There's little time left before MageTestFest slaps us in the face: November 15th to 18th 2017, MageTestFest is held in The Netherlands. And Magento has a strong presence, even though MageTestFest is not an official Magento event. What is happening here? Is MageTestFest a Magento franchise? Or is something else at play?
Magento as a Contribution Day Sponsor
First, MageTestFest is not a Magento event. It is organized by Yireo, made possible by a bunch of volunteers and attracting developers from all over the world. It is more of a community event, similar to MageTitans and MageUnconferences.
However, at those conferences, a lot of time, Magento was not present. This has changed a lot over the last year. But still, Magento seemed to see those community events as less of an investment, while Magento only got really involved big time with the more official MeetMagento conferences. There is a difference here - something makes MageTestFest different than the other developer conferences.
Magento financially backing Contribution Day
We are proud to have Magento being present at MageTestFest. And even cooler, Magento is also acting as a Contribution Day Sponsor. Now, I've been at a lot of conferences and Magento was often the guest of honour. However, only rarely did Magento sponsor. Yes, they helped set up Contribution Days all over the world, sending in their people. But more specifically, Magento is also contributing financially to the Contribution Day of MageTestFest.
And MageTestFest has lowered the attendance fee to the Contribution Day to a mere 19 Euro because of this. Why? Because it is important that developers get involved. This is no longer just a hackathon. It is actually collaborative development to increase software quality on all fronts.
The difference: Focus on testing
And obviously, the main focus of such a Contribution Day - as being part of MageTestFest - is testing. This is the real reason why MageTestFest caught the attention of Magento. Testing should be a daily practice. Testing increases stability. Still, too few developers practice TDD. Tests are still lacking.
By promoting testing, MageTestFest puts a finger on the sensitive spot, it points out the path that we, as developers, should take. And Magento sees this - Magento shares this vision. Therefore, it is more than logical - but still very very cool - that Magento has joined us in such a way at MageTestFest.
2 talks on testing only
Practically, Magento is sending two great engineers to talk at the main conference on November 17th 2, 17: Igor Miniailo will share the findings that the Community Engineering Team had whilst working on the Multi Source Inventory (MSI) project. And Tom Erskine is introducing us with the new Functional Testing Framework - its ins and outs being shared, so that we know how and when to put into practice.
Contribution Day on testing
Even cooler, both developers (plus some more Magento engineers) are joining forces with developers from the community to work on tests on various levels during the Contribution Day on November 18th. I'll write a separate blog post on this soon, to share the vision that the Yireo team has with this Contribution Day.
But rest assured, this Contribution Day is not going to be an average pick-anything hackathon. It has a strong focus on testing (unit testing, integration testing) with some of the best Magento developers guiding everyone. We already have 50 people coming to this hackathon, so number-wise this is already a success.
Stay tuned for more news. And thanks, Magento, for making this great event possible!