I’ve been attending Sitefinity User Groups for nearly 5 years now, I’ve even presented at more than a handful myself. Going into last night’s user group I had a good expectation for how it would go: there would be standing presentations, a follow up Q/A section, and of course pizza.
Last night’s meeting – now at a new location next door – completely changed that expectation, and for the better. This was a more “intimate” environment so instead of a presentation format, everyone sat in a more roundtable setup for the presentations. It was very welcoming and inviting which spurred up a lot of interesting conversations throughout the night.. and of course we still had the pizza.
Americaneagle.com Sitefinity Department Director Matt Annes revealed features that we can expect coming up in 11.1 as well as features we’ve seen over the past few versions. There was a range of guests who maintain a variety of Sitefinity versions, and it’s always awesome to see people’s reactions to where the CMS is going. It was a great presentation that covered aspects from content entry improvements to even development features. He showed off a new Visual Studio plugin, VSIX – something completely new to me (and I basically breathe Sitefinity these days).
There was really information for every type of person in the room, and that trend continued on into the next presentation.
Americaneagle.com Project Manager Gianna Neri covered the essentials in planning a Sitefinity website to set yourself up for better long term success. She provided real world examples of how the CMS not only provides well-functioning out of the box content solutions, but how well those same solutions can be extended. From basic functionality, using custom code, all the way up to tying these tools into third party solutions such as Marketo or Coveo - we discussed a wide range of scenarios.
We also spent a lot of time discussing the capabilities of Sitefinity’s out of the box REST service (my favorite topic ever) and working with multimedia alongside the CMS. This time around Matt and Gianna also pulled up different Sitefinity sites which attendees in the room actually manage out in the real world - it was a great opportunity to see the unique ways people use the CMS for their needs.
I’ve always really enjoyed going to the user groups but tonight’s format has me even more excited for the next one. Hope to see you there!!
For more information on the Chicago Sitefinity User Group or to join the Meetup Group please click below.
Sitefinity Meetup Group