FOSDEM, DrupalCon DC and more!

published on January 22, 2009

I’ve got so much exciting good news that I don’t even know where to begin!

I was asked to review a Drupal book, was chosen to speak at FOSDEM, my bachelor thesis proposal will be published as part of a technical communications book, I turned 21 and was selected for a DrupalCon DC sponsorship! If only all of this happened while I wasn’t in the middle of my exam period…

Reviewing a Drupal book

Packt Publishing contacted me on January 7, asking if I was interested in reviewing Drupal 6 Site Builder Solutions. It’ll be my first book review, but I’ve always had eye for detail, consistency and clarity in books (I have yet to see the first U.S. college text book that is well written), so I hope it’ll be of use to somebody :)
You can expect the review towards the end of February. What interests me is that it’s targeted at business owners instead of developers, so I’ll do a practical test with my dad, who’s not technically adept.

Speaking at FOSDEM 2009!

On January 11, I was selected to speak at FOSDEM 2009. It’ll be my first real presentation: the previous one was just a BoF session at DrupalCon Szeged. At that BoF session, I was terribly nervous although there were only fifteen people in front of me. At FOSDEM, there will probably be two hundred people in front of me, and I’ll be speaking after Dries Buytaert and later that day, other (in)famous Drupalers will be speaking, including Emma Jane Hogbin, Robert Douglass and Roel de Meester. So I will not only be nervous, but also thrilled to be speaking next to them :)
I’ll be speaking about “Improving Drupal’s page loading performance”, a topic about which I’ve written before. It’ll be a lecture-style session: I’ll explain how to fix some of the problems with the tools that exist today. But I’ll also look ahead to my bachelor thesis, in which I’ll solve the harder problems. Of course you can talk to me afterwards about your ideas and ask questions about my bachelor thesis – I welcome all feedback!
The schedule looks promising, so make sure to reserve February 8th for FOSDEM!

Bachelor thesis proposal will be published

Then I was contacted by a Permissions Editor (now that’s a profession out of the ordinary!) from Longman Publishers, asking permission to include my bachelor thesis proposal in the 2009 edition of the college textbook Technical Communication Today, which is a book designed to develop students’ writing skills for a variety of situations and audiences in the technical workplace. Apparently my proposal was written well enough to qualify as an example according to the professor who wrote the book, although with some minor remarks about things that could’ve been done better.
Not that this is very special, but it’s still nice to know that that there’ll be more than 3 people reading it after all the work that went in it :)

Yet another year older

Next up, on January 20, it was my birthday. Yep, another year has ticked by and now I’m 21 years old. On this same day, the U.S. got their new/fresh/saner/much-more-eloquent/well-visioned/more-European-like president, Obama! That, and the Chinese food were the highlight of the day, because I was still studying for my Computer Networks exam.

DrupalCon DC scholarship!

One day later I received an e-mail from Bonnie Bogle, with the subject “DrupalCon DC scholarship”. Wow, the excitement! Was I chosen or not? Of course at this very moment, GMail would lag… 10 seconds later I read with amazement that I was selected! Woohoo! (And because I’m 21 now, I’ll be allowed to drink … silly Americans :P).
If you’re interested in pushing Drupal’s page loading performance forward or in combining your own static file servers with a CDN, or even combining multiple CDNs or in optimizing image files automatically, you may want to vote on my 30-minute session proposal: “Drupal CDN integration: easier, more flexible and faster!. It’ll contain the second part of my FOSDEM session, plus 3 weeks worth of work on my bachelor thesis, so you’ll still be able to push me into new directions!

Today I had my Computer Networks exam and I’m pretty sure I passed it. Two more exams to go and then I’ll be able to dive right back into the wonderful Drupal world! I’ll continue maintaining my Hierarchical Select and AHAH Helper modules. And of course I’ll begin working on my bachelor thesis!