Sitecore Symposium 2018 Day 2 Summary

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This blog post is second one from my Sitecore Symposium 2018 Series.

I am writing these blog posts as my reflection and summary of this year’s Sitecore Symposium.

Let’s continue today with summary of Day 2 of Sitecore Symposium 2018.

Day 2

Day started with nice breakfast talk and continued with breakout sessions.


Session #1: .NET Core and 9.1 architecture by Stephen Pope and Kern Nightingale
Probably the most visited breakout session I was on that day.

Stephen and Kern described latest changes in Sitecore 9.1 architecture and how .NET Core is used even more in Sitecore 9.1.

Main message of this session was “Sitecore is on a journey from Monolith to NET Core based Service Architecture”.

Stephen talked about how they embraced .NET Core and how also Sitecore team is contributing on it.
Sitecore Host will be introduced in Sitecore 9.1. This will be lean common runtime for Sitecore NET Core instances powering Apps and Services – Horizon, Universal Tracker and Sitecore Identity. Also Publishing Service, xConnect Services, and Sitecore Commerce will be rewritten to use Sitecore Host. It should give Apps and Services commands, unified file system, tracing / diagnostics, unified configuration, IOC, abstracted host base and dynamic plugin loading.

Sitecore Identity will be used for single sign on and will be compatible with old membership. Experience Manager, Experience Platform itself, Experience Commerce, Horizon, Publishing Service, etc. will be using it for authentication.
Horizon is a next generation experience management and will be Angular based SPA. In 9.1 will be only as Preview. You also need to enable it specifically.

They have also introduced Universal Tracker, new tracking service based on Web/REST API technology to track interactions as they’re occurring. You can process interactions before they go into Experience database through xConnect. It is based on .NET Core and use Sitecore Host. You can use Xamarin Mobile SDK, Augmented / Virtual Reality, Virtual Assistant or IoT Hub to send data into Universal Tracker.

At the same time Jeff L’Heureux had his “Helix and Sitecore JavaScript Services (JSS)” presentation. Luckily for us, he released slides and also recording on his blog so you can watch it as I did afterwards so you won’t miss it. Really great presentation. Thanks Jeff for sharing it.


Keynote #1: Change the game by playing your own – How to build an unbeatable company by Sarah Robb O’Hagan
3 takeaways from her keynote:

  1. Play your specialist game
  2. Change the game
  3. Break yourself to make yourself

“Get out of your confort zone and push yourself!”

It was really inspiring keynote.


Session #2: Beyond the SXA toolbox by Adam Najmanowicz and Mark van Aalst

Adam first showed us couple of famous garages where companies like Apple started and then he showed us even more famous one. His garage and therefore the one where SXA team is working from currently.

If you are curious, this is the garage:

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They continued the talk with evolution of SXA and what features like Facet support, Grid Frameworks and Creative Exchange Live have been added from initial version of SXA released in August 2016.

They announced that from this version SXA will have same cadence of releases as Sitecore itself. So we can expect one release in spring and one in autumn. Very good for planning and doing upgrades.
They talked about how SXA can decrease time to market and what features it has to enable this like rich set of components, multi-tenant / multi-site capabilities, theming, toolbox, sharing content and presentation across sites, content entry and frontend development in parallel and many more.

New features in SXA 1.8 have been mentioned and some also demoed by Adam like phase 1 of Accessibility compliance, you can now change paths to views of components so you can easily override views for OOTB components, cross-site linking and Bootstrap 4 support just to mention few of them.
Very interesting presentation and definitely looking forward using SXA 1.8 when it’s released with Sitecore 9.1.

At the same time Akshay Sura and Kamruz Jaman had their “How to create customer loyalty programs using Sitecore Experience Commerce and EXM?” presentation. You can watch this session recorded before Symposium for SUGNCR by Akshay alone or watch recording from Symposium itself by Akshay and Kamruz or take a look on source codes and blog posts about their implementation here. Thanks for that gentlemen!


Session #3: Omnichannel retail: Personal and contextual experiences! by Ishraq Al Fataftah

I was planning to attend this session but at the same time my recording for Sitecore Virtual Developer Day was scheduled so I had to skip it.
You can however watch this session (as I did) on youtube as it was pre-recorded for SUGBR or you can also wait and watch it live on 31st October as she will redo the same session for SUG NCR. Thanks Ishraq that I haven’t missed your session at the end! It was worth watching it.


Session #4: Scaling Sitecore 9.0 for the Superbowl by Dennis Weston and Srikanth Kondapally

Dennis and Srikanth showed how they have designed infrastructure for PaaS to make the solution scalable and more reliable.
They showed how to scale App Services, SQL, Solr and why to use CDN in different geo locations and why and how to do performance testing.Perfomance testing can reduce risk of downtime, costs of failure and risk associated with SLAs. It can also improve deployment quality and find performance bottlenecks

Regarding reliability, they have talked about disaster recovery, traffic manager, Solr and Redis. They showed how their infrastructure was setup to improve reliability and high availability.
Dennis and Srikanth showed how they have designed infrastructure for PaaS to make the solution scalable and more reliable.
They showed how to scale App Services, SQL, Solr and why to use CDN in different geo locations and why and how to do performance testing.Perfomance testing can reduce risk of downtime, costs of failure and risk associated with SLAs. It can also improve deployment quality and find performance bottlenecks

Regarding reliability, they have talked about disaster recovery, traffic manager, Solr and Redis. They showed how their infrastructure was setup to improve reliability and high availability.
Perfomance testing can reduce risk of downtime, costs of failure and risk associated with SLAs. It can also improve deployment quality and find performance bottlenecks

Regarding reliability, they have talked about disaster recovery, traffic manager, Solr and Redis. They showed how their infrastructure was setup to improve reliability and high availability.
They mentioned also that key are monitoring tools to enable all this.

Their deployment pipeline was nicely described from commit until the deployment itself.


Session #5: Unlocking the power of Marketing Automation and Email Experience Manager by Ben Burns and Jacob Nielsen
Session was divided into two parts. First one was walk through of a customer journey from new prospect to paying customer and second one which was demo showcasing how to create that customer journey using OOTB toolset.

Main message of the first part was delivering “Right Message at Right Time to Right Person”.

They have showed new featured introduced in Sitecore 9.1 in terms of EXM and Marketing Automation. You can configure for example number of emails send out per contact per defined time period. Very handy for not spamming customers too often with emails.
They have shown whole journey from contact list creation, creating marketing automation workflow until email campaigns and configuration. Seems that lots of new features and fixes will be in this release. Looking forward to it.

During a break I have met with legendary lifetime Sitecore MVP John West. We talked and he signed his book that I have almost for 5 years now.

I feel honored by what John wrote me in my book:

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Session #6: Sitecore Experience Awards 2018 Ultimate Winners by Page O’Neill

Sitecore picked up 4 Ultimate winners for Sitecore Experience Awards 2018 for each region – Americas, EMEA, Australia & New Zeland, Greater Asia.

Session #6: Sitecore Experience Awards 2018 Ultimate Winners by Page O’Neill

Sitecore picked up 4 Ultimate winners for Sitecore Experience Awards 2018 for each region – Americas, EMEA, Australia & New Zeland, Greater Asia.

Session #6: Sitecore Experience Awards 2018 Ultimate Winners by Page O’Neill

Sitecore picked up 4 Ultimate winners for Sitecore Experience Awards 2018 for each region – Americas, EMEA, Australia & New Zeland, Greater Asia.

More information can be found at this link.
Congratulations to all winners and I am proud that 3 out of 4 ultimate winners have chosen Avanade to implement Sitecore for them.

Evening Party

Evening Party
Evening Party
Evening Party
Evening Party on Universal’s CityWalk and exclusive access to top Universal attractions was nice finish of Wednesday.

Talked with lots of friends. Tasted different kind of meals. Ride couple of attractions.

I felt like in Harry Potter movie 🙂

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Thanks for reading summary of my Day 2 at Sitecore Symposium 2018. Last summary to come shortly. Hope you have enjoyed reading it cause I enjoyed experiencing this day 🙂 Check series landing page for more blog posts about Sitecore Symposium 2018.

Cheers!

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