Keeping it Simple

In the past months my team and I have spent some time reflecting our development processes in general and our Git workflow in particular.

One of my favorite things to do these days is questioning why something has to be that complex. Over time every single aspect of our work has become increasingly complex and many people come up with solutions to these problems. But looking at these fancy solutions often doesn't make things easier since now you have to understand why something was solved that way, what benefits it brings over doing it in a different way and if the assumption under which this solution was designed even applies to our situation.

I feel it's very refreshing to forget about everything that's out there for a moment and start from scratch looking at the big picture first, reflecting the actual problem and what's the simplest solution to it. Then think about what the limitation are to this solution and if there are ways to work around these in an elegant way or if we might want to come up with a different solution for the edge cases.

Don't confuse this approach with quickly hacking something that "works for now". In fact a lot of thought usually goes into creating a very minimal solution. After questioning and rethinking how to set up our development environments with Chef and Vagrant, how to design our build process with Jenkins and how to deploy code to production, the next thing was to come up with a Git workflow that's simple enough to bring back the fun into committing code :)

Continue Reading...

Or: "How to cleanup the mess..."

A couple of days ago a friend that is new to Magento reached out to me asking for some advice on how to update a Magento instance. He had inherited a legacy Magento project from another friend and now the merchant wants him to update the shop to a recent version of Magento.

While there are a couple of posts available on how to update Magento none of them covers how to deal with a really messy project in the first place and how to update that one in a safe way. Let my try to explain my approach.

Continue Reading...

Or: Making my blog go fast!

As you might have noticed I relaunched my blog two weeks ago. I wanted to run something that's a lot more lightweight than TYPO3 (I'm still a fan of TYPO3, but in the meantime I learned to pick to right tool for the right job...) and wanted to bring the fun back into writing blog posts by writing them using Markdown on my computer instead of dealing with an RTE. I explored a couple of static file CMS and Grav met all my requirements: It's PHP, it's free, it's truly open source, it's actively developed, it's easy to learn, easy to customize, easy to extend! Plus the developers are super responsive. Get in touch via

Continue Reading...

A couple of days ago I stumbled upon this wonderful project and decided I wanted to participate: 24pullrequests.

There are so many things on my list of things I wanted to do and hopefully this will give me some motivation to write some code, add new features, write documentation and blog about things.

Let's get started!

P.S.: It's not too late to join! And: "contributing" does necessarily mean "writing code". Check out this page and find out about ways on how you can contribute to the projects you love.

Continue Reading...