An Online Community Brought to Life: DrupalCon Portland 2022

Drupal-what?

The Drupal Association, the nonprofit engine that powers the global Drupal community, hosts DrupalCon annually. DrupalCon is one of the largest community-sponsored technology events in the world and the energy of the community is undeniable. Drupal-celebrities — maintainers of modules, creators of themes — hang out alongside total Drupal newbies talking shop, pushing updates to code or learning about the future of Open Source platforms.

A light blue background with various stickers in blue shades. One sticker is in the shape of a water droplet and has the words “DrupalCon PDX ‘22”. The Mediacurrent word mark is in the lower right hand corner.

Mediacurrent’s Relationship to Drupal

Mediacurrent has been an active member of the Drupal community since we were founded in 2007. As an Open Source Product Agency, Drupal is one of the most powerful tools in our arsenal, and we’re big advocates for contributing to the project on a regular basis. Members of our team actively maintain many popular modules, especially in the security space. We also encourage our clients to adopt our “contrib first” approach — taking advantage of the 40,000+ supported Drupal modules instead of creating custom code and then contributing to the project when we do create something new.

A light blue background with two photos: the photo on the lower left shows the Mediacurrent team in their booth at DrupalCon Portland. The photo on the upper right shows a claw machine and a banner advertising DrupalCon.

Exploring Component-Based Development

As leaders in component-based development, specifically for Drupal, it was great to share our expertise and guidance directly with developers through our training session. Four members of our development and project management teams organized an engaging and interactive session that went deep into “the why” behind component-based development. By the last session of the training, the group had built their own front-end components and integrated them with Drupal to receive live data.

A blue background with light blue text that reads: How Penn State News Pivoted to Decoupled Drupal with Gatsby.

Improving Authoring Experiences

Our work with Penn State demonstrates more than our component-based approach to design and development. A big focus of that project was on an element of the website that Penn State University News readers never see — the authoring experience. Creating efficient and intuitive authoring experiences for content managers is a huge focus of our work. One of Drupal’s primary value propositions is the fact that the authoring experience can be customized to meet any editor’s needs and match any editorial workflow.

A dark blue background with light blue text that reads: Rapid Drupal Development: Building at Scale with Design Systems.

Kick-Starting Site Building

Site builders can leverage Rain’s benefits by using any combination of its three parts. The first piece of Rain is what Drupal calls an “install profile,” which is a curated collection of modules that make building and maintaining a site easier. The second piece of Rain is a back-end theme that offers an improved authoring experience, making it easier for non-technical people to build and manage web pages. The third piece of Rain, its front-end theme, leverages a set of common components that can be styled to match any organization’s brand guidelines and used to build pages almost immediately.

The Future of Drupal

If DrupalCon has a can’t-miss moment, it’s typically the keynote address from Drupal Project founder, Dries Buytaert. Called the “Driesnote,” it’s where the exciting updates on the future of Drupal are shared with the community. This year, Dries talked about the eagerly awaited version 10 of Drupal scheduled to be released at the end of the year.

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