DrupalCon 2012: Recharging Our Batteries
One of my colleagues, Cleaver Barnes, made the wise observation that Drupalcon is a way to recharge your Drupal batteries. Change is thrilling. Don’t fear the change. Embrace it. Better yet, participate in it. With batteries charged, that’s what I am doing.
One of my colleagues, Cleaver Barnes, made the wise observation that Drupalcon is a way to recharge your Drupal batteries. It’s easy to get cynical or complacent with the tools that you use on a day to day basis. It’s easy to forget how incredible something is when you start taking it for granted. Drupal is a world class enterprise ready content management system. Drupal is made up of communities of developers, designers and enthusiasts from around the globe. The project is a shining example of the power of open source and open community. Spend a week with the best and brightest thinkers, developers and businesses in the Drupal world and you can’t help but feel rejuvenated.
4 things that have me excited:
1) Rejection of NIH
There is a clear shift away from Not Invented Here (NIH) within the Drupal community. Where NIH plagued the community in the past, there is a maturity present in the community now embracing concepts and ideas coming from outside its walls. This of course include several Symfony 2 components. Everything from HttpKernel to Event Dispatchers to Dependency Injection is being actively insepected and integrated into portions of the Drupal project. Even Symfony’s TWIG templating system is suddenly on a fast track to adoption within the community.
2) Developer Experience (DX)
As a side effect of exploring external libraries and tools, Drupal is adopting large blocks of code using the latest and greatest that PHP has to offer. And the new code that is coming out of the different Drupal 8 initiatives is going to make development more elegant. Many concepts and patterns commonly found in other languages and frameworks is going to be the new standard in Drupal. This along with the new language features in PHP 5.3 and 5.4 may actually attract developers to the community rather than have them run away.
3) User Experience (UX)
There is a continued drive within the community to enhance user experience. There are real conversations happening that question fundamental assumptions that Drupal has made in the past about what users expect from their content management system.
The most exciting developments in this area are with the layouts and blocks everywhere initiative (the SCOTCH initiative which was spun out of WSCCI). At an architectural level the way Drupal renders content is changing drastically, and with this change comes a wonderful opportunity to completely re-think and re-design how a user interacts with Drupal to not only create content, but layout pages and sections of their site.
There is mind boggling amounts of change coming for Drupal 8. The code base is going to be almost unrecognizable. The user and developer interfaces are likely to change drastically. There is a growing attitude that nothing is sacred. Nothing is off the table for change.
Change is thrilling. Don’t fear the change. Embrace it. Better yet, participate in it.
With batteries charged, that’s what I am doing.
Click here to see more photos of the Myplanet team in Denver at DrupalCon 2012.