Florida DrupalCamp 2016 Retrospective

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Web site

  • Clearly, we need to get it up-and-running earlier.
  • During the camp I noticed that on mobile, the incorrect (FLDC15) hashtag is displayed in the header.
  • With this year's changes to the Eventbright stuff, is the site good-to-go for future years?
    • (mike h) It should be with minimal effort
  • (Hollye M.) Need a page for the Sunday events so organizations have some way of validating travel. It's a government thing.
  • (Mike A) https://sched.org is a pretty cool thing for managing the schedule and making it available on different devices and outputs.
  • (Mike T) I feel that while the website is very good there should be a user profile section. I am use to being an authenticated user = Drupal. In the profile section there could be a link to the purchased tickets. Call to actions section, etc. The fact that the "register" link takes you to the events bright page is not what I was expecting and the first time this happened it was confusing.
    • (Mike H) I hear ya, but EventBrite is managing this so much better than COD was.
  • (Geocamp) Heard one sponsor state that two tickets came with certain level of sponsorship but only one person received "ribbon" to denote sponsorship. Website would need to be updated to include names of both parties representing sponsor.
  • (John L) Website can keep going, but lets tweak the theme.
    • (Mike H) Agree on tweaking the design
  • (Kyle H) Make survey available sooner
  • (Kyle H) G+ Hangout to record sessions - need volunteers to organize it, create and test a "process" document. We need one volunteer per room for the entire day.
  • (Kyle H) Add an area to report an issue and send to a distro for immediate response?
  • (Kyle H) RSVP to get an idea of how many will attend a session

Marketing

  • (Mike A) We failed to get the camp listed in the monthly Orlando tech meetup newsletter.
  • (Mike A) Mike H saved our butts with all the newsletters and Facebook ads.
    • (Mike H) It was hard to get an exact ROI on the FB stuff, but I feel it worked pretty well
  • (Mike A) George did a good job with the social media stuff.
  • (Kyle H) We should probably figured out naming conventions early on so others are on the same page. (#fldc2016 #fldc16)
    • (Mike H) Need to standardize on the #fldcYY hashtag
  • (Mike T) Are there any tracking stats on how users are accessing the FLDC site? What social channel is attracting the most registrations? Are we targeting current Drupal users or do we want to bring in "new blood" as Mike A suggested at the opening session. New blood = marketing outside of the Drupal ecosystem.
    • (Mike H) We have Google Analytics. Ping me for access. I honestly haven't been paying attention at all to it.
  • (Geocamp) Registration as a sponsor should include some marketing info such as slogan or focus of business. I attempted to decipher websites but many were broad or vague.
  • (Geocamp) Yes, please. Do determine hashtags early on. Although I had fun with the transition.
    • (Mike H). No worries! It's #fldcYY though :)
  • (Kyle H) Maybe we should consider having two marketing people - one for the Drupal community, one for non-Drupal community.

Badges

  • (Mike A) I liked the new badge design, but I think the orientation of the pages was a little wonky. Also, I think we need to make it so that the schedule is in the centerfold so it is not split on different pages.
  • (Kyle H) A lot of people had their lanyard rip through the holes on their badges. Not sure of a fix but something to think about.
  • (John C) I agree that the schedule should move to the inside of the centerfold, overall I really liked the design, just needs a little tweaking. As far as the lanyard hole ripping, that was a combination of the thick paper and the hole punch not being able to adjust to open wider. It made it difficult to punch. If we stick with the same hole punch then we should go with a slightly lighter weight paper to make it easier to slide the badge all the way into the hole punch.
  • (Hollye M.) Badges were cumbersome because of the larger size and the schedule in it. I ended up removing one of the inserts. The schedule is nice to have handy like that, but I am not sure it worked well the way it was designed. Maybe if the badges were the old size and then a folded paper insert were added. As I said, I'm not sure.
  • (Frank B.) I thought the concept was brilliant. There might be some work in perfecting it. I think it would better without an insert, but I understand the need for sponsors to be highlighted.
  • (Geocamp) Lanyards were short. In order to prevent tearing of badges that are used all day long you would need some sort of metal or plastic ring. People flipping and twisting will tear thick as well as thin paper.
  • (Mike H) I loved the badges!

Food

  • (Mike A) Yum. Do the same next year.
  • (Kyle H) Food was awesome, breakfast at the code sprint was awesome too. 10/10 would recommend next year.
  • (Hollye M.) Food is really great, but I would like have onions on my tacos.
  • (Mike T) Food was good but the lines are still a bummer.
  • (Geocamp) Those tacos always seem to hit the spot without being too heavy.

T-shirts

  • (Mike A) I love the design.
  • (Kyle H) Great shirts, fit was spot on too. Maybe consider offering a collard version for an up charge or tack on an option for sponsors. Might be incentive for more to individually sponsor.
  • (Hollye M.) The material is a lot better than last year. The design is nice, but needs to pop.
  • (Mike T) The design was a bit conservative. Maybe more edgy next time.
  • (Geocamp) Love them. Could use a bit more pop.
  • (Mike H) MORE POP!!!

Venue

  • (Mike A) Easy to book, relatively inexpensive - although this year, we did get charged a bit more for security and custodial ($780), with fewer people this year, the auditorium was less of an issue. Should we just stick with FTC for 2017 and book a date now?
  • (Kyle H) Would it be possible to take volunteers as a cleanup crew to maybe lessen the cost of custodial?
  • (Linda) FTC feels like home now.
  • (Frank B.) It is hard to think of a better venue than you have.
  • (Mike T) Love that this location is very easy to get to from the east coast. I wish the session rooms where a bit larger. Get that AC fixed for the afternoons.
  • Look into audio system for speakers in the auditorium.
  • (Mike H) Yes! We need audio for the auditorium. I could barely hear KarenS
  • (Mike H) Yes! Let's keep FTC. It's so easy!
  • (Kyle H) Classroom size, move larger sessions to the large classroom beginner track was in

Fiscal sponsor

  • We've been given notice that CFCS may not be around next year, and we should make alternative plans for a fiscal steward. Mike, Hewie, and Don discussed, and see three options:
    • Create our own 501(c)(3) - this would take time and effort.
    • Take over the CFCS 501(c)(3) - this would take less time and effort than the first option, but would still require additional work.
    • Let the Drupal Association manage our finances. This would be easiest from a volunteer standpoint, but would cost us 10% of all income. Mike and Don discussed that if the DA agrees to not "tax" our current next egg, this would probably be the best solution for us.
  • See Maggie's comment below for another option for future fiscal sponsorship.

Swag bags

  • (Mike A) I think there might be some fatigue here, but unless someone else steps up and organizes it, this is pretty easy for us to continue doing.
  • (Mike T) I love the swag bags.
  • (Mike H) Yeah, I like em :)

Swag

  • Stickers
    • (Mike A) Loved these.
  • Card folios (for speakers)
    • (Mike A) Loved these more.
    • (MIke H) I don't use this type of stuff, but they did come out well!
  • Luggage tags
    • (Mike A) Loved these most of all.
  • We didn't have books to give away due to lack of volunteer(s) to organize.
    • (Mike A) Bummer, but I didn't hear any complaints.
  • (Linda) I think FLDC17 notebooks and pens would be great since I left my notebook at home this year. Drupaleasy phone stand was most useful swag imho. Also Securi had some great swag as well. I especially liked the hand sanitizer and webcam cover. Loved the luggage tags. Screen cleaning cloths are always useful especially if you wear glasses. Missed the books.
  • (Geocamp) I find swag to be low on the priority list but I understand I am probably not in the majority. Pens are always good as are a stylus for touch screens. Maybe a pen on one side, a stylus on the other? I don't know that it happened but I had a blast at the bag stuffing party for fldc14.

Session videos

  • We didn't have session videos due to lack of volunteer(s) to organize.
  • (Kyle H) I think we should really prioritize session videos and maybe offer an incentive if we have lack of volunteers. If necessary would could have a few volunteers working multiple different sessions at once by simply setting up the videocameras in the back and then letting them run throughout the sessions.
  • (Mike T) I heard quite a few comments that having videos would be great. Can we partner with a small video company to at least have some of the sessions taped?
  • (John L) No need for cameras, we should find out how BADCamp and others are just basically doing screencasts, recording their talk along with the slides on their computer. Much more lightweight and less equipment to wrangle.
  • During the retrospective call, we discussed having someone talk with other camps that do screencast + audio recording, and a volunteer for next year should probably start there: research the most efficient way to do it.
  • (Kyle H) I'm taking the lead on session recordings next event.

Sponsorships

  • We need to do a better job scheduling more social media exposure for higher level sponsors. Something like 1 mention for Bronze, 2 for Silver, 3 for Gold, 5 for Platinum...
  • (Geocamp) Again, lets get more info from the sponsors. It would be a bit more interesting (for me anyway) if I had more to do than just Thanking them and sharing their website and Twitter account.
  • (Geocamp) We need to encourage more sponsors to set up tables. Last year that hall was filled with tables and it was impressive.

Photography

  • (Mike A) George did a great job.
  • (Mike T) +1 George, great job.
  • (Geocamp) Thanks. I did notice there were not many cameras this year. Thinking next year I might set up a portrait backdrop with fldc logo in the entrance.

Community day (Sunday) activities

  • (Mike A) We need to find someone to carry the flag for Sunday activities. We didn't have anyone this year, so it wasn't very organized, and I ended up doing just about everything (coffee, donuts, lunch, etc...)

Audio-video

  • (Mike A) Linda, Natalie, any major issues?
  • (Linda) Only with rooms 177 & 178 that I know of. A few presenters had to restart their computers to get the projector to work. I suggest a full inventory of the cable and connector box provided by FTC before we start so we know what went where and we're sure we return everything we borrowed.
  • (Mike H) We need mic for the auditorium. I could barely hear KarenS

Signage

  • (Mike A) Thanks Caroline and Karan for handling this!

Check-in process (Saturday morning)

  • (Mike A) Don't mess with Caroline and Karan. Lesson learned.
  • LOL

Afterparty

  • (Mike A) Wouldn't change a thing.
  • (Kyle H) Someone call pantheon and tell them they rock!
  • (John L) Several of us thought the Firkin & Kegler staff really sucked this year :( Service was not on par with prior years (long waits for drinks at bar - maybe have servers roaming the room).
  • (Mike H) I got too drunk.

Beginner track

  • (Mike A) I didn't hear any feedback, but I assume it worked out well. I trust Steve Burge.
  • (Kyle H) I heard it was very informative and everyone gained a lot from it. Seeing some of the stuff they worked on I thought they accomplished a lot in one day.
  • (Frank B.) I did attend the Beginner Track - was very impressed at how much was covered. We set up a new site, added content to articles and basic pages; created a new type; learned about templates and views. That covered a very impressive look at how to use Drupal 8.
  • (Kyle H) Beginner track on Sunday, 19 Feb in auditorium 9-3 (Remind people to bring power strips)

Featured speakers

  • (Mike A) They rocked. Wow.
  • (Mike T) This was the first year I could actually get into the auditorium and it and the speakers were great. I purpose we do two days of sessions and get more sessions into the auditorium.

Sessions

  • (Mike A) Generally, I think they were very well received, but that's only based on anecdotal evidence. Also, I see no reason to keep on accepting sessions as they are submitted, I wish we had someone else dedicated to the task though...
  • (Mike T) Sessions where great. The one concern is two session types happening at the same time. Is it possible to split the sessions over two days so that you would be able to pick a track and stick with it. Would it be too much to have speakers do sessions on Saturday and Sunday?
  • (Geocamp) Sessions seemed to go smoother than previous years. Experience I guess. Again some sessions were more popular than others and were very crowded. Standing room only. Maybe there is a way on the website to get a count of those interested in each session and if one appears that it might overfill a room the presenter can be asked to present it twice? This could also be a marketing tool on Facebook to create an event for each session but would take serious obligation by Facebook users.
  • During the retrospective call, John L suggested that we keep track of how populated each session is, with an eye towards future featured speakers.
  • (Kyle H) Longer breaks in between classes, offer 45 minute or 75 minute sessions to speakers.

Hotel/lodging

  • (Mike A) No idea.
  • (Kyle H) Hotel filled up quick (thanks Trump...)
  • (John L) I thought it was fine but heard several people think it was a dump.
  • (Mike H) I thought it was great. We sold 17 rooms I believe, and they comp'd us one room (used by KarenS)

Post-camp survey

  • We need to get this done ASAP!
  • Kyle is handling this with help from Mike A, Mike H, and John L.
  • We have PhpStorm licenses to give away as an incentive to complete the survey.
  • (Kyle H) Have survey ready to go and mention it in closing remarks.

Setup/cleanup

  • We could do a better job formalizing the setup and cleanup crews for both Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Other stuff

  • (Alex M) Perhaps hold a coworking day on the day before the camp? It seems like a lot of people came into town on Thursday night anyway in order to be around for the dinner on Friday.
  • (Kyle H) coworking Fri Feb 17
  • (Mike T) +1 Alex's idea.
  • (Mike A) Create a relative calendar for DrupalCamp organizing. For example, at T-4 months, have the web site up, at T-1 week, do the badge mail merge, etc...

Comments

Discussion about Fiscal Sponsorship

magellen's picture

Great job, FLDC organizers and volunteers! It just keeps getting better.
Here are some thoughts about the issue of how to handle the "fiscal sponsorship" for next year's Drupal Camp.
As a lot of my Drupal buddies know, I have been working for a long time (actually 5 years now! time flies when your having fun) trying to harness the awesome power of Drupal for what, to me, is an important cause - active aging and sustainable living focused on cycling and making the world and our communities more bikable, walkable, and livable.
Also, if you know me, you know I have a love/hate relationship with Drupal because although I'm in awe of its power, there are aspects of Drupal that are beyond my personal technical capabilities. Even though I had no trouble graduating from Drupal Easy Academy, when I'm on my own I struggle with the technical problems.

But I keep soldiering on because I think it's important, and now I am forming a Non-Profit organization so I can afford to get the technical assistance I need to make the sites I manage successful. The new organization will use Drupal's great data matching and social media capabilities to be a clearinghouse for cycling and trail-related information. So I expect to have obtained 501 (c) 3 status soon. And I would be interested in discussing what is involved in taking on the role of fiscal sponsor for Drupal Camp - I know this would involve effort, but it would help FLDC since CFCS is disbanding (kudos and happy retirement to Hewie for his years of service and support!) and might also help me in getting more interest and support for my new organization.

What do you think about this idea? Anyone have a better suggestion for how to handle the fiscal sponsorship of next year's FLDC?

Discussion about Fiscal Sponsorship

magellen's picture

Great job, FLDC organizers and volunteers! It just keeps getting better.
Here are some thoughts about the issue of how to handle the "fiscal sponsorship" for next year's Drupal Camp.
As a lot of my Drupal buddies know, I have been working for a long time (actually 5 years now! time flies when your having fun) trying to harness the awesome power of Drupal for what, to me, is an important cause - active aging and sustainable living focused on cycling and making the world and our communities more bikable, walkable, and livable.
Also, if you know me, you know I have a love/hate relationship with Drupal because although I'm in awe of its power, there are aspects of Drupal that are beyond my personal technical capabilities. Even though I had no trouble graduating from Drupal Easy Academy, when I'm on my own I struggle with the technical problems.

But I keep soldiering on because I think it's important, and now I am forming a Non-Profit organization so I can afford to get the technical assistance I need to make the sites I manage successful. The new organization will use Drupal's great data matching and social media capabilities to be a clearinghouse for cycling and trail-related information. So I expect to have obtained 501 (c) 3 status soon. And I would be interested in discussing what is involved in taking on the role of fiscal sponsor for Drupal Camp - I know this would involve effort, but it would help FLDC since CFCS is disbanding (kudos and happy retirement to Hewie for his years of service and support!) and might also help me in getting more interest and support for my new organization.

What do you think about this idea? Anyone have a better suggestion for how to handle the fiscal sponsorship of next year's FLDC?

sorry that went in twice...

magellen's picture

sorry that went in twice... doesn't seem to give a way to delete the dupe.

sorry that went in twice...

magellen's picture

sorry that went in twice... doesn't seem to give a way to delete the dupe.

Screencasts

kthull's picture

Hey all, I do MidCamp's screen records and St. Louis, Twin Cities and BADCamp all have sponsored my travel and hotel expenses to do their recordings. March may be a challenge for me as it's the busiest time of my year with my company's con and with MidCamp. But if schedules work out, I'd happily help out!

A (bit outdated) write-up of what I use is documented at http://www.bluedropshop.com

I organize camps!
DrupalCamp Fox Valley: http://drupalcampfv.org
MidCamp: http://midcamp.org

Thanks Kevin! You were just

JCL324's picture

Thanks Kevin! You were just the person I was going to reach out to when I see you at the next camp/CON. I remember BADCamp last year did the screencast/audio way and that's all we need. We have a volunteer who has offered to lead this for next year's FLDC and is thinking about Google hangouts. Have you tried this? If so, the pros/cons?

JCL

I have not, though it's come

kthull's picture

I have not, though it's come up in our team before and I think it's a terrifying idea. If every session room had wired broadband, maybe.

I organize camps!
DrupalCamp Fox Valley: http://drupalcampfv.org
MidCamp: http://midcamp.org

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