One of my favorite things about the DNN community is meeting new people and learning about what they’re doing with DNN. I first stumbled across Aaron Lopez a few years ago when he submitted himself for the first DNN Super Fan Contest. Unfortunately, he didn’t win, but his entry was good enough for me to remember who he was. Since then, he has been contributing to the DNN community a lot through twitter. Perhaps other places as well, but that’s where I see him. One day, he announced a new site that their company released and I couldn’t tell it was DNN. I had to learn more. This led to him publishing a blog on the topic and then he and his brother volunteered to come on the show to talk about some of the things they’ve learned with DNN.
As one of the more prominent producers of DNN video content, it seemed only logical that we should invite Aderson Oliveira of DNNHero to come and speak to us. He instantly suggested that we speak about templates in DNN and how they can be used to streamline content creation. As a huge fan of templates myself, I was excited about his presentation immediately. Not only did he not disappoint, but he covered nearly every aspect on this topic. So much so, that Joe and I really didn’t have any questions – and neither did our audience!
If you’re arriving to this blog for the first time, you may not know that I’ve been working with DNN nearly since it was released. That’s well over 10 years of managing DNN sites of various sizes, purposes, and deployments. This experience has ranged from businesses that run on the platform, to running subsets of an organizations web properties on it, and more. During my consulting days, I saw all kinds of DNN sites. This wide range of challenges has resulted in learning a large number of things – including how to leverage SQL Server to solve problems in a creative way. That’s what this session was about.
The past few weeks have been a blur for us here at Hotcakes Commerce for quite a few reasons… We were highly involved at DNNCon Palm Beach 2014. This is the third consecutive DNN event that we’ve sponsored and attended. We not only sponsored this time, but we also co-organized, provided a training track, presented 2 sessions, and emceed the event. It’s always great to participate with the DNN community and this time we took it to a whole new level.
One of the sessions I presented at DNNCon Palm Beach 2014 was greatly inspired by all of you. During my years consulting and then into my time training large companies at DNN Corp, I kept getting a common question, “how do I do this with large/enterprise teams?” It’s way too easy to try and walk them through doing all of the hard work of trying work around the single-developer project architecture that you’re used to seeing in videos and wiki articles – but that’s not the answer they’re looking for. If you have a complicated project and/or a team of 2 or more people working on code that’s all supposed to work together, there has to be a far simpler solution – and there is!
We’ve just gotten done with the October episode of DNNHangout – this time featuring longtime DNN community member and skin designer, Tracy Wittenkeller. You may or may not have heard of Tracy, but he’s the man behind the team that brings you T-Worx and DNN Magazine. Chance are that you’ve already used or purchase one of his skins at some point. Tracy walks us through some new and exciting techniques that his company is applying to their new skins to help use contemporary design techniques, while at the same time making the content editing experience accessible to the average content editor. From what we could see, he’s taken this a long way to fill in that gap and by using a lot of existing DNN features!
I don’t know if you deal with as many websites as I do, but I’ve been dealing with other peoples DNN sites since I first began dabbling with it over a decade ago. (Boy, does that make me feel old!) Restoring the website from someone else’s environment to test, troubleshoot, and fix an issue isn’t a major issue as long as you have some experience with IIS, SQL Server, and Windows. However, the testing you need to do often requires access to multiple accounts. This is the problem. Duplicating those accounts is either non-trivial, or time consuming. So why not just reset all of their passwords?
It’s been a LONG time since I began and last updated the “participate” blog series. A lot of things have changed since then. I am at a new company. Shaun Walker moved on too. Joe Brinkman is now leading community. Charles Nurse took over as the Chief Architect. The DNN core is now much more open for contributions, and so many more changes. Regardless to your personal opinions, there is a bright future for DNN. Part of this is the introduction of working groups, one of which is the Training working group that I am leading – and I need your help. Nay… The COMMUNITY needs your help!
Joe Brinkman and I have begun hosting a monthly show called DNNHangout. In each episode we will talk to you about recent DNN news, events, and anything else that might be useful to the DNN community. We also will be talking to and showcasing a speaker that will present an interesting topic that you can apply on your own DNN site.
This is the second post in a series of blog posts that will focus on ways that you can participate in DNN in some way. Participation is incredibly important. Without it, any community will suffer, and an open source community like ours knows this all too well if you look at the history of open source. After all, what good is any project if no one is using it. Luckily, we have had the luxury of millions of users, nearly a million production sites, over a thousand eco-system vendors & system integrators, and more. We have thrived more than most. However, like I stated before, there are a ton of ways for you to participate. If you’re new to DNN, this post will help you help others by answering questions.