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Apr 20 2019
Apr 20

It was easy!

Ok - I did have help from cafuego, so there's some bits of the process that were just magic to me.  But once I had access to the environments, I enabled the migrate modules, and followed instructions on drupal.org and hey presto it was done!

I did need to do manual clean up - re position blocks into differently named regions, and recreate some menu items for taxonomy.

I also got stumped for a bit about why I could no longer free tag, but that turned out to be a simple setting change.

There's still some tweaking to do, and I know that the path to files has changed, so there's lots of broken images I need to tidy up, but other than that, all seems well.

During his keynote at DrupalCon a couple of weeks back, Dries said the time to move to D8 is now.

He's right.

Oct 27 2018
Oct 27

Six years and 9 months... is a relatively long time. Not as long as some things, longer than others. Relative. As is everything.

But Six years and 9 months is the length of time I've been on the board of the Drupal Association.

I was elected to serve on the board by the community in February 2012, and then nominated to serve for another two terms. That second term expires on 31 October. My original candidate statement makes somewhat nostalgic reading now... and it's now that I wonder, what I achieved. If anything?

But that's the wrong question. There's nothing useful to be gained in trying to answer it.

Instead - I want to reflect on what I learned.

I learned something from everyone at that table. Honestly, I never really lost my sense of imposter syndrome, and I'm freely and gleefully willing to admit that.

Cary Gordon - we shared a passion for DrupalCon. That show grew into the incredible event it is because of seeds you sewed. And your experience running big shows, and supporting small community libraries seemed to be the perfect mix for fueling what Drupal needed.

Steve Purkiss - we were elected together! Your passion for cooperatives, for Drupal, and for getting on with it, and making things happen was infectious! Thank you for standing with me in those weird first few months of being in this weird new place, called the board of the Drupal Association!

Pedro Cambra - I wish I'd heed the lesson you taught me more often. Listen carefully. Speak only when there's something important to say, or to make the case for a perspective that's being missed. But also good humour. And Thank you for helping make the election process better, and helping the DA "own" the mechanics.

Morten - brother. I can't even find the words to say. Your passion for Drupal, for theming, and for our community always inspired me. I miss your energy.

Angie "webchick" Byron - mate! I still can't fathom how you did what you do so effortlessly! Well, I know it's not effortless, but you make it look that way. Your ability to cut through noise, sort things out, get things done, and inspire the Drupal masses to greatness is breathtaking.

Matthew Saunders - you made me appreciate the importance of governance from a different perspective. Thank you for the work you did to strengthen our board processes.

Addison Berry - Sorry Addi - this is a bit shameful, but it was the mezcal, tequila and bourbon lessons that really stuck.

Danese Cooper - I was so grateful for your deep wisdom of Open Source, and the twists and turns of the path it's followed over such a long time. Your eye to pragmatism over zealotry, but steadfast in the important principles.

Shyamala Rajaram - Oh Shyamala! I can't believe we only first met at DrupalCon Mumbai, or perhaps it was only the first time, this time! Thank you for teaching us all how important it is for us to be in India, and embrace our global community.

Ryan Szrama - you stepped onto the board at such a tough moment, but you stepped up into the role of community elected Director, and helped make sense out of what was happening. Sorry not to see you in Drupal Europe.

Rob Gill - Running. I didn't learn this. Sorry.

Tiffany Farriss - You're formidable! You taught me the importance of having principles, and sticking to them. And then using them to build a foundation in the bedrock. You do this with such style, and grace, and good humour. I'm so thankful I've had this time with you.

Jeff Walpole - You made me question my assumptions all the time! You made me laugh, and you gave me excellent bourbon. You always had a way of bringing us back to the real world when we waded too deep into the weeds.

Vesa Palmu - So many things - but the one that still resonates, is we should all celebrate failure. We should create ritual around it, and formalise the lessons failure teaches. We all learn so much more from mistakes, than from successes.

Sameer Verna - For a time, we were the only linux users at the table, and then I defected back to MacOS - I still feel a bit guilty about this, I admit. You championed Free Software at every step - but also, so often, guided us through the strategic mumbo jumbo, to get to the point we needed to.

Steve Francia - "It's not as bad as you all seem to think it is" I don't know why, but I hear this mantra, spoken with your voice, whenever I think of you. Thank you for your Keynote in Nashville, and for everything.

Mike Lamb - I've not yet put into practice the lesson I need to learn from you. To switch off. To really go home, and be home, and switch off the world. I need me some of that, after all of this. Thank you so much for all you've done, but more for your positive, real world perspective. Ta!

Annie - I missed your presence in Germany so much - I feel like I've still got so much to learn from you. You bridged the worlds of digital and marketing, and brought much needed perspective to our thinking. Twas an honour to serve with you.

Audra - With you too, I feel like I was only beginning to get into the groove of the wisdom you're bringing to the table. I hope our paths continue to cross, so I can keep learning!

Baddy Sonja Breidert - A powerful lesson - as volunteers, we have to account for the time, passion and energy we borrow from the rest of our lives, when we give it to Drupal. And Drupal needs to properly recognise it too.

Ingo Rübe - You taught me how to have courage to bring big ideas to the table, and show grace in letting them go.

Michel van Velde - You taught me to interrogate my assumptions, with fun, with good humour, and honest intention of doing good.

George Matthes - You taught me the power of questioning the received wisdom from history. You reminded me of the importance of bringing fresh eyes to every challenge.

Adam Goodman - a simple, but important lesson. That leadership is about caring for people.

Suzanne Dergacheva - newly elected, and about to start your term - I had too little chance to learn from you at the board table, but I already learned that you can teach the whole community kindness by giving them carnations! #DrupalThanks to you too. And power to your arms as you take the oars as a community elected director, and help row us forward!

And to all the staff who've served over the years, your dedication to this organisation and community it serves is incredible. You've all made a difference, together, to all of us. Special mentions for four of you...

Kris - from Munich to Vienna - my constant companion, and my dive bar adventure buddy. Til next time there is cheese...

Holly - Inspiring me to knit! Or, more accurately, to wish I could knit better than I can. To knit with conviction! It's a metaphor for so much, but also very very literally. Also I miss you.

Steph - Your vibrant enthusiasm, and commitment to DrupalCon always inspired me. Your advice on food trucks in Portland nourished me.

Megan - where to start? I'd never finish. Kindness, compassion, steely focus, commercial reality, "operational excellence", and cactus margaritas.

I save my penultimate words for Dries... Thank you for having faith in me. Thank you for creating Drupal, and for sharing it with all of us. Also, thank you sharing many interesting kinds of Gin!

These final words are for Tim - as you take the reins of this crazy sleigh ride into the future - I feel like I'm leaving just before the party is really about to kick off.

Go you good thing.

Good bye, so long, and thanks for all the fish.

The DA does amazing work.
If you rely on Drupal, you rely on them.

Please consider becoming a member, or a supporting partner.

Mar 17 2018
Mar 17
DrupalCon Nashville kattekrab Sat, 17/03/2018 - 22:01

I'm going to Nashville!!

That is all. Carry on. Or... better yet - you should come too!

https://events.drupal.org/nashville2018

drupalplanet
Feb 17 2018
Feb 17

What even is "Site Building"?

At DrupalDownunder some years back, the wonderful Erica Bramham named her talk "All node, no code". Nodes were the fundamental building blocks in Drupal, they were like single drops of content. These days though, it's all about entities.

But hang on a minute, I'm using lots of buzz words, and worse, I'm using words that mean different things in different contexts. Jargon is one of the first hurdles you need to jump to understand the diverse worlds of the web. People who grow up multi-lingual learn that the meanings of words is somewhat arbitrary. They learn the same thing has different names. This is true for the web too. So the first thing to know about Site Building, is it means different things to different people. 

To me, it means being able to build a website with out knowing how to code. I also believe it means I can build a website without having to set up my own development environment. I know people who vehemently disagree with me about this. But that's ok. This is my blog, and these are my rules.

So - this is a post about site building, using SimplyTest.Me and Drupal 8 out of the box.

1. Go to https://simplytest.me

2. Type Drupal Core in the search field, and select "Drupal core" from the list

3. Choose the latest development branch, right at the bottom of the list.

For me, right now, that's 8.6.x, and here's a screenshot of what that looks like.

SimplyTest Me Screenshot, showing drop down fields described in the text.

4. Click "Launch sandbox".

Now wait.

In a few moments, you should see a fresh shiny Drupal 8 site, ready for you to explore.

For me today, it looks like this.  

Drupal 8.6.x front page screenshot

In the top right of the window, you should see a "Log in" link.

Click that, and enter admin/admin to login. 

You're now ready to practice some site building!

First, you'll need to create some content to play with.  Here's a short screencast that shows you how to login, add an article, and change the title using Quick Edit.

[embedded content]

A guide to what's next

Follow the Drupal User guide to start building your site!

If you want to start at the beginning, you'll get a great overview of Drupal, and some important info on how to plan your site. But if you want to roll up your sleeves and get building, you can skip the chapter on site installation and jump straight to chapter 4, and dive into basic site configuration.

Experiment

You have 24 hours to experiment with the simplytest.me sandbox - after that it disappears.

Get in touch

If you want something more permanent, you might want to "try drupal" or contact us at catalyst-au.net to discuss our Drupal services.

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay
Aug 10 2017
Aug 10

I gave a talk a couple of years ago called Tools for Talking.

I'm preparing a new talk, which, in some ways, is a sequel to this one. As part of that prep, I thought it might be useful to write some short summaries of each of the tools outlined here, with links to resources on them.

So I might try to make a start on that over the next week or so.

In the meantime, here's the slides:

And here's the video of the presentation at DrupalCon Barcelona

[embedded content]

Apr 05 2017
Apr 05
Making Views in Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 kattekrab Wed, 05/04/2017 - 11:45

This talk was written for DrupalGov Canberra 2017.

Download a PDF of the slides.

Or view below on slideshare.

 

Making views - DrupalGov Canberra 2017 from Donna Benjamin drupal drupalplanet content management
Mar 10 2016
Mar 10

We've got a great line-up of candidates to choose from this year in the Drupal Association board election. It's a really tough choice.

But reading through the candidates statements it seems many of them seem to think that being on the board of the association somehow influences the project directly. It doesn't.

The board governs the association. It doesn't govern Drupal.

The Association doesn't govern Drupal either.

As a community - we should probably think and talk about project governance more than we do, and perhaps consider or Re-consider how the association fits into the picture.

The Association works to keep the lights on for Drupal.org, and run DrupalCon. There's other important stuff, but those two things are the Big Jobs - the heavy lifting. Last year we ran a fund-raising campaign to directly fund work on the project. That was new, and great work was done, but we also didn't decide who did that work, or what work they did.

Last year, Holly (our awesome Executive Director) wrote a great blog post that outlines what the board does.

Anyway - some rushed and random thoughts after I cast my vote.

Please cast yours!

If you have an account on Drupal.org and logged in during the past 12 months, you are eligible to vote. Please do so!

https://assoc.drupal.org/drupal-association-board-elections

Dec 12 2015
Dec 12

Open Source Software. Gotta love it.

I was fooling around with the second alpha release of the Bootstrap theme for Drupal8. I hit a snag, made a wish (by posting an issue to drupal.org) and Lo! and Behold! Not long after the wish was granted and a Beta was released.

If you're one of those people who uses Drupal to publish stuff online, and just want to get something up quickly without using Drupal's default Bartik theme, then you might want to take a look at Bootstrap.

Yes, there's still some rough edges in there - but if you're willing to share your thoughts, and be constructive, you too might be able to help improve it faster!

Head to https://www.drupal.org/project/bootstrap to check it out.

Or perhaps just fire up Bootstrap on simplytest.me

Sep 10 2015
Sep 10

Communication can be surprisingly hard.

Human beings talk a lot. Well many humans do. Some less so, Some more so, but I reckon, in general, there's a lot of daily jibber jabber.

Some of that talking is light hearted "Small Talk". Some of it is world changing speeches. Some of it is the daily to and fro we need to get stuff done; at work, at play, at home.

Some talking leads to conflict. Whilst thinking and talking about how to resolve conflict in more constructive ways, me and Gina Likins puzzled over how we could talk about compassion, and the important part it plays in conflict resolution. We talked about Empathy and Sympathy, and examined various definitions of all these words.

In the end, this is what we came up with. We were thinking about Free and Open Source Software communities. But it seems to have resonated with others, so, I thought I'd post it here, and expand a little on each point.

Sympathy, Empathy and Compassion are "Big feels". So, this is just my take on how we might more easily distinguish them from each other.

Sympathy

This is when we feel sorry for someone. We acknowledge that something has happened which isn't good for them, and is causing them some level of distress. In the software world, it might be like noticing that someone has reported a bug.

Empathy

This goes a step further. This is when we really acknowledge something is wrong. Perhaps we've experienced it too, we understand the issue is real. In software terms, perhaps we can replicate the bug, and acknowledge it's an issue that needs addressing.

Compassion

The next step comes when we are motivated to help. We've not just acknowledged there's a problem, but are willing to do something to help fix it. In software terms, it means stepping up to help fix the bug that's been reported.

Bug trackers and issue queues can be sources of minor conflict. We lack the non-verbal queues provided by tone of voice and body language that help when raising issues. It's natural to feel defensive. But perhaps, taking a moment to reflect on how we communicate, and what we hear, what we mean, and how we respond, could really help us get more done, together.

Aug 27 2015
Aug 27

The Drupal 8 Accelerate campaign has raised over two hundred and thirty thousand dollars ($233,519!!).  That's a lot of money! But our goal was to raise US$250,000 and we're running out of time. I've personally helped raise $12,500 and I'm aiming to raise 8% of the whole amount, which equals $20,000. I've got less than $7500 now to raise. Can you help me? Please chip in.

Most of my colleagues on the board have contributed anchor funding via their companies. As a micro-enterprise, my company Creative Contingencies is not in a position to be able to that, so I set out to crowdfund my share of the fundraising effort.

I'd really like to shout out and thank EVERYONE who has made a contribution to get me this far.Whether you donated cash, or helped to amplify my voice, thank you SO so soooo much. I am deeply grateful for your support.

If you can't, or don't want to contribute because you do enough for Drupal that's OK! I completely understand. You're awesome. :) But perhaps you know someone else who is using Drupal, who will be using Drupal you could ask to help us? Do you know someone or an organisation who gets untold value from the effort of our global community? Please ask them, on my behalf, to Make a Donation

If you don't know anyone, perhaps you can help simply by sharing my plea? I'd love that help. I really would!

And if you, like some others I've spoken with, don't think people should be paid to make Free Software then I urge you to read Ashe Dryden's piece on the ethics of unpaid labor in the Open Source Community. It made me think again.

Do you want to know more about how the money is being spent? 
See: https://assoc.drupal.org/d8-accelerate-awarded-grants

Perhaps you want to find out how to apply to spend it on getting Drupal8 done?
See: https://assoc.drupal.org/d8-accelerate-application

Are you curious about the governance of the program?
See: https://www.drupal.org/governance/d8accelerate

And just once more, with feeling, I ask you to please consider making a donation.

So how much more do I need to get it done? To get to GAME OVER?

  • 1 donation x $7500 = game over!
  • 3 donations x $2500
  • 5 donations x $1500
  • 10 donations x $750
  • 15 donationsx $500 <== average donation
  • 75 donations x $100 <== most common donation
  • 100 donations x $75
  • 150 donations x $50
  • 500 donations x $15
  • 750 donations x $10 <== minimum donation

Thank you for reading this far. Really :-)

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