We Work on the Internet, but Our Hearts Belong to Paris

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It's been about a week since returning from Drupalcon Paris, and the consensus at Trellon is that we wish it never had to end. Many of the members of our team have been going to Drupalcons for a long time, and this was definitely one of the most memorable ones on record.

It was great getting to come out and support the community, and what a community it is these days! Being there, you got the sense of how much enthusiasm is building around Drupal, with so many people with different perspectives about what to do with the platform. While attendance was not as high as some previous events, that owed more to the venue than anything else, and you had the sense it made for a better experience.

The keynote speakers were thought provoking, to say the least, and I am still processing some of what was discussed about productization and RDF. Needless to say, our entire team learned a lot, and is returning with a better sense of the opportunities recent advances are leading too as well as the challenges faced by people working with the platform.

Here are a few photos we collected during the event. We are going to be posting more to Twitter, look for the #trellon tag over the coming weeks. There are a lot. [EDIT: I meant Flickr. Big difference.]

Cite Universitare

This is the venue where Drupalcon Paris was held. Getting there required a trip on the Paris subways, which is quite an experience when you are not really that familiar with the way they work. The settings were perfect for talking about technology, the venue was both spaceous and personal all at once. Many thanks to the organizers for setting up such a terrific place to connect with so many other Drupalgangers.

Team Trellon

We had an opportunity to connect with a large number of interesting people at the Trellon table. The common theme for most of the people we spoke with was RDF, I was surprised by the number of folks who already grasped the potential for this important technology. One of the keynote sessions addressed RDF directly, and inspired a lot of thoughts about various ways to support it. Look for RDF support forthcoming in the activism module and tools for targetting online campaigns based on data received from common RDF feeds.

There was also a lot of discussion around productization. Alan Palzollo, one of the developers on our team, recently participated in the Open Atrium beta, and learned a lot about how to release Drupal as a platform. We had a chance to connect with members of other shops who are releasing Drupal distros as a service / as a product, and it instructed our thinking about a few things we have been considering releasing to the community as well.

Team Trellon

The Trellon delegation relaxing at one of the omnipresent Paris cafes. Prices for Coca-Cola ranged from 2 - 8 Euros, which lead to some big tabs for Katie (pictured at the end, the youngest Trellonaut). One of the most challenging parts about being in Paris was figuring out the meal schedules, basically you are out of luck if you are looking for lunch after a certain time. It is hard trying to write code when you are jet lagged, starving and don't speak the language. There were fast food joints around, but, really, who wants a cheeseburger when you are in Paris?

Le Procope

Our team seemed to have a knack for finding American themed bistros and Irish pubs for group meals. On the last night of Drupalcon, we went out to Le Procope, which stands as one of the oldest restaurants in Paris. Anything that has survived since 1686 impresses me, and it was interesting to know I was sitting at a place where Ben Franklin, Voltaire, Robspierre, et al used to hang out. Drupal has always been something of a revolutionary platform, a tool that various people use to change the places they work / live in. Getting a chance to take in the scenery and think about the way Romantic idealism relates the challenges the community faces set a certain mood that carried over into the conference.