Drupal 8 is right around the corner; it's time to start brushing off your old textbooks, taking notes, asking questions, and preparing for all the awesomeness coming your way.
For most of us, Drupal 8 represents a departure from what we've come to know about how to create with Drupal. In short, we've got a learning curve we're going to have to overcome before we can be proficient with Drupal 8. But I'm here to tell you: it’s okay, we're in this together, and, given the proper learning environment and a little bit of guidance, you'll be Drupal 8 ready in no time.
In the glorious words of Douglas Adams, “Don't panic!”
While most of us have a tendency to want to jump right into the documentation and start poring over code samples, this is a good opportunity to take a step back and make sure we're ready to learn before we dive in. So let’s take a minute to think about education theory and the environment we put ourselves in when preparing to learn a new technology. How do we remove blockers from the learning process and set ourselves up for success?
- What is my motivation for learning this?
- Where can I practice what I'm learning?
- How will I know if I have learned the right thing?
How motivated are you?
Are you learning for fun, or for work?
Because you want to, or because you have to?
Our motivation – and our understanding of it – allows us to decide whether it is worth the investment in time and energy necessary to learn something new today – right now – which we may not use until tomorrow.
One of the best ways to assess whether or not you've learned something is to teach it to someone else. Lucky for you, you're not the only one embarking on the quest to learn Drupal 8; there are plenty of opportunities to share your new knowledge with others. Local user groups, co-workers – even friends on IRC – all represent great teaching opportunities. Moreover, these interactions often turn into discussions, and discussions are one of the best ways to get beyond the how and into the why.
Marketing is a key factor to growing Drupal adoption and spreading the goodness of Drupal. One way to do that is by exhibiting at key industry events. The CMS Garden team has done a great job getting Drupal included in some key events in Europe and now the Drupal Association will take on a parallel effort.
The initiative will be an experimental “co-marketing” campaign to promote Drupal in the European marketplace. It is called a “co-marketing” campaign because it will be crowdfunded by a group of Drupal businesses (if you would like to find out how your Drupal business can get involved, keep reading). This is a pilot program that will allow us to experiment with the best ways to promote Drupal in the global marketplace and reach the CMS evaluator audience.
Why Europe? Data from our DrupalCon surveys show that relative to DrupalCon North America, DrupalCon Europe has a higher percentage of developer attendees but a lower percentage of CMS “evaluator” attendees. From that standpoint, it makes sense to target Europe evaluators in this pilot program. The evaluators we are targeting in the pilot program are digital marketers who have significant sway over CMS selection.
So what’s the plan?
This year, Drupal Association will secure exhibit space at two European digital marketing industry events (dmexco in Germany and Festival of Marketing in the UK). We will exhibit as Drupal and together with representatives from the anchor sponsors who have already signed on (including Wunderkraut (Germany), Wunder (UK) and Deeson (UK), we will promote Drupal and the sponsoring companies’ expertise and successes with Digital Marketing and Drupal. Leads generated from the exhibit presence will go to the sponsoring companies. We are offering first right of refusal to sponsor the effort to Drupal Premium Supporting Partners, followed by other Supporters.
Why these two events? There are many events in Europe that target the audiences we want to reach. After researching attendee types, costs and other factors, we determined the abovementioned events make the most sense for this pilot project.
If you would like to learn more about how your business can participate in this exciting initiative, please contact Johanna Bergmann. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blink Reaction has announced it has begun to offer free live public Drupal training online, in NYC and in other major markets.The free classes will focus on Drupal 8 adoption and will include Site Building classes formerly offered at $799.
Announcing the decision to offer free Drupal training, Blink CEO Nancy Stango explained the decision.
Building a robust Drupal ecosystem requires attention to all the things. We can’t just build great software. For many people formal training is the best way to learn and we need to lower obstacles to Drupal adoption everywhere. Providing this training free of charge on a regular schedule is part of our contribution back to the community.
Included in each free class listing is an appeal to support the Drupal Association by becoming a paid member.Why is this class free?
Providing this class free of charge is one of the many ways we give back to the open source community.
Blink is highly committed to helping organizations and individuals adopt Drupal successfully. At Blink we believe great training helps create great, results-oriented websites. That's a win-win-win for you, Drupal and Blink.
And if you’re interested in Developing for Drupal 8 register for our Drupalcon LA class, ‘Introduction to Symfony/Getting Ready for Drupal 8.’ Half of all proceeds goes to support the Drupal Association.
Blink has been delivering paid public training since 2011 through the Blink Institute and has offered free training during Global Drupal Training days since the start of the program.
Visit our training pages for more information and to register for a free training.
If you’re interested in Developing for Drupal 8 register for our Drupalcon LA class, ‘Introduction to Symfony/Getting Ready for Drupal 8.’ Half of all proceeds goes to support the Drupal Association.
DrupalDrupal PlanetDrupal TrainingPost tags: Trainingdrupal 8
After making it’s first Drupalcon appearance to a sold out crowd in Austin, I’m really excited to be offering an updated version of our class in LA.
Since Austin we’ve offered the class in Drupalcon Amsterdam and Drupalcon Bogota. Each time it has been filled to capacity and tickets are already going fast for Drupalcon LA.
This year we’ve focused even more on the Symfony components that are most important for developing in Drupal 8. We’re spending additional time in Drupal 8 too since we are oh so close to a release.
The class will be led by Blink Drupal 8 Solutions Engineer Jesus Olivas, lead contributor on the Drupal Console project supported by Blink. Jesus will also share some of the latest new features he's built in the Console project. No fewer than eight Blink developers will be supporting Jesus so that we can give each and every participant a hands on experience.
Register for the class now on the Drupalcon LA site.DrupalDrupal PlanetDrupal TrainingPost tags: drupal 8symfonyTraining
I want to share two stories with you.
On a beautiful summerlike day at DrupalCon Amsterdam, we stop at the Drupal Association table, where we are introduced to DA Staff Members JOE SAYLOR, LEIGH CARVER, and RUDY GRIGAR. Then it’s on to HOLLY ROSS (Executive Director, Drupal Association). Erudite cameraman BOB WILLIAMS (Financial Manager, Tag1 Consulting) works the GoPro.
HOLLY ROSS: Yep, so we had a BoF for people who like to knit and are at DrupalCon and it was really great because we all worked on our projects, and we all talked about how we learned to knit. And what I love the most about the fact that there are so many knitters in Drupal is that – I love the relationship between knitting and coding – right? -- like pattern discernment and building – and all the things we talk about that we love about Drupal – it’s all there in knitting, too.
This one is really interesting to me because – well first of all, I’ll just share that we have 2,300 people here – 500 more than Prague. That’s a lot bigger.
What I am reading right now actually is a book called The Last Ship. I don’t recommend it – I hate it – it’s taking me months to read. I’m also concurrently reading a couple of Cory Doctorow books, because I was getting ready to come here and see Cory speak, so I’m reading Little Brother, which is a young adult novel he wrote, which is really really good. And I’m also reading right now, the uh – oh, what’s it called when all the people go to heaven except the bad people that are left on Earth?
RR: Left behind?
BOB WILLIAMS: The Rapture.
HR: The Rapture of the Nerds, that’s it, The Rapture of the Nerds, yeah.Tags: DrupalCon DrupalCon Amsterdam Video Video:
In the last part of our series, we talked about "Agile work at a fixed price". We realized that detailed requirements in terms of a project specification are the key to agile management of fixed-price projects. Today, we’ll deal with those project specifications.
A “specification” describes the results or certain milestones of a project. Thus, it defines what we have to measure in order to find out whether the project is finished, that is: either the requirements are fulfilled – or they’re not. This point harbors the greatest potential for conflict! Neither restrictive contracts nor other contractual pieces of art can help here. Only when both parties know exactly what has to have been implemented by the end of the project, can you:
- Show, prove, demonstrate and understand that everything that should have been done has actually been done
- Check whether a new request is indeed new during the project
- Find out whether changes have negatively affected the software (change management and risk management)
Using some negative examples of a specification, I’ll try to demonstrate what to avoid during a project.
"We integrate social media functions." What does that really mean? The developer may understand this to include a Facebook Like button, a Google +1 button and a Tweet this button. In fact, what the customer would like is to have a portal for his Facebook app. It’s purely a matter of interpretation what social media functions really are and how they should be integrated. Always check that your requirements are clear and without ambiguous wordings.2) Avoid comparisons
"We implement web pages with the same functions as those of awesome-competitor.com." No one knows exactly which functions the competitor’s websites possess in detail. Here again, two different expectations would collide at the end of the project. As provider, you don’t know for sure what features are implemented in the backend. However, if you agree to the statement above, then you must provide these functions. Arguing after the fact with statements like "But I didn’t know that..." doesn’t suffice. The extra costs can be enormous! So, avoid comparisons with other systems in your specification. This might save time in the beginning, but at the end of the project one of the parties could have over twice the expected expenses, which would no longer be controllable.3) Write clear definitions
"We import the current data of the previous software." The data format for new software is usually not the same as for the previous version. Here, it’s important to clarify how the import should take place. Which old fields should be mapped to which new fields? Which validations should be processed, and, most importantly, what does the data format of the previous version look like, exactly, and how can you get this data and map it to the new structure? Clarify these points up front in order to avoid explosive increases in the effort required. In this case, it’s hard to argue using experience from past projects, because it implies that imports in previous projects are similar to the case at hand, which may be true – but usually isn’t. "We implement ... according to the usual ..." What’s usual here and who defines what’s normal? Make absolutely clear that both parties are talking about the same thing. Otherwise, two worlds will again clash over their differing expectations, which can be difficult to reconcile. Instead, refer to or quote the text that clearly defines "... the usual ..." and the requirements. Then everyone involved knows what the wording means.
There are countless other formulations that you should avoid. However, the above are the most common. A detailed engineering of requirements is always a good investment for both project parties to provide a solid basis for project success. Additionally, relevant user stories with related acceptance criteria can help to clarify the project deliverables.Incorrect specification happens!
Specifications are wrong if they don’t serve the overall project goal. A short example: the sales manager of a company orders an app to support the sales team. The software is developed according to his requirements. However, it can’t be imported because no one involved the sales team and asked them for their requirements. Take the conditions of each case into account: nothing is more dissatisfying for both sides than fully-developed software that can’t be used because it doesn't deliver value to the users or the company as a whole. You should pay attention to these conditions right at the start of the project, both as a supplier and as a customer. During the analysis of requirements, involve all the stakeholders. Finally, the specification also serves to keep the documentation effort low, because it has already described what the final product looks like. It also provides for good planning and systematic change management to ensure that the software is stable. Imagine you’re building a house and want to combine the kitchen and the living room. For this, you only need to remove one wall. However, if this is a load-bearing wall, the floor above will collapse onto your head as the whole house caves in. This should be prevented at all costs, so be attentive and take all the challenges listed into account!
In the next part in our series, we examine responsibilities and communication in projects.Other blog posts of this series:
There's a neat feature in MySQL which lets you sort a result set by arbitrary field values. It's the ORDER BY FIELD() function. Here's how to leverage this in your Drupal views.
Let's say you have a field in your Article content type called Status, and it has the following allowed values:Draft
It can be very helpful to sort the articles by status. You could key your allowed values with alphabetical prefixes, numbers, etc. But let's say you didn't. Or don't want to.
With bare MySQL, the query would look something like this (not an actual Drupal query, but used to illustrate how FIELD() works):SELECT *
ORDER BY FIELD(status, 'Draft', 'Pending Approval', 'Published', 'Postponed', 'Canceled')
This is now possible in Drupal & Views with the Views List Sort module, which creates a sort handler that populates the FIELD() sort with the allowed values of a given "List (text)" field.
To use it is easy, just add the "List (text)" field to your sort criteria, and set "Sort by allowed values" to "yes".Submitted by Joel Stein on April 14, 2015.Tags: Drupal, Drupal 7, Drupal Planet
There are examples out there for generating a unique Drupal username. The usual technique is to continue incrementing a numeric suffix until an unused name is found. There's also a project to automatically generate usernames for new users. All of this makes sense and works, but compared to the existing solutions, I wanted one that focussed on encapsulation and stability; by which I mean it should:
DrupalOnWindows: Using LINQ (Language Integrated Queries) in Drupal or how to write queries x5 faster
- Setting up the project and folder structure
- Communicating .Net and PHP
- The productivity edge
- Git shell on Windows reports “sh.exe has stopped working (APPCRASH)”
- Getting #2,000 requests per second without varnish
- Drupal Session Handler: everything you need to know
- Bypassing Form Validations and Required Fields in Drupal: the BFV module.
- Drupal on IIS or Apache
- When PHP crashes: how to collect meaningful information and what to do with it
- Distinct options in a views exposed filter: The Views Selective Filters Module
- Calling .Net Framework and .Net Assemblies from PHP
- Node Comment and Forum working together to boost user participation
- Deploying Drupal Like a Pro - Part 1: File Structure
This screencast shows how you can use a cloud provider like Digital Ocean to install a working copy of ELMSLN by copying and pasting the following line into the terminal:
yes | yum -y install git && git clone https://github.com/btopro/elmsln.git /var/www/elmsln && bash /var/www/elmsln/scripts/install/handsfree/centos/centos-install.sh elmsln ln elmsln.dev http email@example.com yes