The "State of the Union" at CiviCon Chicago
Today we are attending (as bronze sponsors) CiviCon 2011 in Chicago and the morning session was focused on where CiviCRM is today and where its going to go. As this is interesting to anyone either using CiviCRM or thinking about a CRM solution then we thought it useful to share the information.
Firstly, Kurund from the core team gave out a lot of thanks to the sponsors of the event and the core team working on CiviCRM.
Dave Greenburg, one of the co-founders then gave an update on the "State of the Union". Here are some highlights:
In 2010 the CiviCRM community grew considerably:
- Almost 30% increase in downloads of CiviCRM
- Forum posts have grown to nearly 60,000
- Submitted patches have sky-rocketed over recent months
There is a brand new edition of the official CiviCRM manual that is created by community volunteers. We all got a copy of it and it looks great – you can order a copy and its also available for free online. There is also a new “Using CiviCRM” book available from PACKT Publishing and written by Joseph Murray and Brian Shaughnessey – this is the first CiviCRM commercial publication.
The have been meet-ups in 15 cities and we were encouraged to set them up in our city. Also many other countries, not just the USA and CiviCon Europe is being planned in August 2011 by Micheal McAndrew to co-incide with Drupalcon London 2011.
Donald Lobo took over at this point and introduced, " what is next for CiviCRM?"
Usable, scalable, testable, sustainable....
- Usability - we have made significant strides on this in v3 series but we are only half way and can do a lot better. We need to make it easy out of the box.
- Scalability - we need to scale from 1k contacts, to 1million + contacts. Again, we've made good progress but there is a long way to go.
- Testability - we're about 25% there with 1300 tests and manual test suite initiation. We can use D6 to D7 test changes as a model and need to do something similar.
- Sustainability - first five years was 50-75% funded by foundations but this needs to be more sustainable. Make it happen has made a big difference using the crowdsourcing model. Contributions are growing at a very good rate, training is helping with venue and a paid support option should be introduced.
Regarding CiviCRM 4, here are some of the things to expect - Drupal 7 compatibility, CiviAccounts, Wordpress integration, import improvements, personal campaign page improvements and extended support for D6 and J1.5 – a great list of changes worth getting pretty excited about.
CiviCRM.org is also being redesigned. Working with Rayogram, there is a drive for the redesign programme planning to distinguish and legitimize CiviCRM and engage further with the people coming from all the different audiences CiviCRM needs to. The plan is to have a new website online by July 1st 2011 with case studies and new information about how to get involved.
After some technical difficulties, a representative from Rayogram started his keynote on "doing business with CiviCRM" based on their experience with the New York State Senate. The project had to go open source and it had the choice of CiviCRM and sugar CRM but in the end chose CiviCRM.
One of the most interesting part of this keynote for me was the focus on branding, and the use of "Bluebird CRM" that helped in adoption and everyday people being able to enagae with CiviCRM. The work also had a massive scalability consideration as it needed to scale to around 20million contacts across 63 installations - a pretty amazing task.
So thats how the morning shaped up. There are many more sessions but this was the more generic info that we thought you might find interesting.