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Deeson: Drupal 8, what's in it for me?

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 11:59pm

The open source content management framework Drupal is at the heart of our work here at Deeson. We use it every day, contribute code and enjoy participating in the global Drupal community.

With the new Drupal 8 release on the horizon and a few of our dedicated Drupalers participating in this weekend's DrupalCamp London, we thought it was a good time to look at the benefits of using Drupal 8 for both marketers and technologists

So as the ever so polite marketer that I am, we'll let the technologists go first. Read on further to find out more about Drupal 8 and marketing.

I'm an IT or technical specialist. Hit me with Drupal 8. 

How would you sell Drupal 8 to me in one sentence? 

"Use Drupal for the developer experience."

Drupal 8 is built using the Symfony framework which makes use of best practice object orientated paradigms.

This allows for easier code completion and better integration into development environments - put simply, programming is less stress and more fun.

What makes it different to the CMS I'm currently (and successfully) using? 

There are several major changes to Drupal 8 which address some of the shortcomings of previous versions of Drupal.

A clear winner here is the ability for developers to track changes in configuration using version control, The means there's a much more reliable process to update a production site cleanly.  

Drupal 8 drops some of the custom built libraries used in previous Drupal versions for best-of-breed industry standard alternatives from beyond the Drupal ecosystem.  

Drupal exposes its data in a RESTful manner using web services - making it much easier to create and maintain integrations with other systems.

The language translation systems have been completely rewritten making multi lingual websites a pleasure to build - compared to some of the pain that developers have experienced building multi-lingual sites on previous Drupal versions.

What benefits could I bring to my company from adopting Drupal 8? 

For the developers, Drupal 8 is better architected. This means it just makes more sense to developers and technologists.

There's less need for what is known as "tribal knowledge" - specialist knowledge about Drupal itself.

For the business this means less need to employ Drupal specialists. Employers can look to recruit and develop good computer programmers who will get up to speed with Drupal 8 faster than they would have done with Drupal 7.

Enough tech talk. I'm a Marketing Manager​. What's in it for me?

Why should I be bothered about Drupal 8?

In the past marketers have too often seen the choice of website content management system (CMS) as a technology decision that belongs in the IT department. 

But reaching the multichannel consumer needs multichannel marketing. And that means that the CMS needs to play an active role in delivering an effective marketing mix.

The right CMS can enable sophisticated personalisation and integration with wider digital marketing infrastructure.

The wrong CMS can lead to ineffective campaign workarounds, problems with handling customer data and unnecessary complexity.

Drupal 8 has been created with marketers in mind. It allows you to easily integrate your choice of CRM, email marketing and marketing automation systems with your Drupal 8 website. It enables marketing teams to easily deliver segmented campaigns by audience, language and device type.

How can I align Drupal 8 with the everyday demands of my job? Can it actually be part of campaign planning and strategy work? 

In modern digital marketing content doesn’t just sit on a website. It’s at the heart of effective marketing across every digital channel.

Drupal 8 is built to combine power with flexibility for marketers. This potential doesn’t come at the expense of user complexity though.

Common administrative features that marketers will use every day have been redesigned with easy of use in mind in Drupal 8.

Content can be edited in-situ, easily previewed so you can see what users will see and a new drag and drop image upload feature makes image management easy.

This power to effectively manage content combined with the integration of Drupal 8 with other parts of your marketing infrastructure means marketing teams can deliver better campaigns with Drupal 8 at the heart of their day-to-day marketing planning and execution. 

How do I sell the idea of using Drupal 8 to my boss? 

A good question. I think the answer is that selling Drupal 8 to your boss is the wrong move.

Understanding the limitations your current CMS places on your marketing is probably a good starting point. 

Once you’ve worked this out, you’ll find that many of them will probably be solved in Drupal 8.

Allowing you to deliver better and more effective campaigns is where the business benefit of a move to Drupal 8 comes from - and so that’s the basis on which you can build a business case.

Don’t forget that the benefits of Drupal 8 are wider than just marketing. So your business case needs to make sure it takes account of the technology and management benefits for your organisation too.   

Whille we've only covered a few of the many reasons to use Drupal as a CMS, it's important to understand how it can align with your goals as a marketer or an IT specialist within your business.

If you're attending DrupalCamp London and you'd like to have a coffee or simply spy on us as we investigate each talk, follow and tweet us @deesonlabs

Deeson: Drupalcamp 2015 and why it matters

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 11:15pm

This weekend sees the annual DrupalCamp London 2015 and Deeson team members will be there in force.

As a co-director of the event I've enjoyed seeing DrupalCamp London grow and thrive over the years.

Launched in 2013, the event is a place to gather with like-minded Drupal developers and those who'd like to find out more about the benefits of using an open source CMS.

This year promises to be extra interesting, with the impending release of Drupal 8.

We've already discussed why this is highly relevant to both tech specialists and marketers, but we think it's also important to note how valuable DrupalCamp is to the evolution of the technology. 

People over product

Not only is DrupalCamp exciting in the technology it showcases, but also in the 'process' it hosts - the focused collaboration of great minds in building an even better product.

With such a 'people based' approach to building the product, it's impossible to ignore the personal issues developers may face. 

That's why keynote speakers are focused both on the product itself and the art of bringing people together to solve complex issues and the questions arising for the people behind Drupal.

Saturday sees a huge range of topics covered, both from the perspective of a website user to the often-overlooked issue of the CMS user and how to make their experience better within the system. 

While the schedule focuses on the practical issues developer might face when using Drupal, it also provides guidance for developers who may be experiencing difficult working situations, including the wonderfully titled 'Team working for megalomaniacs' session.

The event's a unique opportunity to gather the people who contribute to and use Drupal on a daily basis. It's a sounding board to find out what makes them tick, steering the product development in a direction they're happy with. 

 

Two heads are better than one, hundreds are unbeatable 

Getting people in a room together to thrash out issues and debate usability over the same table is second to none in catalysing progress.

Some of the brightest, most unique brains in the land use the technology, each putting their own spin on things. 

Sitting these people down together creates new and amazing ways to drive Drupal forward in to its next phase. 

There's also the opportunity to socialise with like-minded Drupal enthusiasts at the pub. Where better to discuss Bootstrap, Panels and all things content management?

Open to all

Whether you're a hardened Drupal expert or a curious brand manager who has never experimented with the system, the event is inclusive, welcoming and enlightening.

One thing's certain, you'll leave with plenty of answers and a lot more questions than you came with. 

There's truly no better place to witness the excitement and pace of collaborative development. 

Why not come and join us?

Annertech: Create the WOW Factor with Drupal - Part 5 of 5

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 11:04pm
Create the WOW Factor with Drupal - Part 5 of 5

Over the course of this series we have looked at how to add some pizazz, AKA added value, to your projects through the three prongs of technical knowhow, aesthetics and service delivery. Today we'll look at:

Creating Wow - Transforming the ordinary into something special

This is part 5 of a 5 part series. Read the rest of the series here.

To finish off talking about The Wow Factor, here are some ideas where you can go the extra mile to really create wow.

Capgemini Engineering: Drupal, Symfony and friends

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 4:00pm
Drupal, Symfony and friends Introduction

There are thousands of situations in which you do not want to reinvent the wheel. It is a well known principle in Software Engineering, but not always well applied/known into the Drupal world.

Let’s say for example, that you have a url that you want to convert from relative to absolute. It is a typical scenario when you are working with Web (but not just Web) crawlers. Well, you could start building your own library to achieve the functionality you are looking for, packaging all in a Drupal module format. It is an interesting challenge indeed but, unless for training or learning purposes, why wasting your time when someone else has already done it instead of just focussing on the real problem? Especially if your main app purpose is not that secondary problem (the url converter).

What’s more, if you reuse libraries and Open Source code, you’ll probably find yourself in the situation in which you could need an small improvement in that nice library you are using. Contributing your changes back you are closing the circle of the Open Source, the reason why the Open Source is here to stay and conquer the world (diabolical laugh here).

That’s another one of the main reasons why lot’s of projects are moving to the Composer/Symfony binomium, stop working as isolated projects and start working as global projects that can share code and knowledge between many other projects. It’s a pattern followed by Drupal, to name but one, and also by projects like like phpBB, ezPublish, Laravel, Magento,Piwik, …

Composer and friends

Coming back to our crawler and the de-relativizer library that we are going to need, at this point we get to know Composer. Composer is a great tool for using third party libraries and, of course, for contributing back those of your own. In our web crawler example, net_url2 does a the job just beautifully.

Nice, but at this point you must be wondering… What does this have to do with Drupal, if any at all? Well, in fact, as everyone knows, Drupal 8 is being (re)built following this same principle (DRY or don’t repeat yourself) with an strong presence of the great Symfony 2 bundles in the core. Advantages? Lots of them, as we were pointing out, but that’s the purpose of another discussion

The point here is that you don’t need to wait for Drupal 8, and what’s more, you can start applying some of this principles in your Drupal 7 libraries, making your future transition to Drupal 8 even easier.

Let’s rock and roll

So, using a Symfony bundle in Drupal 7 is quite simple. Just:

  1. Install composer manager
  2. Create a composer.json file in your custom module folder
  3. Place the content (which by the way, you’ll find quite familiar if you’ve already worked with Symfony / composer yaml’s): "require": { "pear/net_url2": "2.0.x-dev" }
  4. enable the custom module

And that’s it basically. At this point we simply need to tell drupal to generate the main composer.json. That’s basically a composer file generated from the composer.json found in each one of the modules that include a composer themselves.

Lets generate that file:

drush composer-rebuild

At this point we have the main composer file, normally in a vendor folder (if will depend on the composer manager settings).

Now, let’s make some composer magic :

drush composer update

At this point, inside the vendors folder we should now have a classmap, containing amongst others our newly included library.

Hopefully all has gone well, and just like magic, the class net_url2 is there to be used in our modules. Something like :

$base = new Net_URL2($absoluteURL);

Just remember to add the library to your class. Something like:

use Net_URL2;

In the next post we’ll be doing some more exciting stuff. We will create some code that will live in a Symfony bundle, completely decoupled but at the same time fully integrated with Drupal. All using Composer magic to allow the integration.

Why? Again, many reasons like:

  1. Being ready for Drupal 8 (just lift libraries from D7 or D6 to D8),
  2. Decoupling things so we code things that are ready to use not just in Drupal, and
  3. Opening the door to other worlds to colaborate with our Drupal world, …
  4. Why not use Dependency Injection in Drupal (as it already happens in D8)? What about using the Symfony Service container? Or something more light like Pimple?
  5. Choose between many other reasons…

See you in my next article about Drupal, Composer and friends, on the meantime, be good :-).

Drupal, Symfony and friends was originally published by Capgemini at Capgemini on February 27, 2015.

Annertech: Create the WOW Factor with Drupal - Part 4 of 5

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 3:32pm
Create the WOW Factor with Drupal - Part 4 of 5

In yesterday's installment of this series we looked at adding some wow factor through the aesthetics of a project. Today's we'll look at:

Creating Wow - Service

This is part 3 of a 5 part series. Read the rest of the series here.

 

Wowing your clients is not solely about the end product. The delivery of that product and its ongoing service and maintenance are just as important for the ongoing happiness of the client and therefore the bottom line.

Mediacurrent: Charlotte Drupal Drive-In 2015

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 1:44pm

This past Saturday was the second annual Drupal Drive-in event in Charlotte, North Carolina. Somewhere between a camp and a meetup, the Drive-in was conceived as an informal and ad-hoc gathering by its organizers, Thomas Lattimore and Mark Shropshire.

DrupalCon News: Call for Business Track Speakers

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 1:35pm

It is well understood within the tech community that most of our executives started out as being highly technical; in the trenches writing code for 15 hours a day. Like many journeyman professions, the more successful you are at your skillset, the more likely you’ll be rewarded with larger, higher profile, projects. The master developers among us are often asked to lead within our organizations and eventually take on such diverse responsibilities as scrum leader, mentor, technical lead, and eventually, the role of technology executive.

Gbyte blog: Simple Views display switch

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 11:55am

If you need a simple Views display switch to toggle e.g between a list and a grid display of a view, there are a couple of plug & play options already.

Display Suite and Quick Tabs are modules which provide this functionality but they seem to be quite an overkill for a simple display switch. View modes on the other hand seems to be exactly what is needed, however there is no stable version and the development one did not work for me.

How it needs to work

Our use case dictates that the filters and the page number have to stay intact while switching to a different views display. The page will be reloaded, no AJAX magic here.

Propeople Blog: A Content Staging Solution for Drupal 8 (and more)

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 10:02am

Moving content between different environments is a need for many big companies that have a Drupal site and content that should be created, reviewed, edited and published on different environments. Although Drupal 8 is not yet released, a content staging solution is already in the works. Dick Olsson (dixon_ on drupal.org) and I are working on this solution together and we aim to release an alpha version soon.

The content staging solution for Drupal 8 is based on a re-designed version of the Deploy module. This solution consists of some contrib modules and depends on three Drupal core modules. The core dependencies are Entity API, Serialization and Restful Web Services. The contributed module dependencies are Relaxed Web Services, Multiversion, Key-value Extensions and (soon) Deploy.

The Relaxed Web Services module provides a Restful/Relaxed JSON API and endpoints for entities, file attachments, administrative tasks like revisions comparison, starting/stopping replication, etc. It extends the core REST API with better support for handling UUID references, revisions, file attachments, etc. This module is borrowing the API interface from CouchDB and its Replication API. CouchDB is a NoSQL, document-oriented database.

The Multiversion module provides revision support for all content entities. It also tracks update sequences to make dependency management easier and tracks revision trees (similar to Git) in order to support conflict detection. With Multiversion, entities are never deleted, they are just flagged as deleted. This is needed in order to replicate deletions and for conflict handling.

Key-value Extensions provides an extension of the core key-value API with a backend for lists and sorted sets that you can do range queries on. This module is needed because of the way the Multiversion module stores its sequence indexes.

Deploy (will be implemented soon) - provides a simple user interface to manage replication and conflicts.

Replication

At the moment, we are using the CouchDB replicator to test content replication between different systems. The CouchDB Replication protocol is a protocol for synchronizing documents between 2 peers over HTTP. This protocol will be used to implement the Replication Web Service module for Drupal 8.

The Replication Web Service module will provide the possibility to replicate content between different systems and Drupal 8, it will also have a Drush plugin for running the replication. Furthermore, it will be possible to run live replications in order to synchronize applications.

Offline applications

By using a standardized HTTP replication protocol for Drupal, such as the one CouchDB is using, the same solution will be applicable to other very interesting use cases as well.

The Offline First principle is quite new in web development, but it has many benefits for users and their experience. A website designed after these principles will continue to work, even if there is no Internet connection available. Now it’s possiblel to create Offline First applications with Drupal 8! We can build offline applications using the same suite of modules that we introduced earlier. To do this we need a remote database - represented by a Drupal 8 site and a local browser-based database, for example PouchDB.

The content staging suite provides all necessary features, such as synchronization, revisioning and file attachments, to create an offline application. At the moment, it’s working with PouchDB version 3.2.1. I’ve created a video to demonstrate how synchronization between PouchDB and Drupal 8 works

Video of Test pull and push replication using Drupal 8 and PouchDB

To test this I use an application based on ToDoMVC and PouchDB 3.2.1.

Headless Drupal

In Drupal 8, we have integrated the Twig template framework, a very good thing, especially for front-end developers. However, sometimes we want to create an absolutely custom frontend using the power of libraries and frameworks like AngularJS and Hoodie, combined with Drupal 8 on the back-end.

The solution we implement provides a lot more possibilities than the Restful Web Services module from Drupal 8 core. This will make possible to create awesome applications using frameworks like AngularJS, a PouchDB database and Drupal 8.

Other Systems

The content staging suite will have many different use-cases, allow for replication between different systems and database, not just between Drupal sites.

Currently we have test suites for replication between Drupal 8 and CouchDB (using the CouchDB replicator, but later you will be able to use the Replication Web Services module). We also have test suites for replication between Drupal 8 and PouchDB.

In the future, this solution may be used to integrate Drupal 8 with other libraries and frameworks.

For more information, check out:

Tags: Drupal 8content stagingCheck this option to include this post in Planet Drupal aggregator: planetTopics: Tech & Development

Shomeya: 3 Pro-Theming Tips for Drupal 7

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 10:00am

Most developers know how to do these, but a lot of people follow the temptation and skip them in the rush to go live.

These simple steps reassure future developers and clients that you know what you are doing, subsequently increasing your value with just a few minutes of work.

All which means you can charge more and book more clients, both of which lead to the ability to do more of the things you love that are just for fun!

Read more

Drupal Watchdog: Will The Revolution Be Drupalized?

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 8:38am
Feature

Recently I found myself musing about two Drupal-related posts from back in 2007 that projected very different futures for the software project.

The first was by Jeff Robbins of Lullabot: “How Drupal Will Save the World.”

Robbins took as his reference case a community in Nigeria facing exploitation by a multinational oil company. Drupal, he suggested, could empower the community and “give a voice to those who might not otherwise be heard,” driving an internet that was “a powerful force for social change.” To achieve that vision, Robbins laid out technical challenges, centered on making the software easier to learn and use.[1]

A few months after Robbins’ post, Drupal contributor Fergus Geraghty initiated a Drupal.org discussion, “7 million reasons to consider democratising Drupal?” Drupal project lead Dries Buytaert had recently co-founded the company Acquia, and Buytaert’s start-up had just announced its first round of $7 million in venture capital financing. Geraghty expressed concern that the new commercial demands of Acquia could come to shape the overall direction of Drupal, pushing the project in the direction of profit maximization. Against this future, Geraghty proposed the creation of a co-operative to serve as the owner of the Drupal project.[2]

Seven years later, which of these futures are we living? Is Drupal empowering the marginalized and saving the world?

Or is it serving “the man”?

Software Freedom and Social Change

The idea that Drupal and free software could have a role in revolutionizing society might not be as off-the-wall as it sounds.

In Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution, the 19th century anarchist Peter Kropotkin countered the social Darwinist “survival of the fittest” thesis by arguing that cooperation was a driving force of evolution and a basis for free human societies.[3]

Tag1 Consulting: How to Maintain Contrib Modules for Drupal and Backdrop at the Same Time - Part 3

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 6:54am

This is the third in a series of blog posts about the relationship between Drupal and Backdrop CMS, a recently-released fork of Drupal. The goal of the series is to explain how a module (or theme) developer can take a Drupal project they currently maintain and support it for Backdrop as well, while keeping duplicate work to a minimum.

read more

more onion - devblog: Howto: Uninstall a field-based module.

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 3:27am

Usually when you try to uninstall a field-based module you're confronted with the following error message:

[module] is a required module and can't be disabled. Reason: Field type(s) in use - see Field list

In this blogpost I'm showing you how to uninstall such a module anyway (deleting all the stored data).

Tags:

ERPAL: These 3 questions help you to ensure satisfactory project results

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 1:51am

When you start a new project, you want your client to be happy with your solution because then you’ll get paid for what you’ve delivered. But what if your customer isn’t happy with your project results? Most likely, you won’t get paid the full amount of your order. The project setup with all the necessary agreements is one of the most critical parts of a project, and it influences the overall project's results. The good thing is that it’s not as hard as it seems to draft solid project agreements. When we at Bright Solutions start a new project, we always consider the following three questions. This provides a good basis for a robust project process that will deliver results and, ultimately, make clients happy.

1) What should you deliver and when?

This question is essential and the most important one, so I’ll devote a few words to it. Spend as much time as needed to clarify all your client’s detailed requirements and have him commit to them. This detailed agreement should already be part of your quote. Don't just talk vaguely about requirements; use mind maps, mock-ups and user stories – they’re good tools for requirements engineering. This will help you avoid misunderstandings and failed projects. I’ll give you a short example:
"We need a registration process" is a requirement, in fact. You could agree on this – but you really should elaborate the particulars to reduce the risk of change requests down the road. "We need a registration process that allows a user to enter his/her company and user name in a single-line text field and with a button to sign in via Facebook" is a much more detailed requirement! Any old process by which a user can register would fulfill the first requirement, but this may not be what your customer expects. Next, always clarify the type of contract that underlies your business relationship. There are really only two kinds:

  • Time and material: You’ll be hired for your skills and paid by the working hour, regardless of the result. Freelancers mostly work on this basis in project teams.
  • Contract for work and labor: With this sort of contract you get paid only for the results, no matter how long you spend on delivering it.

Be conscientious and don't confuse these two contract types. Take care of the details during the engineering of requirements and write them all down.

2) Who is responsible for what?

Clarify your role in the project and what kind of responsibility you’re assuming in this role. Are you a project manager, responsible for the project’s success? Are you a developer who just does the work you’re assigned? Or, are you an architect who transforms requirements into the software architecture that the developers need to do their part? This should be defined at the start of every undertaking to avoid misunderstandings during the project.

3) When will I get paid?

Last but not least you should clarify when you’ll get paid. There are several options and it should be clear which one applies. Your client won’t be happy if you just send an invoice whenever you want: you should invoice according to your agreement. This could take one of the following forms:

  • After the project is completely finished and successful (this payment modality is mostly for work-and-labor contracts)
  • At the end of a specific time period (week, month, year), based on the hours you spent on a project (mostly for time-and-material contracts)
  • After delivering pre-defined milestones

 

Add your payment modality to your quote to ensure that both you and your client agree on the same facts.

There’s a lot of project-related jargon floating around these days, like "agile", "fixed price", "waterfall" and "T&M". Ask 10 different people and you’ll get 11 different opinions on how these terms might apply to your projects! But my advice is: when it comes to negotiations with your client or contractor, simply focus on clarifying these three crucial questions and you’ll lay a strong foundation for your business relationship. Don’t be misled by buzzwords if you don't know exactly what they mean for you.

In upcoming blog posts I’ll share some additional information about successful project setup, management and controlling.

Business administration systems such as ERPAL for Service Providers and ERPAL Platform can help you control these agreements and automate the work of administration.

Isovera Ideas & Insights: Tips for Success for Enterprise-level Drupal Projects

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 12:38am
I imagine Isovera isn’t the only Drupal shop noticing a gradual but unmistakable shift toward more “enterprise-level” projects. It’s a welcome trend, of course, and one that’ll only intensify as the adoption of Drupal 8 starts in earnest. But it also brings with it some unwelcome growing pains, not least of which is the discovery that many of the management tools that work perfectly fine for small- to medium-sized teams can start to break down when projects get bigger.

groups.drupal.org frontpage posts: DrupalCamp Johannesburg 2015

Drupal News - February 26, 2015 - 12:09am
Start:  2015-03-28 09:00 - 15:00 Africa/Johannesburg Drupalcamp or Regional Summit Organizers:  Riaan Burger Renate Ehlers mckeen_greg robin.prieschl DunnLofts dubois Jason Lewis

http://dasa.org.za/drupalcamp-johannesburg.html

DrupalCamp Johannesburg 2015 will be held on Saturday the 28th of March 2015, from 09:00 until 15:00 at:

Business Connexion

Block Q
Business Connexion Park North
789 16th Road
Randjespark
Midrand

Just off New Road, Midrand

Google Map
OpenStreetMap

Attendance to DrupalCamp Johannesburg is free; Let us know you are going to be there on meetup.com.

Sponsors

Please consider sponsoring DrupalCamp Johannesburg 2015, we have very affordable options available:

Gold Sponsors: R 6 000
  • Logo on a Stage Banner.
  • Logo on a large Shark Fin.
  • 6 Vinyl (back-of-laptop) Gold Sponsor Stickers.
  • Noted, always, on DASA.org.za website as a Gold Sponsor.
Silver Sponsors: R 3 000
  • Logo on a Stage Banner.
  • Logo on a medium Shark Fin.
  • 4 Vinyl (back-of-laptop) Silver Sponsor Stickers.
  • Noted, always, on DASA.org.za website as a Silver Sponsor.
Individual Sponsors: R 150
  • 2 Vinyl (back-of-laptop) Individual Sponsor Stickers.
  • Noted, always, on DASA.org.za website as an Individual Sponsor.

Because we have printed material to prepare, the deadline for confirming that you will be a sponsor and for receiving your creative (logo for landscape, ISO216) is noon the 5th of March. It's urgent to contact info@dasa.org.za as soon as possible to arrange sponsorship. The deadlines are tight and it may be tough to handle a heavier load of work close to the deadline.

DASA Board

DASA Governing Board Members agreed, when we formed DASA, to always stand aside if limited sponsorship options are available and the community wishes to sponsor an event. We have only five Gold and five Silver sponsorship spots open. If the community sponsors those and board members already also booked sponsorship, the board members' sponsorship will be downgraded to the first available lower level sponsorship.

Midwestern Mac, LLC: Introducing the Dramble - Raspberry Pi 2 cluster running Drupal 8

Drupal News - February 25, 2015 - 10:08pm


Version 0.9.3 of the Dramble—running Drupal 8 on 6 Raspberry Pis

I've been tinkering with computers since I was a kid, but in the past ten or so years, mainstream computing has become more and more locked down, enclosed, lightweight, and, well, polished. I even wrote a blog post about how, nowadays, most computers are amazing. Long gone are the days when I had to worry about line voltage, IRQ settings, diagnosing bad capacitors, and replacing 40-pin cables that went bad!

But I'm always tempted back into my earlier years of more hardware-oriented hacking when I pull out one of my Raspberry Pi B+/A+ or Arduino Unos. These devices are as raw of modern computers as you can get—requiring you to actual touch the silicone chips and pins to be able to even use the devices. I've been building a temperature monitoring network that's based around a Node.js/Express app using Pis and Arduinos placed around my house. I've also been working a lot lately on a project that incorporates three of my current favorite technologies: The Raspberry Pi 2 model B (just announced earlier this month), Ansible, and Drupal!

In short, I'm building a cluster of Raspberry Pis, and designating it a 'Dramble'—a 'bramble' of Raspberry Pis running Drupal 8.

Out & About On The Third Rock: Drupal Camp Tunis 2015 – Call to Action

Drupal News - February 25, 2015 - 4:27pm
Speaking to Willie Seabrook took me back to 2011-2012 when a few of us were trying to get Drupalists in Pakistan to morph into a local community, connect with the regional and global Drupal community and reap the benefits that come from the wisdom of the crowd. Willie is doing for Tunisian Drupal community what I […]

Darren Mothersele: The Drupal Site Builder Manifesto

Drupal News - February 25, 2015 - 4:00pm

I wanted to get some clarity on what I mean by the term "site builder". In a general sense, it refers to the actual process of building a website, but in Drupal the term Site Builder tends to have a specific meaning. I realised that my definition may vary from others so I wanted to be precise about what I think it means, and what I think it means to be a Drupal Site Builder.

I am a developer. I studied programming languages in depth. I did research into the semantic analysis of object oriented languages. But, when it comes to Drupal, I love to be a Site Builder.

I run a Creative Coding Meetup in London. At last night's meeting I was explaining Friday's Drupal Camp training to someone. I am clear about the aims and objectives of the training, I know my material, and I've given similar trainings many times before, but, the fact I labelled it an "intermediate" and "site builder" training causes some confusion.

First of all, I realised that using the word "intermediate" doesn't really mean anything. Drupal developers (or anyone building Drupal sites) of all skill levels have benefited from this training. So, perhaps what I mean by "intermediate" is actually "not beginner". As all I am really saying is that I'm not covering the very basics of getting Drupal up and running.

The term "site builder" is more problematic, possibly because my definition of a Drupal Site Builder may be wider than what most people expect. I thought about this a lot, and what I came up with was a clear set of statements of what I think it means to be a Drupal Site Builder...

The Drupal Site Builder Manifesto

As Drupal Site Builders...

We work in a multi-disciplinary role.

We take initiative, and play a central role in the web development process.

We are usually the ones to take ownership of the final product.

We don't just “click and configure” websites. We have knowledge of all the areas involved in building a Drupal website.

We work with the rest of the team to ensure everyone is doing what they do best and contributing to the project in a meaningful way.

We may not all be trained developers, but we do appreciate how to think like a developer. We apply software development principles and Drupal best practises when creating Drupal configuation.

We may not all know how to write optimal PHP code, but we know when to build something using Drupal core or contributed modules, and when we need a custom plugin or custom module creating.

We may not all be able to produce the most stunning web designs, but because we understand how Drupal works we will work with designers to ensure their designs are consistent and well structured.

We may not all know all the latest front-end tricks, but when given well build front-end code we know how to get Drupal to generate the appropriate markup.

Most importantly, we know how to get the best results out of Drupal's building blocks, we know how to turn good designs and ideas into great websites, and we know how to build websites in a methodical, flexible, and maintainable way.

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