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Drupal Gardens 6 week update

In these early days of the Drupal Gardens beta, we are adding new features, beta testers, and cloud servers around the clock. Since our last update 3 weeks ago, thousands more beta testers have been added, and they have clicked to create thousands of new Drupal Gardens web sites. And of course, being a social platform, those sites in turn are attracting their own communities. It's a lot of fun watching the garden grow.

The Path to Drupal - equating extensibility with success

Some time ago I wrote an article that looks deeply at the Drupal path system and shows how easy it is for new developers to hook into a running Drupal system. I explore the idea that this openness and extensibility is a key factor in winning large numbers of developers to work on Drupal, and that this is one of the reasons the project is succeeding. The paper is now available at Acquia, beautifully formatted as a technical whitepaper.

Crowd-sourcing usability testing with free Adobe Connect Pro licenses

Leisa and Mark recently blogged about crowd-sourcing usability testing. I'm really interested in this topic, in fact i spoke about it in DC. For those of you not familiar with the concept, the idea is to generate vast amounts of usage data. Consider the fact that Drupal has been tested 3 times, roughly once per year, generating approximately 24 videos of users attempting to fulfill a fraction of the tasks in Drupal core.

Mark Boulton & Leisa Reichelt need our help...

For the past month or so, Mark Boulton and Leisa Reichelt have been getting up to speed on Drupal and brainstorming ideas for improvement. They're now at a point where they need help from the community. They can not succeed without our participation, and thus far they're not getting the level of participation they need. At present, they immediate feedback on the following:

How to test 20 000 Drupal 7 core patches: Part II

Approximately a year ago I helped layout out a vision for how we could add test driven development to the Drupal core development process. Here's an update on the automated testing process. Jimmy Berry and I gave a talk at Drupalcon DC.

How to use Acquia Search & Apache Solr

This is the second half of a screencast series on Acquia Search. In the first screencast, I demonstrated how to enable the appropriate modules. In this screencast, I show you how to configure and use Acquia Search and Apache Solr.

Calculating test coverage

Here's how you can determine test coverage of your tests by generating a report like this one:
http://acquia.com/files/test-results/index.html

Step 1: Install xdebug php extension. On ubuntu I run
apt-get install php5-xdebug

Step 2: Checkout simpletest trunk anywhere on your disk. In this example I will choose /usr/local/simpletest
svn co \  https://simpletest.svn.sourceforge.net/svnroot/simpletest/simpletest/trunk \ /usr/local/simpletest

Step 3: Add simpletest to the php.ini loaded by apache.

Acquia Search: Call for 6 usability testers in DC

What if I told you I could improve your visitors experience by optimizing their ability to discover information on your site? What if I could empower your visitors to find information faster? I can do this for you! No, I'm not a magician, I'm merely running a usability study on Acquia's Search offering. There's only room for 6 (2 per session), but if you sign up now, I'll help you achieve the aforementioned goals by getting Acquia Search running on your site.

Drupal 7 user experience improvements - get involved at DrupalCon

I'm tremendously excited to have Mark, Leisa and team join forces with the community and continue the user experience momemtum. Given their prior work, I truly believe they're the team to help extract us from the minutia, think big, and create an experience that expands Drupal's adoption. Welcome aboard!

As with any good design process, they'll kick this project off at Drupalcon DC by conducting research. So far, they've identified two activities:

1. Blue Sky Design Workshops

Get a scholarship to DrupalCon 2009 in Washington DC

I can hardly wait to go do DrupalCon 2009 in Washington DC. If you’re as excited about DrupalCon as I am, but are having a hard time finding the money you’d need to attend, perhaps you should apply for one of the 20 scholarships that are being awarded. Anybody in financial need can apply:

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