EECONF2020 - The year the ExpressionEngine Conference went virtual

Posted on November 02, 2020

Caroline Blaker

EECONF2020 - The year the ExpressionEngine Conference went virtual Image

I pre-recorded a talk for this year's EEConf - the ExpressionEngine conference

Last month, the long-standing ExpressionEngine conference put on by the EECA the community organization around ExpressionEngine (pursuing non-profit status) took place on a platform called hopin on a place we were all used to occupying in the first place: the browser. On a website built for conferences, we attended this session or that, milled around in “booths” and “lounges” - chat rooms where up to 10 could share video and audio and the rest hung out in the chat.

It was so fun.

It was a day where a bunch of people who kind of knew each other and a bunch of people who showed up to a (sponsored) free conference got to have sort of the maximum human contact possible considering all prevailing circumstances. Some sessions were prerecorded, others were live. There were some technical hiccups but definitely no tragedies. Like when my attempt to go backstage at the end of my talk resulted in having to leave entirely and go to a lounge. Argh! But all in all the EECA were on top of everything and it really did go off without a hitch. At least to me.

Where is all of the ExpressionEngine Work?

My prerecorded talk focused on ExpressionEngine’s many key strong points as a choice for content management, while making a case for looking to the future differently. It laid out the fallacy of wondering where all the work is as a meaningful means of evaluation of the content management system and took a look at some more prescient indicators of future success.

I also referred to “the greater ExpressionEngine community,” and I’ll do it again. Starting, of course with the tweet that went viral for asking people in tech how they got kicked off with their career:

(^ this is the first tweet I have embeded here. Hmm..)

And so many people doing so many wonderful things had #eecms in common origin.

While “the greater ExpressionEngine community” doesn’t mention anything specific, it is a root-centered way to talk about our colleagues and our community as it realistically began and still exists. It gets rid of the need to “overlap” with “I do both” or other political choices, and just includes everyone that it describes. The community has been divided by preferred CMS so bitterly that our commonality has been all but erased to each other; yet we have more in common than we ever did with Brad Par——. I just want to name the commonality something and be able to refer to it as a complete idea. It refers to a one-of-a-kind exceptional group that continues to break boundaries and make dreams come true despite being quite small in number. It should be talked about.

This EECONF I met a new community ready for a refreshed perspective on the capabilities supported by ExpressionEngine and the future that work and effort could bring. I saw a group ready to take on the future knowing that the road ahead was merely an idea ready for the stomping. They wanted to see the potential, the future plans, and what we have now to bring to the table - and learn how to articulate it in a unified way. It’s such a great place to start from.

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