Lots of code, fruitful discussions & productive cooperation: review of a successful retreat
As announced we went on a joint retreat in Greece with our sister company terrestris from 2021-10-01 to 2021-10-08. Retreats have a long tradition with us, maybe not as long as terrestris, but internationally we went to Spain in 2018, and Portugal in 2015, and many more times at home in Bonn which create time and space for us to reflect on processes and structures and try out exciting technologies away from the daily business routine. Our internal team cohesion also benefits regularly from our retreats.
This year, 29 colleagues made their way to the Peloponnese, more precisely to Agios Nikolaos where we stayed in the Calme Suites Mani.
Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors, rendering OWS terrestris
With fantastic weather and in a very pleasant environment, we were able to pursue all the things that move us forward as companies. Here is an excerpt of what kept us busy:
- Actinia (subsequently released as v2.0.0 released) was extended and improved in several places:
- New/improved endpoints have been added, for example to be able to offer vector uploads
- More and better tests
- Some bugs have been fixed (e.g. using slashes at endpoints, deleting directories, supporting more operations with r.mapcalc etc.)
- Linting of more directories using flake8
- Tutorials have been revised and updated
- Many things have happened in the SHOGun context:
- The SHOGun Docker image now includes by default a generic graphical admin interface and a simple map client built on top of react-geo.
- SHOGun itself has been upgraded to Java 17
- More integration tests have been added
- the automated OpenAPI spec generation has been tested and improved
- Horizontal scalability capability has been extensively tested and is now included in standard docker-compose setup
- The landing page has been updated
- Numerous improvements have been made to the (as yet unreleased) Actinia-QGIS-Plugin
- Our Docker GeoServer image (GitHub, Dockerhub) got a lot of love: it is now built using GitHub actions, uses OpenJDK 11, can better handle custom fonts and plugins and more
- Extensive work that will eventually lead to a windowless GeoStyler was started
- Numerous releases of GeoStyler components: GeoStyler v7.2.1, GeoStyler Style v5.0.0, GeoStyler SLD-Parser v3.0.0 & GeoStyler OpenLayers-Parser v3.0.0
- We proposed a performance optimisation for the PostgreSQL JDBC driver (currently under review)
- We continued to work on a GeoServer, GRASS raster data DataStore, which we hope to release soon
- Our free OpenStreetMap WMS has been split into two group layers: one for geometry and one for dedicated layers. This paves the way for even more flexible use of the layer and we hope to be able to internationalise the display of the labels more easily.
- On the subject of agility in our companies and the many projects we supervise, we have discussed and evaluated variants: What framework conditions can we create to successfully advance projects together in an agile way? How do we formulate offers and contracts in such a way that we can realistically describe agility and sustainably realise it in projects?
- Work has begun on an internal tool for personnel planning based on the svelte library
- Product sheets and web pages (e.g. for 3D) were revised and expanded, Sneek-Peek
- The local development setup for Mr. Map was improved
- We tried and evaluated Kotlin, graphql-mutations, rtk-query, redux toolkit and many, many more libraries, languages and tools
- The styling options in QGIS were re-evaluated, resulting in the following map (proof-of-concept, Germany is not an island):
Of course, there was also time to unwind, whether on hikes, swimming in the Mediterranean or eating insanely rich and delicious food. Some impressions from our time together can be found at the end of the post.
Now, highly motivated and inspired, we look forward to the end-of-year rally with our clients and partners.
Our accommodation: The Calme Suites Mani
A break in the Greek sun
Many, many cute cats wanted to be photographed
Coding in the outdoors: a dream
Ideas are cast in code at the central table of the accommodation
The food: always delicious, always a little bit too much and yet always all plates empty later on
Discussions in the group
An early morning hike to Pirgos (Πύργος).
Group photo at the foot of the St. George Church (Church Άγιος Γεώργιος)
Starting the joint hike to Pigi (Πηγή)
Late conversations with a fun factor
Interim results are presented
Approaches and ideas want to be shown and examined
Impressions of a fantastic landscape I
Impressions of a fantastic landscape II
Impressions of a fantastic landscape III
Impressions of a fantastic landscape IV
After-work beer in the sun
A Greek tortoise (Testudo hermanni) in an olive grove