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Magento 2 perspectives: an interview with Sherrie Rohde

As the official launch of Magento 2 draws near, we caught up with Sherrie Rohde, Community Manager at Magento, to hear how the launch build up is going behind the scenes, her advice for developers new to the Magento world, and how community feedback has fed into the development of Magento 2.0.

So it’s almost here…Magento 2.0 has been in the works for a while now. What’s your perspective been from the inside?

I’ve only been truly on the inside since April, but I can honestly say my respect for our team has grown exponentially from this vantage point. While Magento 2.0 was first mentioned several years ago, our product team has been fully committed to the roadmap shared over the past year and it’s been great to watch them stick to it.

How well prepared do you think the Magento community is for Magento 2.0?

The community has been incredibly involved in Magento 2.0 development with over 2,300 pull requests and issues resolved and countless blog posts on the new platform. 

I’m truly grateful to community members like those of you at Session Digital, Alan Storm, Viktor Khliupko at Firebear Studiothe Inchoo team and others for putting so much time and energy into blogging about what you’ve learned about the Magento 2.0 platform to help prepare others. In addition, we also have those who have literally traveled the world to educate the community at Magento branded events, the Meet Magento series, various user groups, and other events.

We’ve also been working with key extension developers and partners like aheadWorks, Bronto, Dotmailer, New Relic and SLI Systems to ensure that their extensions are ready for Magento 2.0. It’s been great to see so many get on board to get us the critical mass we need for merchants at GA.

Obviously, there is always more to be done when it comes to a new platform and there are lots of great resources to tap. On our end, we’re doing our best to support the community through resources like developer documentation, which the community has also contributed to, and Magento U training. Our product team is also working hard on additional resources for Magento 2.0 GA.

The official release is drawing near, but there must be more on the to-do list. What are the first and second things you’ll do after its launch? And what comes next?

Sleep? In all seriousness, I think part of our team will be pretty focused on increasing adoption with merchants, developers, and extension providers while our product team continues to work on the platform for future versions. Training is, and will be, key.

What are you most excited about with Magento 2.0? Can you name just one element of it that you think is going to make a real difference with the way the community works with Magento?

As is always true with tech, so much has changed since Magento 1.0 was released. I’m really excited about a massively updated admin experience for merchants. In my opinion, it will make a huge difference for actual Magento users—those who are in the system every day to manage sales and perform business tasks.

On top of that, the Magento 2.0 release signifies established trust that we deliver what we promise, and I think that is absolutely crucial for the community.

What’s the most useful piece of feedback you’ve received so far from the Magento community regarding Magento 2.0? Can you name any examples where feedback from the community has directly influenced the development/path of Magento 2.0?

The forums we held in early 2015 in Austin and Berlin were great sources of influential community feedback for Magento 2.0. Brendan Falkowski’s feedback about the speed of front-end development was one of those areas we were able to work to improve. Community feedback has also led to refactoring services and creating a pretty unique framework to support both SOAP & REST style APIs. Other changes originating from community feedback include dependency injection around plugins and the tax engine.

What’s your advice for developers new to the Magento world who want to join the community?

Join the conversation. Our community is impressively active, inclusive, and eager to help. You can find them on our forums, on StackExchange, and on Twitter. 

Another great way to get involved with the community is to find a Magento event near you. We have several listed on our events page: http://magento.com/company/events and you can find local user groups by searching http://magento.meetup.com. 

If you don’t know where to start, reach out. I’m happy to help connect you!

You’ve got a great presence on Twitter; could you name a few people you recommend all Magento devs follow?

If you want to stay aware of the heartbeat of our product and our community, here are a few people who are actively connecting the Magento Community (in alphabetical order so no one can accuse me of favoritism in any way, I love you all!):

  • Richard Baik, Enterprise Support Lead at Magento
  • Paul Boisvert, Head of Product Management at Magento
  • Fabrizio Branca, Lead System Developer at AOE and MageCasts.io Creator
  • James Cowie, Software Engineer at Session Digital, member of the Magento GitHub Community Team and MageCasts.io Creator
  • Phillip Jackson, Senior Interactive Programmer at Something Digital and Co-Host at MageTalk
  • Kalen Jordan, Founder at MageMail and Co-Host at MageTalk
  • Piotr Kaminski, Lead Product Manager at Magento
  • Alan Kent, VP of Architecture at Magento
  • Vinai Kopp, Freelance Magento Trainer, Developer, Consultant, Author of Grokking Magento and member of the Magento GitHub Community Team
  • Elena Leonova, Senior Product Manager at Magento
  • Allan MacGregor, Director of Engineering at Demac Media, Author of Test Driven Magento Extension Development and MageCasts.io Creator
  • Ben Marks, Evangelist at Magento
  • Sander Mangal, Sr. Magento Developer at FitForMe, Rotterdam Magento User Group Organizer and MageStackDay Organizer
  • David Manners, Web Developer at Sitewards GmbH and Host of MageEngage
  • Brent Peterson, Magento Evangelist at Wagento Commerce and Magento Forum Moderator
  • Alessandro Ronchi, Magento Specialist at Bitbull srl and collector of Magento Community resources
  • Alan Storm, Creator of Commerce Bug and Author of No Frills Magento Layout
  • Marius Strajeru, Magento Guru at Arnia Software and Magento StackExchange Moderator
  • Kimberely Thomas, Managing Partner at interactiv4 and organizer/host of multiple Magento Community events
  • Anna Völkl, Magento Web-Developer at LimeSoda Interactive Marketing GmbH and MageStackDay Organizer
  • Joshua Warren, CEO at Creatuity and active speaker on Magento
  • Max Yekaterynenko, Director of Software Development at Magento

Our community is so much larger than this list though, so please be sure to check out my Magento Community list as it’s far more comprehensive and there are many, many great people to follow. I also have a (completely unofficial) list of our team.

My first Magento event ever was the inaugural Magento Imagine conference in 2011. Because of this, Imagine 2015 will always have a special place in my heart since my first day as a Magento employee was also the first day of the conference, and I got to celebrate with my best friends from around the world. It’s pretty hard to top that. 

What’s next? I’ll actually be at php[world] in D.C. November 16-20 to support David Alger, Mathew Beane and Joshua Warren who are all speaking in the Magento track.

 


As Magento 2 nears launch, we’ve prepared a series of technical tutorials covering front-end, back-end, and admin aspects of Magento 2. You can see the guides here.

Article update
This article was originally published under Session Digital, which unified with Inviqa in June 2016. For more information about the unification visit https://inviqa.com/new-era.