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Alion | DUUGFest and the Alionauts

Dutch Umbraco Festival 2019 Takeaways

Alion blog author

Tom Chance

11 October 2019

min read

Alion blog intro image

Friday the 11th of October saw Alion's own Raoul, Dave, Tom and Robbert visit the Dutch Umbraco User Group Festival (DUUGFest) - the largest Dutch Umbraco conference in the country. Our team spent the day attending cutting edge talks to explore the new and innovative options surrounding our favorite platform Umbraco.

Our team attended several discussions throughout the day revolving around the upcoming developments of Umbraco and what amazing tools / systems the community have created on websites around the world.

From code innovations to editor experience level ups, our team learnt valuable lessons which we look to take forward in our current and future Umbraco projects, that will benefit users greatly.

Lets take a look at what the team learnt at DUUGFest, and how that benefits our clients!

Our developers in action

Static site generation, incredible speeds with incredible usability.

In one of the talks our team discovered the amazing side of Static site generation with Umbraco presented by Matt Brailsford. A system that allows the front facing website to be generated as flat files, meaning that no complex logic or calculations have to be performed. From a user perspective, you receive the same Umbraco system you've come to know and love with all of its user experience goodies, with no drawback on the editting experience.

The site however will experience drastic speed increases for your desktop and mobile customers. With the beauty of static site generation, we can also look to offer the Umbraco website on a load balanced, scalable setup ensuring you can dynamically scale to requirements set by the size of your audience. It also comes hand in hand with great security benefits to you as a website owner, as all the files are statically loading - it vastly reduces the 'weak chains' within a standard Content Management setup.

Upgrading Umbraco 7 to 8 - Why?

A question that was asked, and responded to at DUUG, was very much a highlighting topic for our team: upgrading Umbraco to the new version 8. What would it entail and more importantly, why should one do this?

At a talk with Callum Whyte we walked through the steps and differences between Umbraco 7 and 8, learning what was required to migrate from one version to another, this included porting existing templates, document types and data types to the newest version and then taking advantage of some of the new editor tools to enhance the user experience offered by Umbraco.

Some of these features were: 

  • Content Apps - The new tools to enhance page data. With content apps, we can use SEO applications to analyse real time page information. Look at image meta data and more.
  • Content variants - Allowing you to easily translate pages between multiple languages and deliver them to your customers.
  • Infinite Editing - Giving editors the ability to do what they do best: edit pages without any annoying page reloads, or having to stop editing to upload an image for a page.

Umbraco and the European Council - Big site, no problem.

Some of our team attended a talk presented by Simone Chiaretta, here Simone walked through an Umbraco implementation of immense scale - 24 Languages, 28 Countries.

Simone explained and demonstrated that by utilising the amazing library of extensions available to Umbraco, that the CMS system could handle thousands of article pages being edited by a team of over 800 translators working simultaneously on the live website. All the while a team of 9 developers in tandem worked to create a super fast, scalable system using tools such as Elastic search, Vorto translations and Varnish caching.

The proof is in the pudding and the website can be found here:

Did you find this article interesting and do you think Umbraco could be of use to your organisation? Maybe our article '8 reasons to choose Umbraco' might be interesting to you. And please do not hesitate to contact us!

Photo credits: Remke Maris

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