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A Site Factory that’s Perfect for the Media Biz

What do funk musician George Clinton and communications giant Clear Channel have in common? Well, for one thing, me. I’ve worked for both, and while the experiences were very different, the work gave me good insight into what it takes to be successful in the world of media and entertainment. Before coming to Acquia as director of media, entertainment and publishing, I spent several years in content production, developing broadcast programming for Clear Channel, CNET, and The Wall Street Journal. I’ve spent time in my career as a musician and digital marketer for George Clinton, and I also... More

The evolution of the toolbar; Drupal 7 to Drupal 8

Blog series: #1 of 5. As we saw in Dries’ keynote in Portland there’s a new toolbar in Drupal 8 that looks—and works—quite different to the one in Drupal 7. This series will give some history on how the new toolbar came to be as well as some of the design thinking behind it and how it can be used and extended by content authors, site builders, themers, and module developers. Why did we need to change the toolbar? The Drupal 7 toolbar was a big improvement over what we had in Drupal 6 but just in the short few years since it’s introduction the whole landscape of front-end design has changed... More

The Power of PHP: The "Swiss Army Knife of Digital"

Guest post by Michelangelo van Dam – Michelangelo van Dam is a professional PHP consultant and Zend Framework expert working mainly for governments and larger enterprises. Michelangelo is also president of PHPBenelux, a PHP user group operating in Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg. He is a respected and sought-after speaker at PHP conferences around the world. In the Beginning... Since the day Rasmus Lerdorf open-sourced PHP back in 1995, millions of businesses have relied on this technology to build rich, interactive, and dynamic web... More

Site Performance with Drupal 8 and Symfony - Part 1

(Part 1 of the "Site Performance with Drupal 8 and Symfony" blog series) (This article does not represent the current state of Drupal 8 development.) In over five years of developing Drupal, the most interesting announcement I’ve read was that the SCOTCH and WSCII initiatives had resulted in refactoring Drupal 8 code to use Symfony components. The switch comes with a lot of fascinating possibilities for performance improvements, but on the other hand, frameworks are often maligned for being bloated... More

My (good) adventures with using SVN to manage my code

Back in the days of yore there was FTP, and it was OK (don’t fool yourself, it was never ‘good’). And we used FTP to upload files to our servers and we messed things up and we overwrote good code with bad and well... we made a mess. Then some genius (bless his or her soul) thought of creating a system that you could use to maintain a history of every version of your code. They also thought it would be neat if it supported more than one person working on the code and could also give you ‘diffs’ between two versions. There are a fair number of systems providing these features and they are... More

Meet Jeff Beeman, Embedded Drupal Consultant

Jeff Beeman, Acquia Professional Services consultant, talks about how far Drupal has come in the last 8 years, what it's like to be on a team of people specialised in joining other teams, and the satisfaction of making Drupal really sing when it counts. This interview was recorded in March, 2013 in Burlington, Massachusetts. Life changing moment - Hello Drupal! While Jeff was working at Arizona State University as a front end developer, a Wordpress blog needed expansion beyond what it could handle at the time, "We went looking around, and... More

Few things to consider when redesigning a B2B website

Everyone who is in the web business has dealt with a site redesign before. Sometimes they are long drawn out projects, and sometimes they go a bit faster. Sometimes they take years and millions of dollars. I’ve been a part of each of those scenarios. Our recent website redesign went pretty smoothly, so I wanted to share what I’ve learned over the years. Make sure you know why you are redesigning your website. Set Goals. When we started redesigning Acquia.com we listed out these main goal: Increase Leads Improve Messaging More Relevant Content Once you have your goals set and ideas of how... More

"Retirement Tsunami" of CIO's in Higher Education. What Comes Next?

I remember being at Gartner Symposium in Orlando years ago and sitting in one of Mike Zastrocky’s presentations and listening him talk about the issue of an aging IT demographic bearing down on colleges and universities. Mike’s warning was meant to serve as a call to action to the industry: Colleges and universities need to actively work on transferring technological skills and knowledge, cultivating a new generation of IT leaders... More

Digital Clarity Group: The Latest Marketing Gimmick? Truly Useful Content

This is a guest blog post written by Robert Rose, Senior Analyst at Digital Clarity Group (DCG). Along side his work with DCG, he is also the Strategist in Residence and brand advisor for the Content Marketing Institute, a featured writer and guest blogger for iMedia Connection, CMSWire and Fierce Content Management. Robert also maintains his own blog at The Mythic Marketer. When you’re surfing the channels on television – you’re looking for great content. You may first try your “tried and true” channels. But you’ll ultimately land (and stay) on a channel because of the content, and not... More

As the Digital Revolution Matures, Daily Tasks Take Center Stage

Almost twenty years into the digital revolution, we now live in a world where our mobile devices are always on and always available. GPS and other on-device sensors ensure that our smartphones and tablets provide a constant stream of data about where we are and what we’re doing. This shift is giving rise to a new generation of applications that focus on the tasks of our everyday lives, rather than the anonymous streams of information we routinely encounter. And “next generation” content-centric platforms, like Drupal,... More

Social Depth Platforms & The Death of Social Business Silos

Today, Forrester Research released the Q3 2013 Forrester Wave: Social Depth Platforms. Acquia’s Drupal Commons was identified as a Leader in the Wave, alongside Social Business Software stalwarts like Jive Software. It’s the first time Acquia has been identified as a Leader by a top analyst like Forrester and Gartner. It’s also a milestone achievement for open source as Drupal Commons is now one of the few (maybe the only?) open source business applications to lead a Forrester Wave. Here's my favorite quote from... More

B2B Marketing & Sales Trends: 14 Sessions You Won't Want to Miss

Keeping up with the latest advancements in marketing and sales can be a daunting task... especially while you're trying to get your daily tasks done and keep the business running! The good news is that our friends over at The Marketing Cloud have done some of the heavy lifting for us. The B2B Marketing & Sales Trends event is less than 2 weeks away! This half-day virtual conference is a... More

You can bet your career and company on open source - Meet Tom Wentworth

Acquia's Chief Marketing Officer Tom Wentworth is a great fit for a technology company. He has a computer science background and has been working with web content management since it was a concept. Tom wasn't interested in marketing until a few years ago, "What really got me excited about Marketing was seeing the intersection of marketing and technology, because technology is where my passion is." This is part one of an interview recorded at Acquia headquarters in Burlington, Massachusetts in March 2013. Web 1.0 Tom's been around the... More

3 Government mobile websites worth visiting

One each at the Federal, State, and Local level: FEMA - http://www.fema.gov State of Georgia - http://georgia.gov NYC MTA - http://apps.mta.info/traintime enabling faster and more effective access for all citizens by incorporating both responsive design and native application techniques. Additional (non government sites) worth... More

CMIS - mitigating integration risks for your content

While consolidation efforts help to lend sanity to an IT portfolio, it's rare that anyone is able to collapse things into a single, unified stack covering all scenarios. Instead options become codified using a number of "pre approved" product sets in various categories: a key one being DM & WCM. Each permutation carries different costs with respect to licensing, operating, and integrating the underlying components. The last point can lead to many unknowns in a project plan - exactly why... More

Running eCommerce big data on PHP - meet @juokaz

In this interview from the Oregon Convention Center, where both DrupalCon and Symfony Live were taking place, Juozas "people call me Joe" Kaziukėnas talks about PHP's unique combination of ease of implementation, speed, and scalability. Data science, competitive intelligence, and PHP Joe is the CTO of E Revolution Ventures - an eCommerce company using PHP to run data-driven eCommerce and drive 25 million dollars of business a year, "and growing quickly": 3-year sales growth of 228%... More

Migrate 2.6 - UI changes

The Migrate module provides services for migrating data from various sources (other CMS frameworks, external web services, or other Drupal installations) into the local Drupal environment. It has been used to migrate sites such as The Economist, Examiner.com, ... More

We hold these truths to be (not so) self-evident

With "the Cloud" stratified into rough categories of IaaS / PaaS / SaaS service models, it becomes increasingly apparent that not all application hosting options are created equal - especially when viewed from an O&M perspective: Just as stepping into IaaS options, like AWS, enable you to offload direct hardware purchases and their associated maintenance PaaS and SaaS offer additional benefits for the right use cases. In particular, with Drupal applications you have the following options: Acquia Network (... More

The Marketers' Case for Drupal

I was asked about a week before Drupal Camp Austin if I could fill in for Tom Wentworth presenting The Marketers' Case for Drupal. After a moment of excitement for travel to Austin TX I had a moment of panic, I have a week to pull together a presentation and I've never presented in front of a large audience before (outside of college). But, I said yes. I started off by giving a quick background on me and how I found Drupal. Which is a cute story but you could listen to it in... More

The Battle for Brand Recognition in the Online Ed Market

Today, nearly 70 percent of chief academic leaders in the U.S. say online learning is critical to their long-term strategy. Norwich University, the country’s oldest military college, is among those vying for its share of the growing online education market. Launched successfully in 1997, Norwich’s online graduate school came to face increasing competition from name brand schools. So OHO Interactive... More

Prague Demystified: Essential guide to the next Drupalcon capital

Prague - the capital of the Czech republic, an ancient city, one of the most beautiful in the world, a place that has caused political turmoil throughout centuries, mecca for on-the-budget bachelor parties, and the next venue for Drupalcon. What should you know, what should you try to see, and what to avoid? Welcome to my guide to essential Prague - all the things that you should do, visit or try while in the Czech Republic. I would like to give you a perspective of someone born in the country and who has lived in Prague for over 7 years - and provide tips for some less traditional trips and... More

Why Steve Jobs Would Have Loved Drupal

I’m an unashamed Apple fanboy. I’ll resist the temptation to #humblebrag about all the Apple gear I’ve owned through the years. I worship at the altar of the late Steve Jobs, who while flawed, has inspired me through his relentless passion and creativity. News of the paperback release of his autobiography in September reminded me of one of my favorite moments from his book: I always thought of myself as a humanities person as a kid, but... More

Meet Balazs Dianiska: The “honorable” module and Drupal in the enterprise

Balazs Dianiska, Acquia Professional Services Consultant, has a lot of insight about the needs of enterprise businesses. Whenever he can, he shares that insight with the Drupal community at events and meet-ups. Balazs, aka snufkin on Drupal.org credits entry his into Drupal to Angie "webchick" Byron: "She participated in the Google Summer of Code program," mentored by Robert Douglass, "and it became so popular, partly... More

Getting Started: Collaborative development with Git

This post is part of the "All you need to know to become a great Drupal developer" blog series. Git is a version control system, like "track changes" for code. It's fast, powerful, and easy-to-use version control system. But the thing that's really special about Git is the way it empowers people to collaborate. All the projects on drupal.org are stored in Git, and there are millions of public projects hosted by GitHub.com. Whether... More

Bringing Life to Human Rights Abuses with a Multi-functional Drupal Site

The Human Rights Watch (HRW) Film Festival brings to life human rights abuses through storytelling in a way that challenges each individual to empathize and demand justice for all people. HRW needed a multi-functional site to support their International Film Festival held in various cities across the globe. The information architecture and visual design was developed by a design agency in order to present festival information in a distinctive, location-centric manner - making each city’s page look and feel like a unique festival unto itself.... More

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