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Why Open Source Is Driving Digital Transformation in Government

“Change.” That’s the word that best describes today’s digital world. Since 1991, internet users have grown from a handful of researchers to nearly 3 billion globally. Along the way, how we access and use digital information has changed as well. Government organizations, like the rest of society, are under increasing pressure to adapt to this rapid pace of change. Today’s sophisticated consumers demand dynamic, interactive experiences that help them work with–and participate in–government. To craft the digital experiences their constituents demand, governments have to adopt newer technologies... More

Front End Performance Strategy: Styles

The quest for improved page-load speed and website performance is constant. And it should be. The speed and responsiveness of a website have a significant impact on conversion, search engine optimization, and the digital experience in general. In part one of this series, we established the importance of front-end optimization on performance, and discussed how properly-handled images can provide a significant boost toward that goal. In this... More

Improve Your Site’s Security by Adding Two-Factor Authentication

Identity theft and site compromises are all-too-common occurrences -- it seems a day rarely goes by without a news story detailing the latest batch of user passwords which have been compromised and publicly posted. Passwords were first used in the 1960s when computers were shared among multiple people via time-sharing methods. Allowing multiple users on a single system required a way for users to prove they were who they claimed to be. As computer systems have grown more complex over the last 50 years, the same password concept has been baked into them as the core authentication method. That... More

Users and Permissions, and Creating an Organization in GitHub

This is the fourth post in a multi-part series on using GitHub for Government. In previous posts, we’ve discussed what the public can see and do with GitHub and what Drupal code should and shouldn’t be in a public repository. In this post we’ll discuss users and permissions on organizational accounts, and in the final post, we’ll look at developer workflows. If your developers peer review each other’s code, if you have multi-person teams and want to control roles and permissions for code access, or if your organization’s code sticks around longer than your developers, a GitHub Organization is... More

One year later: the Acquia Certification Program

A little over a year ago we launched the Acquia Certification Program for Drupal. We ended up the first year with close to 1,000 exams taken, which exceeded our goal of 300-600. Today, I'm pleased to announce that the Acquia Certification Program passed another major milestone with over 1,000 exams passed (not just taken). People have debated the pros and cons of software certifications for years (including myself... More

Caching to Improve Drupal Performance: The Three Levels You Should Know

In our continuing mission (well, not a mission; it’s actually a blog series) to help you improve your Drupal website, let’s look at the power of caching. In our previous post, we debunked some too common Drupal performance advice. This time we're going positive, with a simple, rock-solid strategy to get you started: caching is the single best way to improve Drupal performance without having to fiddle with code. At the basic level, it is... More

Seamless Migration to Drupal 8: Make it Yours

Hi there. I’m Adam from Acquia. And I want YOU to adopt Drupal 8! I’ve been working on this for months. Last year, as an Acquia intern, I wrote the Drupal Module Upgrader to help people upgrade their code from Drupal 7 (D7) to Drupal 8 (D8). And now, again as an Acquia intern, I’m working to provide Drupal core with a robust migration path for your content and configuration from D6 and D7 to Drupal 8. I’m a full-service intern! The good news is that Drupal core already includes the migration path from D6 to D8... More

Acquia's 2015 Partner Site of The Year Finalists

Acquia partners with top digital agencies that are creating amazing digital experiences in order to help companies and brands thrive in today's complex digital world. The Partner Site of The Year competition serves as a unique opportunity to showcase the best examples of their work. For this year’s competition, Acquia’s digital agency partners submitted client sites for consideration across 15 categories. After careful deliberation, Acquia’s executive team selected 48 finalists, assessing each site on visual design, functionality, integration and overall customer experience. Next... More

Conquering the Drupal Learning Curve

Common perception is that Drupal has a steep learning curve. Others, colleagues included, find the statement misleading and detrimental. I find myself somewhere in the middle. I think that Drupal development can be unintuitive to someone new to Drupal. However, I believe that any motivated, interested individual can 'conquer' Drupal development, regardless of prior experience. I decided to test the theory by teaching a pre-school teacher, a used car dealership manager, a Java developer, and five others, Drupal 7 development. Why the Reputation? Drupal allows you to change almost anything at... More

What Drupal Code Should/Should Not Be Included in a Public Repository?

This is the third post in a multi-part series on using GitHub for Government. In previous posts, we've discussed the basics of GitHub, as well as what the public can see and do with GitHub. In this post we'll look at what Drupal code should and shouldn’t be in a public repository, and in future posts, we'll discuss users and permissions on organizational accounts and developer workflows. What code can be safely made public and what code should be made public are not always the same thing. What custom code should or should not be made public depends on what your agency’s objectives are in... More

Open Data - The Global Health Data Imperative

This year’s 3rd International Open Data Conference in Ottawa was a call to action and an amazing opportunity to witness the innovation that is enabling a global data revolution. According to the Office of Science and Technology Policy at the White House, “Freely available data from the U.S. Government is an important national resource, serving as fuel for entrepreneurship, innovation, scientific discovery, and other public benefits. According to a... More

How Weather.com Improved Their Page Load Times

In November, 2014 Weather.com launched on Drupal and became one of the highest trafficked websites in the world to launch on an open-source content management system (CMS). Mediacurrent and Acquia are excited to announce a new, 3-part blog post series that will share insight around how Weather.com was migrated to Drupal. Our team of experts will share best practices and what lessons we learned during the project. There's an old saying, “... More

Redefining Commerce: OluKai - Selling Shoes, Selling a Lifestyle

I discovered the OluKai brand a couple of years ago when my brother bought a pair of OluKai sandals, and lived in them for an entire summer. Nearly daily proclamations of enthusiasm and excitement over that single pair of sandals soon had me looking at the brand website and buying a pair for myself. Much like my Brother, I immediately fell in love, and have been a strong brand advocate ever since. But it’s not just the sandals I fell in love with, it’s the lifestyle that OluKai embodies. It made me want to emulate that in my own life.... More

Achieving Agile in Government - It Can Be Done

Implementing agile development methodologies in a government setting can be quite difficult. Government agencies often want to know upfront exactly what they’re getting, and exactly what it will cost. From an agile development perspective, this is a major challenge. According to Agile In A Nutshell, “Agile is a time boxed, iterative approach to software delivery that builds software incrementally from the start of the project, instead of trying to deliver it all at once near the end. It works by breaking projects down into little... More

What Can The Public See and Do With Things I Put On GitHub?

This is the second post in a multi-part series on using GitHub for Government. In the first, we discussed the basics of getting your government agency up and running with GitHub. In this post, we'll take a look at what the public can see and do with GitHub, and in the upcoming posts, we'll discuss what Drupal code should and shouldn’t be in a public repository, users and permissions on organizational accounts, and developer workflows. Here’s a quick overview of things that become visible and interactions that become public when a person makes a code repository, or “repo”, public on GitHub. 1... More

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