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Drupal Modules Take Site Personalization to the Next Level

If you’ve already taken advantage of Drupal taxonomy terms to increase engagement on your website, you may be ready for the next step of more advanced targeting and segmentation using personalization modules.
In this blog, I’d like to discuss two examples of how large organizations have used Drupal modules to identify “like” users and then present them with targeted content. These customers have also integrated with best of breed technologies such as Google Analytics for web tracking and email... More

Drupal - Views & SQL Analogy - An easier way to explain Views

With over 4 million downloads, Views is the most used contributed module in Drupal. Every Drupal developer knows that Views is an absolutely inevitable part of almost every Drupal project. Using Views, one can build anything from simple list of content, slideshows, jump menus to RSS feeds, JSON feeds through to contextual blocks of information and even PDF and Excel downloads of data. That's why, in the Drupal development universe, understanding & effectively using views separates novices from experts!
This blog post is by Prasad Shirgaonkar who has recently joined our Learning Services... More

Acquia and BLEN Corp power Unfurlough.us

The United States Government has shutdown — for the first time in 17 years — on October 1st, 2013. According to estimates, some 800,000 government employees were furloughed on that day. For those people, the shutdown created an incredible amount of uncertainty and financial pressure. As one of my friends who is among the furloughed said, “… [it] doesn’t mean the mortgage and car loan payments aren’t still due.”
We thought about how we can help and the answer was obvious to us:... More

Tutorial: Drupal 8 Site Building preview - Less is more

(updated Oct 8- went from 14 contrib modules you don't need to 32! thanks to larowlan, klausi, webchick, swentel, gabor and wim leers for heads-up!)
Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll dig into the main Drupal 8 site building tasks and how they’ve been changed in the next version of Drupal. In today’s introduction, I want to give you some observations about the site building experience in Drupal 8. I’m starting in this post by pointing out what modules are GONE from core in Drupal 8- and what contrib modules you won’t need to install since that functionality is included in Drupal 8.
On... More

A Few Tips Toward Successful Enterprise Software Implementations

Throughout my career I've enjoyed implementing software/solutions at the enterprise level for organizations ranging from Fortune 25 giants to boutique eRetailers. There's much to be gained from each implementation as few are ever alike. This post isn't going to speak to how Drupal saved the Universe (it did and continues to do so), but rather how a recent implementation has enlightened me to a few keys to success for which any implementation team may employ.
Not so long ago I had the pleasure of leading an implementation team through one of the most complex, exposed, and aggressive... More

10 Ways an Open Source CMS Can Make You Happier

(Cross-posted from achieveinternet.com)
Is your custom content management system bringing you down? Jumping through too many hoops? Too much time spent not getting your content online? These are signs of a common problem referred to as Custom CMS Fatigue. It’s been known to cause nausea, headaches and shattered computer screens. Luckily, there’s a cure. Dont't Get Mad, Get Drupal.
Drupal.
Drupal is an Open Source content management system (CMS). Drupal is not an antidepressant. However, using Drupal can make you very happy. If you are experiencing headaches from your proprietary CMS then it... More

This is SUPPORTA! Meet the Acquia Client Advisory Team


Inside Acquia, the Client Advisory Team is something special. These are the people who are on the front lines, helping others succeed with Drupal 24 hours a day. They go above and beyond the call of duty for anyone who needs help and for other members of their team. In July, I spoke with five Acquia Client Advisors about their work and their team.

THIS IS SUPPORTA!

What a team! This is a group of technology experts who will fight (maybe literally?) for you and your Drupal site. They will celebrate your... More

Live Drupal 8 video podcast Oct. 4/5 - D8 won't kill any kittens


Tomorrow (October 4/5, 2013 depending on your timezone) I will be hosting a live Hangout on Air with three major Drupal contributors: Lee Rowlands, Tim Plunket, and Daniel Wehner about what's going on in Drupal 8 and how you will benefit from the all the new stuff. Join us for this live Hangout on Air (you'll be able to watch the live stream on the G+ event page) and post your questions there, too.

Sign up, RSVP, invite your friends!

Since we... More

Content editing enhancements in Drupal 8

Much of the community is focusing on the improvements to Drupal 8 under the hood. Now, based on modern PHP practices, a standardized framework, and an improved theming system, Drupal 8 brings many enhancements for developers and designers. However, as a content editor familiar with Drupal 7, you might be wondering what you’ll find for you in Drupal 8.
There are many improvements which you’ll notice as soon as you login. However there are many other little gems which you discover as you continue to use your new Drupal 8 site. For example in previous versions of Drupal, to edit the "authored... More

Drupal 8: Hello OOP, Hello world!

"Cross Posted from http://effulgentsia.drupalgardens.com"
In the course of working on Drupal 8 and attending various Drupal events, I've met quite a few Drupal 7 module developers curious about what they'll need to learn to be successful Drupal 8 module developers. Several people in the Drupal community have started writing blog posts about that, including one earlier this week by Joe Shindelar on writing a Hello World module.
In this post, I'd like to dive a... More

This Week in Drupal Core: October 3, 2013

"Cross Posted from groups.drupal.org"
The most notable Drupal core news since last time around is DrupalCon Prague happened, with lots of Drupal 8 sessions, sprints, and all-around goodness.
Dozens of core developers spent over 30 hours in 20 dedicated brainstorms and deep-dives to solve hard problems in Drupal 8 core, focusing on three critical areas: Drupal 8 API completion, developer experience (DX), and performance. The notes from these talks can be found at... More

Top 5 Media and Entertainment Trends for 2013: No. 3: Social Curation

Are social channels with media and entertainment content disrupting audiences away from media owned branded web sites? This was one of the main topics of conversation at Acquia’s recent Media Entertainment and Publishing-Focused Digital Disruption event in New York City.
It’s a difficult question to answer, but with the trend of social content curation rising this year, media companies have found ways to integrate social channels into their own branded experiences. Media and entertainment companies use technology to aggregate the best content about their brands from social channels and... More

BloombergCurrent: Building a Social Network that Matters

With the abundance of cute puppies and heartwarming videos on the Internet, it’s easy to forget about the great deal of meaningful thinking that occurs online. Finding all of the relevant content you should be reading can at times be a seemingly impossible task. If a single site existed that could host this relevant thought knowledge, well that might be the beginning of a great online conversation.
This is, in essence, the primary thinking behind the creation of BloombergCurrent.com.
As the... More

Scaling Cloud: Ops Team Manages Petabytes with Clear View

Handling scale is one of those things people talk about that is an odd mixture of bragging and legitimate challenge. At Acquia, the Operations team is tasked with managing over 6,500 AWS instances, over 12,000 EBS volumes and over 5 million S3 objects. In your early days of growth you’d be able to keep track of this infrastructure just using a spreadsheet but as you can imagine this sprawl really gets out of the wheelhouse of what a spreadsheet can handle after you get past a few dozen servers. It’s not just a matter of keeping track of them individually, you also need to keep track of the... More

Prepare to be Amazed: Acquia Partner Site Awards Now Accepting Nominations

Our partners bring our solutions to life through their creativity, their development skills and their understanding of their clients’ businesses. The Partner Site of the Year Awards is one of my favorite programs because it showcases the amazing work of our partners. Last year was our inaugural year, and the bar was set high by our 114 nominees and seven category winners. I predict the competition will only be tougher in 2014, with more submissions and more great examples of digital innovation.... More

Next Great Digital Experience Adds Reality as Channel

The Internet dealt a staggering blow to business-as-usual. The digital disruption of connecting buyers and sellers through the World Wide Web changed everything, posing a serious threat to the brick-and-mortar retailer. But that was only the beginning.
While digital has been so successful in the early rounds of this battle due to lower pricing, convenience is now the high ground to be taken and has pulled the physical retailers back into the picture.
Reality, as it turns out, is the next digital channel.
One of the early signs of the inter-reliance of digital and physical retailing was... More

What does Google Hummingbird mean for Drupal SEO?

If you didn't catch the news last week, Google announced that they made the single largest change to their search algorithm since 2009. They also didn't bother telling anyone for the first month, so if you're a Google user, you've been using Hummingbird for a while now. If you're anything like me, then the first thought you may have had is "what will this mean for SEO?". Clearly, for anyone who is operating or building web sites, what Google thinks of your... More

Open Data - A new birth of Freedom

Whether FOIA, or local equivalent (we call it OPRA here in New Jersey), the demand for public access to information from our government - that should be in theory if not in practice "of the people, by the people, for the people" - remains stronger than ever before.
In fact, various Open Data initiatives affirm this. Transparency in all aspects is crucial for effective governance, and ultimately, accountability. Classified material aside:... More

9 Changes To Be Excited About In Drupal 8

(Cross-posted from DigitalBungalow.com)
Although still lacking a firm release date, the upcoming launch of Drupal 8 will be sure to impact the CMS landscape for years to come. Already, it has sparked interest across a host of different fields. While developers are waiting tosee how this will affect with work flows, clients are already asking what this next iteration will do for them that isn’t already available in Drupal 7. Luckily, you don’t need to be a developer to understand all the working parts that go along with this latest update, and what it really means for the future of our... More

Embracing the Teen Hacker as the Next-Gen Innovator

As I was sipping my morning coffee checking my LinkedIn newsfeed, I came across an article about a small group of LA School Students who had an interesting reaction when they were given iPads that were set up so that they could not access Facebook, Pandora and other social sites. What did the 300 kids at Theodore Roosevelt High School do? They hacked their way around the restrictions.
In reaction, LA school district shut down the program. The author of the... More

Drupal Commons Tutorial: Customizing Community Website

Often community managers are moving between a variety of fractured systems. They might have a community discussion in a forum application, but they need to edit content in a CMS. Recently we completed two live tutorials showing community managers how to manage groups, users and the content on their sites using Drupal Commons.
Drupal Commons allows you to unify the content editing and community experience. It is online community software that works right out of the box. It is used to build knowledge sharing networks, collaborative spaces... More

3 Keys for Brand Success

I was underdressed. That was the first thing I noticed this week at the Luxury Interactive, “The Premiere Luxury and Branding & eCommerce conference”. The list of attendees was a veritable who’s who in luxury brand marketing, including: Chanel, Stuart Weitzman,... More

Effective Git for Drupal Development

Possibly the nerdiest thing that's ever escaped my mind is a reimagining of the lyrics to 1983 pop hit The Safety Dance by Men Without Hats in tribute to my favorite distributed version control system, Git, contra CVS:
"We can branch if we want to. We can leave your friends behind. 'Cause your friends don't branch, and if they don't branch, well they're no friends of mine!"

You may think that's a little over the top, but even if your appreciation for Git hasn't advanced to the point of putting anachronistic praise into the mouths of... More

Real-Time Marketing is the Next Marketing Evolution

Website marketing is undergoing an evolution, just as it did several years ago when marketers realized the benefits of creating and promoting valuable content. The advent of inbound marketing saw websites move from digital brochures to content producing machines. This opened the top of the funnel, enabling marketers to draw in more and more traffic. However, strategies for converting this newfound traffic haven’t really changed, and this is where the next evolution, real-time marketing, is going change the game.
To understand how real-time marketing will increase conversions, first you... More

Not just another pretty higher education website

Georgia Tech’s new website is fantastic. Engaging, clean, informative, it really helps tell the impressive and dynamic story of who Georgia Tech is, where the school has been and where it is going. Granted the previous site wasn’t all that terrible, but the “before” and “after” from this week’s new site launch highlights how impactful creative design, fresh perspective, and of course a little imagination can be.
But the new GaTech.edu isn’t just a pretty site. There are five key elements that quickly and forcefully inform visitors of who Georgia Tech is and more importantly why Georgia... More

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