Dec 13 2011
Dec 13

DrupalCamp NYC 10 was one of the best Drupal camps I've ever attended. With around 400 attendees, it was definitely the biggest. Somehow, it still had the intimate feel of a camp and there were lots of opportunities for conversations and networking, both during the day and at the after party.

By scheduling ten sessions during each time slot, the organizers allowed more people the opportunity to speak, ensured that there was always something for everyone, and gave sessions an intimate, bof-like feel. We really appreciated the many high-quality sessions in the dedicated track for sysadmin and performance topics, with Nathan Goulding's Chef session and Mark Sonnabaum's XHProf session stimulating a lively discussion during the long drive back to Montreal.

Julia and I had the opportunity to present sessions at the camp:

How to tell Views about your mongooses

Julia Evans presented a Views session about displaying custom data in Drupal using Views. She'll be doing a write-up soon to go along with the presentation.

Multilingual Site Building with Drupal 7

Drupal Camp NYC 10 The camp also featured one time slot for guided conversations (aka Birds of a Feather sessions) led by expert Drupalers who had presented throughout the day. These provided a place for Q&A amongst those with common interests. Setting aside a dedicated time slot ensured that there was a high level of participation.

A huge thanks to the organizers who put so much time and energy into planning the event. You guys made it look easy and fun! We're looking forward to heading back down to the tri-state area for Drupal Camp New Jersey in February.

Nov 14 2011
Nov 14

Alex, Tavish and I had a great time in the T Dot over the weekend at DrupalCamp Toronto. The camp was well-attended, there were lots of great presentations and BoFs, and we even came back with some very hardcore Druplicon touques (hats for you non-Canadians).

Here's a recap of the four sessions we presented at the camp:

Drupal 7 Higher Education Case Study

Alex did a case study on our recent work in using Drupal 7 to build an admissions portal for a major Canadian university, emphasizing how we were able to leverage Drupal 7's new Fields API to allow non-technical administrators to easily customize the online application form.

Responsive Design and Drupal Theming

I presented my approach to implementing responsive design in Drupal, including how to handling elements like Panels, tables, forms, and images. This session expanded on a blog post about responsive design and Drupal that I wrote last month.

Multilingual Site Building in Drupal 7

I also did a presentation on building multilingual sites with Drupal. My focus was on methods for content translation, which is also covered by this blog post.

Poutine Maker: A Tasty Introduction to the Field API in Drupal 7

Tavish, our superstar intern, introduced attendees to the Drupal 7 Field API with his popular Poutine-themed presentation. The presentation covered creating custom fields, including validation, saving, and formatting field data.

A huge thanks to all the organizers and sponsors for putting on such a great event, which gave us a chance to connect with many friends old and new. We're looking forward to heading back to Toronto for the Drupal Business Summit 2011 Toronto, on December 2nd, where Alex will be co-chairing a breakout session on Drupal in Higher Education with Jennifer Hols from ImageX Media.

Sep 30 2011
Sep 30

This September, to kick off Drupal Camp Montreal 2011, the Montreal Drupal community held our first large-scale Drupal code sprint. The sprint was held from September 14-16 at Notman House and carried on at the camp until September 18th. The sprint was spearheaded by Gábor Hojtsy who is leading the Drupal 8 Multilingual intiative. Francesco Placella, who has contributed to Drupal 7’s field translation API as well as the Entity Translation module, was also a key contributor.

In Quebec, support for multilingual websites is extremely important as most projects include some type of multilingual user interface and content. Holding a code sprint for the multilingual initiative was a perfect opportunity for our community to contribute to Drupal. Overall, there were over 15 contributors who attended the code sprint including developers, UX designers, site builders, and new-comers to Drupal. Our whole team participated in the sprint and three of our developers attended all five days of the sprint.

The code sprint covered a lot of ground, including documentation, UX improvements, and patches to Drupal core and the Entity Translation module. UX improvements were proposed for installing new languages and configuring languages in Drupal. Core development was done to improve how various Drupal APIs handle language. Since most Drupal developers don't have experience with multilingual, this is key to improving Drupal's overall multilingual support. For an overview of all the progress made, read Gábor’s summary of the sprint or watch his presentation from the camp on the Drupal 8 Multilingual initiative. Here’s a summary of our contributions:

Code

Logan Smyth worked on creating new functions for managing multilingual field items (http://drupal.org/node/1260640), adding support for Javascript versions of t and formatPlural (http://drupal.org/node/488496), moving the language domain and prefix settings to the language negotiation configuration page (http://drupal.org/node/1280530), and creating a new API for managing Locale source and target strings (http://drupal.org/node/361597).

Tavish Armstrong worked on language handling in the form API (http://drupal.org/node/1280996), the API for deleting languages (http://drupal.org/node/1260528), and compatibility between Node Clone and Entity Translation (http://drupal.org/node/1230858).

Thomas Getgood, our newest developer, worked on a patch to enable bulk field language updates when switching field translatability for the Entity Translation module (http://drupal.org/node/1279372).

Documentation

Suzanne Kennedy, our front-end developer, worked on multilingual documentation with Sylvain Aube of Whisky Echo Bravo. Together, they cleaned up the existing documentation and added pages on Entity Translation (http://drupal.org/node/1280632). They also pushed to make the Drupal multilingual documentation guide a top-level handbook on drupal.org, which it now is. You can learn more about the Entity Translation module and how it compares to Content Translation from Suzanne’s presentation at DrupalCamp Montreal.

Thank You!

The sprint was a huge success, and a great milestone for the Montreal Drupal community. In addition to learning more about the multilingual intiative and how languages are handled in Drupal 7 and 8, we learnt a lot about contributing to Drupal, issue queue management using IRC, and how to write tests. Thanks to Francesco and Gábor for making the trip to Montreal from across the Atlantic! Thanks to Notman House for providing the venue for the first three days of the sprint, and McGill for hosting the camp and sprint over the weekend. The Drupal Association also provided us a community cultivation grant, which paid for Francesco's flight from Italy and Acquia flew in Gábor Hojtsy from Hungary as part of their sponsorship of the camp.

We’re looking forward to helping organize another sprint in Montreal in the near future!

Sep 23 2011
Sep 23

After 6 months of planning, DrupalCamp Montreal finally came together mid-September. We were all really excited for how this year would pan out. With a smaller, leaner organizational team, the core group of volunteers quickly secured a location, set up a website and selected keynotes. McGill University generously provided McIntyre Medical building as our venue, and we hosted a pre-Camp code sprint at the Notman House.

Gabor Hojtsy and Francesco Placella flew in from Hungary and Italy, respectively, for the sprint. Indeed, it proved to be a very productive week for those involved. Over 15 issues were created, UX improvements were logged, and the multilingual documentation received a major facelift. Despite being scheduled for only 3 days, most of the sprinters continued their effort during the Camp.
Code Sprint

The Camp itself went off without a hitch. Attendance, unfortunately, wasn’t as high as we had expected, but the smaller crowd created a more personal feel at the event. We had two powerful keynotes delivered by Jen Simmons and Angie Byron, and a host of presentations by knowledgeable speakers. Jen gave an overview of the progress made in responsive design and what the future holds with HTML 5. Angie talked about how every little bit goes a long way in the community, and how easy contributing to Drupal can be. Both were inspiring speakers whose presentations should be watched by everyone (videos are available here).

Despite the smaller crowd, the Camp generated a profit for the second year in a row. Montreal is a great place to get involved in technology, and our local Drupal community is steadily growing. The funding from the event will provide us with sufficient resources to host more code sprints, meet ups, community BBQs and to foster Drupal growth in the city.

Evolving Web presented 5 sessions during the Camp. All videos are up on the website, and our slides are available below:

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