Yesterday I had the pleasure of presenting at the first umbLocalGov, organised by the ever cheerful ProjectWIP bunch in Shropshire. It was a really informative and interesting day and its always good to catch up with what everyone is doing and put faces to twitter avatars.
Dale Shepherd, of Project WIP gave an good presentation on where Shropshire are with Umbraco and how they got there, although he did steal my thunder by migrating Shropshire in 10 weeks – We did Liverpool in 12. I’ll forgive him not least because of the slide that said listen to Kevin Jump!
My talk was focused more on the project delivery elements of the Umbraco migration at Liverpool. It was more of an Umbraco/Trello cross over talk, but I hope it gave people a flavour of what it was like, If not the sweets that fuelled the project.
There was a video camera in the room so there’s a dangerous chance it could end up on the internet, which I am sure is something I can prevent with the right amount of money in a brown envelope.
Matt Watson from Barnsley gave a really good talk on the work they’ve been doing building their integration layer, and just how they are making their website talk to everything. As he said it’s not really about Umbraco but web services.
It was good that at an event that was primarily about one CMS we saw that it doesn’t really matter what the specifics are of any one piece of your solution are. If you plan it correctly you can have loosely coupled systems that can be plugged in and out without much disruption to the service as a whole.
I suspect there was some trepidation in the room with the latest and greatest Umbraco; not least because both Dale and myself had talked about how our projects had gone into new releases to quickly and had to roll back (Shropshire went 5 back to 4, and we went from 6 back to 4 two weeks into our migration). Also the current intention with the Umbraco Belle interface is to support IE10+, Firefox and Chrome and in local government that is not the usual desktop browser suite by quite some way.
These issues aren’t unique to Umbraco. Its probably never wise to put your project onto pre-release or week old releases of software, and browser support is something corpocracies always struggle with.
uLocalGov Starter Kit
I also dropped in to the end of my talk the uLocalGov starter kit which is something I have just put more about in another post – it’s a package for Umbraco that gives you a local government style site to play around with, and see how things might work if you where building a local government site in Umbraco.