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eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012 in Croatia

Monday October 08 2012: Martin Wilde

eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012 trophy - A boat out of stone

As a newbie at JAC Systeme GmbH, which is a member of the CJW Network, I've been allowed to visit the eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012 in Bol, Croatia. By the way the CJW Network is a sponsor of the eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012. There I've visited the »Development Kickoff-Workshop« – simply called BASIC-Track. The eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012 spanned from 05. September 2012 to 08. September 2012.

The goal of the BASIC-Track was to give beginners an understanding of the most important fundamentals and concepts of eZ Publish.

In this blogpost I want to report about the experiences and impressions I could acquire at the eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012. Thereby I'm going to split my report into single days and write something about every single day.

To start off with, I want to thank the Netgen crew and the employees of eZ. They've done everything in there power to let the event pass off like planned. Thank you!


Day 1, Tuesday - »The Arrival«

On Tuesday – 04. September 2012 – has been the day of arrival. Early in the morning our little tour group proceeded from the cold »Hanseatic Town Of Stralsund« southbound. But before we had traveled into the warm regions of earth we'd had to go to Berlin by train to finally fly to Split.

After we'd arrived in Split we've been searching for the bus which should bring us to our ferry to Brač. When we found the right bus after a bit of confusion, we arrived at the port of Split after about a half hour of drive. Unfortunately we couldn't see much of Split as it during this bus journey.

Past a little walk through the harbor area of Split we finally arrived at the berth of our ferry in which we embarked after a short time of waiting. It has been so freshening because the air in the ferry was much cooler than outside – thanks to the air conditioning system.

The ferry finally has brought our tour group to Brač – more precisely to the city of Bol – where we went to our apartment and unloaded our luggage. We'd stayed there for a short amount of time before we've went to the Hotel Elaphusa.

At the hotel we've got a warm welcome and have been registered. With this registration you had to specify which kind of certification you would like to take there.

Furthermore each of the members got a small »Welcome« package in form of a goody bag. Each of this bags held a eZ Sailor t-shirt, a accreditation for hanging around the neck – which also has been the schedule of this week – and a small bottle of blueberry brandy.

Subsequent to the registration and the distribution of the goody bags the members gathered outside at the pool area. Each of the members got a welcome drink and started talking. The first people made friends and found possible connections.

Beside the lectures and workshops the schedule of the week has planned some extraordinary events, like dinner, wine vault and boat trip. They have been split into three categories:


This track turned on beginners who haven't had any experience in dealing with eZ Publish and covered things like:

  • The basic-setup of eZ Publish
  • Classes, objects, nodes and drafts
  • Extensions
  • Settings, overrides and SiteAccesses
  • Debugging and caching
  • User, user groups and policies


The CMS-Track turned - as contrasted with the BASIC-Track - on experienced eZ Publish developers and covered advanced techniques like:

  • Advanced eZ Find
  • Responsive Layout in eZ
  • Integration with Varnish
  • Clustering techniques
  • Performance analysis
  • Advanced Caching
  • Mobile site in eZ


The PHP-Track turned on profound eZ Publish developers whose are interested in the substructure of eZ Publish and wanted to gather information abou new techniques like:

  • New public API
  • Build your datatypes
  • Symfony2 introduction
  • New REST API
  • Hackathon

This day ended after this - for some people earlier, for some later.

Day 2, Wednesday - »The Opening«

The next morning began at 9 o' clock with a 20-minutes-lasting welcome event. This was referring to members who were unable for personal reasons to arrive at yesterday's opening. Ongoing – at 9:20 – the lectures and workshops finally began.

I attended the BASIC-Track, because I'm a beginner with eZ Publish and this track should be an introduction to this matter. The gross goal of the Basic-Workshop has been creating a website from scratch within three days – focusing eZ Publish. This workshop mainly has been leaded by the pleasant Ivo Lukač which is an employee of Netgen. Not only him, but also Nicolas Pastorino – an employee of eZ – taught us some things. Netgen have been in charge of the eZ Summer Camp 2012. The following themes and concepts have been approached this day:

  1. General things about eZ Publish
  2. Objects, sub items and nodes
  3. Drafts and versions
  4. Translations
  5. Creating a site map
  6. Classes
  7. Creating a class
  8. Structure of eZ Publish (database and file system)
  9. Site accesses and overrides
  10. Extensions

Altogether the workshop has been fairly theoretically that day, but this is necessary in case of the complexity of eZ Publish. But Ivo arranged this workshop exciting and funny in most cases.

After workshop ended for this day members had free time till dinner in the restaurant Vagabundo. Some members used opportunity to go to the beach.

Many members joined on the dinner and expanded relationship with others. It looked like the members enjoyed this evening.

Day 3, Thursday - »Practical Exercises«

The next morning lectures and workshops began at 9 o' clock, because there had been no welcome event this day. When I got into the room of the BASIC-Track there have been some new people in this track. The track approached the following themes and activities this day:

  1. Revision
  2. Design extension: logo and favicon
  3. Removing register link from header by extension
  4. Creating a CSS file within the extension for moving navigation bar
  5. Templates and template language
  6. Page layout and module result
  7. Adjusting »project_full« and »project_line« template
  8. Adjusting »selected_project_folder« by node id

In contrast to the first day of workshop it has been more focused on practice either than theory. But it has been build on things that had been taught the day before. Because of this Ivo started a revision in the beginning. The topics this day have been a very good addition to the topics on first day. Moreover things from day before have been solidified.

Day 4, Friday - »The Final Spurt«

Timing planned same beginning time than day before. This day was something special to all of the members, because the eZ certification should taking place. Many members became nervous. But in that short time, Basic-Track members had no chance to pass the certification with a good score. The following themes have been approached this day:

  1. Revision
  2. Users, roles and policies
  3. Sections
  4. Creating an user
  5. Creating a user group and containing users
  6. Cache management
  7. RSS feeds
  8. URL aliases
  9. Extension: eZ Flow
  10. Information about eZ and future events

After the completion, the Hackathon and the eZ Publish certification proceeded simultaneous. But most of the members gathered in the biggest conference room of the hotel for passing the certification. Unfortunately the certification doesn't worked like planned. There have been too many users and too less bandwidth for all the users. But the members that weren't able to do this certification at this time have the possibility to do it later though.

End of Hackathon and certification has been at 17 o' clock. Then all the members gathered in the same room where the certification took place for listening to the completion event of the organizers. Also the sponsors of eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012 have been called and introduced. Every sponsor got a little gift. Additionally, each member were completed survey and added his own username that was valid for the evening lottery.

Planning for that evening has been a meeting in the wine vault of Bol. An employee of the wine vault told us some things about the evolution and history of the vault but also details about the wines. After this tour we've got invited to the winetasting. We've got served with three different wines and canapés. Moreover the winners of the lottery were drawn out and got their little gift.

Day 5, Saturday - »Boat Tour And Sightseeing«

Despite the end of the lectures and workshops the planning of the eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012 still hasn't got to an end. For this day it was planned to visit another island Hvar by boat, which is accross our island Brač. The participation hasn't been a duty but a big part of the members gathered in front of the ship in the morning.

While this approximately two hours taking boat trip we've got served some ice coffee and a small croissant. Weather has been warm and very nice this day. That induced some members to sleep while this time. After the trip completed the ship was staying there for approximately one hour and a half. Many members explored the island, the city and the fortress on top of the city.

When all the members got together, we were offered with nice meal on board: grilled fish from the Adriatic Sea with fresh bread and supplements. It's a strange feeling having lunch during the boat ride and eat this kind of food.

During the boat tour, we passed through the famous islands called on Croatian "Pakleni Otoci". The ship held at one of the smaller islands called Palmižana where the members could choose if they want to take a ship back to Bol or if they want to explore the island. The people who decided to explore the island gathered at a beach that consists of rocks. The weather was perfect: the air was clear, the sun was incredibly warm, the sun's rays are lighted immaculate sea, that was comfortable for a little refreshment

In the late afternoon we returned back to the ship and went back to Bol. So, we had plenty of time to take advantage of our free time. Some of the members took the opportunity to play volleyball on the beach, some of them took the last chance to get a refreshments on the beautiful beach called Zlatni Rat (engl. Golden Cape) - narrow white pebble beach on a promontory near Bol, located 2 km west of Bol harbor and some of them took some time off to be able to come out in the evening at a nearby bar.

Conclusion - »A Wonderful Time«

In conclusion I want to issue my personal statement about my days at the eZ Publish Summer Camp 2012.

Myself as a newbie in this sector and especially in dealing with eZ Publish many things have been completely new to me. The workshop as a whole has been very interesting and well-guided. Mr. Ivo Lukač has clearly been the central point of this event with his engagement. Beside of leading the BASIC-Track he has had an open mind about a nice conversation and guided the provided events.

In the time I've had in Croatia I've met interesting new people and have learned many fundamental techniques in dealing with eZ Publish. Additionally I've met future workmates and non-workmates which I could count among my friends.

Beside the interesting workshop the common events have been well-planned and rich in variety. One of the reasons for this was probably that the members got on well with each other.

Summarizing I can declare that my days in Croatia have been successful in common. I've spend some nice days in Bol, have learned many new things and I've got known some stunning people. Personally, I hope that this hasn't been the last event on which I'd participated and I want to say »Good Luck with your work!« to eZ and the Netgen crew. But I also wish every member much luck for their plans in personal and vocational way. I hope your wishes come true!

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