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Our Trip to Summer Camp: Magento Imagine 2013

  • Christopher Shea
  • 04.15.2013
  • StoreFront Events and News

Several of us from Store Front Consulting were in Vegas for Magento Imagine last week. We took a few steps back from the usual rat race to attend the conference and get the most out of it. This was not just an ordinary event with meetings and mingling, but several days of full engagement. We exercised our bodies along with our networking skills, and enjoyed some first-rate entertainment to boot.

picture of garth running

Bright and early Sunday morning, Garth and I participated in an endurance event we had not found the spare time to properly train for. It was a race that would leave our tendons tight and muscles sore for the remainder of the week. Brent Peterson of WagentoCreative put on the Second Annual Magento Half Marathon and 5k. Being the gluttons for punishment that we are, we signed up for the Half. We looked at the event as an opportunity to get to know our peers outside of our walking desks, headsets, and yet another external monitor. The race started by the Railroad Pass Casino in Boulder City and meandered through the valley, offering beautiful views of Lake Mead and its surrounding mountains. So, how did we do?trophyWell we finished… I somehow managed to place first in my age group, which is especially interesting due to the fact that I was on the phone with my wife and toddler for at least ten minutes of the run. I also stopped for a couple drinks along the way (water that is, Im not that good). Was this thing rigged??? Have the geeks invented time travel?

our booth at the imagine conference

Come Monday, it was time to get to work. We attended the conference to celebrate the release of our newest integration extension, and to spread the word about our latest line of payment extensions built to work with the popular gateway Authorize.Net. Rather than walking the floor, SFC shared a booth in the marketplace with the guys from DropShip Commerce. We recently completed building the integration extension which allows product and order data to flow easily between Magento and the DropShip Commerce platform. It was exciting to see the interest that was coming from the attendees as well as the competition, as drop shipping is certainly all the buzz amongst online merchants. The ease of use and stability of the platform make it a great choice for the merchant looking to reign in their suppliers and stop hiding under spreadsheets and manual order processing systems.

chris with ceo magentoSFC logo etched in phone case

While on the floor meeting with various solutions providers, our Creative Director Aaron Boswell discovered the laser etching booth, where geeks and execs waited in line to have everything from images of their kids to company logos engraved on their device of choice. After patiently standing in line for at least twenty minutes, I was cut in front of by none other than the CEO of eBay Inc., John Donahoe and three other higher ups at Magento. I guess I should not expect the CEO to wait in line like everyone else? John smoothed this over by making a joke about the ZeroLag dart that I had earlier taken to the heart. While long, the wait was worth it, and the SFC logo I had etched turned out pretty sweet.

imagine conference stage

This event was for the cool kids. I have been to many business conferences, but none like this. Apparently Magento knows how to throw a party! Even the stage designer was impressed by the choice the ups at Magento made to have a 3D projection layout on the stage. He said, “I usually do stages for DJs and artists–pretty wild of them to go with this type of layout. The performing artist was Bobby McFerrin’s son, Taylor McFerrin. The room thundered with applause at the completion of an amazing beatbox performance by Taylor. No one worried and everyone was happy!

aaron wearing a monkey hat

Finally the rubber met the road, and Magento announced the release of Magento Enterprise 1.13. While there are other improvements in the latest release by far, the one of most interest to the development community is the increased performance of the indexing process. They talked about test cases where reindexing was going from thirty hours to four hours. In addition, they have modified the indexing procedure to process deltas instead of rebuilding the entire index. This is a much needed improvement, as Magento attracts larger and larger merchants with hundreds of thousands of skus.

All in all, we feel it was a successful event. We are excited about what the future holds as Magento and the community continue to grow.

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