Dec 17 2018
Dec 17

Drupal is an enormously welcoming community with countless online forums and community events to learn about the platform. Its open-source knowledge sharing and peer review is arguably second-to-none, and thanks to Acquia's Drupal certifications the Drupal learning process is becoming more consolidated.

However, nothing can quite beat the quality, focus, and hard work that goes into publishing a book. We’ve quizzed our Drupal developers and members of the Manchester tech community to find out which books every Drupal developer must read.


Drupal-Specific Books

 

Drupal 8 Module Development

Drupal 8 Module Development: Build and customize Drupal 8 modules and extensions efficiently

By Daniel Sipos

This book is a great welcome to Drupal 8, introducing you to the architecture of D8 and its subsystems, for a thorough foundational understanding. It guides you through creating your first module and continues to build upon your skills with more functionalities that all modern developers need to know.

View on amazon

Drupal Development Cookbook

Drupal 8 Development Cookbook - Second Edition: Harness the power of Drupal 8 with this recipe-based practical guide

By Matt Glaman

Using a fun, easy-to-follow recipe format, this book gives you an expansive look at the basic concepts of Drupal 8, in a step-by-step fashion. While this sometimes misses out on the ‘why’ of an action, it makes building new modules approachable and unintimidating for any level of developer.

View on amazon

Ambitious, intelligent, and a great Drupal developer? Check out our careers page.

CTI Careers

Drupal 8 Explained

Drupal 8 Explained: Your Step-by-Step Guide to Drupal 8

by Stephen Burge

Written in no-nonsense plain English, this book is great for any Drupal beginner. It’s been praised as the day-to-day reference book that any new developer should keep handy on their desk.

View on amazon

Drupal 8 Blueprints

Drupal 8 Blueprints: Step along the creation of 7 professional-grade Drupal sites

By Alex Burrows

This Drupal 8 guide will take you through 7 real Drupal 8 sites to demonstrate the latest practices in action. This all-encompassing view provides a look at the reasoning and methodology behind certain practices, and context for their larger impact on the site.

View on amazon

Definative Guide To Drupal 7

The Definitive Guide to Drupal 7 (Definitive Guide Apress)

by Benjamin Melancon

While some new sites are building built in Drupal 8, it’s important the remember that many of the sites you’ll work on and maintain are in Drupal 7. This comprehensive book provides the nuts and bolts of any Drupal 7 site, to build a powerful and extensible system. Some concepts are slightly dated, so we’d recommend cross-checking online occasionally.

View on amazon

Pro Drupal 7 Development

Pro Drupal 7 Development (Expert's Voice in Open Source)

by Todd Tomlinson

This book is for slightly more ambitious developers as it quickly jumps through the basic modules to the more complex. Breaking down the development of APIs and improvements to Drupal 7, this book will have any Drupal Developer producing complex modules in no time.

View on amazon

Essential Development Books

Many coding principles span development languages and frameworks. Here are our essentials for any developer seeking the ability to produce high quality, clean code.

The Clean Coder

The Clean Coder: A Code of Conduct for Professional Programmers

By Robert C. Martin

This book delves into the difference between good and bad code. Split into 3 parts, the book first discusses principles, patterns, and practices of writing clean code. Real world case studies follow, before the book finishes with the signs of bad code and problem solving skills needed to de-bug and refresh any code base.

View on amazon

CSS

CSS Secrets: Better Solutions to Everyday Web Design Problems

by Lea Verou

CSS Secrets explains how to code common 'real world' solutions with CSS. Condensing the most useful and practical examples, this book is a more exciting read than the often extensive paperbacks which try to cover absolutely everything.

View on amazon

PHP and Javascript

Learning PHP, MySQL & JavaScript 5e (Learning PHP, MYSQL, Javascript, CSS & HTML5)

By Robin Nixon

Begin expanding your language stack with this multifaceted book. PHP is essential for any Drupal developer as it forms the core language of the Drupal framework. Meanwhile, learning Javascript, CSS and HTML5 will empower you to deliver more complex solutions.

View on amazon

And lastly, an open source book about… open source

The Cathedral & the Bazaar

By Eric S. Raymond

While this piece is slightly dated, it’s underlying concepts are still highly relevant and give great insight into the origins and essence of open source. It’s also free, so definitely still worth having a skim through… if you can handle the formatting!

Read it for free

I hope you've found some great reads here, if you've got a personal favourite please let us know below. Also if you're interested in advancing your Drupal career, please check out our careers page to see if there's a position perfect for you.

Careers at CTI Digital

Nov 23 2018
Nov 23

27 Attendees representing 18 Drupal events from around the world.

It’s been almost one month since I wrote the blog post, “DrupalCamp Organizers Unite: Is it Time for Camp Organizers to Become an Official Working Group” and a ton of things have transpired that will catapult us into 2019 with some great momentum. With the support of the many Drupal evangelists, over 50 Drupal event organizers from around the world signed up to attend our first official / unofficial video call.

Then on Friday, November 8, a few hours leading up to the video call, The Drupal Governance Taskforce 2018 Proposal was released. This proposal was put together by the Governance Taskforce in an effort establish a community directive that helps create the next generation of Drupalers. One of the recommendations in this proposal was to provide in-person events, more support, and to establish a Drupal community events working group. The timing of the proposal was perfect for our call. It was really great to see that us organizers were not the only ones who acknowledged that our community events are crucial to Drupal adoption.

Are you a Drupal Event Organizer? Well, join us at our next meeting on Tuesday, January 8, 2019, at 12 pm (EST). Register Here

When the time came to start the call I was a little nervous that not very many people would attend and then all of a sudden the chimes started going off and faces appeared on the screen. After 5 minutes we had 25 people on the call. It was inspirational to be a part of something big. It felt like we were the United Nations :).

Flags of all the Countries that were represented

Countries Represented
Canada, Mumbai, Netherlands, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States.

Drupal Events Represented
BADCamp(2), Drupal Association(2), Drupal North, Drupal Camp Asheville, DrupalCamp Atlanta, Drupal Camp Chattanooga, DrupalCamp Colorado, DrupalCorn(2), Drupaldelphia, Drupal Mountain Camp, Drupal Camp Mumbai, DrupalCamp New Jersey, Florida Drupal Camp (2),Frontend United, GovCon, MidCamp(2), NED Camp(4),Victoria BC Meetup.

Major Points from the November 9th Meeting

  1. The next meeting will be held on Tuesday, January 8, 2019, at 12 pm (EST). Register Here
  2. Comment on Governance Taskforce Proposal Issue
    To help Dries Buytaert, prioritize the recommendation of creating a Community Events Working Group, we need as many people as possible to comment on this issue. Please view the issue and indicate why you believe this working group is critical to the success of Drupal. Comment now!
  3. DrupalCamp Website Starter Kit
    Out of all of the discussions, the common pain point is that the website takes up too much of our limited resources. The idea of an event starter kit, instead of a distribution, was really intriguing to us all. We also discussed all of the events donating funding to hire a professional project manager to scope out what a starter kit would look like.
  4. Drupal.org Events Website
    Many of us use the great Drupical to let us know what events are happening. But if you don’t know about that website there is nowhere on Drupal.org that is easily accessible that promotes Drupal events. The idea that was brought to the table was to design a new section of the community page that is a space specifically for promoting and producing Drupal events.
  5. A Centralized Drupal Event Statistics Hub
    Another website related item that was brought up was the idea of centralized data hub that event organizers could submit crucial data of events (attendance, budget, programing etc.) so that Drupal.org could display the data and allow for data manipulation. For example, it would be great to know how many people attended Drupal events in one year. This data would be extremely powerful as it could help organizers to compare events, drive corporate sponsorships and adoption, and get more people involved with Drupal.
  6. DrupalTV — A website with all Drupal Videos
    The topic around Drupal video content came up and one of the biggest issues was that videos are all over the place and are not organized. To solve this problem, the idea of a centralized website (DrupalTV) where videos were tagged by topic, presenter, module, etc.. would allow for content to be easily found. This idea was started before our meeting and you can see a proof of concept here.

I was very happy to be a part of this first meeting and I hope that Drupal leadership also sees the work we do as critical and will make us an official working group. There were a lot of great conversations that took place so I am sure that I have missed something. Feel free to comment and let me know and I will update the post.

Nov 02 2018
Nov 02

You Can’t Put a Price Tag on Visibility, Creditability, and Collegiality

“pink pig” by Fabian Blank on Unsplash

Organizing a DrupalCamp takes a lot of commitment from volunteers, so when someone gets motivated to help organize these events, the financial risks can be quite alarming and sometimes overwhelming. But forget all that mess, you are a Drupal enthusiast and have drummed up the courage to volunteer with the organization of your local DrupalCamp. During your first meeting, you find out that there are no free college or community spaces in the area and the estimated price tag is $25,000. Holy Batman that is a lot of money!

Naturally, you start thinking about how we are going to cover that price tag, so you immediately ask, “how many people usually attend?” Well unless you are one of the big 5, (BadCamp, NYCCamp, GovCon, MidCamp or FloridaCamp) we average between 100 and 200 people. Then you ask, “how much can we charge?” You are then told that we cannot charge more than $50 because camps are supposed to be affordable for the local community and that has been the culture of most DrupalCamps.

Are you interested in attending the first online DrupalCamp Organizers Meeting, on Friday, November 9th at 4:00pm (EST)? RSVP Here.

If Drupal is the Enterprise solution why are all of our camps priced and sponsored like we are still hobbyist in 2002?

Why Don’t We Treat DrupalCamps Like It’s the Enterprise Solution?

Drupal is the Enterprise solution. Drupal has forgotten about the hobbyist and is only concerned about large-scale projects. Drupal developers and companies make more per hour than Wordpress developers. These are all things I have heard from people within the community. So if any of these statements are valid, why are all the camps priced like it is 2002 and we are all sitting around in a circle singing Kumbaya? In 2016 for DrupalCamp Atlanta, we couldn’t make the numbers work, so we decided to raise the price of the camp from $45 to $65 (early bird) and $85 (regular rate). This was a long drawn out and heated debate that took nearly all of our 2 hours allotted for our google hangout. At the end of the day, one of our board members who is also a Diamond sponsor said,

“when you compare how other technology conferences are priced and what they are offering for sessions, DrupalCamps are severely under-priced for the value they provide to the community.”

Courtesy of Amaziee.io Labs

If a camp roughly costs $25,000 and you can only charge 150 people $50, how in the world are DrupalCamps produced? The simple answer, sponsors, sponsors, and more sponsors. Most camps solely rely on the sponsors to cover the costs. One camp, in particular, BADCamp has roughly 2,000 attendees and the registration is FREE. That’s right, the camp is completely free and did I forget to mention that it’s in San Francisco? Based on the BADCamp model and due to the fact the diamond sponsorship for DrupalCon Nashville was $50,000, getting 10 companies to sponsor your camp at $2,500 will be no sweat. Oh and don’t forget Drupal is the enterprise solution, right?

With all of your newfound confidence in obtaining sponsorships, you start contacting some of the larger Drupal shops in your area and after a week nothing. You reach out again maybe by phone this time and actually speak to someone but they are not committing because they want some more information as to why they should sponsor the camp such as, what other perks can you throw in for the sponsorship, are we guaranteed presentation slots, and do you provide the participant list. Of course, the worst response is the dreaded no, we cannot sponsor your conference because we have already met our sponsorship budget for the year.

At this point, you feel defeated and confused as to why organizations are not chomping at the bit to fork over $2,500 to be the sponsor. Yep, that’s right, twenty-five hundred, not $25,000 to be the highest level, sponsor. Mind you many Drupal shops charge anywhere between $150 — $250 an hour. So that means donating 10–17 hours of your organizations time to support a Drupal event in your local community. Yes, you understand that there are a lot of DrupalCamps contacting the same companies for sponsorship so you ask yourself, what has changed from years past?

Are you interested in attending the first online DrupalCamp Organizers Meeting, on Friday, November 9th at 4:00 pm (EST)? RSVP Here.

What Do Companies Expect to Gain From DrupalCamp Sponsorships?

At DrupalCon Nashville, I got an awesome opportunity to participate in a session around organizing DrupalCamps. It was really interesting to hear about how other organizers produce their camp and what were some of the biggest pain points.

Group Photo — DrupalCon 2018 Nashville by Susanne Coates

During this session, we were talking about a centralized sponsorship program for all DrupalCamps (that I personally disagree with and will save that discussion for another blog post) and an individual asked the question,

“why should my company sponsor DrupalCamp Atlanta? There is nothing there for me that makes it worth it. We don’t pick up clients, you to don’t distribute the participant list, so why should we sponsor the camp?”

Needless to say, they caught me completely off guard, so I paused then replied,

“DrupalCamp Atlanta has between 150–200 people, most of them from other Drupal shops, so what is it that you are expecting to get out of the sponsorship that would make it worth it to you? Why do you sponsor any DrupalCamps?”

Have Drupal Companies Outgrown the Need to Sponsor DrupalCamps?

On the plane ride back to the ATL it got me thinking, why does an organization sponsor DrupalCamps? What is the return on their investment? I started reminiscing of the very first DrupalCamp that I attended in 2008 and all the rage at that time (and still is), was inbound marketing and how using a content strategy and or conference presentations can establish your company as thought leaders in the field, therefore, clients will find your information useful and approach you when its time to hire for services. Maybe this is why so many camps received a ton of presentation submissions and why it was easy to find sponsors, but that was over 10 years ago now and some of those same companies have now been established as leaders in the field. Could it be, that established companies no longer need the visibility of DrupalCamps?

What happens to DrupalCamps when companies no longer need the visibility or credibility from the Drupal community?

The Drupal community thrives when Drupal shops become bigger and take on those huge projects because it results in contributions back to the code, therefore, making our project more competitive. But an unintended consequence of these Drupal shops becoming larger is that there is a lot more pressure on them to raise funding thus they need to spend more resources on obtaining clients outside of the Drupal community. Acquia, the company built by the founder of Drupal, Dries Buytaert, have made it clear that they are pulling back on their local camp sponsorships and have even created their own conference called Acquia Engage that showcases their enterprise clients. Now from a business perspective, I totally understand why they would create this event as it provides a much higher return on their investment but it results in competing with other camps (ahem, this year’s DrupalCamp Atlanta), but more importantly the sponsorship dollars all of us depend on are now being redirected to other initiatives.

Are you interested in attending the first online DrupalCamp Organizers Meeting, on Friday, November 9th at 4:00 pm (EST)? RSVP Here.

Why Should Established Companies Sponsor a DrupalCamp?

The reality of the situation is that sponsoring these DrupalCamps are most likely not going to land your next big client that pays your company a $500,000 contract. So what are true reasons to sponsor a DrupalCamp:

  • Visibility
    When sponsoring these DrupalCamps most of us organizers do a pretty good job of tweeting thanks to the company and if the organization has presenters we usually promote the sessions as well. In addition, most camps print logos on the website, merchandise, and name after parties. Yes, its only a little bit but the internet is forever and the more you are mentioned the better off you are. But you are from a well established Drupal shop so you don’t need any more visibility.
  • Credibility
    Even the companies who are have been established need their staff to be credible. There will always be some amount of turnover and when that happens your clients still want to know if this person is talented. And if your company is new, being associated with Drupal in your local community does provide your company a sense of credibility.
  • Collegiality
    I saved the best for last. Collegiality is highly overlooked when looking at sponsoring camps. Most companies have a referral program for new hires and when the time comes for you to hire, people tend to refer their friends and their professional acquaintances. There is no better place to meet and interact with other Drupalist than a DrupalCamp. What about employee engagement? In a recent focus group I participated in with a Drupal shop, many of the staff wanted more opportunities for professional development. These local camps are affordable and can allow staff to attend multiple events in a year when you have small budgets.

I must end by saying, that there are so many great Drupal companies that I have had the pleasure to work with and if it were not for the Acquia’s of the world Drupal wouldn’t exist. I understand that CEO’s are responsible for their employees and their families so I don’t want to underestimate the pressures that come with making payroll and having a client pipeline. The purpose of this post was to explain how it feels as a volunteer who is doing something for the community and the frustrations that sometimes come with it.

Oct 27 2018
Oct 27

If the community is a top priority then resources for organizing DrupalCamps must also be a top priority.

“Together We Create graffiti wall decor” by "My Life Through A Lens" on Unsplash

Community, community and more community. One of the common themes we hear when it comes to evaluating Drupal against other content management systems (CMS), is that the community is made up of over 100,000 highly skilled and passionate developers who contribute code. And in many of these application evaluations, it’s the community, not the software that leads to Drupal winning the bid. We have also heard Dries Buytaert speak about the importance of the community at various DrupalCons and he is quoted on Drupal.org’s getting involved page:

“It’s really the Drupal community and not so much the software that makes the Drupal project what it is. So fostering the Drupal community is actually more important than just managing the code base.” — Dries Buytaert

My First Encounter with the Drupal Community

With this emphasis on community, I tried to think back to how and when I first interacted with the community. Like so many others, my first introduction to Drupal was at a local Meetup. I remember going to this office building in Atlanta and the room was packed with people, plenty of pizza, soda and, of course, laptops. It was a nice relaxed atmosphere where we introduced ourselves and got a chance to know each other a little bit. Then the lights dimmed, the projector turned on and the presentations kicked off, highlighting some new content strategy or a new module that can help layout your content. After that first meetup, I felt energized because until that point, I had never spoken with someone in person about Drupal and it was the first time that I was introduced to Drupal professionals and companies.

Are you interested in attending the first online DrupalCamp Organizers Meeting, on Friday, November 9th at 4:00pm (EST)? RSVP Here.

DrupalCamps Play An Integral Role in Fostering Community

After attending a few meetups, I joined the email list and I received an email announcing DrupalCamp Atlanta was going to be held at Georgia Tech and the call for proposals was now open for session submissions.

2013 DrupalCamp Atlanta photo by Mediacurrent

I purchased a ticket for a mere $30 and added it to my google calendar. On the day of the event, I remember walking in the front door and being blown away by the professionalism of the conference as there were sponsor booths, giveaways, and four concurrent sessions throughout the day. But it wasn’t until I was inside the auditorium during the opening session and saw the 200 or so people pile in that made me realize this Drupal community thing I heard about was for real. Over the next couple of years, I decided that I would attend other camps instead of DrupalCon because the camps were more affordable and less intimidating. My first camp outside of Atlanta was Design4Drupal in Boston, DrupalCamp Charlotte, DrupalCamp Florida and BADCamp were all camps I went to before attending a DrupalCon. All of these camps were top notch but what I really loved is that each camp had their own identity and culture. It’s exactly what I think a community should be and for the very first time, I felt that I was a part of the Drupal community.

Why Establish the DrupalCamp Organizers Council?

As provided in my previous examples, one of the advantages of Drupal comes from the great community and DrupalCamps are an important aspect in fostering this community. Running any event can be challenging, but to pull off a respectable DrupalCamp you have consider so many things such as the website, credit card processing, food, accepting and rejecting sessions, finding a keynote speaker, the afterparty, pre-conference trainings, oh and did I mention the website? You get my drift, it's a lot of work. Many of these tasks just roll off my tongue from past experience so ask yourself;

  • Where can I share my knowledge with other people who organize camps?
  • What if there was some way that all of us DrupalCamp organizers could come together and implement services that make organizing camps easier?
  • How could we provide camp organizers with resources to produce great camps?

During the #AskDries session at DrupalCon Nashville (listen for yourself), Midwest DrupalCamp Organizer Avi Schwab asked Dries the following question;

“... giving the limited funding the Drupal Association has, where should we go in trying to support our smaller local community events?” — Avi Schwab

Dries then responded with:

“That’s a great question. I actually think its a great idea what they (WordCamp) do. Because these camps are a lot of work. ...I think having some sort of central service or lack of a better term, that helps local camp organizers, I think is a fantastic idea, because we could do a lot of things, like have a camp website out of the box, ... we could have all sorts of best practices out of the box .” — Dries Buytaert

DrupalCamp Slack Community was the first time that I was provided a link to a spreadsheet that had the camp history dating back to 2006 and people were adding their target camp dates even if they were just in the planning stages. As a camp organizer I felt connected, I felt empowered to make better decisions and most of all I could just ask everyone, hey, how are you doing this?

Are you interested in attending the first online DrupalCamp Organizers meeting, on Friday, November 9th at 4:00pm (EST)? RSVP Here.

Earlier this year I volunteered for the Drupal Diversity and Inclusion Initiative (DDI) and was inspired when I heard Tara King on the DrupalEasy podcast, talk about how she just created the ddi-contrib channel on the Drupal slack and started hosting meetings. All jazzed up and motivated by that podcast, I reached out to over 20 different camp organizers from various countries and asked them if they would be interested in being on something like this? And if not, would they feel represented if this council existed?

Here are some quotes from Camp Organizers:

“I think a DrupalCamp Organizers Council is a great idea. I would be interested in being a part of such a working group. Just now I’m restraining myself from pouring ideas forth, so I definitely think I’m interested in being a part.”

“I am interested in seeing something that gathers resources from the vast experiences of current/past organizers and provides support to camps.”

“I definitely would appreciate having such a council and taking part. I’ve now helped organize DrupalCamp four times, and this was the first year we were looped into the slack channels for the organizers.”

“I really like the idea — what do we need to do to get this started?”

What are the Next Steps?

Based on the positive feedback and the spike in interest from other camp organizers I have decided to take the plunge and establish our first meeting of DrupalCamp Organizers on Friday, November 9th at 4:00pm (EST). This will be an online Zoom video call to encourage people to use their cameras so we can actually get to know one another.

The agenda is simple:

  • Introductions from all callers, and one thing they would like to see from the council.
  • Brainstorm the list of items the council should be advocating for.
  • Identify procedures for electing people to the Council: ways to nominate, eligibility criteria, Drupal event organizer experience required etc.
  • Outline of a quick strategic plan.
Oct 02 2018
Oct 02

Whilst at Drupal Europe last month, I was privileged to be invited by Drupal’s founder, Dries Buytaert, to a round table discussion, aimed at further marketing the Drupal project.

Bringing together a number of leaders from the Drupal community, we all shared the same desire to boost the marketable assets of the open source platform. One of the ways we hope to achieve this publicity is by creating a comprehensive, customer-facing "Pitch Deck".

The session began as a workshop, facilitated by Adam Goodman. We were guided to identify opportunities for delivering the benefits of Drupal to the uninitiated. The ultimate objective is to encourage the adoption of the Drupal platform. Consensus was reached that we focus upon three separate initiatives.

  

We're not competing with one another, yet we’re not helping each other either. Our role as leaders is to activate the assets that already exist in the community. Bert Boerland

One of these three initiatives is a plan to create a comprehensive, customer-facing marketing resource, or "Pitch Deck". The resource will present Drupal’s credentials in a persuasive manner, containing impressive exemplar case studies, to ease the process of convincing an organisation or client to choose Drupal.

The Team

I volunteered to take overall responsibility for the creation of the end result. Joining forces with Suzanne Dergacheva and Ricardo Amarowho bring rich, varied perspectives and skill sets, I feel confident providing the basis for this universal toolkit. But we can only be truly successful if many others contribute to our initiative. We need sales people, marketers, copywriters to join our cause.

Get Involved Today

Providing a single and persuasive resource, available for all Drupal promoters, to sell the powerful advantages of Drupal will benefit all who use it. With strong consistent messaging, and bolstered by the many Drupal success stories, the deck will position all advocates better to expand the Drupal market share across many scenarios.

With a core team of fellow Drupal professionals, we plan to cover as many topics as we can identify, from security, accessibility and performance functionality through to specific industry verticals, like Higher Education or Media. The key intention is to show how Drupal can adapt to fit projects of all shapes and sizes, across all industries.

 

The Benefits

Many of Drupal’s competitors (think Wordpress, Squarespace etc.) are widely publicised and, consequently, innately popular. In many cases, Drupal may well be the ideal platform for a project, but it risks losing out to competing CMS providers as the success and potential of Drupal is not easily demonstrated.

Our intended users are sophisticated purchasers. As they ask more and more questions, our responsibility grows to equip agencies with comprehensive information. By using the collaborative resource, agencies will be able to accurately sell the Drupal platform, whilst spending more of their energy and resources focusing on the services they deliver. Freeing up time from writing and re-writing duplicated Drupal sales, organisations will be left to promote their unique strengths.


The Plan

We plan to kick off the project by identifying the high-level requirements and the mechanism to create the slide deck. From there, we hope to crowdsource for support, and seek volunteers from the wider business community. By recruiting sales people, marketers, copywriters and subject matter experts, we hope to create a well-rounded resource, targeted at the varied stakeholders of a new Drupal development project.

Brainstorm Notes from Drupal Europe RoundtableBrainstorm Notes from Drupal Europe Roundtable - Photo by Meike Jung

By working together, embracing open source ideals, we hope to rapidly achieve the first incarnation of the slide deck, ready for it to be built upon in the future. The sooner we create a draft, the sooner we can share the potential of Drupal with a wider audience. Projects like this prove that you needn’t be a web developer to be part of the welcoming Drupal community.

Get Involved!

If you’re interested in getting involved with this innovative project, please get in touch via our web form. Any contributions, big or small, will be gratefully received, as we strive to convert this idea into a reality.

Join the cause, let’s make Drupal better together!

Get Involved Today

Drupal.org Issue: Drupal "Pitch Deck" for Presenting to (Potential) Customers 

Sep 26 2018
Sep 26

The Drupal Unconference is coming up in November and we can’t wait! Following the huge success of last year's event, we are once again proud to be Silver Sponsors of this alternative annual conference.

As active members of the Drupal community, several of our team are already preparing lightning talks to pitch on the day. To secure attendance for the majority of our large Drupal team, we have just bought a batch of tickets. To avoid disappointment, we encourage you to do the same! 

Unconference Tickets

[embedded content]Co-organiser, Eli, on what to expect

This year’s Unconference will be held on 3rd November at The Federation, Manchester. The annual unconference breaks the mould, with an informal, accessible programme. All talks are planned on the day by the attendees rather than organisers. Representing open source ideals, Unconference recognises that the best ideas can come from anyone, no matter their experience. First-time speakers and long-term contributors have equal opportunity to share their insights into the Drupal Content Management System.

For the second year in a row, we are proudly sponsoring the event and attending en mass. Our developers are preparing talks on a wide range of topics: from front-end design using Pattern Lab, to a bold career change, swapping auto body repairs for Drupal development. The unplanned structure of the Unconference enables speeches that are reactive to recent topics and events. As such, we expect some competition for the most innovative talk this year!

Not sure what to talk about?

You can reach beyond Drupal core and open source code. Unconference presentations will address a wide range of digital topics. With talks and insights expected to cover UX, databases, frameworks, security and front-end design. Web developers, devops, project managers, designers and marketers can all expect relevant and actionable takeaways from the event. Website owners and end users, no matter their technical experience, are welcomed to the inclusive conversation.

Unlike Drupal sprints, which focus on delivering working software and contributed modules, the Unconference is designed to be a rich learning environment. Offering real-world case studies and ideas, NWDUG invite anyone to share their digital experiences.

Hosted at The Federation, the 2018 event will be bigger and better than ever. With more space comes more opportunities for different speakers and discussion groups.

[embedded content]Explore the Venue

Last year’s event was a huge success, so we are optimistic for Unconference 2018 to be the best yet. We are excited to see new faces and new innovations from the open source community.

Join the welcoming Drupal community this November 3rd for a day that celebrates inclusivity, accessibility and open source software.

 

Find out more and order your tickets of the Unconference website. We'll see you there!

Unconference Tickets

Jun 19 2018
Jun 19
Amazee labs @flickr

Drupal Europe brings a unique opportunity to connect, share and learn from the Drupal community and to talk about what holds us together. We grew to be the biggest open source community under the tagline “Come for the code and stay for the community” which we strive to uphold.

Join us on September 10–14, 2018 in Darmstadt, Germany to discuss and learn about growing and strengthening communities and the challenges that come with that.

Drupal has been a historic example of how Open Source communities can thrive and to maintain this leading position we need to learn from each other, include others and inspire everybody to be an active contributor. This might bring its challenges from time to time, so please come and share your stories, expertise and lessons learned with us. This is the only way to keep our community strong, diverse and open minded.

Who should attend?

You! This vertical topic will be the meeting place for everyone in Drupal and other communities.

Whether you want to organise events, you’re new to the community and want to know where you can get involved, or you want to share a success story from your community, you are welcome.

Target groups:

  • Members of the Drupal community
  • Other open source communities
  • Organisations and those interested in how communities work and prosper

Example talks:

  • Being Human
  • Challenges of contribution
  • Community help
  • Community retention
  • Growing leaders & influencers (by empowering, enabling and adding trust)
  • Growing the Drupal Community
  • Improving diversity
  • Mentorship, sponsorship and allies
  • Organizing events
  • Succession planning for organizers and leaders

As you’ve probably read in one of our previous blog posts, industry verticals are a new concept being introduced at Drupal Europe and replace the summits, which typically took place on Monday. At Drupal Europe. These industry verticals are integrated with the rest of the conference — same location, same ticket and provide more opportunities to learn and exchange within the industry verticals throughout three days.

Industry vertical icons by @sixeleven

Now is the perfect time to buy your ticket for Drupal Europe. Session submission is already open so please submit your sessions and encourage others who have great ideas.

Please help us to spread the word about this awesome conference. Our hashtag is #drupaleurope.

To recommend speakers or topics please get in touch at [email protected].

About Drupal Europe Conference

Drupal is one of the leading open source technologies empowering thousands of digital solutions around the world.

Drupal Europe 2018 brings over 2,000 creators, innovators, and users of digital technologies from all over Europe and the rest of the world together for three days of intense and inspiring interaction.

Location & Dates

Drupal Europe will be held in Darmstadtium in Darmstadt, Germany — which has a direct connection to Frankfurt International Airport. Drupal Europe will take place 10–14 September 2018 with Drupal contribution opportunities every day. Keynotes, sessions, workshops and BoFs will be from Tuesday to Thursday.

May 14 2018
May 14

Last weekend I attended my first ever Drupal Sprint organised by NWDUG.

My background with Drupal is slightly unconventional: as a newbie to Drupal, who only became aware of its existence just under a year ago, I’ve had a fast-track journey with the software whilst working at CTI Digital. I don’t have an in-depth knowledge of the technical side of Drupal, but as I work in Marketing, exploring the history and culture around Drupal, I’m quickly becoming a bit of an expert. Therefore, attending my first sprint was a great insight into the world of Drupal.

IMG_6029

The May Sprint Team

 

The sprint was organised by NWDUG and we were happy to offer up our office space, as a large space with comfy seats and plentiful coffee is something always appreciated at a sprint. The space is actually open for anyone to use, so if you’re interested in holding a Drupal event, please get in touch any time.

 

Here’s what went on at the sprint:

9:30am

Everyone arrived, chipper and excited for the day. The first thing I noticed was how friendly and welcoming everyone was, even though I obviously wasn’t your standard Sprint attendee. Coffee and some light bites were shared out before we headed to our event space, named ‘The Garden’, for the welcome brief, given by Phil Norton.

Phil talked us through what would happen throughout the sprint and took special care to ensure first-time sprinters were set up and knew how to get involved. There were also a few non-technical activities, for newbies like me to get involved with.

Dc_GnsiWAAAKT8H-129037-edited

Phil's welcome address in 'The Garden'


10am

The Sprint begins! Those interested in doing some development discussed which issues they’d like to get involved with, then broke into teams and got to work. Again, I was delighted to see just how engaged all the first-time sprinters were; no-one was left confused or overwhelmed by the Sprint.


11am

A few of us broke off into a Case Study Workshop. Working in Marketing, I’m a big fan of a beautifully written case study, so we created a task force to review how we can encourage more members of the Drupal community to celebrate their work within the Drupal case study section. We used the AIDA model to break down the journey of writing a case study for developers and marketers. Then, we discussed the blockers and opportunities at each stage.

case study workshop

The case study workshop in full swing

 

Lunch!

Pizza and more pizza! After a busy morning everyone had a break to eat pizza, play pool, and socialise. Thank you to Access, for co-providing the pizza with us. There was also time for a quick group photo and an impromptu dance break, where a mini sprinter taught the developers how to do The Floss. Unfortunately no future ‘Britain's Got Talent’ winners were discovered, but everyone definitely enjoyed themselves!

[embedded content]The Drupal Floss

 

1pm

Back to sprinting: the developers resumed their issue teams and the second non-technical activity took place. Paul Johnson took video interviews, detailing the origin stories of how the attendees got involved with Drupal in the first place. Members of the sprint group discussed how Drupal has changed their lives, something that Rakesh recently delved into on our blog. It was inspiring to hear the developments of personal stories and journeys with Drupal.

IMG_6220

Post lunch sprinting

 

3pm

Before we knew it, the sprint was over! In summary: it was a brilliant day for technical and non-technical individuals alike. Afterwards a few of the group went for some celebratory drinks to soak up the success of the day.

What did we achieve?

There were a total of:

  • 16 patches applied
  • 5 were successfully reviewed and tested by the community (RTBC
  • 2 issues completely fixed.

Along with the open source contributions, we achieved:

  • A significant development into the accessibility of case study writing
  • The capture and documentation of the origin stories of multiple Drupal advocates

Special Thanks

Finally, I’d like to take some time to give special thanks to a few individuals on the day:

Our MVPs - Gemma Butler and Craig Perks

Gemma and Craig came down to keep the day running smoothly and it couldn’t have happened without them. From first aid to countless other essential roles, Gemma and Craig really made the day what it was and we couldn’t say thank you enough!

Rakesh James

Rakesh got the ball rolling for this sprint in the first place and was the driving force in helping it happen. Thank you Rakesh and hopefully this isn’t the last time you’ll be making something like this happen.

Phil Norton

Phil heads up the North West Drupal User Group and provided the community to form the sprint of such a welcoming and successful group of multi-talented individuals. So thank you Phil for such a great day!

And thank you to everyone else who attended;

  • Peter Jones
  • Des Fildes
  • Nigel White
  • James Davidson
  • Lesley Moreira
  • Tony Barket
  • Richard Sheppard
  • Phil Wolstenholme
  • Steve Hilton
  • Syed Huda
  • John Cook
  • Daniel Harper
  • Andrew Macpherson
  • Rachel Lawson (From The Drupal Association)
  • Craig Perks
  • Michael Trestianu
  • Paul Johnson
  • Andrew J

Interested in attending the next Drupal Sprint? Follow  and  on twitter to hear about the next one.

.

Apr 24 2018
Apr 24

During our first few weeks of selling Drupal Europe tickets, we were frequently asked about how our program is going to be structured. In this post we will outline the structure of our program and what it means for you.

Why change what works?

Pedro Lozano (Drupalcon Barcelona 2015)

Our organizers are regular attendees at DrupalCons and other Drupal events. DrupalCon has always had a very high level of quality in terms of sessions, speakers and diversity.

At a DrupalCon you would usually see the following elements:

  • Monday — Summits for industry-specific groups such as Government, Media and Publishing, etc. (Separate ticket required)
  • Monday — Training in a small number of topics presented by experienced professionals in a hands-on manner for a whole day (Separate ticket required)
  • Tuesday to Thursday — Sessions and workshops organized into tracks based mostly on expertise area (Backend development, Frontend, Design/UX, Site Building, Project Management, etc.) as well as common shared interests (Being Human, Building Community, Core conversations, etc.)
  • Sprints for some attendees on all days of the conference but really in full swing on Friday with a great group of mentors available to onboard new contributors
  • BoFs which provide an unconference style setup for people to self-schedule topics and gather with other people around a shared interest
  • Social events including well-known gatherings like Women in Drupal and First-Time Attendee Social

To meet the high expectations of our community, we will keep as much as possible of what worked well. At the same time, we wanted to improve the structure of the program by gearing it towards people who are interested in seeing Drupal applied to specific industries.

Speaking with many past sponsors and attendees, we observed that the main difference between European and non-European events is our fragmented markets. With fragmented markets you have a lower chance of meeting with colleagues, business partners, and customers from your markets, which leads to lower sponsor involvement.

Even if the program is outstanding, lack of sufficient business support makes the event impossible to put on. The primary feedback from all parties was that a Drupal event this size works best as a melting pot of different aspects of Drupal. This is an event where developers, decision makers, project managers, and other roles can share their work and get inspired by real-life stories like Drupal used to control insulin pumps, usage on cruise ships and many more.

Since we cannot really influence the European geopolitical questions, we looked at other aspects to help unify markets. In Europe, Drupal has a strong base in government, publishing, education, social media, and more. There are even Drupal distributions for these purposes originating from Europe. Also we have historically held various business events like the Drupal Business Days as well as popular events like Drupal Splash Awards that have contributed to Drupal’s strong European influence.

Therefore we are incorporating these successful event formats into Drupal Europe.

How Drupal Europe will be different

Focus on industry verticals

Instead of having a specific day for industry participants, we decided to organize the whole event around where Drupal is applied. Drupal Europe focuses on the following verticals:

  • Digital Transformation + Enterprise
  • Government
  • Healthcare
  • E-Commerce
  • Higher Education
  • Publishing + Media
  • Social + Non-profit
  • Infrastructure
  • Drupal Community
  • Drupal + Technology
  • Agency Business

Instead of primarily focusing on the technology used (e.g. frontend), you will see frontend talks in the government vertical, the e-commerce vertical, and so on. A great React online store implementation would be presented in the e-commerce vertical. A compelling multi-channel civic project will be included in the government vertical. We believe this focus of the program will help attendees see the value Drupal brings to their respective markets. It should also compel potential speakers who may not use the latest bleeding edge technology but have deeper industry know-how and insights to present.

Having specific industry verticals allows sponsors to meet with their peers, partners and clients and exchange information about important industry topics and around Drupal and Open Source Software in general. Also they have the chance to learn from other verticals that might face similar challenges in their growth. As a sponsor you can buy sponsorship packages targeted specifically at the verticals.

While focusing more on business, we did not want to lose the spaces and opportunities a conference of this size usually provides to Drupalers. Therefore the last three verticals are more focused on us Drupalers and represent the traditional structure with a focus on community, Drupal technology, and agency business.

Working on the program at DrupalCon Nashville

Expertise tagging

There is of course not one true way to organize sessions, so while our primary organization structure will be verticals, we’ll also use tagging on sessions so you can identify content based on expertises like frontend, backend, and so on… We also believe it is useful to keep the varied lengths and formats including panels, longer workshops and short lightning talks in most verticals.

Given this direction, Drupal Europe will not host summits on Monday.

Expanded opportunities for contribution

However, we also want to strengthen the space provided for contribution. Therefore we will hold a contribution day with mentors already on Monday (additionally to the usual mentored contribution day on Friday). Our contribution room will be open on all days in the conference venue. Join us on Monday to possibly get your contributions committed at the conference!

Birds of a Feather and Trainings

We don’t see a reason to change the unconference aspect and will make space for Birds of a Feather sessions as much as the conference venue allows us to.

Some training providers reached out to us to discuss training possibilities for Monday. We have space for training on Monday, and are still in talks with possible trainers.

Social events

We are also looking forward to continuing the traditional social events and already have an enthusiastic sponsor lined up for Trivia Night.

We’ve seen the success of Splash Awards in various countries across Europe: The Netherlands, Germany and Austria, Norway, Bulgaria, Denmark, France and Romania. We are proud to host the first European Splash Awards! Winners from local competitions can compete in this international contest. It is not too late to organize your local Splash Awards.

One ticket for Drupal Europe gives you access to all this great content. Don’t wait — buy your ticket now!

Join the program team!

Currently we’re looking for volunteers to help the program team create the best possible program. It would be great if you have a background or strong interest in one of the conference verticals so we can reach out to the most interesting speakers.

If you are interested, please email us at [email protected]

If you have valuable contacts that you think could help us make Drupal Europe an awesome event, please refer them to us or this blog post.

Apr 06 2018
Apr 06

In my humble opinion, as a Drupal developer, contributing back to the Drupal Community is something we should love to do.

Have you ever considered a Drupal with no Views module?

Or thought about a world where there is no Drupal at all? Just think of how much extra time you would be spending writing and fixing code for each individual project. Or how much more difficult it would be for a developer (or site builder) to finish a job on time!

Lucky for us, these days I hope that we have solved the issues of time-consuming development: the answer is open-source, the answer is Drupal. Thanks to collaborative contributions, Drupal is a quality, world-leading resource. I feel excited by the opportunity to get involved and contribute back to Drupal open-source projects, don’t you? The quantity of your contribution doesn’t matter; even your digital experience or expertise isn’t important. Big or small, all that matters is whether you are able to give something back or not.

Once willing to contribute, we all face the questions: How can I start my Drupal contribution? 

The simple answer: check for the next Drupal sprint happening near you, add it to your calendar and get to the sprint! Once there, you can find mentors and, most importantly, ask questions! Some people might say: 'I am not writing code any more' or 'I am not a developer'. Yet they also ask:

But I am using Drupal, so is there a way I can contribute?

Well there is a plenty of room for you to get involved. Here are just some of the ways I am aware of:

  • Register on Drupal.org as a user
  • Confirm as a user on Drupal.org
  • Tell someone about Drupal- spread the word!
  • Join the Drupal Association
  • Attend a Drupal Association meeting
  • Improve documentation - even if that’s just correcting a spelling mistake
  • Marketing - write blog posts, articles, organise events
  • Write Case Studies - explain what Drupal can achieve
  • Follow and share Drupal's social media
  • Mentoring 
  • List someone as a mentor on your Drupal.org profile
  • Speak at Drupal events
  • Test module patches (bug fixes) and quality assurance
  • Report an issue
  • Report spam users on Drupal.org
  • Take and share Drupal-related photographs
  • Organise Drupal events, like Meetups, Sprints and Camps
  • Sponsor a venue for Drupal events
  • Host the reception desk at Drupal events
  • Help on the sessions room
  • Fund or Sponsor Drupal events

Again, it’s not a matter of how we contribute to Drupal, what’s important is to ask yourself: 'Are we/ Am I giving back to Drupal?' Over the past fifteen years, Drupal has celebrated 8 major releases and it is totally incomparable from the first to the latest version. All of this is made possible because of many of our contributions. So whatever your contribution may be, it’s very important to Drupal.

Title image by pdjohnson on Flickr

Mar 14 2018
Mar 14

DrupalCon Nashville is coming up and that means another chance to create deeper connections with the Drupal community by attending or facilitating Birds of a Feather sessions (BOFs). The DrupalCon team has summarized what a BOF is on the DrupalCon website:

Birds of a Feather sessions (or BOFs) are informal gatherings of like-minded individuals who wish to discuss a certain topic without a pre-planned agenda. BOFs allow groups to meet and discuss issues and talk out ways to move the project forward. Have fun and learn! BOFs exist to provide attendees with an inclusive, informal environment in which to share ideas freely. BOFs can be serious, and a great way to gather the people you’ve been working remotely with on a project in a space to deep dive on a topic, but they can also be fun as well. Knitting BOF? Why not?!

At this point, you might think BOFs sound interesting, but why would you consider attending a BOF at DrupalCon?

Since regular DrupalCon sessions are recorded and BOFs are not, consider attending BOFs you find interesting in preference to a session - you can always watch the recording later! BOFs are great subjects for blog posts, so take notes and write about them.

  1. BOFs are not presented lecture style and allow for a high-level of interactivity between the facilitators and other participants. The facilitator generally kicks off the topic and framework for the discussion, allowing everyone to discuss the ideas.
     
  2. Due to the interactivity, there is a chance to meet and get to know others in a way that you might not be able to do in a DrupalCon session.
     
  3. Some BOFs are focused on discussions around and determining best practices. These are great ways to look into your processes and know what you are doing well and what you can do to improve. Organizations looking for the value in sending you to DrupalCon can’t ask for more than the opportunity for immediate process improvements post-DrupalCon.
     

Let’s shift gears to BOF planning and facilitation. Why would you want to host a BOF? One reason is that you may have been one of the 900+ session proposal submitters that were not selected - turn your lecture style idea into a BOF discussion! Another reason to host is that you can ensure that a topic you have a passion about has DrupalCon representation, drawing in participants with similar interests. A BOF is also a great way to practice public speaking and prepare for a future DrupalCon session opportunity!

If you are interested in facilitating a BOF, here are some tips to make sure you get the most out of it and ensure that participants have the opportunity for a positive experience.

  1. As a first step, check out the DrupalCon suggestions: How to Run a Successful BOF
     
  2. Plan your BOF with a clear and concise abstract on what you want to discuss. You are marketing your session against others sessions happening at the same time so make sure to attract participants.
     
  3. Submit your idea as soon as possible! The BOF schedule fills up quickly! There is nothing wrong with pulling together an informal BOF in a hallway or lunch table if spaces fill up.
     
  4. When the BOF begins, introduce yourself and clearly state the topic and format for the BOF so participants know how it will work.
     
  5. Have a brief topic discussion to kick off the BOF. This can be an example of your personal experience around the topic, including successes and challenges. This helps make participants comfortable and gives them time to think about questions and ideas to contribute. Keep it brief so you have time for others to participate.
     
  6. After the short introduction discussion, start by asking an icebreaker question to get participant involvement going. It is a good idea to have a list of related questions and discussion items ready in case you need to keep the conversation moving. Many times, the BOF will take off organically and there will be no need to rely on those techniques.
     
  7. Remember, you are the facilitator. It is your job to help give everyone a chance to be involved and to guide the BOF back to the topic if it gets off track a bit.
     
  8. End the BOF by thanking everyone for coming and consider offering some resources or related research to continue the conversation.
     

If you are interested in submitting a BOF idea at DrupalCon Nashville, BOF scheduling opens on March 14th, 2018. Visit https://events.drupal.org/nashville2018/birds-feather for submission details. Remember that the Code of Conduct is in effect at BOFs and throughout DrupalCon events. We hope to see you at a BOF at DrupalCon Nashville!

Additional Resources
Mediacurrent to Present 7 Sessions at Drupalcon Nashville | Mediacurrent Blog
Drupalcon: Not Just for Developers | Mediacurrent Blog 

Jan 08 2018
Jan 08
Mediacurrent’s Dave Terry and Paul Chason

I’ve been Drupaling for about 8 years and this was my first camp. I really enjoyed the sessions and learning from others. -2016 Attendee

Now that most of us have completed our holiday shopping, we would like to provide the gift of Drupal to the Atlanta and the world — wide Drupal community!

This year’s DrupalCamp Atlanta centered around Drupal 8 and the importance of giving back to open source projects. After the inspiring keynote, “Creating a Culture of Giving for Your Organization” by Mediacurrent’s Dave Terry and Paul Chason, it is our hope that more organizations and individuals make an intentional effort to give back. If you are interested in helping shape the Atlanta Drupal community, feel free to contact us.

DrupalCamp Atlanta 2016 session videos are now live at www.drupalcampatlanta.com. Thanks to Utzu Logigan and his Recall Act team for creating the best session videos on the planet once again.

This year’s training schedule was provided two great sessions: The Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Drupal 8 sponsored by OSTraining and Drupal 8 Theming and Templating by Evolving Web. Without people dedicated to spreading their advanced knowledge, we wouldn’t be able to provide this to you! Thank you OSTraining and Evolving Web!

We also want to thank our sponsors for the time and financial support of this camp, as we can’t make events like this work without them. Special thanks to Mediacurrent and Sevaa group for their help with the Keynote, Afterparty, and general assistance in making DCA a great event! We also had SiteGround, Pantheon, 3Ci, Lingotek, and Acquia as sponsors who we also want to thank for coming from so far to be a part of our event!

Additionally, the Drupal Association made it out to our event, promoting the good word of Drupal. Please donate, as we all benefit from a strong nationwide community. You can join the Drupal Association here.

Last but not least we would like to thank all of the session speakers. Without the willingness to give back to the community, camps like this could not be possible. Their efforts can go unnoticed to so many, and we want to make sure that we acknowledge them here:

Kelly Albrecht, Ed Allison, Kirsten Burgard, Paul Chason, Suzanne Dergacheva, Jitesh Doshi, Dan Hansen, Zack Hawkins, Jimmy Kriigel, Ishan Mahajan, Tom McCracken, Paul McKibben, Todd Nienkerk, Lisa Ridley, Scott Sawyer, Scot Self, Mark Shropshire, Jim Smith, Dave Terry, David Thompson, Cheyenne Throckmorton, Jason Want, Bull Weber.

Happy Holidays from the Atlanta Drupal Users Group to all of the 2016 DrupalCamp Atlanta presenters and attendees.

Enjoy the videos at www.drupalcampatlanta.com

ADUG — Board of Directors
Eric Sembrat
Zach Sines
Taylor Wright
Kaleem Clarkson

Nov 14 2017
Nov 14

Christmas is almost here!

In our last post you saw our call for venues. Europe answered the call and we received 13 venue submissions from 7 countries, including Australia. We are now working through the submissions and we will send out a more detailed question list to all submitters.

Get involved

So far a lot of work has been done in norming and storming and the team continues to build great momentum and is strengthened almost every day. We believe that “Many hands make light work” and we’d like you to get involved. Even helping with small tasks will help to make this great event happen. So if you want to participate then now is the time to take action and get involved! Sign up on our OpenSocial website and spread the word by tweeting and sharing on Facebook about this great community-driven event.

The proposed event model

The current consensus is to start with a minimum viable conference model:

  • Two days of sessions (Thursday and Friday)
  • General Contribution Day (Saturday)
Schema

If possible, this could be expanded with two days beforehand for trainings and a community day. This also means a contributor can contribute for 5 days.

This is still at the planning stage and any ideas you may have would be greatly received.

To make this event sustainable, we may not be providing food which will significantly cut down the cost for this event. We’ll make the final decision based on what is possible with the budget. Best effort will be made to invite food trucks and find good restaurants in the area if needed.

Wifi is under heavy debate and depends on what the location is charging. We are hoping that we can come up with a cost effective solution. It is the next tier in this growing conference model. Followed by coffee and snacks.

If we get the main community event funding model correct, then we might be able to also facilitate food in the training and community days. In summary we are looking at budget items in priority order and not as a given.

Conference costs for Dublin 2016

This might be confusing to read but is in fact very logical if we look at the thumb figures from Dublin. In a blog post from the Drupal Association, the financial problem of DrupalCon Europe was explained.

Around ⅔ of the income comes from ticket sale and the rest comes from sponsorships and other sources. If we look at the expenses, roughly 50% of the expenses are for the catering and the facility cost. For more detailed information you can look at the Profit & Loss statement from the blogpost.

What do these numbers tell us? It helps us to understand what are the largest expenses of an event of this size. We are using this information to help us to find ways to cut down costs. For example, we can:

  • Cut down on the floor space needed by having a smaller auditorium and streaming the keynote to other rooms at the venue.
  • Use a venue that is close to local food outlets which could make supplying food optional
  • Aim for locations that allow us to cut down on staff costs by means of volunteers

If we do this, then this could become a viable, even profitable event. Any profits generated could be used in supporting camps in the region as well as flow back into the project.

Going out of the comfort zone

In 2017 we had over 50 Drupal camps in Europe. Almost all of them were within the Drupal camp comfort zone of 500 attendees maximum, with a budget between 50k and 80k euros. So in order to be successful we need to experiment and consult or even hire some professionals.

Drawing by Baddy

What is next?

The venue is very important for any conference but we are not losing sight of what is ahead. We have many steps that we still have to cover in order to bring you, your friends and colleagues a great event:

  • Define sponsor benefits and packages
  • Decide how to handle talk/session proposal and selection process
  • Marketing and Promotion — in the community and outside
  • Volunteer coordination — can some tasks be crowdsourced?
  • Create an event website — we are still looking for some design help here!

But before we dive too deep into any of those tasks, the venue needs to be in place — we will be reaching out to those that have submitted proposal with some additional questions (if all goes as planned those will be sent out Monday) and we expect to be able to confirm the venue mid-December.

If you can provide some insights, advice or want to help collaborate getting this event further on its way, please do not hesitate reaching out to us! Either on twitter or [email protected]

Oct 24 2017
Oct 24

Two weeks ago we published our first post to introduce ourselves to the Drupal community. Today we are back with the latest updates and also with several calls to action to everyone in the Drupal community. From the very beginning we stated that this is an event organised by the Drupal community, for the Drupal community, and this is a great opportunity to get involved.

Photo credits: Michael Cannon

A lot has happened in the past week. Here is an overview of the highlights we achieved since our last official communication;

In the meantime there are also a lot of behind the scenes tasks that we keep working on to make sure that Drupal Europe 2018 will actually happen. Here’s an overview of what we are currently working on:

  • Defining our internal roles & the leadership team.
  • Design branding materials.
  • Explore event ticketing systems.
  • Exploring payment gateways.
  • Investigating feasibility of using Kickstarter
  • Developing best-practices and various administrational templates which can be reused in the future.

Call for venues

No website or payment gateway will make the event happen alone though. The biggest outstanding question about Drupal Europe is location and timing and we need your help in moving forward on that.

Currently we are collecting data about possible venues in Europe. Is there a possible venue in your country that you could think of? Would you like to invite the Drupal community to your hometown? Let us know by simply answering several questions about the venue.

The more detail there is in the proposal the better we can compare the options.

We are not expecting you to organise the entire conference by yourselves or your local community, we are just looking for venues where our organisation could host Drupal Europe.

Currently we are aiming for a date between the end of August and the beginning of September 2018. We are planning to have the conference from Thursday to Saturday where we will have a sprint room, different session rooms, an exhibition hall for sponsors and the possibility to have our own catering services. Before the actual conference we will be hosting summits and optional two days of training beforehand.

Call for Swag

Drupal enthusiasts like their swag, and so do we. We thought it would be fun to put some creative minds on designing t-shirts, mugs and other cool swag that are all related to Drupal Europe 2018. We would love to see you involved!

Call for Designers

We’d love to have a lasting brand that does not need to be reinvented again if the event ever happens again in the future. So if you are, or if you know, a creative person or company who wants to contribute this and add “Designed the branding for Drupal Europe 2018” to their resume or portfolio, please do let us know via Twitter

Sep 22 2016
Sep 22

Giving back to our communities isn’t a new thing for us. And come Monday, five of our team members will be at DrupalCon Dublin. There will be plenty of Axelerant to go around. We’ve got three sessions, each in a different track, and the official event photography team will be led by Michael, our COO.

But before we get into what we’re bringing to Dublin, we should mention that we started to schedule our meet and greets. And we want you to be one of them. Let’s get together at a local brew pub and talk about Open Source problems and solutions in the community:

Let's connect at DrupalCon Dublin

Now, let’s get into what we’re up to. We’re presenting in Front-End, Project Management, and Business tracks at DrupalCon Dublin, so be sure to add them to your list.

Choosing The “Right Agile Methodology” For Your Drupal Projects

Date: 09/27/2016

Time: 14:15 to 15:15

Room: Liffey Meeting 4 | New Relic

Add this session to my schedule!

Shani and Prabhat will explore and compare different agile methodologies and share tips on how to choose the right one so you can accelerate your Drupal project. In this session, they’ll cover effective uses of CYNEFIN, a popular decision-making framework, to differentiate between Drupal projects and choosing right agile methodologies for the same.

Shani and Prabhat will cover:

  • Scrum
  • Extreme programming
  • Feature-driven development
  • Scrumban
  • Kanban
  • Lean development

Expected Takeaways:

A clearer idea of which methodology is right for each project, considering: project size, team size, iteration length, roles and responsibilities, and distributed team support. They’ll also discuss risk mitigation levels and customer interaction.

Growing Via Strategic Account Management Frameworks

Date: 09/27/2016

Time: 17:00 to 18:00

Room: Wicklow Hall 2A | Druid

Add this session to my schedule!

Piyush will take you through our Account Management practice and share some real-life case studies demonstrating how we hit target sales quota by 2-3x and achieved maximum strategic account objectives within the desired timeline.

Have you connected with Piyush yet?

Piyush will cover:

  • Customer onboarding process
  • Kickoff meetings
  • Routine engagement health check-ins
  • Invoicing and collections management
  • Satisfaction surveys and testimonials management
  • Complaint and grievances management
  • Contract renewals and extensions.
  • Opportunity exploration: researching the client, industry, references, social media, etc.
  • Evangelizing clients via social media, digital marketing, and event participations

Expected Takeaways:

  • What is Account Management?
  • What skills and talents are required to excel in Account Management specific to Drupal
  • What activities must be performed to maximize Account Management ROI?
  • What are some of the accountabilities and performance metrics used?

React Front-End For Your Drupal 8 Back-End

Date: 09/29/2016

Time: 12:00 to 13:00

Room: Wicklow Hall 2B | Platform.sh

Add this session to my schedule!

Aliya and Bassam will give a hands-on session. By the end of it, you’ll have learned how to build a decoupled website using React ecosystem on the front-end, using Drupal 8 as the content management system (and a data source).

Aliya and Bassam will cover:

  • How to configure Drupal to expose RESTful resources using Drupal 8
  • Enable CORS support for the domains/port running our React application
  • Authenticate requests using JWT
  • Consume data on front-end using Redux store
  • Pass data from Redux store React components

Expected Takeaways:

  • Be able to build a RESTful API using Drupal 8
  • Use any backend with react front-end

Covering DrupalCon Dublin

Michael has a knack for capturing Open Source events around the world as a way of giving back. He’s been leading the photography for two DrupalCons now: DrupalCon Asia and DrupalCon New Orleans.

He’s coming fully equipped to help the Drupal Association immortalize DrupalCon Dublin for all of us, and you can help. If you’d like to contribute to this process, there’s still time to join the “Official Photography Team.”

And while he’ll be running around the event like a paparazzo, Michael would still like to connect with you one-on-one to answer any questions you have about Axelerant. Be sure to take him up on the offer if there’s something you feel we can help you accomplish.

Want to chat about something? Parth Gohil

Parth Gohil

Parth is Axelerant's Community Manager hailing from Surat. He loves supporting open source communities, piloting single-engine aircraft, and being a Cha-Cha Productions actor.

Jul 11 2016
Jul 11

Throughout the software development world there are many “evangelist” roles who sell the code to the community, but maybe we need the other side? Maybe we need to sell the community to the those who are just there for the code.

Drupal is famed for its community, with the slogan “Come for the code, stay for the community”, but as Drupal starts to evolve into a more enterprise platform it’s expected to see more organisations coming for the code, and staying just for the code. Why should we care?

Drupal Cores lists 3635 contributors to Drupal 8 core. Without these people you wouldn’t have Drupal. If you’re not supporting these people your business model is flawed. Many organisations sell Drupal to clients and / or use Drupal themselves. What would happen if Drupal wasn’t a sustainable platform anymore?

The Drupal Association doesn’t have anything to do with the code itself, but they do run the platform that packages the code, hosts the code, tests the code, markets the code, as well as many other roles within the community. This year and last year the Drupal Association had to lay off a number of staff members due to funding issues. Organisations really need to get behind the Drupal Association otherwise there will be no Drupal. There are a number of ways you can support the Drupal Association, and it’s great to see more and more non-dev-shops listed on https://www.drupal.org/organizations.

At Appnovation we have had a lot of growth over the last 2 years and with this growth community contributions have not kept up. Therefore we’re currently working on a community contributions program to try to inspire the company as a whole to work closer with all the open source communities. We’re also embedding this within the sales and pre-sales process too, so we can ensure our clients know about and understand the open source communities behind the software we’re using with them.

It’d be great to hear your thoughts, ideas, and views. In return there will be more blog posts with progress updates.

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.

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May 01 2016
hw
May 01

Things have gotten busy after DrupalCon Asia which meant that the Drupal meetup we hold in Bangalore every month was a little difficult to organize. Srijan Technologies stepped up and offered their office space in Whitefield, Bangalore. They also took care of snacks and even lunch for all the attendees. Kudos to Srijan for organizing the meetup. Thank you!

This is actually the second meetup since DrupalCon Asia. The first one was held soon after the con and we had the honour of hosting Danese Cooper, who was one of the keynote speakers in DrupalCon Asia in Mumbai. That meetup was held at 91Springboard in Koramangala on 5th March, 2016 and saw an attendance of about 40-50 people. Danese Cooper repeated her keynote in DrupalCon Asia in essentials, which received great response. This was followed by a session on Mobile features in Drupal 8 by Ram Singh. Photos from this meetup are at the end of this post.

Drupal Meetup Attendance - March 2016

Attendance Breakup in Drupal Meetup in March, 2016

April’s meetup started at around 10:45 AM with Soumyajit Basu explaining about using Protractor JS for front-end testing. After an insightful session and an in-depth discussion on testing frameworks and methodologies, we continued with the session on Migrating from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8 by Harish Goud. After that, I explained some of the more basic Migration concepts. I followed this with a discussion on drush make and composer.

Even though the attendance was lower than our usual meetups, we had a great and fruitful discussion. We ended with pizzas and soft drinks courtesy of Srijan and left around 2 PM.

Photos from Drupal Meetup in March 2016

Open Source and Drupal Meetup - March 2016

Photos from Drupal Meetup in April 2016

Drupal Meetup Bangalore - April 2016

Feb 25 2016
hw
Feb 25

DrupalCon Asia Day 2 dawned bright and promising. I was excited to know who would win the visualization challenge and hoping it was me. I wanted that Royal Enfield Classic 350. Read about my day 0 and day 1 here.

@Dries checking out the @drupal bike. @DrupalConAsia #drupalconasia #devcontest pic.twitter.com/1EgUETJxGn

— azri (@azrisolutions) February 18, 2016

About an hour or two later, I said this

Awesome! Thanks @azrisolutions, @Dries, @azrisolutions. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/bjiuMAqYs3

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

I can finally say this. That's @Dries on MY bike. ???? https://t.co/mdrPU91q2d

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

Yes, that’s right! I won this beautiful bike

@dries handing the keys to the winner of azri devcontest @hussainweb @DrupalConAsia #devcontest pic.twitter.com/hsyqCQTdjC

— azri (@azrisolutions) February 20, 2016

Congratulations @hussainweb on winning @azrisolutions drupalcon dev contest, truly deserving @BangaloreDrupal #proud pic.twitter.com/wglMjmb1sU

— Chakri (@chakri_iiith) February 20, 2016

Okay, I went in the wrong order. The day actually started with Holly Ross telling us about Drupal in India.

"Now I'm in future cause I'm in India." – @drupalhross #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/y6vGgBQZso

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

The need is increasing for Drupal talent. – @drupalhross #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/pvH6Kqwolq

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

Thanks @drupalhross for encouraging @DrupalCAP Miles to go :) @DrupalConAsia pic.twitter.com/gcUhgpHByO

— Rakhi Mandhania (@MandhaniaRakhi) February 20, 2016

Come to the sprints tomorrow. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/eoePSY3x5D

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

After the winner for the developer contest was announced (me), we heard Danese Cooper share her amazing insights into open source and tell us about open source in India

"Make the world better, monetize some of it." #DrupalCon

— Larry Garfield (@Crell) February 20, 2016

"open source is a level playing field." #DrupalCon

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

"You're not cogs in a wheel anymore." #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/fPbaCBuHQY

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

"Reputation is a big thing, I'm this country and in open source." #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/gHllZQu41L

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

Diversity in Drupal #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/c0JeowI2Le

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

That's Drupal and it's a beautiful thing. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/NSWf6Dbs6b

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

Be transparent. If it's not the best code you've ever written, say that and still share it. @divadanese keynote at #drupalconasia

— xjm (@xjmdrupal) February 20, 2016

.@DivaDanese on #Drupal community: #diversity #niceness #global #balance @DrupalConAsia "best open source community on the planet!"

— Ani Gupta (@anigupta) February 20, 2016

OH: "There's inherent niceness here." Via @divadanese #DrupalCon

— Larry Garfield (@Crell) February 20, 2016

Don't make people feel small when you help them. Make them feel big. Lift them up & they'll lift you. @divadanese keynote at #drupalconasia

— xjm (@xjmdrupal) February 20, 2016

Thanks for the nice words @DivaDanese. You had me shed a tear (and that doesn't happen easily). #dccooper #drupalcon

— Dries Buytaert (@Dries) February 20, 2016

It’s up to us, as practitioners, to hold government to their promise to use open source. @DivaDanese #DCAsia #dccooper #DrupalCon

— Donna Benjamin (@kattekrab) February 20, 2016

"It's not a video game." I can totally identify with this. @DivaDanese #DrupalCon

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

@DivaDanese working for govt is a great idea #dccooper @DrupalConAsia pic.twitter.com/VVLXtDKRaR

— Vaibhav Jain (@vaibhavjain_in) February 20, 2016

Q&A with @DivaDanese by @parth_gohil #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/Va9Jnacm9G

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

Oh, and if something can increase the joy of winning the bike, it was this

You know what is awesome? @hussainweb winning a #Drupal motor cycle at @Drupalcon /cc @azrisolutions

— Dries Buytaert (@Dries) February 20, 2016

You know what makes it even more awesome? You tweeting about this. Thank you! https://t.co/mcL6z2Q5c2

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

We also heard from Jacob Singh about contributions from Acquia and Acquia India

Contributions by @acquia India by @JacobSingh #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/Yg5BpvvBDf

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 20, 2016

Oh, and there is a dance again

Of course the #DrupalConAsia dance number spills out into the audience. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/8hctX02UJC

— Larry Garfield (@Crell) February 20, 2016

[embedded content]

Then there is a day filled with sessions, BOF’s, and meeting people

Nice meeting you @hussainweb congrats again pic.twitter.com/ewF6cqetfI

— shyam_raj (@shyam_raj) February 20, 2016

Azri team handing over the azri Drupal bike to @hussainweb @DrupalConAsia cc/ @skwashd @drupalhross @joshua_io pic.twitter.com/8V4p9uqal0

— azri (@azrisolutions) February 20, 2016

Team @axelerant taking a class ;) #drupalcon #dcasia pic.twitter.com/VMlG8DYIP4

— Murtaza Alvi (@AlviMurtaza) February 20, 2016

Axelerant Raspberry winner - DrupalCon Asia 2016

I was also a part of the panel discussing contributions and community in India

Contribution vs. Consumption - DrupalCon Asia 2016

Contribute without code? Know who: 1-#UX with webchick,lewisnyman,bojhan 2-help gabor with #Multilingual & translate! #DrupalCon #DCAsia

— Adelle Frank (@adellefrank) February 20, 2016

Asia/India has similar #Contribution issue with being afraid to DO until learn how #DrupalCon #DCAsia

— Adelle Frank (@adellefrank) February 20, 2016

It was time to take the bike out

Here we go. Winner of contest taking this one for a spin #DrupalCon #dcasia @hussainweb pic.twitter.com/GGqoomsmVc

— Isabell Schulz (@murgeys) February 20, 2016

@skwashd and @hussainweb on the azri Drupal bike @DrupalConAsia #sholay #sholaymoment #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/nBnHV8LHr4

— azri (@azrisolutions) February 20, 2016

don't they look cute ? @DrupalConAsia pic.twitter.com/qNRZsq3Ofg

— mortendk (@mortendk) February 20, 2016

And then sprint next day and meeting more people

Hey @drupalconasia – these folks are ready to learn to sprint. He'd on down to the lecture hall complex and join in! pic.twitter.com/Ahk7QKAzT3

— Holly Ross (@drupalhross) February 21, 2016

#DrupalCon mentored sprints. New contributors #FTW! pic.twitter.com/VqOO5o2Egj

— Larry Garfield (@Crell) February 21, 2016

woo we did it,350+ ppls joined us, amazing exp, thnx to all @DrupalConAsia mentors. spl thnx 2 @xjmdrupal @webchick pic.twitter.com/LkPRce7Mkl

— Ravindra Singh (@ravindrasingh01) February 21, 2016

Codesprint @DrupalConAsia @nikunjhk @mohit_rocks @Crell #DrupalCon @axelerant pic.twitter.com/ywQmlgA8Vf

— Mitesh Patel (@miteshmap) February 21, 2016

1025 people came to @DrupalConAsia :)

— mortendk (@mortendk) February 21, 2016

1025 attendees, of which 82% just experienced their first DrupalCon at @DrupalConAsia!

— The Lyf of Barthe (@BartFeenstra) February 21, 2016

Great closing session @amandagonser @RachFrieee https://t.co/BHaYumWXy1

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 21, 2016

To everyone involved in making @DrupalConAsia happen – THANK YOU. Best time of my life. You are the most generous community!

— Holly Ross (@drupalhross) February 21, 2016

1025 people attended #drupalconasia! That's almost triple #DrupalCon Sydney. Awesome effort team. pic.twitter.com/yAwBMUHXgu

— Dave Hall (@skwashd) February 21, 2016

First-time contributors #DrupalCon India – Sprints https://t.co/V7xQAPK7lN pic.twitter.com/IavkV6Oszn

— Josef Dabernig (@dasjo) February 21, 2016

Where we come for the code and stay for the community. #drupalconasia #DividedByBoundariesUnitedByDrupal pic.twitter.com/7tm5NSx63B

— Manogna (@ManognaRao) February 21, 2016

I gotta say, 6 DrupalCons down, the gratitude/love from the community in India is truly touching. Thx for everything! It's been incredible.

— Rachel Friesen (@RachFrieee) February 22, 2016

Goodbye @DrupalConAsia. What an incredible time we had. Thank you for your amazing generosity #drupalcon

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 22, 2016

.@DrupalConAsia is over, Auntie? But we will have another, na? #HappyDrupalista #DCAsia #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/4xbkq0Ux4D

— Adelle Frank (@adellefrank) February 22, 2016

Thank you sprint mentors at @DrupalConAsia ! pic.twitter.com/yvHTbeItpZ

— xjm (@xjmdrupal) February 21, 2016

Say hi to the Indian #Drupal community #DrupalCon https://t.co/RRLhzjFYNd pic.twitter.com/jJCtMwmrnF

— Josef Dabernig (@dasjo) February 19, 2016

Divided by boundaries but united by #drupal friends from PK @drupakpakistan @m_tanweer @DrupalConAsia @DrupalMumbai pic.twitter.com/1zYenYpBbB

— Rachit Gupta (@tweet_rachit) February 21, 2016

I'm checking out of #DrupalCon and feeling overwhelmed. What a con! What a community! I'm privileged to be a part. pic.twitter.com/x49eGI8EgG

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 21, 2016

Oh, and one more selfie

Here is my #DrupalCon #selfie w/ @parth_gohil, @piyushpoddar, @Crell in background, and photobomb by @drupalhross. pic.twitter.com/AR38NON1KD

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 21, 2016

This DrupalCon was very special to me, not least because it was in India. But this tweet captures it.

This tweet captures everything that Drupal is. It is about community, about people, about love. #DrupalCon https://t.co/2PvLB5h3uJ

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 23, 2016

Feb 20 2016
hw
Feb 20

DrupalConASIA is here!!! I am back in the busy city of Mumbai and in the premises of IIT Bombay, which also saw DrupalCamp Mumbai last year. This time, it is a much bigger conference; in all ways. More people, more sessions, more community, more fun.

Lol I was just about to post the same thing. Good morning @hussainweb and #DrupalConAsia! pic.twitter.com/0vpWPc80hp

— Novella C. (@italiatina) February 18, 2016

As DrupalCon tradition goes, we start on Thursday, 18-Feb-2016, with summits (for business, government, education, and community) and a whole lot of trainings. I was fortunate enough to speak at the community summit about some of the issues surrounding contribution.

@hussainweb speaks about DO contrib tracking at community summit @drupalcon #drupalconasia pic.twitter.com/293Xp0IL7w

— DEVIKA DAS (@das_devika) February 18, 2016

@hussainweb talking about DO contrib tracking at Community Summit @DrupalConAsia #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/gZMyBLQm2V

— Sushil (@thesushyl) February 18, 2016

I was still tired with everything around the con, including the Developer Contest by Azri Solutions in which I was participating, and went back early. The only other thing I did that day was attend Axelerant’s team dinner / party. I also met my old colleagues at Blisstering Solution there.

Finally did it! I submitted my visualizations for the @azrisolutions #devcontest at @DrupalConAsia. #fingerscrossed pic.twitter.com/HDAKWXHagp

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 18, 2016

Next day dawned early but I was still not well and was late to prenote!

Late for #DrupalCon prenote. ???? pic.twitter.com/2eSWmdqpEL

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

The prenote was great, and ended with a dance where almost all of the audience went up on the stage to dance.

"Why is #DrupalCon special?" Hear it from the community. pic.twitter.com/HVguNkl8Lm

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

There are more people on the stage than you can see in audience. This is @DrupalConAsia. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/JkZSzbW7Fv

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

[embedded content]

This was followed by an introduction by Holly Ross, a guide to pronouncing D8 by Sunit Gala, and then the DriesNote.

269 contributors to #Drupal8 from Asia. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/UtMEuwreEe

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

How you can get away contributing to #Drupal8 on a Friday night. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/DgwCwBW9Xf

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

#DriesNote begins pic.twitter.com/YCwp5SG81k

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

"If #Drupal does not do well in India, it will be very sad." – @Dries #DriesNote #paraphrased pic.twitter.com/Vdfx1MnNdt

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

What hair product does @dries use? #DriesNote

— Dave Hall (@skwashd) February 19, 2016

Ah, we've reached the Davos section of the #DriesNote. #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/pmbhn8VE9U

— Larry Garfield (@Crell) February 19, 2016

Of course, Dries had to wear a turban.

@Dries befoe #DriesNote at #DrupalConAsia, putting on turban! pic.twitter.com/M2iO4eCS7a

— Sushil (@thesushyl) February 19, 2016

And who’s up for an yearly DrupalCon in India?

"Totally makes sense for India to have an annual conference" – @Dries #DriesNote Q&A

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

"I can totally see this being the third largest conference." – @Dries, on #DrupalCon in India. #DriesNote Q&A

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

And then the group photo.

Thank you to everyone in the community who is here to support DrupalCon Asia! #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/AEMbcqAl8v

— DrupalCon Asia (@DrupalConAsia) February 19, 2016

We then went to sessions, collecting swag at booths, meeting people, and so on.

@Zaizi @ZaiziAsia #drupalteam with @hussainweb pic.twitter.com/CpF4u2vkMo

— Niraj Meegama (@nmeegama) February 18, 2016

We are talking about migrating a top 50 website in Room 23 at @DrupalConAsia. #DrupalCon @axelerant pic.twitter.com/UCBH5Ov7AI

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

@hussainweb discussing RESTful Panels for legacy #drupalcon #dcasia pic.twitter.com/nUaPPQA8Tu

— Murtaza Alvi (@AlviMurtaza) February 19, 2016

@_agupta_ @lakshminp @hussainweb @skippednote from at #DrupalCon on Migrating https://t.co/LHs5vx3i7N @axelerant pic.twitter.com/ap7UpSx7Pn

— Sushil (@thesushyl) February 19, 2016

.@chakri_iiith and @gokulnk from @BangaloreDrupal discuss community at #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/tEahoDgtMT

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

.@emma_maria88 and the joy of #Contribution !! #DrupalCon #DCAsia pic.twitter.com/GErwYdnJa8

— Adelle Frank (@adellefrank) February 19, 2016

@prestonso giving session in Hindi! pic.twitter.com/TMjaMvTpE6

— Gulab Bisht (@gulabbisht) February 19, 2016

.@mohit_rocks and Ankit discuss design patterns. #DrupalCon @axelerant pic.twitter.com/jSMOuoRsPr

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

New contributors can work on… #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/KV1JKhlBTs

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) February 19, 2016

It was all possible because of the Drupal Association team and sponsors:

.@DrupalConAsia is possible because of a great partnership with IIT Bombay. Thanks to @psunthar pic.twitter.com/iJNwcxPjNh

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 19, 2016

A great day making new friends @DrupalConAsia @axelerant pic.twitter.com/sMhp9E6toW

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 18, 2016

Still smiling after organizing all the @DrupalConAsia programming for MONTHS. Great job @amandagonser #DrupalCon pic.twitter.com/UgDpFmyXPz

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 19, 2016

Be sure to thank @RachFrieee for bringing @DrupalConAsia to India. 1 year of hard work. @DrupalConAsia #drupalcon pic.twitter.com/bTN3X2XYuW

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 19, 2016

Oh yummy local snacks. Thanks @axelerant pic.twitter.com/RD9PApREFu

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 19, 2016

Such cool #drupal tattoos. Thanks @Blisstering @DrupalConAsia #drupalcon pic.twitter.com/wt41cv7hDA

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 19, 2016

I am most thankful for our @DrupalConAsia volunteers. pic.twitter.com/kg6T2uDw0q

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 18, 2016

Be sure to thank #drupal volunteers @DrupalConAsia. This team donated a full day to help at registration pic.twitter.com/7CINFU953i

— Megan Sanicki (@megansanicki) February 18, 2016

It was a great day and I’m looking forward to Day 2!

Group photo by Michael Cannon under Share-alike license.

Feb 01 2016
hw
Feb 01

This year’s Drupal Global Sprint Weekend 2016 was held on January 30th and 31st throughout the world. We conduct a Drupal meetup every last Saturday in a month in Bangalore and this time, we just organized the sprint instead. Wipro offered to host the sprint at their Sarjapur campus and we gratefully accepted.

Sprint Participants breakdown

The sprint started at 10:30 AM at the Wipro Learning Centre in Sarjapur campus with 22 participants. There were a few participants from other cities as well some of whom had started at 4:30 AM to reach the sprint on time. Most of the audience was new to Drupal contribution or even Drupal 8 and Chakrapani and myself mentored participants on an ad-hoc basis. We worked on 16 issues with members adding issues to a tracker as they picked up any issue. It was a beginner level sprint and we were happy to see so many people excited at the idea of contributing back to the community. Hopefully, we will soon see more productive and focused sprints in the future.

We took breaks for coffee and lunch courtesy of Wipro. We started to wrap up around 2:45 PM and each participant described their experience at the sprint and contributing to the Drupal community in general. We also received some great feedback from everyone present there. Those who had traveled from other cities had already left by this time to catch their trains or flights. It was overwhelming to see their dedication and hear stories of their involvement with the Drupal community. We all left at 3:15 PM hopefully having learned a bit more. Photos are at the end of this post.

The next sprint we are looking forward to is at DrupalCon Asia. The sprints are free to attend and you can learn from some of the best mentors in the world. Are you going to be there?

Drupal Global Sprint Weekend 2016

Jan 19 2016
hw
Jan 19

It is Drupal’s 15th birthday! This is the first one since Drupal 8 was released; yes, there is a release of Drupal 8 today! If you’ve been following Drupal for some time now, you can imagine the happiness all us Drupalers have when I say this. I think this is a great moment to share something I wanted to since quite some time now. This is my story of how I got into Drupal all those years ago and how I built my career around it.

I first came across Drupal in around 2007 (don’t remember the year exactly) when a group of us sat down to plan for a website for our community. I had already built a site using my own CMS on native PHP as I was wary of any CMS or frameworks at the time. My attitude was that when I can do it myself with complete customization, why should I use something else! Anyway, I looked up on Drupal and what it could do, but didn’t really explore. Some time later, another friend asked for help to build another community website. I looked up Drupal again as I was very busy with work and couldn’t work on a custom CMS. When I couldn’t figure out how to allow uploading images to a content type, I gave it up. Around 2010, that friend checked if I had time and this time, I decided to check Drupal properly. I was already using WordPress and other frameworks like CodeIgniter, Kohana, etc… by this time and I thought it is time I start exploring Drupal.

This was my first and only Drupal 6 website. I built the site with some difficulty and wrote custom functionality for various tasks. I then migrated content from the custom CMS to Drupal 6 using a custom script (migrate framework wasn’t ready yet, as far as I can remember). This was a huge success and improved efficiency and productivity. The website grew massively as well.

After that, I continued working with Drupal, WordPress, Magento, and other frameworks and couldn’t specialize in any. I was still running a small business then and couldn’t afford a very narrow focus. Things changed in 2012 but I was still busy focusing on multiple technologies. I was part of a bigger company (still small) and was leading the complete web development (and design) effort. What happened next is a long story suitable for another post but I moved out and decided to work exclusively with Drupal.

Drupal story

I found a post on g.d.o one day about a company called Blisstering Solutions opening an office in Bangalore. I joined them and started working exclusively on Drupal. After a couple of projects there, I found myself with a little free time and I started looking into Drupal 8 issues. It was around April of 2013 and Drupal 8 development was still going rapidly with tons of issues in the queue. Due to this, there were a lot of patches that required rerolls and I jumped in there. Soon, I started looking at some of the more complex issues that needed a much deeper understanding of the system, and then, Drupal 8 was still very complicated and not that well documented. Around the same time, I also joined another company called Axelerant Technologies.

I started off as a developer at Axelerant but soon took up the position of full time contributor for a few months. Since then, I have been working as a technical architect and helping with the overall engineering direction but contribution has remained one of my most important areas. Since then, I have contributed to various projects, some on Github, many on drupal.org, but mostly to Drupal core. I helped fix Drupal 8 criticals and odd tasks here and there. I am thrilled to have reached 200 commit mentions recently.

Drupal Community

I also took a larger interest in the local community. Up until then, I was a mere participant of the monthly meetups held in Bangalore. I started speaking at various meetups and helping Chakrapani and Gokul, who organized these meetups, wherever I could. Soon, I started attending and speaking at camps in India. My first talk at a camp was at DrupalCamp Pune in April 2014 where I spoke about migrating to Drupal 7 using the migrate module. I then started speaking at almost every camp and meetup. The only camp I haven’t spoken at is the camp we organized in Bangalore in July 2015, and only because I was busy with organizing the event.

I was also involved in early stages of planning for DrupalCon Asia (then DrupalCon India). It was my first chance to actually meet some of the people I had only heard about until then. I actually thought that they might be customarily nice in letter, but I had no idea how nice and warm they were in person. This was repeated with almost every person I met over my trips to camps and cons outside India. And Indian community is no different. There are some brilliant minds here who are not just talented but also super nice. I can’t think of the number of times I have been intimidated by a d.o username and then actually meeting the person and see how down-to-earth person they are. It is plain awesome.

I was also fortunate enough to speak at DrupalCon Los Angeles 2015 and DrupalCon Barcelona 2015, which were my first DrupalCons. I will also be speaking at DrupalCon Asia 2016, to be held in Feb 2016 in Mumbai.

I don’t have much to compare against but the Drupal community is one of the kindest and helpful communities I have known. I cannot describe how it has made a difference in my career and even my life. I have also witnessed how the community at large has come together to help individuals like me. I know the community doesn’t only care for your code, but also respects you as an individual and cares about you as a human being. I am incredibly grateful to be a part of this awesome community.

As taglines go, I know this is heavily cliched but it happens to be true to every letter. I can’t think of any better way to describe the overall Drupal ecosystem as “Come for the code, stay for the community.”

Dec 02 2015
Dec 02

For several years now, I've been serving as the API documentation maintainer for the Drupal core project. It's a job that I enjoy doing, since it combines working with the Drupal community (especially new contributors) and improving API documentation (somewhat of a passion). But it's a pretty big job for just one person, and lately, I've been taking more "personal time" (traveling, not working a full 8 hour day, etc.), and I've had less time to devote to it. So, I'd really like to find another person or two, having at least some level of experience with Drupal core development, to share the job.

Clarification: I'm talking here about the API (programmer) documentation that you can see at api.drupal.org, which is generated from specially-formatted comments in the Drupal Core PHP source code, and modified by updating Drupal Core PHP source code.

Job description

Help with any of these items would be welcome:

  1. Triage new issues that are filed in the Drupal core project in component "documentation":
    • Sometimes they belong in a different component or a different project, and can be moved there.
    • Sometimes they are really support requests (someone needs help either using Drupal or programming with Drupal); in those cases, you can politely steer them towards the https://www.drupal.org/support page where they can find more appropriate resources (we don't handle support requests, as a general rule, in the Drupal core issue queue).
    • Sometimes they need an update to the title and/or issue summary for clarity, so you can do that.
    • Sometimes they don't make any sense, and you just need to ask the person who filed it for clarification, and set the status to "Postponed - maintainer needs more info".
    • Sometimes they are straightforward, easy-to-fix issues; in that case, add the "Novice" tag and someone will soon make a patch.
    I usually try to check for new issues in the documentation component every few days and triage them appropriately. And always say thanks for filing issues (if they're not filed, they won't be fixed!)... except for the Support requests, where a polite tone of "Sorry, but we don't do support here so you'll need to look elsewhere" is more appropriate than a "thanks" vibe.
  2. Review patches (in the same documentation issue queue) for:
    • Accuracy - does the patched documentation match what the code is actually doing?
    • Clarity - is it well-written, easy-to-understand documentation?
    • Completeness - are there more points that need to be made? Does the patch cover all of what was stated as problems in the issue title and summary?
    • Standards - does the documentation conform to our comment and documentation block standards on https://www.drupal.org/node/1354 ? Will included code examples work, and do they comply with the Drupal project coding standards and best practices?
    • Copy - punctuation, grammar, good English, spelling, etc.
    If the patch does comply with these points, mark it Reviewed and Tested by the Community. If not, mark it Needs Work, and provide detailed, polite feedback on what needs to be changed. Especially for new contributor patches, if the wording is awkward or unclear, a specific suggestion of new wording is very helpful. And be sure to say thank you to the person or people who supplied patches, and keep the tone polite and respectful.
  3. Committing documentation patches: This is part of my "Core Maintainer for Documentation" job description, but at least for now, that wouldn't be part of a new person's job description.

Skillset

The ideal person or people for this job will have the following skills and attributes:
  • Knowledge of how the Drupal core issue queue and patch workflow works (someone who has not worked on any Drupal core issues would probably not be best for this job, yet).
  • Knowledge of the comment/documentation standards (this can be learned on the job, but ideally the person will have made some API documentation patches in the past).
  • Attention to detail.
  • Caring about improving Drupal documentation.
  • English grammar, punctuation, etc.
  • Patience - many of the people contributing documentation patches are novice contributors, and you'll see the same mistakes made over and over, sometimes repeatedly by the same person. It can get frustrating, and it can be difficult to maintain a polite, respectful, thankful tone.
  • PHP coding - you'll need to be able to at least read PHP code and figure out what it is doing, in order to assess whether a patch contains accurate documentation of what the code does. This may also involve some sleuthing, such as seeing how a function is being called, how the return value is being used, or what the classes implementing an interface method are doing.
  • General knowledge of Drupal 7 and 8 (mostly 8) APIs would help, but you can definitely improve those skills as you go.

Any takers? You can jump right in on issue Triage and Reviews (as described above), without asking for permission. Or if you'd like to discuss it with me, find me in the #drupal-contribute IRC channel or contact me via my Drupal.org contact form (I'm assuming anyone who's right for the job would know how to do that -- I'm jhodgdon on both). Fame and gratitude can be yours, in just a few hours a week!

Dec 01 2015
Dec 01

This week a lot got undone, broken, recovered and then some.

Worked on the product backlog, not quite ready for public consumption yet but getting there, sprint backlog for the week:

  • Shop for VPS
  • Setup VPS 
  • Migrate to VPS
  • Fonts – via CSS
  • Sort out Contact Form (emails not working)
  • Sort our Domain name and DNS stuff (may need an expert’s assistance)
  • Backlog grooming – WIP

Acquia Cloud Professional would be nice, would make life much easier, support would be kick ass (and needed) but is out of my budget! time to count the pennies and find a candy store that fits the budget. Bluehost.com or DigitalOcean.com…. went with DigitalOcean, gives an SSD, quite a bit of computing power on a budget, has no developer tools though, will need to get devops help and learn some devops stuff myself (kind’a and kind’a not looking forward to that) but hey you get what you can afford!

  • Added an SSH key, instructions easy enough to follow
  • Am in as root! (nice!)
  • its an Ubuntu VPS, LAMP stack, phpmyadmin installed
  • explored setting up DNS and nada – haven’t got time for this, my sprint capacity is significantly reduced this week and possibly the next too! can’t wait, time to call in devops help, Asim enlisted to help set up DNS for agileforpeace.com for the VPS and opensocial.agileforpeace.com for my social transformation site (thank you Asif)
  • With not much to do, dived into CSS architecture (for Drupal 8)… 10 mins later… need to find an idiot’s guide to CSS in Drupal!
  • Had good wins today, the fear of the terminal is dissipating.
  • Need to migrate my site from Acquia Cloud to the new VPS environment.
  • Installed backup and migrate, activated it and disaster strikes! backup and migrate broke the site and can not access the extend page to uninstall.

Drupal8-brokenbymigrateDrupal8-brokenbymigrate

  • Looked up uninstall backup_migrate using Drush since I could not access the extend page – nada!
  • But if I go to an invalid URL it seems to work but can’t access anything in the admin menu, insanity!

Drupal8-brokenbymigrate01Drupal8-brokenbymigrate01

  • Tried disabling using Drush (drush dis -y backup_migrate && drush pm-uninstall -y backup_migrate), did not work, tried a bunch of stuff, whatsoever google threw up as candidate solutions.
  • Decided to take the simplest option and restored the site from backup on Acquia insight, easy enough.
  • I’ll take the small win and call it a day!
  • Started day 4 with a nice surprise, my first contribution! wooHoo.. the joy of little things!
  • It was a tough start, forgot my admin password again (blistering barnacles)! and remained locked out for the a good part of the timebox! tried a number of suggested means to recover the admin password using Drush, it was one fail after another! eventually reached out to @Dakku for help and it turns out its a pretty simple process!
  • Attempted migration from the DB back up – something migrated but not quite, need to figure out what went wrong, the theme didnt quite work even though its Bartik straight out of the box, am beginning to have doubts about maintaining a VPS by myself.

Open Social Broken 001Open Social Broken 001

  • Am back in but am out of time, more on day 5.
  • bulbbulb In terminal type: cd /var/www/html/yoursite.dev/docroot/sites/default
  • Once in the directory, type: /usr/local/bin/drush8 uli
  • You will get a return value that looks like: /user/reset/1/1448057351/JY2957SilWctPfNfN1gUQ2bT5lS-NvCwjt3heDqdu5A.
  • Copy everything from “/user/….” onwards and paste it after your domain in the address bar in the browser e.g. http://yourdomain.com/user/reset/1/1448057351/JY2957SilWctPfNfN1gUQ2bT5l...
  • Go to that url, this is a one off password change process, you can reset your admin password.

Decision time! I can spend time building my site in D8 with dev tools to support me (on Acquia Cloud) or I can build without them and pick up needed devops skills to manage my VPS; time being the deciding factor am ditching the VPS route and will continue with Acquia Cloud, as for affordability found out as an Acquian I get an environment as an employee benefit! wooHoo! Though it seems this week was not as productive but got a couple of nice wins and picked up some more Drush (the fear of the terminal is dissipating! BTW DrushCommands.com is a pretty epic resource).
Retro time

      • Shop for VPS
      • Setup VPS –
      • Migrate to VPS (theme isn’t working)
      • Fonts – via CSS
      • Sort out Contact Form (so that it sends out emails)
      • Sort our Domain name and DNS stuff (may need a subject matter expert to assist)
      • Backlog grooming – WIP

Having decided to stay on Acquia Cloud I can focus on the site backlog in week 5, (mental note: need to pick up the MVP backlog items soonish).

One more option to look on her packing at it levitra vardenafil it of course to take not so simply because a form another and there is a wish to hold in hand her not so strongly. You can carry by me on a wide field.

Nov 28 2015
Nov 28

logo_small_sx_1logo_small_sx_1 The keynote at DrupalCamp Bulgaria was planned to be left field from the get go, however it went a little further out after Paris came under attack on the night of the 13th of November 2015.

#JeSuiBaghdad #JeSuiParis #JeSuiBeirut #JeSuiChibok #JeSuiKarachi #JeSuiMadrid #JeSuiDamascus #JeSuiAnkara #JeSuiLondon Dalai Lama Quote 2015Dalai Lama Quote 2015 #JeSuiMali the list goes on, but other than on the bench solidarity what are we doing as individuals, as a community to facilitate and help build a better safer, cohesive and a pluralist society?

As a FOSS community we are constantly talking of give-back but are we engaged enough?

How could we take the strengths and learnings that make us a successful tech community to wider non tech audiences with a view of creating social transformation that addresses the needs of our societies in these turbulent times. What can we learn from the transformation FOSS and the Cloud has had on our ecosystem as technologists and how can we export that beyond tech to heal and build a stronger society?

I have more questions for discussions than answers however there is an inflight and successful start made by Peace Through Prosperity using Agile, Open source and Cloud to deliver social transformation programs that could be a starting point for the Drupal community to engage with in their own geographies. The open source component of this program is in development and work in progress can be seen here, if you’d like to contribute and #GiveBack beyond our bubble please get in touch over Twitter or Linkedin.

Links shared within the keynote slides:

The presentation from the keynote:

Open Source and Cloud Beyond tech from Kubair Shirazee

One more option to look on her packing at it levitra vardenafil it of course to take not so simply because a form another and there is a wish to hold in hand her not so strongly. You can carry by me on a wide field.

Nov 20 2015
Nov 20

More a log than a guide, but you get the idea! its a lengthy log this week, a lot got undone, done and then some. Backlog for the week:
  • Fonts
  • Contact Form (customise it)
  • Translations (Lingotek)  
  • Take the site online 
  • Toy around with Drush
Not part of the backlog, decided to update core, followed the instructions to the letter, used Drush and broke the site completely! ha! ‘A little learning is a dangerous thing; drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring’ … and yes did not back it up did see Drush had created a back up but have failed to locate it! was going to take it online anyhow, so decided to rebuild on Acquia CloudSite folder on DT02Site folder on DT02 Would be interesting to see how long it takes to rebuild it! good organisation should make the task a tad bit easier! Revisions made to node/1 were not in the .txt file, extracted them from node_revision_body from the database (a little learning can be a useful thing too) – a small win on a rough day!
  • Logged into Acquia Cloud, spun up a free subscription, installed D8.rc3, and got cracking! 
  • Only downer is can’t add contrib modules without figuring out how to SFTP, or using Drush. For now staying clear of Drush! fear of the terminal is back!
  • Set up path aliases, was a quick and easy introduction and gets rid of the node/n in the address bar, of course good for SEO and all that jazz.
  • I know there is an easier way to justify text alignment via CSS but that’s going to take some time to get to grips with so taking the long but short cut with HTML to <p style=”text-align:justify”>.
  • It was a good day, a forced refresher on getting sh*t done and it took less than 2 hours to get the site back on track a little ahead of the previous version too! wooHoo! 
  • Tested the contact form but it won’t work, a bit of digging around and seems SMTP Authentication Support needs to be installed, am after a quick win today, decided to install and toy with Lingotek instead.
  • Dang it! can not upload to Acquia Dev Cloud, dug around, need SFTP or SSH access, ok set up my SSH Public Key, downloaded FileZilla, followed the instructions and nada! time to put the fear of thescreen-grab-lingotekscreen-grab-lingotek terminal behind me (again) bounced around from page to page but finally got in WooHoo! installed LingoTek in the wrong place Blistering Barnacles!
  • Tried to uninstall LingoTek, could not (commands I’m seeing online don’t work for me), Ok so the next best thing is to install LingoTek in the Dev folder but nothing in the sites folder! Bizarre! or may be not!
  • Anyway reading up on Drush and installing modules on Acquia Cloud and WTF! there is aenable live devenable live dev simpler way to do so! Why is this nugget buried so deep! Evidently all I needs to do is go to my Sites/Cloud and ‘Enable Live Development‘ 
  • That done time to check out LingoTek, copy link address, install, enable, wait, enable dependencies, enable job done! Lingotek Translation itself, lemon squeezy!

LIngo Tek grab 04LIngo Tek grab 04

  • Ending day 2 on a colossal WIN, I have translations for basic pages and articles in Arabic, Bulgarian, French, Hindi, Spanish and Urdu, the main and footer menus are not translated as yet, neither do I have language select buttons/icons enabled, to access the languages I have to go by the language code in the URL and its not perfect I still need our Peace Through Prosperity volunteers to check and edit  multilingual content but they’ll  have less to do. LingoTek kicks ass!
  • Time to take on the font challenge!
  • Noticed whilst on my local environment I was having problems installing modules, kept getting error messages that told me nothing other than it’s an error (FFS!), however haven’t been getting many of those on the Cloud.
  • AnyHoo, for fonts decided on Google Webfont Loader API, comes highly recommended by @Dakku and has a D8 recommended release out too, so what could go wrong. Installed, enabling took ages and it works but… there are only two font added to the library of fonts  (not exactly a library!), all a bit anti-climatic!
  • Not quite what I expected, font attempt five or is it six now is a fail! uninstalled the Google Webfoot Loader API and am going to start exploring the CSS route one of these days. 
  • Its Menu translation day – why hasn’t LingoTek got an automated workflow for menu item translations? got it done but what a pain! suggested improvement for LingoTek: have multiple language translations for a menu item on the same page please! a lot of unnecessary back and forth in the workflow.
  • Decided to spend time on CSS so that I need not rely on modules to change fonts and to get the menu translations in place between day 4 and 5, SMTP set up and the contact form will have to wait its seems a bit complicated and will need help on this in the know, as a starter have bookmarked CSS architecture (for Drupal 8) and Drupal 8 Theming Fundamentals to my reading list.
Its a big day, the WIP site gets opened up for demo on the blog!  Retro time!
  • Fonts – tackled again, failed, avoided (need dragon glass to tackle this one)
  • Contact Form (customise it)
  • Translations (Lingotek)
  • Take the site online
  • Toy around with Drush
  • Backlog grooming
..and disaster strikes! somehow managed to lock myself out! can’t recall the password! dang it! it was such an awesome run! need help on this, tried SSH, can SSH but getting access denied for getting DB backups and hesitant to do too much using Drush, remember day 1’s lesson well. Added @Dakku to the Site ’Team’ on Acquia Cloud and its all good.  Week three has been an epic adventure! am clearly trying to run before I can walk but am finding the platform is coaxing me to do so! what little surface I have scratched has opened up a whole bunch of stuff to add to the open social backlog and am getting pretty confident quite a bit of it could be handled by myself! yes humility is a must have EM trait!. Week four will start with an upgrade to Drupal 8.0.0 WooHoo…! in the mean time feast on this…..in seven languages! Open Social Transformation PTP03Open Social Transformation PTP03

One more option to look on her packing at it levitra vardenafil it of course to take not so simply because a form another and there is a wish to hold in hand her not so strongly. You can carry by me on a wide field.

Nov 19 2015
hw
Nov 19

Drupal 8 is (going to be|already) out today. Drupal communities all round the world are throwing parties to celebrate the release of Drupal 8. As of this writing, we have 200+ locations across 6 continents hosting a party and I hear Antarctica will join us in celebrating Drupal 8 too.

So what’s the big deal? It is just a new version after all. Just in PHP community, we will probably see the release of PHP 7, Magento 2, and Symfony 3 within this two months. Why so much noise over Drupal 8?! Here are some of my reasons why I am over the moon about Drupal 8 release, and why you should be too.

1. Drupal runs 1 in 35 websites worldwide

Okay, Drupal doesn’t have the largest market-share in content management systems out there but it has a lot. With 1 in 35 websites running on Drupal, chances are that you have used a Drupal website more than once before now.

2. Drupal is highly scalable

Drupal runs some of the biggest and prominent websites in the world like weather.com, whitehouse.gov, energy.gov, legacy.com, and more. Drupal scales to any traffic while providing powerful features to administrators, editors, and end-users.

3. Drupal is the first product of PHP-FIG era

Drupal is written with clean and quality object oriented code. It was a great codebase years ago but it’s even better now with it’s adoption of various PSR’s by PHP-FIG. This means that it is easy for any developer to get started with Drupal 8 development in the shortest time; not just any PHP developer, but any developer.

4. Drupal has an awesome community

Drupal’s community is awesome! Period. I never cease to be amazed at the creativity of the entire Drupal community, their generosity, their kindness, their open mindedness, and their ability to resolve differences. It’s not easy to have 3000+ people contribute by code on a single version, yet we see that happen with remarkable ease. They are welcoming to everyone, all inclusive, and very supportive. I could write a whole post on this but let me end by saying that Drupal never fails on it’s motto – “Come for the code, stay for the community.”

5. Drupal is Open Source

Drupal is an Open Source software. It doesn’t just mean it is free; it also means that you are free to extend Drupal in any way you like and contribute back however you want. Drupal’s large community is a testament to this fact.

Drupal 8 Release Celebration

Drupal 8 Release celebrations worldwide

Drupal 8 Release celebrations worldwide

With 200+ parties worldwide, chances are that there is a party somewhere near you. Go, attend, and be a part of this awesome Drupal community. Use Drupical to find your nearest party and go mingle. If you find a contributor – someone who contributed code, tutorials, blog posts, podcasts, hosted events, spread awareness, anything… Thank them! We have Drupal 8 thanks to them, thanks to you! Thank you!

Nov 12 2015
Nov 12

More a log than a guide, but you get the idea! Day 1’s timebox went on user stories and sprint goals (1 week sprints btw); this sprint’s goals are;
  • main menu,
  • footer menu,
  • social (Twitter) feed
  • static content for pages
  • font face
  • Favicon
The allocated time b/w days 2 and 5 are 3 hours in total, so lets see how I fare this week. Started with aesthetics in the hope they’d be the easy wins. 
  • Changing font face – fail: Googled and it appears all I need to do is change the font type in a style.css filesite building D8 font issuesite building D8 font issue , first fail was there is no style.css in the Bartik components folder, did find font types in the elements.css file, edited it, added Arial and nada!
    Went on a module hunt, found font-your-face – installed, did not work, looked up the documentation and does not show up under admin/config/settings/user interface. packing in on the should’ve been an easy win and moving to the next item on my backlog.
  • Favicon success – downloaded Favicon, installed and it has a configure link under extends, first module I’ve come across that links its settings/config page from the module description link from the Extends page (good UX, thank you dave-reid). Initially the .ico file upload didn’t work, thought it might be a cache issue, cleared cache (mysite/admin/config/development/performance) did not work, decided to try renaming the file name and wooHoo! it works. Decided to call it a day with a small win.
Bartik Block RegionsBartik Block Regions

Newbie tip bulbbulb

I took a screen grab of ‘Bartik’s block regions demonstration’, printed it and pinned it to the wall and added it to desktop 2 as a wallpaper – am sure over time I’ll know whats where but for the time being its proving to be a good idea.

WooHoo, its a Saturday and though still working on a project (not really a weekend) am going to take some out for this.
  • Twitter feeds turned out lemon squeesy, with a work around, Twitter widget in a block instead of waiting for maintainers to sort their D8 modules out, thanks Dakku. Five mins into it and job’s done, there is a now a Twitter feed widget on the site! WooHoo! got carried away added a Twitter search box on #peacebuilding and #entrepreneurship, two big wins in less than 10 mins, am on a roll!
  • Next up was Social sharing, searched selected Easy Social, downloaded, installed, read the documentation, fail…. another 10 minutes invested into it… fail fail! should have quit on a win but anyhow failed fast enough to have some time to spare on other backlog items. 
  • So over to Footer menu it is. Added a bunch of menu links but not quite what I had in mind: 
Footer 001Footer 001 Got undone on finding any attributes to the menu setup that allows for external links to be opened in a new window, dug around and found its not possible without a module to manage menu attributes, It took a little bit of time, found one that is D8 ready, and guess what… does not work! fail! Went through the Readme file nothing under admin/configurations tried getting to the  setting using /admin/config/user-interface/extlink and nada! blistering barnacles! Back on the footer menu fumbled around and wooHoo that’s more like it, now to split them out: Footer 0020Footer 0020 Am wondering if I am going about searching for modules the wrong way round for it seems like an awful waste of time trawling through different contrib modules trying to see if they are D-8 ready or not, thought there is this site that lists the status of the top 100 contrib modules it doesn’t cover all of them and when using Google the ones that do turn up are those on D.O and there is just so much noise there! All the contrib modules I have installed and all of the ones that tell me in their Readme file that I will find config links under Admin/configurations –  none have turned up on that page, and when I have tried getting to the  setting using /admin/config/modulename/settings have had no joy either! this pattern suggests something is going wrong with my install! maybe!?” cleared cache too and still nada! more blistering barnacles!! I had a partial win with Footer Menu blocks, am going to take that and come back to this another day.

Its day 4, its shorter, need to stay focused on getting a win.. need it today.

  • Decided to go with the contact form, was easy enough apart from the fact that I could not figure out how to edit the tables for the default form, that’s a ‘nice to have’ so stuck to the ‘must have’ scope and extended the default form as required with custom fields. It was simple, took a bit of toying around but did not need to reach out or Google any how to’s. its a good win, was quick enough so decided to take on a couple of one more task.
  • #OpCleanup; decided am going to clean up all these modules that don’t work, err no uninstall button, its Google to the rescue, a little strange that to uninstall the modules I have to go here: /admin/modules/uninstall and there is no link to it from the extend page! may be I am missing something here. With another win and on a roll decided to look into this unexpected error I’ve been getting intermittently when installing contrib modules:
  • Found a page on D.O on the issue and responded to by a colleague! hello Eric! but the details’way too technical for my current knowhow or lack of! am going to wait till 19th Nov, assuming Dev Desktop will see an update the same day and reinstall Drupal 8 and see if that changes anything, failing that will be badgering some of my TA colleagues.
Was a washout! not enough hours in the day to fit everything! quick retro;
  • main menu,
  • footer menu,
  • social (Twitter) feed,
  • static content for pages,
  • font face
  • Favicon

Did not get to put in anymore than 2 hours over the week, got to >80% of my backlog, broke through last week’s blocker, got stuck on something allegedly trivial, that’s a good week! Looking forward to week 3, I’ll be jumping in font first! 

Peace Through Prosperity Open Transformation ProjectPeace Through Prosperity Open Transformation Project

End of week 2 this is where I am at, not bad!

One more option to look on her packing at it levitra vardenafil it of course to take not so simply because a form another and there is a wish to hold in hand her not so strongly. You can carry by me on a wide field.

Nov 05 2015
Nov 05

More a log than a guide, but you get the idea! Many a weeks before Day 1! started putting a backlog together, the site is for an Open Social Transformation project, its open sourcing the materials designed and developed for Peace Through Prosperity’s social transformation programs that have had epic results so far. The aim is to make the materials and processes available under a creative commons license for communities across the third rock to use and transform for the better, from the ground up.
  • Theme-Library-D8-Theme-install-failTheme-Library-D8-Theme-install-fail 25th Oct 2015 installed Acquia Dev Desktop and got cracking, first impressions; intuitive, a bit like WordPress thats a plus! the learning curve wont be as steep as I had suspected it might be.
  • Bartik looks dull and boring, decided to go on a Theme hunt.
  • Downloaded Zircon – installed, set as default, does not work,
  • Downloaded Adaptive – installed, needs something called AT Core, searched, and installed, set as default, does not work,
  • Back to google, found MAYO, looks nice, installed, does not work,
  • Am 30 mins into my hunt for a theme that looks good and works and am nearing to an OFT moment.
  • Another 5 mins and reached OFT moment.
  • Decided to go with Bartik, into settings and am determined to make this look nice, wasn’t that hard actually! 
  • But need to clean up my Theme library! this is what it looks like after 35 mins.
Drupal-8-engagement-manager-suite-building-guide-001Drupal-8-engagement-manager-suite-building-guide-001 Five minutes of fiddling about in Bartik’s settings and moving the Login Box to Footer 5 (not disabling it for now) this is what my home page looks like! Not bad for a newbie to Drupal… the fruits of less than an hour’s labour and it is responsive out of the box with zero effort!  OK that’s too much excitement for the day, going to quit while I am ahead and get back to it in a few days. A few days later… Decided to hit the deep end before creating my pages and static content, time to add some fancy Blocks, getting the @bringptp Twitter feed on the home page would be epic! The search began for a Twitter module for D8, two choices, Alex Finnarn’s Drupal-twitter-feed and the Twitter Module off D.O – hit a glitch with both, with the Finnarn’s Drupal-twitter-feed module off GIT the challenge became lack of documentation, once set up, had no way to figure out what to do with it as a newbie. With the Twitter Module installing the Entity API became a pain, first things first Entity API is part of D8 Core WTF! kept getting “entity-8.x-1.x-dev.tar.gz does not contain any .info.yml files error”,  looked into the error and got lost in the conversations about it on D.O! whoosh over my head! It was time to call in the big guns, time to reach out to Dakku for help figuring this out. As for the rest of today’s timebox will be getting the pages and content in shape to give the site some semblance of a site prior to diving into the Lingotek module. On reflection today was less frustrating, packed up when I hit a blocker, started finishing and stopped starting, am practising what I preach.  Met up with Dakku and made use of the lunch hour to get some help with the Twitter modules I installed and failed to get them working, turns out its the modules and not my lack of perseverance! Alex Finnarn’s Drupal-twitter-feed module doesn’t show up on the configurations page as the limited documentation suggests it should, so ditched that and moved to the Twitter Module. Got introduced to the issues queue for modules and how to find answers to issues I am having that others have faced, reported and found solutions to, turns out there is an issue with the module as reported on the issues queue, the module has a dependency on Entity API stated in the twitter.info.yml which shouldn’t be there, this dependency prevents the module being installed. Anyway decided I’ll get to Twitter feeds in a Block at a later date once its been patched – which by the way is under way. Dakku on it, submitted a patch that is pending review. With Twitter feeds out for the time being I got a short introduction to Drush and how to install modules using it, haven’t quite got my head around it yet but the fear of the Terminal is slowly giving way to possibilities of being able to use the command line to get sh*t done. Drupal-8-engagement-manager-suite-building-guide-003Drupal-8-engagement-manager-suite-building-guide-003 Back to building up my site, first things first the ‘read more’ link on the home page is getting real annoying, I need the entire content of my page displayed and not a snippet of it, late night IMing for help Dakku pointed me to ‘admin/config/system/site-information’ should have seen that! (mental note to explore more).  Menu links added, with the home page taking shape keen to get some play time with Blocks, a bit of toing and froing got to grips with creating custom blocks and wooHoo! rusty HTML knowledge’s coming back and is handy too. Added two custom blocks: Gofundme and a Vimeo widget blocks and it looks Epic! Still have some time to spare, decided to go social, and got pointed to the Social Media Links module by Dakku, looks awesome but came undone after installation! opened up the modules folder, had a look at the Readme file but when I go to ‘/admin/structure/block/manage/social_media_links/social-media-links/configure’ there is ‘no page found’ dang it! so close so close! must pack it in and get back to this in a couple of day.  Even if I say so my self am chuffed with what has been possible over 3-4 hours spread over a week, next up getting the Social Media Links module to work and then to Lingotek before I start exploring Organic Groups, which will have to be de-prioritised since Organic Groups Module is not ported to Drupal 8 as yet.

One more option to look on her packing at it levitra vardenafil it of course to take not so simply because a form another and there is a wish to hold in hand her not so strongly. You can carry by me on a wide field.

Jul 21 2015
hw
Jul 21

Meetups are a great way to meet like minded people and explore your passion together. No matter your skill or expertise, you always learn something new. At the Bangalore Drupal group, we are aware of this too well and hence lately, we are actively holding meetups in different areas to meet new people. Meetups in March and April were very successful in this regard and we carried off that success to Electronic City, Bangalore, in the campus of Wipro Technologies. Photos below.

Meetup at Wipro

The meetup was different to our regular meetups in a few ways. For one, this was held on a Friday afternoon rather than the usual time of Saturday mornings. For another, the attendees actually came in from other cities just for the meetup. We had a great line up of sessions and interaction over snacks, courtesy of Wipro. We had a lot of support from the team at Wipro, led by Binupreeth Venugopal, to handle logistics and making sure everyone got in to the meetup.

We started off the afternoon with a round of introductions by all the participants, anchored by Vishal Chandra. Smitha M V introduced Wipro’s community efforts to everyone present and we started off with a session on “Drupal Implementation @ Wipro” by Satwik Nag. This was followed by a session on “Building a Live Radio App using Drupal” presented by Mantesh Jahilal. This was followed by interaction over refreshments courtesy of Wipro. We ended the evening with a session on “My experience at DrupalCon LA” presented by myself.

Preparing for DrupalCamp Bangalore 2015

Drupal Bangalore Logo

The Bangalore community is working on a DrupalCamp since a long time now and we are finally seeing it come to reality this Saturday, July 25, 2015. With over 550 registrations at the time of writing, this is one of the biggest DrupalCamps in the country. If you haven’t registered yet, it’s not too late. Go to the DrupalCamp website to register for free now. The camp runs two days and includes lunch and refreshments. You will be able to take benefit of the great sessions, awesome networking opportunities, and directly interacting with companies using Drupal at their respective booths. Comment here if you have any questions.

Photos

May 14 2015
May 14

Last week, we were proud to announce the launch of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center’s enterprise Drupal 8 site, one of the first major Drupal 8 implementations in the U.S. One of the awesome benefits of working on this project was the opportunity to move Drupal 8 forward from beta to official release. Phase2 has been instrumental in accelerating Drupal 8, and we were excited that Memorial Sloan Kettering was equally invested in giving back to the community.

Benefits of starting early

Getting started during the beta phase of Drupal 8 meant that it wasn’t too late to fix bugs and tasks. Even feature requests can make their way in if the benefits outweigh the necessary changes to core.

Similarly, if other agencies and shops starting to use Drupal 8 are going through many of the same issues, there is more of an opportunity for collaboration (both on core issues and on contrib upgrades) than on a typical Drupal 7 project.

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By the numbers

As of this writing, 57 patches have been directly contributed and committed to Drupal 8 as part of this project. Additionally, nearly 100 issues have been reviewed, marked RTBC, and committed. Hundreds of old and long neglected issues have been reviewed and moved closer to being ready.

Often, to take a break on a particularly tricky issue, I’d switch to “Issue Queue Triage” mode, and dive into some of the oldest, most neglected corners of the queue. This work brought the oldest Needs Review bugs from ~4 years to less than 4 months (the oldest crept back up to 6 months once I started circling back on myself).

This activity is a great way to learn about all the various parts of Drupal 8. Older issues stuck at Needs Review usually need, at minimum, a substantial reroll. I found that once tagging something with Needs Reroll, there were legions of folks that swooped in and did just that, increasing activity on most issues and getting many eventually committed.

One of my favorite but uncommitted patches is adding Views integration for the Date module. It’s still qualified as Needs Review, so go forth and review! Another patch, which is too late for 8.0.0, adds a very basic draft/moderation workflow to core. This patch is another amazing example of how powerful core has become–it is essentially just UI work on top of APIs already in Drupal 8.

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Porting contrib modules to Drupal 8

This project has contributed patches and pull requests for Drupal 8 versions of Redirect, Global Redirect, Login Security, Masquerade, Diff, Redis, Memcache, and Node Order.

One of the remarkable things about this project, and a testament to the power of Drupal 8, is how few contributed modules were needed. Compare some 114 contrib modules on the Drupal 6 site, to only 10 on the Drupal 8 site.

Considering Drupal 8 for your organization? Sign up for a complimentary Drupal 8 consultation with the Phase2 Drupal 8 experts

Apr 30 2015
hw
Apr 30

Drupal meetups are fun. You meet new people, learn something new, and other people learn from you. The Drupal community in Bangalore has regularly organized a monthly Drupal meetup, which is only growing with the support of large organizations coming forward to host. This month, the meetup was held at the TCS office in Whitefield in ITPL on Saturday, 25th April, 2015. Photos from the meetup are below and a more detailed account follows.

The April meetup was held at an auditorium in TCS Whitefield office. We saw an attendance of around 40 people, which was lesser than we expected, owing to disruption caused by recent rains. Inspite of the relatively lesser number, this was still one of the more successful meetups. Since the TCS office is in ITPL, with massive security hassles, we reached there by 9:45 AM and we reached the building by about 10:15 AM. There were a few people already there and we waited until 10:30 AM to start.

Attendees at Drupal Bangalore Meetup, April 2015.

Attendees at Drupal Bangalore Meetup, April 2015.

We started off with Jaya talking about how being a part of the Drupal community has helped her career and life. After her inspiring talk, several people came forward and shared their Drupal story, and how it has helped in their career. Being a part of all this discussion was an amazing and insightful experience. Photos of the speakers are uploaded in a Flickr album (also shown above in the slideshow).

This was followed by a session on SEO by Sudheesh Sudhakaran where he explained what helps and hurts sites in SEO. This was also followed by a productive discussion on various techniques, questions, and latest practices. We ended the meetup at around 1:15 PM with the customary group photo. Some of the participants later met for lunch at the ITPL cafeteria.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank TCS for hosting us for this meetup. Sudheesh and his team helped in arranging the venue and the refreshments and helped all the participants through the security checkpoints in ITPL. They even took care of the photos and for once, I was not seen swinging around with my camera.

The next meetup is tentatively scheduled at the end of May. Follow @BangaloreDrupal on twitter (or myself) to keep up with the news. You can also join the meetup group to get an email as soon as the new meetup is announced.

Group Photo - Drupal Meetup - April 2015

Group Photo – Drupal Meetup – April 2015

Apr 14 2015
hw
Apr 14

Drupal Meetup is now in Whitefield, Bangalore! After February’s meetup, we decided to try and discover more Drupalers in Bangalore. We always knew that there are a lot more people using Drupal than we meet in the meetups and we have also known that location is a big factor in determining attendance at a meetup on a weekend. We found some leads in Whitefield and decided to hold the meetup there. Mindtree kindly agreed to host us for the meetup on 28th March, 2015. Photos from the event are below.

We carpooled and reached there by about 9:30 AM, having miscalculated for the traffic. After a quick bite at the canteen, we went down to the board room to find it almost full. Around 10:30 AM, we started with a round of introductions. I did a quick introduction to the meetup group and we first started with Gokul’s session on performance improvements in Drupal 8. This was followed by a quick break with tea, coffee, and biscuits courtesy of Mindtree. After the short break, I discussed on how everyone can start contributing to the Drupal core and other contributed modules using larowlan’s excellent slides from DrupalSouth. This turned into an interactive session with questions answered by experienced Drupalers such as Chakrapani, Gokul, Pavithra, myself and many others in the room.

We ended the day at about 1:30 PM feeling great about a successful meetup. We took names and other details of all the attendees and got a great representation from various companies in Bangalore. I will let the pie chart below do the talking.

Drupalers representing different companies at meetup at @BangaloreDrupal. Great going guys! Expecting more next time. pic.twitter.com/SY0PfimKSu

— hussainweb (@hussainweb) March 29, 2015

The next meetup is scheduled a little early this month – the third Saturday instead of the usual last Saturday of the month. We are again in Whitefield this month and hosted by TCS. Location, date, time, and other details are available on the meetup page. I hope to see you all there this Saturday.

PS: Please help us out with a survey we are conducting to understand who is using Drupal in and around Bangalore. If you have ever used Drupal or considering it, please fill out this form. It will take 10 minutes and will help us plan and organize Drupal events better. The shortlink to the form is: bit.ly/drupal-blr.

Jul 19 2014
Jul 19

Let's be honest, I spend a lot of time at conferences. Over the past 2 years or so I've averaged more than one speaking engagement at a conference per month, including a half-dozen keynotes. I've also helped organize several conferences, mostly DrupalCamps and DrupalCons. I'd estimate conferences make up more than a third of my professional activity. (Incidentally, if someone can tell me how the hell that happened I'd love to hear it; I'm still confused by it.)

As a result I've gotten to see a wide variety of conference setups, plans, crazy ideas, and crazy wonderful ideas. There are many wonderful things that conference organizers do, or do differently, and of course plenty of things that they screw up.

I want to take this opportunity to share some of that experience with the organizers of various conferences together, rather than in one-off feedback forms that only one conference will see. To be clear, while I definitely think there are areas that many conferences could improve I don't want anyone to take this letter as a slam on conference organizers. These are people who put in way more time than you think, often without being paid to do so, out of a love for the community, for learning and sharing, and for you. Whatever else you may think about a conference or this list, the next time you're at a conference take a moment to find one of the organizers and give them a huge hug and/or firm handshake (as is their preference) and say thank you for all the work that they do.

The venue

There is, ultimately, one overriding factor that determines who is awake for the first session in the morning. The percentage of attendees who make it to the first session in the morning is inversely proportional to the travel time in minutes from bedroom to session room. That means conference hotels trump everybody. DrupalCon Chicago 2011, Sunshine PHP, and php[tek] rank at the top of the list here.

If that's not viable for whatever reason (often capacity), make sure there's ample mixed-cost housing very nearby. Nearby means "within a 3 minute walk". If I have to take public transit to get there then it's not close. DrupalCon Austin did very well in this regard, with two large hotels and an apartment complex with several AirBNB's literally across the street from the main entrance to the conference center. It's not quite as nice as it being all one building but it's a close second.

Another logistical point: Consider traffic flow. I've been at a number of conferences where lines to go up the escalator or stairs, or to pick up lunch, or whatever else are longer than most sessions. Few things are as discouraging as wanting to go to a session but being stuck in a line of people going to the same session... at the other end of the convention center. Logistics are hard. Don't under-estimate the amount of thought that needs to go into them.

Don't make me pay to speak

This has been covered elsewhere in more detail so I will only touch on it briefly here. Most people come to a conference to see speakers. Speakers are your offering, attendees are your customers. Don't make me, as a speaker, pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to come to your conference to give someone else a reason to buy a ticket from you.

I'm not asking for an honorarium. (I certainly won't turn one down, but I've only ever had one conference offer that.) But cover hard travel costs for speakers. Or even just hotel and a a stipend for airfare up to some amount. Something. A speaker is already giving you 10-40 hours of their time to prepare a session before they even arrive at the conference. Given what most speakers can make in the IT field that means they're donating, on average, somewhere around $3000 USD worth of their time to your conference before they step in the door. Respect that.

That goes double for invited speakers. Few things are as insulting as reaching out to a speaker to specifically invite them to speak on a subject on which they are an expert, and then telling them "and by the way, you're on your own dime to get here". As a conference organizer for DrupalCon I've been turned down by a number of very good speakers because we don't cover speaker travel, and I don't blame them. You won't get the best talent on stage if you're going to make them pay for the privilege.

Curiously, in my experience it's the big conferences that do worst here. The PHP community conferences tend to be very good in this regard. Big industry vertical conferences often don't even comp tickets for speakers, which is even worse and makes me want to avoid them. Really, the only reason I'd speak under such conditions is as a marketing expense. Do you want your speakers treating you purely as a marketing expense rather than community building?

I will give the very small < 100 person local conferences a pass here, but once you pass around 300-400 attendees you need to treat your speakers better. I've started avoiding conferences that won't cover my travel costs.

Scavenger hunts

A few small to medium conferences have started doing something quite clever with their sponsors. I think php[tek] was the first, and I've seen Sunshine PHP do it as well. All attendees need to get some kind of "check off" from sponsors, or just top-level sponsors with booths. At php[tek] 2014, for example, attendees who got a (fairly high quality) pin from each of the top sponsors were entered into the end-of-conference raffle for a fairly good array of prizes. At Sunshine PHP this year, attendees who had a stamp on their bingo card from all sponsors with tables got a limited edition yellow ElePHPant, Sunny. At Sunshine PHP last year each sponsor visit was worth a raffle ticket as was each question asked in a session of a presenter. Sunshine PHP also had a bonus for the best tweet of the Sunny the ElePHPant around the conference, which encouraged interaction and shenanigans amongst attendees.

Some sponsors just want to give a sales pitch in return for whatever the checkbox is; others want some small social networking stunt ("tweet at us"), or signing up for a free dev account with their service, or whatever. Always fairly simple and reasonable. But it gives attendees a reason to go to the sponsor area (which sponsors love) and to stick around to the end of the conference for the raffle (which organizers love), and a way to get cool free stuff (which attendees love). It probably won't scale to very large conferences like DrupalCon or OSCON or SXSW, but for the < 500 market it's a really nice touch.

On stage

I've had a wide variety of audio options when speaking, from fixed microphones to hand-held mics to wireless lapel mics. Far and away my preference is for something hands-free and mobile. Headset, lapel clip, doesn't matter. I want to be able to move around and I want to have one hand free for a pointer and the other to gesticulate. A hand-held mic means I am walking around two-fisting electronics (feeling and looking like a dork) while a fixed podium mic means I am chained to one spot where no one an see anything but my head. Let me have the freedom to move and I'm able to give a better presentation. I'd rather speak without a microphone than be chained down.

At the same time, though, let me see my slides. This one was a novel experience for me at DrupalCon Austin, where as a presenter the projector screen was situated such that I could not actually see my own slides. I had them on a laptop in front of me, but many laptop/projector setups force you to use only one display so the projector is the only output (which you often don't know until you plug in). Or I may have speaker notes on my laptop screen instead. Or, as is the case for me, I use a laser pointer to highlight portions of a slide or code sample. If I can't see the screen then I can't do that. That was a rather unpleasant surprise when I started speaking and realized I had to change my plan on the fly. (And no, mouse pointers are not a substitute.)

Let me move, let me see my slides, and give me the room to present, not just talk. It really does affect the energy of the talk very significantly.

Edit, as James Watts reminded me of in the comments: Another "little thing" that matters? Water. The last thing a presenter should be thinking about is tracking down water to drink during the talk. There should be either a pitcher of water and cups or water bottles ready and waiting for every presenter as soon as they get to the stage. I've been at (even large) conferences where, for whatever reason, I had to ask one of the attendees to track down water for me from a water fountain 300 feet away from the session room while I setup my laptop because there wasn't anything closer. Please, this is an easy one. Don't forget the water.

A/V

It's been a while since I've had trouble with A/V at a conference. It almost always works, give or take some fiddling. I do, however, occasionally run into a conference that hasn't tested their A/V properly. The biggest challenge? Open Source conferences that only test their A/V with Macs, not with Linux systems. The irony there is palpable. :-) Most laptops in the world still run Windows. In the odd microcosm that is the Open Source world the closed-source Mac OS X is oddly supreme, though. Linux laptops, in my experience, are a strong second. Most of the top-selling laptops on Amazon these days are Chromebooks (Linux). Organizers, please test your A/V setups before I arrive. I can't be the only person with a Linux system at a developer conference.

A few conferences I've been to have asked me to give them slides to present from the conference's laptop. My answer to that is always the same: No. I have my own presenter remote, my own laptop, and I am not using Apple Keynote. Addendum by George DeMet in the comments: I may also be using a non-standard font that I have on my laptop that is not on the conference laptop. That means I often cannot simply dump my slides on a USB key for you and use a strange remote that may or may not work. (Yes, I've had the conference-provided remote fail on me.) It's especially problematic when that is not communicated until I arrive in the room to present.

Fortunately very few conferences I've been to have made this mistake, so to the majority of you who just provide a VGA cable and power outlet that works first-try, thank you!

Recording sessions

I know there's some difference of opinion on this point amongst various speakers so I won't claim my position to be universal, but my stance is this: Please record my session and please give it away!

I present, most of the time, as a form of teaching. I want to share knowledge with as many people as possible. I want to educate. I want to communicate. Recording and sharing session videos — whether it's just slides or a video of me as well — is a way to reach a broader audience than just the 30 people in the room. That includes other attendees of the conference who are in another session in that time-slot. Don't leave them out in the cold!

It also helps me to be able to review my sessions later. I often give the same talk numerous times and being able to review what worked, what didn't, see which jokes fell flat and which slides I stumbled over myself (always a bad sign) is extremely helpful.

The undisputed king on this point is DrupalCon. Recent DrupalCons routinely have decent quality screen-and-audio recordings up in a matter of hours. That's awesome. You don't need to go quite that far but having videos up within, say, a week is very appreciated.

A few conferences do record sessions but then sell access to them, either to attendees or free-for-attendees but paid for everyone else. I can totally understand the financial reasons to do that. So I'll make you a deal: If you charge money for recordings of my session then I want a cut. If not, let me know that you're doing that before I submit a session so I know not to submit one.

After-parties

Conference-sponsored parties are a somewhat controversial subject in some circles. They can be great for socializing and serve as an extended hallway track, but depending on the type of party they can also drive off certain members of the community (due to age, social preference, or alcohol preference) or (due to large quantities of alcohol) increase the chances of the conference ending up as one of too-many negative stories. Some conferences have done away with them as a result, which is rather unfortunate.

There's two ways I've seen after-parties done well: Big and small. For big, the winner is DrupalCon Chicago. The after-party on the first night of the conference was a sit-down dinner for 800 people at the Field Museum of Natural history in Chicago (Warning: Drupal site and Palantir.net client), followed by a local band playing in the main hall. The acoustics weren't great, but it was overall a classy event and gave people who wanted a bit more quiet the opportunity to wander through the public exhibits of one of the top natural history museums in the country. That's great for large groups but can also be quite expensive.

The important key, though, is that it was large enough to handle the crowd. I've been at other conferences where the after-party (also held at a museum) consisted of two really long lines for drinks, a little bit of finger food, and no room to sit down or talk to people. By the time I got through a line for drinks it was nearly time to leave. No, I'm not kidding. Hosting a party is just as much of a logistical challenge as the conference itself; if you're not up to that challenge then it's better to just not have one at all.

For smaller conferences, Lonestar PHP is the reigning champion in my mind. Their after-party consists of a bunch of tables in the main conference venue (the keynote room), a huge pile of board games and card games, a game console with Dance Dance Revolution or similar, and a small bar in the corner with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. It gives drinkers a chance to drink (without being frat-party-hammered) and non-drinkers something else to do and a reason to stick around other than getting drunk. It's well-lit and quiet enough that those who hate loud spaces like bars (myself included) are not driven away. It's even family-friendly. (A number of conference attendees and speakers like to bring their spouse/kids along, which is great to see.) There's even food, albeit usually not enough. (Conference-goers and locusts often have a lot in common.) Well done, Lonestar.

Twin Cities DrupalCamp is a very close second, as they have a very similar setup. The only downside is it's not in the same venue so it requires a little travel. A number of other conferences have started moving to similar plans, which is great. DrupalCon now has a regular trivia night (although if you're not drinking it can be very slow moving) and Symfony Live tends to have a Jeopardy night hosted by Jeremy Mikola. These are all inclusive, friendly, non-frat-party social options. Props to those conferences that have gotten this right, and those that haven't yet... please start. A loud kegger is not a good after-party.

Encourage the hallway track

Conferences are a wonderful educational opportunity. They do not replace training or mentoring but they can provide a "structured taste" of something new: a platform, a system, a technique, or a concept.

As is often said, though, the "hallway track" is where the real conference is. The out-of-session meetings, lunch table conversations, and chance encounters are where the deep learning happens. Encourage those. Provide space for impromptu discussions. (Some conferences call these BoFs, for "Birds of a Feather". I've never understood the term but meh.) Setup lunch so that people have to sit together and talk, and can hear each other talk. Encourage speakers and non-speakers to hang out together and chat informally.

Even as a seasoned speaker I've had random lunch conversations that have turned into new friends, ideas for articles, or even a deeper understanding of the material I'm about to present. (More on that another time.) You can't force that sort of outcome of course, but to the extent possible provide a fertile ground for it. That, in the end, is what conferences are: A fertile ground for learning and connection and mixing to happen.

Thank you, organizers, for all that you do.

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May 08 2014
May 08

Dries Buytaert, the CTO of Aquia and head of the open-source Drupal project, recently wrote a blog post about the business case for hiring a Drupal core contributor. Dries wrote about the measurable effect that a larger Drupal shop can realize from hiring a contributor full-time.

But what if you're a smaller shop, consisting of 1-5 Drupal experts? You obviously can't afford to hire someone full-time to work on Drupal Core development -- but you can still reap benefits from contributing some of your own time, or (if you have employees) paying them for a few hours a week to contribute to Drupal Core or another Drupal sub-project (module, theme, etc.) that many people use, or volunteering in another way (providing free training in your local area, organizing a Drupal meet-up, etc.). The main benefits I see:

  • Your own expertise in Drupal will grow, making you a better Drupal shop.
  • Your reputation among members of the international Drupal community will grow, possibly leading to concrete benefits, such as referrals.
  • Your reputation among members of your local Drupal community will grow, almost certainly leading to greater possibility of referrals and project partnernships, which a small company always needs.
  • When a client is looking for a Drupal contractor to hire, the fact that you are a contributor to the Drupal project or the organizer of a local meeting may tip the balance towards you over another Drupal shop. (A little marketing is in order: publicize your contributions on your web site, and make sure, when talking to clients, to mention your work -- it will add to the sense of expertise that a prospective client is looking for.)

And if your company doesn't have time to contribute volunteer hours to the Drupal project, you can also reap some benefits (good will in the community and good feelings from clients) by contributing financially (again, if you do a little marketing). I know of several great ways to do this:

  • Join the Drupal Association, the non-profit that does so much for the Drupal open-source project (such as paying for the servers that drupal.org and associated sites run on). Once you become a member, you can display a DA badge on your web site.
  • Donate regularly to Drupal developers via Gittip -- you could donate to the Drupal Core team or to one or more developers that works on key modules that your company uses. Once you start donating, you can display a Gittip badge on your web site.
  • Fund particular Drupal projects via Drupalfund, a crowdsourcing platform specifically for Drupal projects. Unlike Gittip, which is meant to be used for weekly contributions to individuals and teams, Drupalfund is for one-time contributions to particular projects (adding features to a module, porting a theme to a new Drupal version, etc.).

So... Pick your method, and do something to help the open-source project that your livelihood depends on!

Oct 15 2013
Oct 15

Drupal Public Sector Exchange

Drupal Public Sector Exchange

Though DPSX has been a tad bit quite since July we did kick up a mini-storm in Prague at DrupalCon last month! The BoF was a hit with relevant attendees from Belgium, Britain, Finland, France, Netherlands and Slovakia represented on the table. in majority the attendees other than Steve Purkiss and myself were from the public sector which was a result!

DrupalCon Prague BoF Drupal Public Sector Exchange

DrupalCon Prague BoF Drupal Public Sector Exchange

The discussions centred around:

  • The political challenges of having a single platform in government
  • options of multisite Vs Domain access and of course creating distributions
  • Managing diversity in government
  • Selling by building business cases
  • When Open becomes closed and proprietary

The audio from the BoF can be downloaded from here.

Looking ahead we are planning on one more DPSX meet up in Blighty prior to Christmas, so if you are interested please drop us a line or comment on D.O.

Oct 03 2013
Oct 03

DrupalCon_Prague_Logo_2013

DrupalCon_Prague_Logo_2013

Coming up to a week  since DrupalCon Prague, caught up with my girls, emails, calls, follow ups and all else… time to reflect.

I stand by my verdict of the 26th of Sept: @drupalcon #Prague No #Munich but No #Croydon either but an informative fun week. That is to some annoyance of a few fellow community members and possibly some folks at DA… folks there was and is no offence intended, someone has to lay it out as it is and I did share the feedback in person with DA and not just tweeted it on my way to the airport HA!

The host city was awesome, the venue was well their congress centre (the best they had to offer I suppose) but the connectivity there sucked! the food though not that important could have been much better, the sessions that I have been catching up on line were good though more diversity is key for the future… representation across the continents please! BoFs were super useful no doubt and some of the SWAG was nice, some just awesome – Acquia and Deeson win the SWAG award!

DrupalCon_Prague_201325 11.51.49

DrupalCon_Prague_201325 11.51.49

Having said all of that the most awesome thing about DrupalCon Prague was the connectedness! on that note Prague won hands down! out did Munich too!

I am going to be at DrupalCon Austin which will be my first DrupalCon across the pond and knowing how conferences go over the Atlantic am sure it will be mind blowing and if not you will hear about it in person. As for DrupalCon Amsterdam… it can be nothing short of epic! but then most peeps who have been to the Netherlands would say that!

It was great seeing old friends and making new ones and looking forward to the next Cons and upcoming Camps across the third rock.

Sep 20 2013
sun
Sep 20

There is an active attempt to fork the Drupal content management system into a new application:

Backdrop — a play on Drupal's name and origin, which originally intended to be dorp.org (Dutch: village), but due to a typo, became drop.org in 2001. Shortly after, drop.org was renamed to drupal.org.

As the name suggests, Backdrop's intention is to get back to the roots of Drupal:

  • Quality
  • Simplicity
  • Developer Experience and Productivity
  • Performance
  • Targeted vision and use-case

The project was kick-started and is driven by a few people that I personally respect and value a lot. In fact, they are representing a group of brilliant people and excellence, which originally turned Drupal into the product that it is today. A group that felt ignored and unheard in the recent past — even though it were primarily these and like-minded people who enabled the world to interpret Drupal as a real product and competition in the first place.

To be clear: Do not try this at home. The attempt of forking Drupal involves hundreds of factors that you are not considering. There have been many attempts in the past, but not a single one succeeded. Yours will not succeed either. Backdrop may or may not be an exception.
(Did I phrase this clear enough?)

The root of all concerns is Drupal 8, which is in development and undergoes major architectural changes for ~3 years already. Though, despite all changes, there's little to no innovation compared to the competition. The focus is to clean up and modernize all core code and APIs, with the intended goal of ending up with a base system whose architecture is more maintainable and sustainable in the future.

The current state of Drupal 8 is poor and not worth to talk about. However, the final and intended state seems to present a clear and diametrical conflict to the former goals, qualities, values, and roots of the original Drupal project.

The situation

I talked to various different parties. What I learned is simple:

People are not listening to each other.

People do not appear to remotely see the points that others are trying to make. In both directions. Assumptions are utterly wrong, frontiers are built before having any clue at all, counter-arguments are overly naive and misguided, and all communication is generally hindered by a good amount of bad-ass trolling.

What I heard was offensive defense and disagreement. No one appears to listen and to truly perceive and understand all arguments, before drawing any kind of lines and/or conclusions.

As if, you know, the world was flat.

In short, a simple and common conflict resolution scenario.

This blog post originally aimed to cover all aspects on the idea of forking Drupal and my personal stance on this particular fork, but after gathering more and more insights on the current situation, I decided to leave out and save those parts for a future post.

Therefore, this post reflects on the communication conflict only.

Solutions are possible. They will require changes. They will cause conflicts. It is a matter of will, listening, and dedication. It is a matter of respect.

Disconnect in Dissent

In analyzing the situation, and in distilling and deciphering all arguments, I did notice that there appears to be a rather large disconnect in understandings and communication.

It's important to note upfront that the situation did not suddenly appear a week ago, but actually evolved over the past ~2 years throughout the Drupal 8 development cycle.

Drupal core developers appear to be coming from a mindset that is deeply stuck in refactoring work of internal core framework subsystems, which happens to involve plenty of abstractions and complexity. These were major and important undertakings, but in all of this work, not much thought went into the question of how verbose these concepts need to be for the average module developer.

A few core developers are showing good will to fix and improve minor developer experience issues. Some others do not appear to see any issues at all, and they seem to not only ignore the arguments that are being raised, but even strongly and blatantly argue against them. Tension appears to be caused by an attitude of:

I am right and know better, and you are just simply wrong.

...which doesn't make it sound as if anyone was listening.

Conversely, people who are looking at the current state of art are deeply confused as to why so much internal complexity and abstractions are verbosely exposed in the user space, and whether that is really necessary.

From what I've heard, the scope and extent of concerns does not encompass a few individual improvements here and there, but instead, is asking for major changes to remove all unnecessary complexity and ensure simplicity (and productivity, for that matter) in user space code.

The primary disconnect appears to be a major difference in understanding of what exactly is interpreted as "complex."

There further appears to be a misunderstanding in that people would have a general problem with object-oriented code, which is not only misguided but also makes an insulting assumption on the technical learnability skills of others. As a consequence, a line is drawn between parties that does not actually exist, which in turn hinders constructive communication.

The same consideration appears to be further manifested by the assumption that the target developer audience of Drupal 8 would be different. Equally based on the idea that novice PHP developers and hobbyists would not be capable to understand and learn object-oriented code. This nonsensical assumption clearly appears to stem from the disparity in understanding of what exactly "complexity" constitutes.

All communication appears to be distorted by another disturbing detail: The API freeze for Drupal 8 was officially announced already, despite the fact that literally everyone and all parties appear to agree that the current state is a total mess and not remotely releasable. This aspect especially supports the resignation of the non-core party, as they're in fact asking for major API changes, which obviously presents yet another unnecessary conflict.

Drupal appears to have taken steps to remedy the situation through a new D8DX initiative. But coherent to all other communications, this initiative starts with a big list of things that are out of question, and just continues with a list of minor issues that may be debatable. In other words, directly building a frontier, before even starting to listen.
Update: It appears the initiative page has been corrected to somewhat address this issue.

Conclusion

It's a tough situation, because there's a lot of frustration all around. In fact, no one appears to be happy with anything. The lack of a clear leadership, ownership, and authority certainly contributed to the final path that slowly but certainly turned frustration into resignation.

Now the question is whether everything sucks and it's too late, or whether there is a chance to resolve the situation by taking a large step back (stop coding, start listening) and bring everyone on one round table to find concrete, working solutions.

Solutions are very well possible. But they certainly require everyone to leave their comfort zone, start being receptive, listen to and ensure to comprehend concerns of others, accept that there are different world perspectives, and most importantly, to allow yourself to make compromises.

My recommendation is to not calm down and defend, downplay, or ignore the issue. Also, don't be afraid, don't be a jerk, and don't be a hardliner. Instead, I want to encourage you to be open, welcoming, collaborative, and constructive in everything you do. Respect others, respect the culture. In short, respect

The Drupal Way™

May 17 2013
May 17

On the eve of DrupalCon Portland, we're happy to be able to get another free community video out, Installing and Using Dreditor. What's more exciting though, is that this video is part of our Community Tools workshop, and in an effort to spread Drupal community involvement further than where we can show up to run this free workshop, we're putting all of our materials and notes online for everyone to use freely, with the Community Tools curriculum.

A Workshop is Born

The Community Tools workshop was born out our experience with the Drupal Ladder and the Core Mentoring program. The idea was to gather up the essential tools that people need to understand in order to fully engage with the community, and feel confident contributing back to it. We don't just talk about the tools or processes, but we actually walk through them; have people install software they need, make sure it works properly, and use it in a community context. We've given the Community Tools workshop at several DrupalCons and camps now, and we've been working hard to refine it so that it works well for multiple circumstances. The most successful use is as part of a larger sprint event, where people can get up to speed on tools, and then immediately go actively use them to contribute, so that is what the initial draft of the curriculum is focused on.

Sharing What We've Learned

We've learned a lot by teaching this workshop so many times, and we'd love to travel everywhere to provide it, but, well, that's just not realistic. We want to make it possible for others to present it in their local groups, regional events, or wherever it would be a help to onboard new contributors. We have a fair amount of the material available in video form as well, so that people can watch and learn on their own, or in any size group. We've created a new guide, the Drupal Community Tools and Core Mentoring guide to group all of the videos together in one easy-to-find place (and it includes the new Dreditor video too). They are also referenced throughout the curriculum itself. Not everyone is brave enough to stand up and teach, or even if they are, they'd like to see someone explain the topic first. We hope that by sharing the slides, videos, links, experiences, and tips, we can get more people running their own Community Tools workshops around the globe, and warmly welcome more people into the Drupal community.

Learn more at DrupalCon

The curriculum is in a draft state right now, but we have plans to improve the organization, and content, over the coming months. Ideally we want to truly open-source this by providing a good way for people to contribute back their own improvements to it. I'll be talking about this more at DrupalCon Portland, as well as running the workshop again on Friday's Get Involved with Core sprint. If you have ideas around this, I'd love to chat with you about it, either in Portland, or online. If you'd like to volunteer to help out with the workshop or the sprint (either in Portland, or sometime in the future), you should definitely come to the Running Coaches Wanted! session at Portland to get a great overview of how all of this works, and what things will be happening all next week to help people learn new tools, get involved, and become mentors and trainers themselves. (Note that the sessions are all going to be recorded and posted online fairly quickly, so even if you can't make it to Portland, you should check the session out online.)

May 12 2013
May 12

Drupal Public Sector Exchange

Drupal Public Sector Exchange

Our second event adopted an alternative format not by design but its usefulness has us thinking it may well be the way to go!
Speaker at the seond DPSX event:
Mark Smitham  – Cabinet Office (G-Cloud) A huge thank you… Mark, we appreciate? the knowledge shared; old hats, newbies and the curious, we all took away a lot from the discussions.
And the key points shared and discussed:
+ G-Cloud is about engaging the SME sector – it is access to the eco-system #GCloudJoinin
+ has delivered the equivalent of £180m+ in savings; introducing innovative SME enterprises into the eco-systemDrupal_Public_Sector_Exchange_meetup_2_May_2013_1

Drupal_Public_Sector_Exchange_meetup_2_May_2013_1


+ G-Cloud is about greater transparency: there are 29,000 Govt. customers on G-Cloud – the access to opportunities for the SME sector is unparalleled  Drupal_Public_Sector_Exchange_meetup_2_May_2013_2

Drupal_Public_Sector_Exchange_meetup_2_May_2013_2


+ The new G-Cloud Store interface by the way is a sight of relief! job well done. Note: G-cloud is a non transactional store but a marketplace for Govt. customers to have access to selected SME suppliers that they can engage with
+ on the CloudStore good old SEO is handy for searchability and visibility
+ There are challenges to getting the critical mass from the Govt. customers… SMEs could assist and inform their clients and prospects of the G-Cloud route to product/service acquisition.
+ a short guide to understanding Impact levels and Pan-Govt accreditation

some useful links:
G-Cloud
CloudStore
if you are a buyer
if you are a supplier

if you are not on the G-Cloud as a supplier  and as a Customer/buyer
LocalGov Digital ?

The next meet-up for Drupal Public Sector Exchange will be held next month and stay tuned on our Twitter account DPSX ?@DPSXchange

DPSX: @Alanpeart @Calert @Greenman @Kubair @MarcDe_ath @shaunwilde
#Drupal #PublicSector #Innovation #G_Cloud_UK #LocalGovDigital

May 11 2013
May 11

While ago i was looking for an slider module (implementation of JQuery UI slider module), surprisingly i couldn't find any solution except jSlider Form API which wasn't exactly what i was looking for. So i did what every good Drupal developer does, I wrote a generic slider module and shared it on Drupal.org (jQuery UI Slider Field). I even implemented "jSlider Form API" features.

Several months later and after i published several new minor versions, one of the users mentioned that there is in fact another slider module similar to mine!! SliderField and it was quite old too. He suggested joining forces to prevent duplicate modules. I usually find what I'm looking for so it was very unexpected. I think there are two reasons i couldn't find it. The main reason is, the name of the module which is"SliderField" instead of "Slider Field" which makes it difficult to find it only by searching titles that's why having search-able keywords for modules is very useful. Another reason is that I didn't ask the community via IRC and forum, i usually do before writing a new module, there is a group for this purpose in case you didn't konw. Contributed Module Ideas

My module was much more completed and had many more features so it was too late for me, but for the sake of the community i decided to join the two projects and probably any other similar slider related module. For straightforward module like this there shouldn't be really several different modules it wastes community's valuable resources. I contacted the maintainer of the SliderField module proposing to join forces, and since nobody was working on SliderField module for quite some time he agreed and gave me access.

Since the SliderField module was older and had more users, proper thing to do was to make it the main module. Here is what i did afterwards :

  • Implemented all the missing features of SliderField
  • Renamed jQuery UI Slider Field
  • Created a new branch and cloned the new module preserving the git history using this tutorial
  • Implement upgrade path for previous version of SliderField and migrate path for jQuery UI Slider Field
  • Published a working version - Updated module's page
  • Added a note on jQuery UI Slider Field page notifying its users of the new module and my plans
  • Moved all the active issues of jQuery UI Slider Field to SliderField
  • Contacted maintainers of several other slider modules asking them to put a note on their module's page notifying their users about the existence of a generic solution

You may ask why? I could simply continue maintaining my own module, why go into this much trouble!

As you may have already noticed one of the great things about Drupal community is that we all work together to make Drupal better. At the end it doesn't really matter if it's my module , my patch or someone else's. What matters is to have a greater and more powerful tool which we can all use.

All well known Drupal developers have done the same, they gave up their own modules to the other developers because they simply didn't have time or interest to continue developing it or joined the others instead of reinventing the wheel! I personally took over several different abandoned modules and revived them instead of making another similar one, Community allowed me to do that. The fact is if it wasn't because of this attitude we would never had powerful modules like Views, FileFiled, Panels,CCK, etc , Instead we might have had Views2, Views Plus, MyViews! and certainly none of them could possible do what Views can today, it's the hard work of many talented developers, they decided to work together and continue each other's work and that's the result.

 

So let's all do it in Drupal way :)

Pages

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