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Author: Heather James @learningdrupal
This is the first in a series of podcasts where I'll be talking to people who have converted to using Drupal. I've chosen to name it to 'Drupal Adapter' to extend the notion of plugging into Drupal from another system. It isn't always easy- let's share experience and help others find their way. Drupal wins when people bring their experience and knowledge to the project.
Are you coming to Drupal from another language, framework or system? Hopefully this podcast series will help you.
Did you already come from another system or framework and add Drupal to your toolbox? I'd love to meet with you at DrupalCon or on Skype! Talk about those things you found difficult in Drupal and what are some things you miss about the other systems you use? Hopefully we can provide pointers for new users or Drupal, and we can also generate ideas for improving the Drupal project. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or catch me in the BoF space at DrupalCon where I'll be camped out! We can have a quick interview there.
The first podcast: Chris Brown, How did you plug into Drupal?
In this first podcast, I spoke with my colleague, Chris Brown a Technical Advisor from the Professional Services team. (Trivia: Chris was the 11th Chris hired at Acquia.) He brings a lot of experience having worked on projects such as Restore the Gulf, and extensive experience with Java and Grails development and service oriented architecture.
In our discussion, Chris compared the code-driven development he employed with Java & Grails versus the install & configure model of Drupal. While he had more power within Grails, he always had to do it in code, rather than configure it on a screen. "Developers always want to be developing. Luckily I had that pounded out of me", he said. "Why am I sitting here redoing this- when someone's already done it? ...And I can move onto more interesting problems."
I think that is great insight for how Drupal works: There are more interesting problems to be solved; so leverage the community-contributed modules and effort so you can innovate.
Ideas for improving Drupal
Chris also pointed out how important documentation is. Admittedly, he says his choice of whether to use X or Y Java library often depended on how well it was documented. He had a good idea for a simple documentation sprint: take and submit screenshots of the most popular modules so people can see how they work. Are you coming to DrupalCon? This would be a fun sprint!
If you agree with Chris, and want to make a quick and valuable contribution to the Drupal project, check out the documentation sprints and BoFs planned for DrupalCon Chicago: http://groups.drupal.org/node/128889.
Links mentioned during the podcast
- Grails - Groovy scripting language which runs off the Java VM.
- Restore the Gulf
- Using Drupal
- Pro Drupal Development
Are you a Drupal Adapter? Want to share your story?
As mentioned above, at DrupalCon, I'll be looking for people to speak with. If you're interested, please find my in the BoF space or at the Acquia table! I promise my throat won't be so scratchy next time :)