Gábor Hojtsy: DevDays Szeged and the new wave of contribution in Drupal

Gábor and I sat down for a chat at United Nations headquarters at NYCCamp in April 2014. We talked about the very productive contribution sprints at the NYC Camp; effecting positive change in the world with technology and how Drupal 8 will enable anyone to communicate using tools in their own language; and the incredible energy and quantity of contributors at the Drupal DevDays in Szeged Hungary.

Not just multilingual, how about omni-lingual?

Regarding how Drupal can empower people everywhere to communicate and improve their lives and world, Gábor describes some of the benefits Drupal 8 brings to the global internet: "The primary goal of our initiative is to make it seamless and very easy to get Drupal to any culture around the globe. It's called the Multilingual Initiative and it is in part about having capabilities to handle multiple languages; it's also about having capabilities to handle any language in Drupal. We are succeeding in making that very easy to do now in Drupal 8. That should contribute a lot to making it very simple for anyone to set up a site in Drupal 8, whatever their language is."

"In Drupal 8, out of the gate, the first screen in the installer asks you for your language and from there on, the whole thing is in your language. If you write right-to-left, then it will be right-to-left from the second screen on. It will be a familiar environment and you can understand what's going on."

DevDays Szeged: Turning pizza into code!

The DevDays events in Europe are technically-focused and bring together developers and site-builders – "those who make Drupal happen and those who use Drupal to build things" for a week of learning and contribution. The Szeged event ran from Monday to Sunday, "Most people were there for the whole week, which blew out our expectations. In the initial planning, we thought there would be 20 or 30 people on Monday, based on previous event experiences. Instead, we had 150 people come in on Monday [for the code sprints], which was totally unexpected." On the busiest days, 320 people were attending sessions, sprinting on a variety of important areas: a responsive theme for Drupal.org, improvements to the Drupal test infrastructure, and Drupal 8 itself.

These events are rife with learning opportunities. "There's a lot of people who come for sessions, but this time a lot realized that there's a lot of value in some of the sprints as well. They can come in and they can sit down with big names in the Drupal community. You can work with them. You can see how they work. You can see how they solve problems and you can learn a lot from just working together with them. A lot of people got that opportunity. We mentored a lot of new contributors to Drupal 8."

The contribution energy in Drupal now, "is amazing. What we've seen at the sprints, people were coming in. We had the rooms open from 9 a.m. till midnight. People were working all the time, solving problems, self-organizing into groups. It was really amazing to see. Somebody ordered half a ton of pizzas to a sprint room one evening." I think it was 70 actually, but that is still a lot of pizza ...

The Gábor extravaganza: All Gábor, all the time

Be sure to check out my previous conversation with Gábor and his jam's Drupal Camp appearance, "A whole new world for multilingual sites with Drupal 8", which includes audio, video, and the slides from his session!

Interview Video

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