Application: The TYPO3 Community Podcast

Meet Felicity Brand: TYPO3 Guidebook Author, Australia

January 12, 2021 Jeffrey A. "jam" McGuire, Open Strategy Partners, TYPO3 Association Season 1 Episode 4
Application: The TYPO3 Community Podcast
Meet Felicity Brand: TYPO3 Guidebook Author, Australia
Show Notes Transcript

Join Jeffrey A. McGuire as he chats with Felicity Brand about her background in technical writing, how technical writing is a structured creative process and her experience in joining the TYPO3 community. 

This is a special edition of the Application podcast: Felicity has spent more than the last year on a project for and with the TYPO3 community creating the TYPO3 guidebook and that's coming out from Apress in January 2021. We get to explore the book, how it came into being and how this led Felicity into giving back to the TYPO3 community. 

Read the full post and transcript on typo3.org:
https://typo3.org/podcast

Listen and subscribe to the Application Podcast on iTunes:
https://podcasts.apple.com/de/podcast/application-the-typo3-community-podcast/id1542071012

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LET’S CONNECT 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TYPO3podcast
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TYPO3Podcast/
Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/typo3podcast/

Meet the TYPO3 Project: https://typo3.org/ 
Find official TYPO3 partners, support offerings, and more at https://typo3.com

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THANK YOU:

TYPO3 Association for sponsoring this podcast: https://typo3.org/project/association
b13 and Stefanie Kreuzer for our logo: https://b13.com/
Patrick Gaumond for our wonderful theme music: https://www.linkedin.com/in/patrickgaumond/

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Felicity Brand 0:00

Thank you, Jam. It's been a really wonderful journey for me and it's taken me to a new place that you know, feels like home already. Aw, that's cheesy, but, but from the heart, you know, I, I really like where I've landed. So thank you TYPO3.


Jeffrey McGuire 0:23

Welcome to Application the TYPO3 Community Podcast.


Felicity Brand 0:27

Hi, I'm Felicity brand and this is Application the TYPO3 Community Podcast, sharing your stories, your projects, and the difference you make.


Felicity Brand 0:44

Hi, I'm Felicity Brand and this is Application the TYPO3 Community Podcast, the podcast that Shamsi was too scared to come on...


Jeffrey McGuire 0:53

One. Two. Welcome to Application the TYPO3 Community Podcast. I'm Jeffrey McGuire, you can call me Jam. And this is where we celebrate the TYPO3 community sharing your stories talking about your projects, and the difference you make in around and withTYPO3 CMS. In today's episode of Application, that TYPO3 community podcast, I speak with Felicity Brand, a fellow team member at Open Strategy Partners and author of the TYPO3 guidebook, which we've been putting together for the last couple of years here at Open Strategy Partners. 


Jeffrey McGuire 1:35

I talked with Felicity about her background, how she and I both agree on the fact that technical writing is a structured creative process, how welcoming open source and the TYPO3 community in particular are. And I was really gratified to hear how inspired she is by her experiences with TYPO3 and doing this book represents her first open-source experiences at all. And she's a total believer now. And it's really, really interesting. And I think, I think that she's got the potential to make a huge difference in the world. And I'm really super grateful. And you'll hear this in this episode for all the changes that we have to make a difference with open source software and the people doing it. So I sincerely hope that you enjoy this episode as much as I enjoyed making it.


Jeffrey McGuire 2:38

And in fact, we are recording a podcast and this is, as they say, in television, a very special episode of the TYPO3 community podcast that we call Application. Now, part of what's special about this is that Felicity has spent more than the last year on a project for and with the type of three community creating the TYPO3 book and that's coming out from  Apress either December 2020 or January 2021. And Felicity has put in an enormous amount of work in that and spent an enormous amount of time working with the wonderful community contributors, I was also involved with that project, I'd really, really like to get into that today. We're also going to talk about who Felicity is and what she does. And it's important that I say at this point, that the TYPO3 Association kindly sponsors this podcast. And they also sponsored the book project. So the company that Felicity and I work for called Open Strategy Partners, was working for, with the TYPO3 Association for both of the projects that we're living life today. So if that counts as a paid message, or whatever, I think we kept the lawyers happy, I hope. 


Jeffrey McGuire 3:52

But the exciting thing for me about the book was, we were given this opportunity to help a community that we are deeply involved in, and we like a lot and we have a lot of clients in that space. But it really felt like a community effort. In the end, I felt like we were given the chance, the way we solved the problem. In the end was we channelled a ton of community members input into a hopefully sensible, usable order. How was that experience for you?


Felicity Brand 4:20

I would say it was quite smooth. I've never written a book before. And it felt like a really interesting project to get into. I should say that the project had kind of been up and running before I came on board. So there was already interviews recorded with community members and the bare bones and structure of the book existed. I would say because Open Strategy Partners has a great process of using briefs to make sure the message is agreed before you start writing, it was actually quite a smooth process for me to come in new. And look at this task I was given. And I think our colleague, Heather, likes to talk about eating the elephant, you eat it one bite at a time. And that's kind of how we went along. So I actually started with chapter four, and kind of work from there we went. And then I went to chapter two. And then we looked at the guides, and it gradually came together,


Jeffrey McGuire 5:31

Talk just a little bit more about the interface between a bunch of information that had been collected before you came on to the project. And this the structure, the structural ideas that we use to help us.


Felicity Brand 5:45

Yes, yes. So I yeah, I didn't get into that. So so we had some interviews that have been recorded, and we had used a tool to transcribe them. So I could read that, I could then reach out to the person who had been interviewed and asked the questions or dig deeper, or I could just use great content that already given us to kind of plug into the brief or the structure that we had used to create a skeleton for chapters and the sections we wanted in those chapters. So I took a whole interview and cherry-picked really great bite-sized pieces, you know, that fit into particular sections of the book, or that supported particular points, I really didn't have to work very hard to create the content that was in the book. I think the people that we interviewed, you know, obviously, I think it's quite well known that the community of TYPO3,  are really passionate about TYPO3. So people are happy to talk about the product, they're happy to explain it. And they explained it very well. So my job, the job of writing the book was not difficult in that respect.


Jeffrey McGuire 7:02

I eventually summed it up in my own mind saying that we were channelling, the community's work. And interestingly, especially at the sort of top end of the web, where I have more experience. So in CMS, and in public-facing projects, I find a lot of people willing to help and a lot of people it's like, when you go to an open-source event, when you participate, it's like the best Show and Tell ever, because you have someone's like, I was trying to I figured out how to fix this thing. And my first instinct is to come and tell all of my friends about it. And it's just a it's an amazing energy. Right. 


Jeffrey McGuire 7:35

And I think we captured some of that, in the book project, you were given this raw information that we had collected. And then for each chapter, we had set up a kind of a skeleton inside of a larger skeleton of the book. So each chapter and each guide, the templates were different, but essentially, there was a sort of a learning goal and points that we had to hit through it and and and what we had to link to any sort of conclusions and and and further reading. And so you said that helped you imagine you hadn't had that structure? How would you have approached this?


Felicity Brand 8:13

I would have spent time putting that structure in place. So when I learnt technical writing, you know, I was taught you should spend 10% of your time planning before you even put pen to paper, you need to have your plan. So if I did not have that plan, I would have spent my time getting a good plan in place, I would have had that reviewed and signed off before embarking upon pulling content together, particularly with a book which is so large, yet you really need to know where you're going. And yeah, without a plan you lost really you would just be writing in circles and it never would have been finished. I think. So


Jeffrey McGuire 9:04

That's really interesting. So I wonder if coming to OSP on the way that we, have we call it the Authentic Communication Framework. But I feel like we spend 30 or 40 or 50% of our time planning because we want to make content that is useful on multiple levels, like strategically relevant pointing people in the right direction helping people figure out if they need something or not all that stuff. So asking about your background in technical writing, how did it feel to discover that we were working that way? Was that a good sign for you when you were coming in?


Felicity Brand 9:45

Yeah, absolutely. Yes. I think when you are a  lone writer, it's very tempting to write without a plan because often you're under time constraints or you feeling confident you know, I'll just get this done, I'll just get that shit out. And I think that's really tempting and risky. So for many reasons, the briefs and the templates and the processes that we use at OSP, are just so helpful and they keep you on track, you know, you're going in the right direction, because you know, that direction has been signed off by the client, you can feel confident when you're writing, that you're working within these boundaries that are taking you to a place where you're going to add value. Yeah, it's em, great!


Jeffrey McGuire 10:40

Right. That's the confidence builder, I guess, I hope, I mean, I feel that way. Tell me a little bit more about your background. I believe you did some business analysis, the things that I remember right now, about your background, it's been a while since we talked about this stuff. You did the business analysis, and technical writing and coming to OSP. And basically, coming straight to this book project, you had not encountered open-source before you had no direct experience. I mean, maybe you'd run Linux or used WordPress or what have you. But, um, but that was new. So I think part one of this question is, tell us about your background and how you ended up as, as the writer you are today.


Felicity Brand 11:30

Okay, so I studied English at university, including linguistics. So it's pretty hard to get a job in that kind of area straight out of uni. And I went into an energy retailer, and I was working with the software. And I kind of fell into being a business analyst because


Jeffrey McGuire 11:53

Wait, do you remember? Do you remember The Fast Show? Did you ever see The Fast Show? The Fast Show was an English sketch comedy thing. And they had a when you said I work for an energy retailer, I had this vision, they have this sketch that comes back and it's a gentleman's it's a bespoke, you know, tailoring. They sell men's wear, right, but the joke is that they're always making really, like waggling their eyebrows, making really innuendo loaded comments. And then their catchphrase is always like, suits use suits, use lovely trouser suits user and I was just picturing you can interview on some soda. We've got some hydro in the mix. suits you sir. Is that how energy retailing?


Felicity Brand 12:42

Not in my experience?


Jeffrey McGuire 12:44

Lovely solar panels, madam? Lovely.


Felicity Brand 12:49

No, that's okay. Yeah. Yeah, I might have to catch up on that show. Yeah.


Jeffrey McGuire 12:56

Sorry for interrupting. That's right. So you got into energy retailing, an obvious choice for a linguistics major.


Felicity Brand 13:05

So a lot of that work was dealing with numbers and spreadsheets because we're looking at usage kilowatt-hour usage. So my transferable skills from university were analysis. 


Jeffrey McGuire 13:18

Uh huh. 


Felicity Brand 13:19

You're, You're either passing a sentence for the linguistic terms, or you are looking at kilowatt-hour usage over a day and looking at peak and off-peak. Yeah. So. So I was in that company, supporting the people that used our software analysis software. And I was good at talking to the business users and talking to the IT team. So then what that kind of boils down to is a kind of translation of business-speak and technical speak. A lot of the role requirements were writing documents, technical specifications, user test plans, business requirements. So I did that for 10 years, I was quite good at it. But eventually, I realized I liked doing all the writing. So I went back to university. I did a postgraduate course in technical communication. And then I have been a writer ever since.


Jeffrey McGuire 14:23

Fascinating, because I mean, it almost, I was gonna make a joke that I want to do an audience poll like, okay, hands up, how many people found that their linguistic skill set was useful for business analysis because that is just super non-obvious to me. I just got this sort of shiver down my spine, because essentially what you were describing is partly my career path, and partly precisely, exactly the reason why we have our company Where you and I work, right Open Strategy Partners, we tell people what we do is translate between technical complexity and the value, usually the business value that someone can get out of a technology solution. So explain it to a developer using the right language and how it makes their day better. Explain it to a marketer and how it makes the business better, and so on. So you were doing that along the way, that's, that's fantastic.


Felicity Brand 15:26

I think I'm quite good at boiling something down to the basics. I'm a great procedural writer. And I, if I buy anything new, I will open the box and read the manual. And I'm often disappointed.


Felicity Brand 15:49

I've, I've thought of something that I wish I said 20 minutes ago.


Jeffrey McGuire 15:56

What is it that you wish you said 20 minutes ago,


Felicity Brand 16:02

We were talking about creative writing, you said something about creative writing. And what I wanted to explain was, there is creativity in technical writing. And something that I really enjoy is finding the right word in a sentence to convey what you're trying to say. To convey the meaning in, in a really succinct, elegant way. So, you know, I think of what I do as a craft and, and I really love all the creativity around that. So although it's called technical writing,


Jeffrey McGuire 16:58

I, that is nice. Yeah,


Felicity Brand 17:01

I consider myself a creative person.


Jeffrey McGuire 17:03

Right. And technical writing is neither dry nor dull. Um,


Felicity Brand 17:08

that's right.


Jeffrey McGuire 17:09

And I love at the next level up, I love, for example, cutting out the extraneous. So that we're also telling a story in a really compact, consumable way, right? Like, how many times do we talk about should this be a list of bullet points or a paragraph? Right? That sort of thing is really, really exciting. And the structural aspect of the kind of communication that we do to motivate to inspire to inform me, I really love that. And I think we have a certain a creative process on some levels, and it certainly relies on instinct, and, and experience within those boundaries. So you know, we say, Oh, it's not creative. But I, you're pointing out that we're being a little bit disingenuous about that maybe.


Felicity Brand 18:11

I think I'm quite good at boiling something down to the basics. I'm a great procedural writer. And I, if I buy anything new, I will open the box and read the manual, and I'm often disappointed. Anyway, um, but I've, I've had it. As you mentioned, earlier, last year, I discovered open-source and where's it been all my life? I think I am. I think it's, I think I'm absolutely where I want to be, because and I'll tell you why Jam, because it gives you the opportunity to work with people anywhere in the world, so completely distributed, right?


Felicity Brand 19:08

 And they are experts at what they do. If if you're in private enterprise, you're kind of limited to the experts who are in your company, and you're lucky if you get access to talk to them, because it may not be in your job description to talk to them. So it breaks down barriers. I've been able to talk with senior technical writers in the project I'm working on called the Good Docs project from Google and other companies who they're just high calibre writers and I get to talk with them weekly, you know, and hear what they have to say and learn from them. And I just love that

Jeffrey McGuire 19:48

they get to talk to you. So there!

Felicity Brand 19:50

well. That's That's true. Yes.


Jeffrey McGuire 19:53

I can tell you I considered you in a completely worthy company there. By the way. At OSP, it looks like we made a welcoming nest for you because we focus very much on structure and procedure. And because the communication we do is not about creativity, per se, it's about telling the right people, the right things, the way that will resonate with them, right. And it takes a lot of finesse and a lot of thinking and what have you, but it's some, it's, it's a set of processes, and we help each other and we work with it. 


Jeffrey McGuire 20:32

Most of us come from an open-source background. And as a communication agency, we have an amazing chance to help open-source companies and organizations with strategic communication who've never had that before. Right. And a piece of all of that is bringing you in, you meet the TYPO3 community, you're given, you know, a couple of terabytes of recordings and notes. And it's like, okay, here you go. Here's a world you didn't know about. Talk about meeting the TYPO3  community and what you learned.


Felicity Brand 21:06

I was surprised by how approachable and friendly and helpful everyone was. And that's all a reflection on me and where I was coming from, which is, I suppose, private enterprise. So talking to stakeholders, traditionally can be difficult, and there's a lot of education that goes into dealing with difficult stakeholders. And so, you know, I had to speak with a lot of people from the community cold calling, basically, you know, Hi, I'm Felicity, I'm working on the book. Can you please help me with a, b and c? And


Jeffrey McGuire 21:52

yes, there is a book. Yes. No, really.


Felicity Brand 21:55

That's right. Yeah. And to a tee, everybody helped me, everybody responded, I was just blown away by it was nothing but a positive experience. And it just showed, to me the passion that people have for TYPO3. It just really engenders positivity and yeah, surely there must be. Surely someone out there is a bit cranky. I don't know. Everyone just seems very


Jeffrey McGuire 22:31

I guarantee you.  But see, I never understood why it took me a couple of it took it felt like months. Um, but it took quite a while for me to push you to actually contacting Michael Shams in Melbourne, and he's one of the world's TYPO3  experts. And you wouldn't call him and I said, Hey, did you set up? Did you call did you talk and, and it took, like, ages. But see now I understand you were just you were working your way in there. And you hadn't you hadn't? hadn't found your sea legs yet in the community?


Felicity Brand 23:09

Yeah, I think that would be fair to say, I also feel like I got a bit of a fast track to the top in terms of speaking to some of the major players in the project, or maybe there isn't that sort of hierarchy. But yeah, certainly, I felt like I was talking with some of the big names pretty quickly. So and, and they had nothing but time for me. So yeah, it's, it's great that


Jeffrey McGuire 23:38

I mean, open-source practitioners generally believed very much in transparency. And I think the majority of people understand that, to make the project sustainable to make any project sustainable. One needs others doing it, contributing their ideas, helping fix it, just using it telling their friends about it. I mean, there's so many ways so the culture of sharing what we do with other people. I think it's an enlightened self-interest because if we enjoy doing what we're doing, then we need to have it tomorrow and next year and five years from now to the TYPO3 community is in it in an interesting and important position in open source in 2020. 


Jeffrey McGuire 24:22

So many communities have nonprofits and associations and membership structures to help their governance and sustainability. Both reasons one of the very few that does not rely on events as their main fundraising source TYPO3 has focused on very strongly on a membership model. And then very strongly on investing that money straight back into the community and straight back into the technology. So in TYPO3 land if you're in Europe, for example, it's and you want to participate in a core contribution sprint or in a community marketing sprint. It's very possible that you will get some or all of your travel costs sponsored to be there, which is not the practice and a lot of communities, right. And so there's financing in place. And it's as far as I can tell very well invested into projects, like creating a book to help market the project and get the word out that this project is, is really worth having a look at. 


Jeffrey McGuire 25:21

And in 2020, they have their budget and their membership money in place, and all of a sudden, nobody can travel. And so the travel costs are sitting on the account. And Benni Mack the project lead the TYPO3, project lead, and lead core developer had a look around and saw a couple of projects that are struggling, a little more than TYPO3. And there are so many of these ecosystems that rely on each other and depend on each other. And then he organized that TYPO3  is officially donating money to Symfony, which is a framework that a lot of projects based are based on and to the composer packages, dependency management infrastructure that is also incredibly widespread in PHP, TYPO3 in the past donated to the legal defence fund for the Joomla project when the German government was trying to take away their associations, nonprofit status. So TYPO3 has this really wonderful history of helping and contributing with other projects as well, it's, um, I really, it's a, it's such a, it's so heartwarming is a silly word, but it's it, I find it very encouraging too, to see that a project that's doing well, they're practically their first thought is, 'Okay. Who else needs help?' I love that. Lots of people in open source take lots of different ways to help others as well, whether you know, like making websites for disaster relief, or donating money, whatever, so, so that that spirit of helping is definitely present. It's really, it's really cool.


Felicity Brand 27:00

Yeah, I really like that. After finishing the book, I felt like I wanted to continue to contribute to the community I, I'm this name that no one's heard of. And it just so happens that my name out of many people that helped write the book happens to be I think, the first on the cover. And so I was looking for ways to contribute to the community. And I, I looked around for where I might be able to add value. And I and I had used the docs a lot that TYPO3  documentation. I had referred to that a lot when writing the book. So I reached out to the team, and I am trying to get involved there now. So I'm working on the editor's guide. And I'm trying to review some PR's.  I've been to some meetings. So yeah, I


Jeffrey McGuire 27:58

completely fallen for it.


Felicity Brand 28:01

I have Yeah, I'm Yes. Drinking the Kool-Aid. I don't know if we're allowed to use that expression. But yeah, I, and it's, and it's so fun. It's just you're working with people who are as enthusiastic as you about what you're working on. Yeah, I really don't.


Jeffrey McGuire 28:23

If you're not the first person to that I know who's had a similar experience. But essentially, you've turned your job into a hobby, right?

Felicity Brand 28:33

I think so. Yeah. Yeah,


Jeffrey McGuire 28:36

I know, with these people for work, and you can't get enough. Let's hear a tiny bit. And let's talk about this book. 


Jeffrey McGuire 28:46

Several years ago, Open Strategy Partners was approached as part of our client work with the TYPO3  company type of GmbH, that there was this potential gap in the TYPO3  ecosystem that hadn't been a book in English for a long time. The TYPO3 project has gone through a lot in the last 10/15 years and had a fork, had some interesting experiences that led to TYPO3, five, not existing, pulled themselves together, created the company created really professionalized development and release structures and is highly standardized. Tons of follows more PSR standards than most projects, use the Symfony components and so on, and it's very professionalized, and not enough people have heard about it. And I would like more people to use it because I think it's the right content management system for a number of really useful use cases. And I think it offers a lot of people that jobs have a commute, community, a career, add that to their agency palette, start a business and so on. I just want people to hear about it. So I got really excited about this project. 


Jeffrey McGuire 29:53

We, we've been working on it. We worked on it for a long time, we had several false, false starts. It was a series of learning experiences for us. Now we're about to have this, this physical book and ebook that we can distribute, sell, promote. And I'm really, really hoping that it opens up makes TYPO3 available to more people around the world than then it's been for a long time. I'm pretty excited about that. And there seem to be a lot of things pointing in this direction to there's a fantastic mentor mentoring mentorship program going on in TYPO3, that I want to bring those people on the podcast soon. There are some users scattered all around the world, there are some governments in Africa using it, there's quite a presence in Eastern Europe. So I think there's a great shot at this, introduce us to the concept of the book. And, and then the structure that follows from that.


Felicity Brand 30:47

The concept of the book is presented in two parts. We have four chapters, which introduce the TYPO3 CMS, and we structured it logically around kind of an overview of the features, we talked about I suppose the editing and the design aspects, we talk about configuring and administering and then maintaining and upgrading. So that's kind of our logical grouping in terms of explaining what the CMS can do, and why its features are so powerful, and how it's great. The second part is a series of practical guides. We wanted to include that in the book, there are a lot of learning resources online. But we thought it was important to include in the book, it's to help the reader to install, create an extension, translate, we have a great guide in there about building a business around selling TYPO3, we included one on common troubleshooting. So the book is the complete package. And like you, I also really hope it achieves its goals and opens up new markets for TYPO3. I can only speak about my experience here in Australia. And I can guarantee you if you Google it here in Australia, you don't get many hits. So even in terms of looking at meetups, any kind of local user groups. Yeah, we just we need to I think there's a market here and we need to tap into that. And hopefully, the book will help us open those doors.


Jeffrey McGuire 32:42

So apart from your grand you PHP user group tour around the Metropole of Australia, how do we grow TYPO3 in Australia?


Felicity Brand 32:52

I'm a technical writer, Jam, I'm not a salesperson. I don't know.


Felicity Brand 33:00

Know, sorry. I think I'm Shamsi and me, Michael shams, and I need to probably get together and maybe we need to


Jeffrey McGuire 33:13

You've gone from being too intimidated to call him to Shamsie


Felicity Brand 33:22

Yeah, I imagine we might need to get together and perhaps attend some CMS user groups, some maybe we need to host some gatherings imagine to build it from their grassroots, you know,


Jeffrey McGuire 33:41

in real-time we're talking in late November 2020. Imagine if people could get together?


Felicity Brand 33:47

Yeah, it's a strange concept. Indeed.


Jeffrey McGuire 33:52

One more thing on the book structure, the way that it's put together, the first four chapters are a broad overview from a number of perspectives. And in the first part of the book, we were trying to give valuable information for a marketer or a designer or a business person or developer or a student. Even maybe someone who just needs a website and would be in a so-called end-user, we tried to give a really useful overview that would give people enough information to find out more or find a service provider or or or decide to invest their time in, in trying it out. And then the second part of the book is 10,10, guides?


Felicity Brand 34:39

10 guides


Jeffrey McGuire 34:40

that go into detail and it's the book is for junior developers for learners for starting from scratch. There are valuable technical instructions about you know, use this template this way, but there are as you say, also sort of tutorials or sets of information that are useful for some other things. And I love the contribution that we got from Mathias Bolt Lesniak where he said, you need a tutorial about setting up a business with this because it's an open-source perspective. And let's give that to people too. So he and Robert Lindh, from the TYPO3 committee put a really interesting guide together. And I don't know another book that has one of those, and I hope it's appropriate, I hope it has its place. But I really liked that we tried that out. And the troubleshooting one I mentioned is really interesting to me, because it's, it's also about the patterns and how to start thinking about that sort of thing. So I'm really hoping the books a gateway to, to, to, for a lot of people to discover a bunch of things that start with TYPO3 but I think there's a lot more behind it somehow. Um, so some quick questions for you. Why should people not use TYPO3?


Felicity Brand 35:58

You shouldn't use TYPO3 if you just want to write a blog, you can use WordPress, you shouldn't use TYPO3. If your needs are small, I think I think TYPO3 shines as an enterprise CMS. So not, it's not the answer to everything. And I think that many people in the community, happy to tell you that


Jeffrey McGuire 36:32

Define enterprise CMS in this context.

Felicity Brand 36:40

So I guess I'm thinking of scale. If you have a global company, and you're interested in an international kind of setup, you may have multiple sites, you may have multiple languages, you may have multiple products, you may be a large university with many campuses,


Jeffrey McGuire 37:05

I think it comes down to large scale web applications that handle a lot of information. And I think thatTYPO3 shines because it's very structured. So apart from the book, the TYPO3guide, the TYPO3guide book from Apress. Where would you direct a totally new TYPO3 user to start learning?


Felicity Brand 37:34

Oh, good question. I would say the first thing they should do is join the slack team. Join slack and you need to have a TYPO3account to join slack. And you do that very easily from TYPO3 dot org website. And then I would read the TYPO3 documentation. But you know, I am a technical writer who likes reading the manual. So that's what I would do. Apart from the official docs, you could try TYPO3.com


Jeffrey McGuire 38:17

Yes, TYPO3.com is a fantastic resource. Absolutely exactly right. The person who writes this is Daniel Goerz. And he's one of those developers who does a thing and then blogs about it. And there's a whole category of people who this was common also 10 to 15 years ago, people would have blogs just as their personal library of things that they wanted to remember. Daniel's are a leading TYPO3 developer and works on the core and full disclosure, he works for a company called b13. Which also works with Open Strategy Partners. So


Felicity Brand 38:55

well, yes. I was going to mention b13 Blog they obviously blog about TYPO3 CMS, there is another one TYPO3worx.eu works with an x 


Jeffrey McGuire 39:11

Tell me as a tech writer, who's deeply embedded in the TYPO3 community who do you follow for advice or perspective? Who do you reach out to when you have a question?


Felicity Brand 39:26

That's a good question.


Felicity Brand 39:29

I suffer the tyranny of asynchronicity because I'm working in an Australian timezone. A lot of the people who can help me are asleep when I'm awake. So poor old Michael Shams has been my go-to guy pretty frequently and he's very responsive. But apart from that, you know, I would reach out to people who Feel like would answer my question so Mateus Bolt Lesniak, or sometimes I go direct to Benni Mack only because hey, it's Benni.  You know, I feel bad about it. But he's, you know, he's very, we've got a connection. Yeah, he's my book, buddy.


Jeffrey McGuire 40:24

Awesome. Speaking of coming into the top right.


Jeffrey McGuire 40:30

Also,I thought I think the tyranny of asynchronicity would be absolutely spectacular title for this episode. I want to propose, however, that, given the luxury of having asynchronous communication channels open to us that you can put in a question for somebody in slack and then have a conversation over, I guess it might take longer, but you can still do that. I would also suggest, um, everyone I know who knows him says that Daniel Siepmann is one of the single most helpful people in the entire world. And he also is he also contributed to the book.


Felicity Brand 41:10

Yes, indeed, he did. And he is very active in the random channel, which, you know, I'm mute that the TYPO3 slack random channel, where anyone and everyone can post their random problem that they need to overcome. And I just I take my hat off to anyone in the community who was watching that channel and helping people because I would just be overwhelmed. So yeah, kudos, kudos to those people helping out there.


Jeffrey McGuire 41:45

So I, I want to do two more things for this episode, and then we'll bring you back on for another one later. How about that? I think that I would like you to play the little game that we call Suggest-A-Guest. Who is it that we should have on the podcast? Who do you think is super interesting for us to bring on and get to know better?


Felicity Brand 42:15

Susie Moog


Jeffrey McGuire 42:18

Awesome core contributor, fantastic person.


Felicity Brand 42:23

Sybille.


Jeffrey McGuire 42:25

Sybille spoke with her time in real-time. We recorded a conversation with her three or four days ago, and it was super fun. So good guests.


Felicity Brand 42:40

Um, I do have another person but I can't. I cannot.


Felicity Brand 42:54

Tom Warwick, his name is Tom Warwick. He's in Great Britain, and he likes to document about templates.


Jeffrey McGuire 43:04

Okay, he's on the documentation team. And Warwick is spelt with two W's. Is that correct? Yes.


Felicity Brand 43:12

Yes.


Jeffrey McGuire 43:13

So Tom Warwick, that's a great suggestion. And he wasn't on my list yet. So that I am happy to press you that that seems like a great idea.


Felicity Brand 43:21

Thank you, Jam. It's it's been a really wonderful journey for me. And it's taken me to a new place that you know, feels like home already are that's cheesy, but, but from the heart, you know, I, I really like where I've landed. So thank you. TYPO3.


Jeffrey McGuire 43:42

Really great. And I do think this is a fun journey and stick around. Let's figure out what's next. All right, till the next time, I trick you into coming on the podcast. Thanks for listening. I believe it's getting close to bedtime over there. And for me, it's meeting time because it's meeting time all the time. Alrighty,


Felicity Brand 44:07

thank you. Thanks, Jam!


Jeffrey McGuire 44:09

Bye bye.


Jeffrey McGuire 45:10

Thanks to the TYPO3 Association for sponsoring this podcast. Thank you, b13, and Stefanie Kreuzer for our logo. Merci beaucoup Patrick Gaumond, TYPO3 developer and musician extraordinaire for our theme music. Thanks again to today's guest. If you like what you heard, don't forget to subscribe in the podcast app of your choice and share Application that TYPO3 community podcast with your friends and colleagues. If you didn't like it, please share it with your enemies. Would you like to play along and suggest a guest for the podcast? Do you have questions or comments? reach out to us on Twitter @TYPO3podcast. You can find show notes, links and more information in our posts on TYPO3.org. Remember, open-source software would not be what it is without you. Thank you all for your contributions.