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Retrospective of my attendance at the Drupal Dev Days April 2022 in Gent Belgium

Published on 2022-04-20

I have been attending Drupal Dev Days for the fifth time

I have been attending Drupal Dev Days for the fifth time and I have to say that this year’s event was as great as the other ones. The tech talks were really interesting and I learned a lot about new trends in the industry. There were also some really fun social activities that let me get to know other developers from within the community. I sprinted with a team of developers and we were all working on the bug smash initiative of Drupal core. Gent is a really beautiful city that I want to definitely go back to.

Highlight: being together with peer developers

It was the first time that I had seen my developer friends after 2 years of lockdowns. Everyone was happy to see each other again and we all had a great time together. At least I had!

It was nice to catch up and talk about daily life, work, family and shared stories from our past Dev Days. We had dinner together in a restaurant and there was even board game night.

Next to the event attendances I met with a friend that lives in Brussels.

The lockdown-years feel like a blob to me, so happy that we are out of it.

Dinner drupal dev days gent

Highlight: code sprinting

Code sprints have been around for a while now and are popular as an event for developers. They are often used by companies and conferences as an opportunity for developers to work on open source software together in one room. The first time I did this was at the Drupal Dev Days in Montpelier 2015.

When I was introduced to the idea of a code sprint, I didn't know what to expect. The thing that hooked me up initially was that it allowed me to learn from experienced developers. You work on advanced topics and in many open source communities the code-quality requirements are just a lot higher than required for in-company projects. Think about code readability, automated tests and a more thorough code-review process. All things that ‘sharpen the knife’ for your professional skill-set.

Code sprints are a great way to improve your developer skills

It is common to work on new features of the open source project. Which makes it a great opportunity to learn these features inside-out, months or years before they are used in client-projects.

This year I have been working on the bug-smash-initiative, where we triaged the status of Drupal core bugs. The goal of this initiative is to reactivate bugs that were reported, but are now on page 100 in the issue queue. And in case a bug is not reproducible we close it. If you also want to contribute to this initiative see:

Sprinting drupal dev days gent

Highlight: city of Gent

Gent is a medieval city in Belgium. It even has a castle in the city-center. It has two rivers coming together inside the city, so there are bridges everywhere. The center is rather small, so you can easily go walking everywhere. I even found a street full of street art. Definitely a city to come back to.

City skyline drupal dev days gent
Streetart drupal dev days gent

Thanks everyone who attended, especially the organisation. It was a great event!