183 days and counting. That seems like a big number but is, in fact, shockingly short. We have 183 days until the opening days of Drupalcon Denver. To be truthful, it is fewer days than that when you take into account preregistration and training days. That is roughly 26 weeks - or just about 6 months.
This post isn't just about the con - it is an illustration of contributions that make the community hum.
My friend Rick over at Monarch Digital in Colorado Springs wrote a blog post about his journey to being part of the local committee working on making this conference a success. I think his points on inclusion are really good. My early days as part of the community really were saturated with the idea that the most valued contributions were code. I've spent a fair bit of time writing and talking about alternative contributions in the Drupal community. In fact, as Drupal becomes an older and wiser platform, more folks from the Project, Product, and Business management world will be (are) needed to help the project move forward. These points are strongly made by the necessary contributions to organize a Con or a Camp. To be fair, at the end of the day, all contributions service the code we use in our hobbies and jobs.
In terms of Drupalcon, these contributions are largely logistic. As an example, a week or two ago, I was handed a set of keys to the Drupal Association Zendesk support site. Support requests are relatively light right now - but I fully expect as the date gets closer, more and more requests for help will come in. This will end up taking up a fair bit of my time. No question I've been asked so far is directly related to code - although there was a bug report that could be seen in this light I suppose.
Here's a paraphrased list of the kinds of questions and answers:
- Q: How can I get access to sessions from the Drupalcon if I'm not there? A: We post the videos online!
- Q: Can I get a Visa to go to the London Drupalcon? A: The London Drupalcon is over already, so no.
- Q: Can I get a VAT tax receipt for London? A: I'll pass it onto the appropriate person to file
- Q: Can I perform at Drupalcon Denver? A: Lets see if it makes sense, but we love this kind of offer!
- Q: Can I sponsor? A: OF COURSE! Thank you for your generosity!
- Q: Can I help with translations? A: What a fabulous thing to offer! Lets see where we can can use that kind of help.
- Q: Can I help with lighting and sound? A: We'll get you in touch with the technical logistics team.
- Q: My information isn't passing correctly from Drupal.org to Drupalcon Denver. Can you help? A: Thanks for reporting the bug. We'll address it and be back in touch.
- Q: I can't figure out how to get the hotel discount rate online. How do I do it? A: You'll need to call the hotel directly.
This just is a taste of the kinds of things people are asking at this point.
What other kinds of things are people doing/organizing?
- Venue organization
- Chairing track committees
- Technical logistics like lighting and sound
- Social Activities
- Site Building
- Site Design
- Site Content
- Social Networking
- and so so much more
Some Fun Stuff
Those of you who are interested in snow sports as a minor distraction from the Convention - Arapahoe Basin has had it's first snow before summer has even closed. This last few days has had snow fall in some of the lower elevations as well. This all strikes me as amusing because my flowers are still blooming and my tomatoes are still providing for our dinner table. Our brussel sprouts are just sprouting.
The featured speakers are starting to firm up, including mobile maven, Luke Wroblewski.
For those interested in libations - The Napa Valley of Beer awaits with styles ranging from the most intense of intimate Belgian Styles to the most insipid of American MEGA BREWING. The long and short is - if you crave a style, you'll find a local brewery that produces it. Fortunately for Drupalcon, there isn't a beer festival going on during the convention - we might have had a mass exodus of folks eager for samples!
If you want to see what the crew in Denver is talking about, you could pop into our freenode IRC channels. Our general chat is in #drupal-colorado and we have more targeted specific conversations in #dcondtown.