Between September 23rd and 25th, about 150 developers gathered in Europe’s tech Mecca, Berlin for this year’s three day adaptTo() meetup:

“adaptTo() is a meetup in Berlin focused on Apache Sling including Apache Jackrabbit and Apache Felix and is addressed to all using this stack or parts of it.”

Thus, it’s not, per se, a conference about Adobe CQ/AEM but more about its underlying technologies (Sling, Jackrabbit, etc.). However, there were a couple CQ specific topics as well and judging by the conversations I had with other developers, most of them actually work with CQ in their daily jobs.

Just getting started with CQ/AEM and its technology stack, the Rookie session explaining the fundamentals about JCR and Sling was very enlightening for me. It really showed how powerful these tools can be. There were also some other talks that I really enjoyed:

After reading Nicola’s article about Varnish, I thought it was cool to see how to implement it with CQ (And who doesn’t like making a website “50 times” faster?). The second day was kicked off with a very interesting talk about “Sling IDE tooling“. This Eclipse plugin (hopefully published soon) will make developing against an Apache Sling installation a breeze. Another thing to look forward to is Adobe’s new templating language HTL/Sightly, which is scheduled to be released early next year. Of course there can’t be a tech conference without the omnipresent buzzword ‘mobile’. Andrew Savory’s and Conrad Woeltge’s talk showed how different device groups can be addressed with “BrowserMap” in combination with Sling’s native features. The lighting talks at the end of day three also contained some interesting aspects, including how to properly “Secure CQ” and the concept of “Superimposing Content” which is used in Volkswagen’s dealer websites.

If you are interested to read more, the adaptTo() website provides all slides (including those from previous years) for download.

What became apparent throughout the talks is that a lot of things are still in development. Many of the speakers called upon the audience to actively contribute, may it be reporting bugs or actually committing code. Now that Adobe is really pushing the system, the community is starting to grow as well.

In between the talks and during the lunch breaks* there naturally was time to network and meet people from the community. It was interesting to talk to people with a variety of skill sets and knowledge about CQ and ask them about their experiences with the system. (* the food was great by the way)

The venue, the “Kulturbrauerei” in Berlin’s Prenzlauer Berg neighborhood, was a cool and sort of industrial/grungy place. Here are some impressions from the three days:

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(For some more pictures, check out the official picture gallery and twitter account)

Concluding, I had a great time and learned a lot. Thanks to all the sponsors and people who made the conference possible.