Let’s not beat around the bush: 2020 was - mildly speaking - a tough year. The reasons which made the current year so terrible are evident. However, we don’t want to linger on the negative but instead focus on the positive things that these rather exceptional circumstances created. Following the regularly updated recommendations from the WHO and the accompanying published advice from the TYPO3 Association Board, TYPO3 events would not have been feasible in the familiar form. However, thanks to its awesome community, TYPO3 was able to hold terrific online events this year. In this article, we’d like to recap on the past year by listing all these great things that the entire TYPO3 Project was able to accomplish.
The biggest milestone within 2020 was without a doubt the release of the new major version TYPO3 v10 LTS. The two most important goals for the newest version were an improved site setup and template handling. With the new “Site Management” module, this promise had definitely been kept. Generally speaking, the newest TYPO3 version had improvements for editors, integrators, and developers to offer:
- Flexible and expandable dashboards
- User-friendly Form Framework Wizard
- Automatic updates for URL segments and redirects
- Secure password reset/recovery
- Link validator enhancements
- Better UX for backend user management
- Attractive HTML-based system mails
- Frontend login improvements
- Automatically detect conflicting redirects
- Translations with Crowdin
- Browser-native lazy-loading for images
- Symfony’s DependencyInjection
- Standardized EventDispatcher
- Symfony’s Mailer API
The historic release of TYPO3 v10 and its entailments were first introduced by Benni Mack during the TYPO3 Developer Days 2019. Since then, people were excited for updates and the upcoming major version. When the day of the release arrived, TYPO3 GmbH provided a live stream via YouTube with several of their employees joining the online session and presenting the new features of TYPO3 v10.
For a long time the TYPO3 community relied on many different tools to interact with one another, to buy merchandise, to manage a company profile, or to take a TYPO3 Certification exam. However, this was about to change during the summer of 2020. In June of this year, the team of TYPO3 GmbH launched a central platform for the TYPO3 community: My TYPO3. Not only is My TYPO3 a gateway to the TYPO3 ecosystem, but it also functions as a central hub for communication, education, products, and services. All aforementioned activities are now bundled in one central place. To enter the central hub, setting up a respective My TYPO3 account is required.
Until spring 2020 it was only possible to take an official TYPO3 certification exam physically - either at a TYPO3 certification event such as the popular CertiFUNcation Day and selected TYPO3 Camps, or through a personal in-house certifier booked through TYPO3 GmbH. As neither of these options were possible due to the current pandemic, a new and groundbreaking tool was born: the TYPO3 Certification Platform, providing the opportunity to take TYPO3 Certification Exams digitally. The requirements to take an online exam are an active My TYPO3 account and a valid certification voucher code. The feedback from the TYPO3 community regarding this new tool was outstanding, proving the point that it came to life at a point where it was urgently needed.
Later in June, a new and shiny TYPO3 Online Shop was launched. With a different and renewed look we wanted to enable people to access different TYPO3 memorabilia on an easy accessible platform. Apart from TYPO3 pens, notebooks, and apparel including branded everyday mouth and nose protections, people can choose between different sponsor packages and also opt for exam certification vouchers for their TYPO3 Certification (TCCD, TCCI, TCCE, and TCCC).
When the Board of the TYPO3 Association recommended that all physical meetings be cancelled until further notice due to the Corona Pandemic, many events such as TYPO3 Camps, the TYPO3 Developer Days or the CertiFUNcation Day had to be cancelled. But instead of cancelling the events altogether, the organizers of the TYPO3 Developer Days had an idea: they wanted to create a virtual series of events that would serve as a compensation for the physical events that did not take place. Of course, these events should also include meetings and discussions, like any typical TYPO3 event. No sooner said than done: the TYPO3 TechSummer was born. In this way, people from the TYPO3 community did not have to forego the lectures and social interactions that normally form the core of every TYPO3 event. With two Online Evenings, an Online Session Day, a whole weekend as an Online Community Event and Online University Days, the TYPO3 TechSummer was a complete success, as it managed to connect people from the TYPO3 community despite their isolation.
In the fall of 2020, another component was added successfully to the TYPO3 ecosystem: The Professional Service Listing or PSL for short. The program’s main goal is to further spread worldwide awareness of TYPO3 CMS and its service providers. If you’re an agency or a freelancer offering services around TYPO3, you can get listed on this platform and reach out to new customers. With the Free Basic Listing, the first level of subscription, the subscriber’s organization name, city, and country is displayed within the PSL. Other modules like your organization’s logo, a map marker, a contact form, a backlink to your organization’s site, or several service badges are available for a small fee. As a subscriber, you’re able to manage your PSL entry via your My TYPO3 account and book and delete additional modules easily.
Now, three months after its initial launch, the PSL has an ever growing number of participants - In fact people from all over the world use this stage to present their TYPO3 services to a wider audience.
Of course, all TYPO3 Sprints that took place in 2020 were also conducted remotely. This applies to the Marketing Team Sprint, the Design Team Sprint, the Security Team Sprint, the Accessibility Sprint, and the typo3.org Team Sprint. Despite the isolation of the individual participants due to Corona - starting in March 2020 - each of the above listed sprints was well attended.
While 2020 was undoubtedly a challenging year for everyone, the TYPO3 Project was still able to reach some remarkable milestones. The biggest milestone for the coming year will be the release of the new major version TYPO3 v11 LTS in October. There is also hope that some of the events that had to be cancelled this year can take place in 2021. These would include the TYPO3 Developer Days, the TYPO3 Conference and the TYPO3 CertiFUNcation Day. The overall goal, of course, is to continue to make our powerhouse CMS more well known and to grow the community. This applies both to the fight against the pandemic and to the ongoing promotion of TYPO3: together we can do it.
Finally we at TYPO3 GmbH would hereby like to wish everyone Merry Christmas and especially a Happy New Year. Please look after one another and stay safe and sound. We’ll most certainly see and hear from one another in no time. So long!