The European DNN professionals network is planning its first live face-to-face meeting in mid February. And it happens to be 200 meters from my office. Coincidence? Nah.
For those not familiar with it: what is the EU DNN Pro community? It is a network of people that work mostly with DNN for a living. Note this is not really clearly delineated. But I've always seen the DNN community like Saturn. The planet itself being the core team, i.e. the people building the platform we work with. And the rings are people that in some way use this platform. The inner rings would be people that depend on DNN for a living like professional module developers, skinners, integrators, and other service providers (hosting, training etc). The outer rings would consist of weekend developers, hobbyists, users, admins etc. Note I'm not saying that hobbyists make worse code than 'pros', or casual users know less of the platform, I just distinguish the amount of your time and the dependence of your income on your knowledge of DNN. So the EU DNN Pro network targets Saturn's inner circles in Europe.
Now we are going to have a get-together. The idea was born at Open Force Europe 2008. OF is a great event to network and a number of us go there for that reason primarily. We hang out, down some beers, compare notes, etc. We also use the opportunity to discuss DNN architectural direction with the likes of Shaun, Charles and Joe. During the event we realized that once a year wasn't enough to discuss some of the more complex issues facing us. The more as the conference also provides lots of other forms of entertainment like presentations by fellow geeks. So we came up with a plan to have a kind of code camp type event for ourselves. The goal is not lucrative (the event itself is free) and no training can be gotten there. In this sense it is not anything like an OpenForce conference. Instead we want to (1) strengthen trust between us, and (2) make progress on some key issues in DNN. With the latter you must realize that we use chat/email/forums a lot for our work. Although great, there's nothing to beat sitting down in the same room and working a problem. We hope that this event will jog a couple of hot issues in DNN and get things moving forward.
About the venue: La Vue-des-Alpes (and Tête-de-Ran where the meeting will be held) is a mountain hideout at 1300 m altitude in the Jura mountains. It is so named because we look out over all the Alps from here. We see the Eiger, Monch and Jungfrau as well as the Matterhorn and Mont Blanc. It is also relatively isolated. Walk out of the hotel and you'll be looking for your hiking boots or snow equipment. In my opinion the perfect location for some brainstorming. No distractions other than nature. A picture speaks more than a 1000 words, no?