Jul 12 2018
Jul 12

Drupal is an open source Content Management System (CMS) which is free to download and use; it allows you to create and manage websites, intranets, and web applications without writing any code.

Why Use Drupal?

Most websites share a common set of features. They typically have navigation menus and lists of content, pages of content with nice URLs, a header with a logo, a footer with contact info, etc. At the same time, there are a lot of differences between websites. They often have a unique content structure, a customized look and feel, and customized features.

Drupal works well for websites that need those shared features. Drupal provides lots of functionality out-of-the-box that most websites need, for example:

  • Content management
  • Taxonomy for organizing content
  • Flexible navigation system
  • Comments
  • Search
  • Content listings
  • Contact forms
  • WYSIWYG Editor
  • Nice content authoring experience
  • Multilingual content & user interface
  • User management
  • Accessibility
  • Responsive design

At the same time, Drupal is really flexible, so you can customize the aspects of your website that are unique and add custom features.

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By using Drupal, you can create: 

  • Corporate websites : contents types of services, workflow for publishing, corporate branding, etc.
  • Intranets: private content, custom workflow for internal processes, listings of internal contents such as internal news and meeting notes. 
  • Online directories: search tools, embedded listing, etc. 
  • Interactive websites: user accounts, multi-step form, custom javascript, decoupled front-ends, etc. 
  • Marketing portals: landing pages for SEO, mix of content and marketing material, campaign landing pages, etc.

Here is some handy Drupal terminology:

  • Node - Piece of content
  • Content type - A template for content
  • Vocabulary - A way of categorizing your content
  • View - Content listing
  • Module - Functionality that you can add to a Drupal website 
  • Theme - Defines the layout, look and feel
  • Block - Displays content, a list, menu, form, etc. on the page (often in the sidebar, header, footer)
  • Permission - A task that a user can do
  • Role - A type of user

What is Drupal? An Introduction to Drupal8

Fun facts!

Drupal was created by Dries Buytaert in 2001

The word Drupal comes from “druppel”, which means drop in Dutch

Drupal Community is originally used for university discussions but there are now thousands of organizations using Drupal, including companies, non-profits, governments, universities to power their web presence.

As of January 2018, the Drupal community reached over 1.3 million users, including developers, designers, content writers, sponsors etc. According to statistics, there are more than 100,000 members that are actively contributing to the community. This results in tens of thousands of free modules that allow to further personalize Drupal functionality, thousands of free themes that help customize the appearance of Drupal and more than one thousand distributions that allow users to easily and efficiently set up Drupal websites.

If you would like to learn more about Drupal, we offer a large variety of trainings from beginner to advanced levels, with our team-lead, Suzanne Dergacheva. Check out Evolving Web’s “Training” section. 
 

Jun 22 2018
Jun 22

Before the Camp:

My name is Ami Koga. A couple weeks ago, I started my summer internship at Evolving Web. I had no idea about Drupal before starting at Evolving Web. I did a bit of research on it beforehand; and the internet gave me some basic information such as 

This was all very abstract to me until I attended DrupalCamp Montreal. Now that I have experienced the DrupalCamp vibes, attended presentations and training, and gotten involved in the Drupal community by volunteering at the camp, I have a much better understanding of what Drupal is.

Training Day:

The first day of DrupalCamp, I went to a Drupal training called “What is Drupal? An Introduction to Drupal 8”, presented by our team lead Suzanne Dergacheva. It was an Introductory Drupal course and the training was available both in English and French. It was my very first time trying out Drupal; and, I was able to understand why the internet claims that “Drupal is easy to use” over and over again. We started with installing Drupal (of course, it was free!!), then, we played around with it by adding content, inserting pictures, changing fields, etc. I created the following basic website within 2 mins without knowing any coding knowledge. Very simple, fast and easy.

drupal-website

Camp Day:

On the second day, I attended the camp as a volunteer, as well as a team member of Evolving Web. During the registration, I noticed a large variety of people came to sign in; all ages, all genders, from different cities, but all gathered for the same common interest: Drupal.

Moreover, the people who stopped by at our company’s booth were very passionate and motivated to learn more about Drupal, and chat with us about their future projects. “Wow, Drupal is actually used by many people from different fields”, was my first impression at the DrupalCamp. Beginners, developers and agencies are all part of the community and all seemed happy to discuss problems and ideas related to Drupal.

Presentations:

Overall, the presentations were the main and most fun part of the DrupalCamp. My Evolving Web colleagues presented 12 sessions, so I got to learn a lot from them! Here are some of the presentations I saw :

  1. Our Co-founder and front-end lead, Suzanne Dergacheva was the Keynote speaker. She gave a presentation titled, “It’s All About the Experience: What I’ve Learnt from Talking to Thousands of People About Drupal.” The essence of the presentation was that we can learn a lot by looking at the Drupal experience from different perspectives and thinking about the personas of people who interact with Drupal. This gave me some insight into the Drupal community and who makes up that community.
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  2. Our Co-Founder and Technical Lead, Alex Dergachev presented, “Migrating 10000 Classic Books to Drupal 8.” He discussed the technical and business motivations for the project, and provided a technical overview of the Drupal migration.
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  3. Our UI/UX Designer, Annika Oeser gave us 10 tips on designing a website, so that we can make our own website projects. Annika's talk gave me insight into the web design process and how designers and developers interact.
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  4. Our Senior Drupal Developer, Jigar Mehta and Marketing & Content Manager, Meyzi Mazalto gave a presentation on Accessibility. Making a website more accessible can also improve the SEO value and usability of your site.
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In summary, the 3 day long DrupalCamp gave me interesting insight about the Drupal Community. It was highly beneficial to my development as an intern at Evolving Web and I was glad that I took the opportunity to get involved in this community as it opened up a “window” for me into web development and design.

About Drupal Sun

Drupal Sun is an Evolving Web project. It allows you to:

  • Do full-text search on all the articles in Drupal Planet (thanks to Apache Solr)
  • Facet based on tags, author, or feed
  • Flip through articles quickly (with j/k or arrow keys) to find what you're interested in
  • View the entire article text inline, or in the context of the site where it was created

See the blog post at Evolving Web

Evolving Web