My Magento Imagine 2011 Conference Recap

Once again I’m in the airport and my mind is reeling from the last few days of madness at Magento Imagine 2011 Conference. First things first, a very big THANKS to the team at Magento for putting on one hell of an event, and they did this in 90 days. Truly amazing experience and one I’m sure won’t be topped in the near future.

The big announcements that I’d like to share with our own community / clients are as follows.

Magento Go

This is Magento’s new Software as a Service (SaaS) offering and from what was spoken about and shown at the conference this is going to be a very significant player in the micro/small business space for online commerce. The user experience looks unbelievable and I was surprised by how many features they actually did include in this first version. We (Demac Media) were scared that Magento Go was going to be extremely lacking in some of the great features that installed versions of Magento have. I’ve never been more happy to be so wrong!

Magento Go Platform

Yes, this is something entirely different. After the Magento team announced Magento Go Platform I had the privelage of speaking with several developers, partners and customers at the event on their thoughts. I was surprised (somewhat) to hear it being received with mixed reviews, with the most notable issue surrounding the use of JavaScript as the language for building Apps on the new Magento Go Platform.

Coming from the Netsuite world and having worked with Salesforce.com / Force.com I really quite liked the direction that Magento decided to take. Using JavaScript as the language is a brilliant move. It’s something we all know and are increasingly using on the web, especially in the last 4 years. The amazing things that Netsuite and Salesforce.com have done with their scripting/development platforms should be a sign for Magento developers. This is an amazing thing guys. Only great things will come from this.

Increased Support Initiatives

Anybody who has been in the Magento community over the last 3 years knows that with a company that grew, and continues to grow as fast as Magento there were some key peices missing from the puzzle. Great support, especially enterprise support, was amongst them. Magento was happy to announce they have made and are continuing to make significant investment in their support organization. This is a great thing for all of Demac Media’s Enterprise and Professional customers (all Magento users in fact)!

Magento 1.5, Magento Enterprise, and of course Professional

The first day of the conference they released 1.5 stable. This is a very welcome release, especially for a large # of our new clients in the sporting industry who have a significant need for better data importing in Magento CE. The other big ones were Custom Order Statuses and also the Shopping Cart API, which from first glance is opening up access to the cart in new and very exciting ways.

All in all I’m coming back from this conference with my eyes even more wide-open and our ambitions and plans as a Magento Partner significantly amplified.

2011 is going to be a truly kick ass year for the Magento Community!