Warning: This is just a small personal note that doesn’t carry any objective value.

This day marks exactly one year since I had first installed Neos CMS. Without any exaggeration I can testify that this event had truly changed my professional life.

I had been doing web development since 2005, got to stick with TYPO3 since 2006, but for the recent years nothing has really been pushing me forward: I was using TYPO3 to build and maintain our corporate websites, just doing my job without much of inspiration, a regular website integrator on his duties. But Neos has changed quite a few things in that picture…

What has happened

  1. I really got inspired by the product design of Neos. Nodes, TypoScript, clean uncluttered UI, everything was carrying just so much innovation and openness. There was no spirit of commerce that is often floating around other slick business-driven open source projects.
  2. That inspiration made me go online to IRC, something I had never done in my years with TYPO3 (now I wonder why?). I met great people there, both core team members and new guys on the block like me. In that hot August of 2014 there was that same team of new, but “persistent” guys up there in IRC every morning: floleblank, kodierkroete, stolle, soee and me… Only later would I learn their real names and even meet all of them in person.
  3. I started joining events. Never had I thought before of a possibility to leave my cozy homeland and go thousands of miles to join some tech meetup… During this year I managed to join 3 code sprints + just back from TYPO3 Developer Days 2015.
  4. I have learned more than I had learned in previous ten years combined! Going from sftp uploads to proper Surf+CircleCI CI/CD to shipping Docker containers; from Windows to Linux; from copies of files scattered around file system to proper Git mastery. Learned to work in a team: CGL, code reviews, semantic versioning and what not. All of that would not be possible without the push from outside, from being surrounded by people who are times more talented (and humble) than I am.
  5. I got a chance to give something back. On behalf of my awesome employer, St Philaret Christian Institute, I had a chance to commit about 40 changes to Neos. About the same amount typical core developer commits in a day, but compared to my 0 contributions to TYPO3 in 9 years, that’s quite a number :)

My plans for the following year

  • Well, most of all I want build a similar community around our team at SFI.ru. We already have all of our code opensourced on Github. A lot of volunteers from our church and students of our institute want to help out, and my task is to make that contribution as simple as possible.
  • I want to learn JavaScript properly and fill-in other gaps in my developer skills to be able to contribute to the Neos project on a more professional level.
  • Have fun together with Neos community and join 3-4 code sprints.
  • Try to find possibility to work with Neos outside the work-time paid by SFI.ru

So I thank God for bringing a bit of love even to my tech career and looking forward to the challenges He still has in store for me next year ;)

Appendix. “Our” castles

"Our" castle Courtesy of www.lacisoft.com