Blogs

This week our focus is on Drupal's first certification program, a service with an amazing potential and how Google's DNS servers have become a popular graffiti motive in Turkey. Enjoy!

Open Source

Drupal

Dries Buytaert: Acquia certification for Drupal
This week Acquia announced the first certification program for Drupal. Here are Dries Buyaert's thoughts. Expect more to follow on the topic, since it has already been discussed emotionally in the community.

Fun

As Konami code aficionados we certainly love this Easter egg in Google’s voice search.

Little Helper

Co.Design: A New App That Lets You Take Apart Websites and Rebuild Them At Will
The service Kimono allows you to transform any website into a structured API in seconds. We already get the data, in a JSON file, from our favourite Indian restaurant with help the service.

Tweets that cut the noise

By Daniel Truninger 21st March 2014 Drupal, Events

A significant delegation of our tech team will be attending the Drupal Dev Days in Szeged. Here are your chances to meet up with us:

Monday, 24 March - Wednesday, 26 March

Thursday, 27 March

Friday, 28 March

Saturday, 29 March - Sunday, 30 March

For real-time updates of our whereabouts, especially for our evening outings, check our Twitter account.

By Daniel Truninger 20th March 2014 Business, Drupal, Events

The inaugural edition of the Web Expresso is in the books. It was a great pleasure to welcome our dear clients and partners exclusively to our quarterly breakfast briefing series. Accompanied by coffee, orange juice and fresh croissants we served an insight into the prospects of Drupal 8 in easy digestible portions.

Here are the slides of the event:

For further questions on Drupal 8 get in touch. We are happy to share our expertise with you.

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In the last seven days the following five stories got our attention. Enjoy!

World Wide Web

The Observer: 25 things you might not know about the web on its 25th birthday
To celebrate the quarter-centenary of the webs existence John Naughton assembled a list of 25 facts you might not be aware about it.

Fun

Dedesign the Web
How well do you know the web? Dedesign the Web challenges you to identify the wireframes of well-known websites and services.

Drupal

Drupal Groups: This Week-ish in Drupal Core: March 12, 2014
While there is still no official release date for Drupal 8, following the weekly updates of Drupal 8's core team is a good way to stay up to date.

Little Helper

Is My Shift Key On or Not
iOS 7.1 was released this week. One of the changes turned out to be a source of confusion for some: The new shift key. Here's a little helper to clarify a thing or two.

Tweets that cut the noise

By Bastian Widmer 13th March 2014 Business

Person on call is shown on our video wall

We have been asked how Amazee Labs manages the IT infrastructure and how we ensure that the right person gets to work when it does not. Our monitoring has come a long way and has been improved constantly.

This blog post highlights our toolset empowering Amazee Labs to swiftly respond to problems as they occur:

Monitor: Pingdom

Monitoring the uptime and the availability of our sites is done with Pingdom. The service enables us to frequently check the status of all our hosted websites and provides us with valuable information.

On-Call Schedule Management: PagerDuty

PagerDuty features many ways to inform us when something is wrong.

It informs the person on-call first by sending out a push message to his phone. At the same time, information about the problem is passed to our HipChat channels. After one minute without acknowledgment of the push notification the person in charge is automatically informed about the situation by phone. After a certain amount of repetitions without any acknowledgment, the alert is escalated to the second person in charge which is informed by the same pattern. 

This service enables us to have someone continuously on call by using an on-duty schedule. If someone has a day off, we can easily override the schedule. A nice new feature we love is the Handoff notification. As soon as your duty starts you are notified by PagerDuty. So we know when we are on call. For further reading of this subject there's a great blog post by the maintainers of the service about Handoff notifications.

In-depth Analysis: New Relic

For analyzing performance bumps and slowness we leverage the features of New Relic. This gives us a fast full spectrum view of our sites from page render time to the load times of the users browser. Just one of many perks you get with hosting with us!

Mitigation Steps

Once an open problem has been acknowledged, which indicates that someone is working on it, we communicate the steps taken in our internal Hipchat channel. If the problem has been solved we close the incident and everything goes back to green.

Additionally there's a status board for our clients. If something goes wrong, we communicate our current state of work there.

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Call it a coincidence. In the week of our 100th issue the web produced some impressive stories.

Drupal

Drupal Association: A Million Drupal Sites... And Counting!
The Drupal Association announced that Drupal surpassed the milestone of a million live sites. A remarkable achievement and we are proud to have contributed our share towards it.

Web Analytics

Amazee Metrics: Google Analytics vs Universal Analytics: Use our Decision Tree to Make the Right Decision
Not sure what the difference between Google's classic analytics and universal analytics is? Then Amazee Metrics' decision tree should clarify a thing or two.

Marketing

WSJ.com: Behind the Preplanned Oscar Selfie: Samsung's Ad Strategy
While the selfie at the Oscars might have appeared to be an impromptu idea, here’s some background on how it came about.

Food for thought

Wolf's Little Store: The History of Flat Design
Remember the times when everybody berated skeuomorphism and hailed flat design as the saviour? User experience designer Xavier Bertels gives his view why a comparison with modernism could put things in perspective.

Opinion

Chris Saad: Breaking News - Your website is not an iPad App
Chris Saad took umbrage with the Time magazine's re-launched website. However his ire isn't solely directed at the American weekly news magazine but at the trend in general.

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By Boris Baldinger 1st March 2014 Drupal

As we have just hired Emma, it was no big question that we should join the community at the Drupalcamp in London 2014. It is the second time that London has had a Drupalcamp, and it already has grown by 50%. Around 600 members of the Drupal community will be there over the weekend.

Drupal Camp London

After the CXO day and training that took place on Friday, Mark O'Neill kicked of a weekend full of sessions and sprints. He talked about how they built an new electoral registration system for 50 million users.

Drupal Camp London

Mark O'Neill during his presentation.

Drupal Camp London

Over lunch some of us had the possibility to enjoy lunch in the small park right beside the City University London, where the camp takes place.

Drupal Camp London

On the other hand there were some very dedicated people which preferred to work on Drupal core.

Drupal Camp London

Dagmar had her presentation right after lunch. The room was quite full and she got a lot of good questions and feedback about the topic "There are no bad clients, only bad project managers".

So far the Drupalcamp in London has been a huge success. And once again we can see and feel how strong the community is, and we are proud to be a part of it.

There are more visual impressions available on our flickr account.

In this week's edition we take a look at stories from the world of Drupal, web development in the 90s and the rise of second screen applications. Enjoy!

Drupal

DrupalCores
Eric J. Duran has highlighted the work put in by individuals and companies towards Drupal 8. How many contributors of the Amazee Labs team can you find?

Try Drupal 8
Want to get your feet wet with the current alpha version of Drupal 8 without going trough the hassle of installing and configuring? Then TryDrupal8.com is down your lane.

Second Screen

Twitter: 80% of UK users access Twitter via their mobile
According to a survey by Nielsen 3 in 5 of Twitter mobile users are on the microblogging service whilst watching TV. Sounds like our most recent second screen solution probably wasn't the last one we had to build.

Social Media

The Next Web: Happy ending: @N has been restored to its rightful owner
A few week's ago the Twitter handle @N gained prominence due to a combination of alleged mishaps between PayPal, GoDaddy and Google. This week Naoki Hiroshima got his account back.

Web Development

Zach Holman: Only 90s Web Developers Remember This
Sometimes it's good to look back to the early days of web development. Veteran web developers will certainly remember these techniques and the tags.

By Daniel Truninger 28th February 2014 Drupal, Events

If you're heading to this weekend's DrupalCamp London chances are high you'll bump into a few members of our team. At these locations your chances are pretty high to do so: 

So watch out for Michael (schnitzel), Dagmar (dagmita), Marc (pfaendler), Emma (emma.maria) and Boris (borisbaldinger) in the famous Amazee Labs t-shirts and make sure to say hi!

By Corina Schmid 26th February 2014 Business, Drupal

Drum roll, please, for the launch of our latest client project: The Voice of Switzerland! It's been a year since SRF, the Swiss broadcasting company, aired the first series of the casting show. Now Switzerland is again on the hunt for the most beautiful voice and Amazee Labs was commissioned to develop the show's platform. 

The motto of this year's solution is: same same but different and more sophisticated. After entrusting us with the building of the show's website and a second screen solution for the first series in 2013, SRF came knocking at our door again. This time they opted for a deeper social media integration, thus giving their audience even more opportunities to engage. The viewer can now enjoy a completely new social media and a second screen experience with real time updates looking gorgeous on any device.

Have a look at Switzerland's voices here.

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