow up post on Medium which is well worth a read.

 

MageTalk Live (featuring FutureCommerce)

Everyone’s favourite podcast duo Kalen Jordan and Phillip Jackson from MageTalk where joined by Brain Lange (co-host of FutureCommerce along with Phillip) across all 3 days for a live broadcast on YouTube with many special guests from a custom built booth in the Imagine marketplace.

I don’t feel there is too much for me say about this, except that as a long time MageTalk listener I felt it was great idea and the wide range of guests the guys had in the booth with them was pretty phenomenal, even Mark Lavelle (Magento CEO) dropped in for a chat!

I’ve only had chance to watch a small portion of the overall broadcast so far, but if you’ve listened to podcast before you know what to expect!  So all left for me to say is to go check out all the recorded videos (in full 360) on YouTube here.

 

Creatuity Photo Wall

This almost felt like a centrepiece at Imagine due its presence right in the middle of the main walk between the main conference rooms and the marketplace and terrace.

The basic concept was that any photos posted on Twitter or Instagram tagged with #MagentoImagine were picked up and any that matched the colours required made it onto the wall to help build up the mosaic.


Further to this every photo matched had an accompanying mini polaroid-esque photo printed off which attendees could come and pick up – I managed to get 6 of these in total, strangely including a photo of a photo!

Creatuity Photo Wall Photos

It was great to see this evolve over the 3 days at the conference all the way through to the finished piece and following the event Mark Lavelle and Creatuity agreed to commission 100 prints that will be auctioned to benefit Women Who Code.

 

DevExchange

On the final afternoon of day 3 there was a special event hosted by Magento Community Manager Sherrie Rohde for developers to get together and chat about a wide range of topics (many had been voted on prior to Imagine) on dedicated tables, plus a few tables that allowed for custom topics.

 

Further to this there was a small outside area to hang out and play table tennis with Magento branded bats and balls! Unfortunately, I was only able to stay for an hour or so of the event, but the turnout was great and the amount interest and knowledge exchange with some of the topics (which included remote working, working with product data and using Magento 2 headless) was incredible.

 

My only other regret here was at this point I was beginning to get a little burnt out (probably due to imminent need to leave for flight and overdoing it at the legendary party the night before!) and didn’t get too involved in the roundtable discussions, deciding to hang out and chat with a few others outside on the balcony and watch the ping pong.  It did however give me a final chance to meet a few new faces (or those I knew from Twitter).

 

Whilst it was a great way to end / wind down Imagine, in my opinion it may also have been better to take place a bit earlier on in the schedule, or perhaps in future have a regular time each day for developers to hang out and catch up informally as whilst the parties are great they aren’t always the best environments for relaxing and talking tech.

Regardless though it was still a great idea and very successful event so thanks Sherrie for organising!

 

Summary

Ok so that’s some of the key community engagement activities covered I’m nearly at the end of my Imagine retrospective journey, but I’d like to do one last piece to close out my thoughts and cover some of the other fun aspects of Imagine, such as the parties and the SWAG!