Tendenci, the NPO CMS website software, is going open source thanks to Matt and Dries

UPDATE 4/3/2012: The Tendenci Open Source Download is available on GitHub here. Also view Instructions on Hosting Requirements

============================

We are making Tendenci open source. Yes really. Official Tendenci Open Source Press Release here. So what is Tendenci?

Tendenci is an Open Source Software for Associations (AMS) and Built Specifically for Non-Profits.

That’s it. Sounds simple but organizing people, especially members of non-profit organizations (NPOs), is a real challenge. And designing software is a challenge too. Therefore focus produces better results.

We’ve talked about making our product open source for years internally. So why now?

The tipping point for me was last year at our bi-annual conference where we had the privilege of hosting two open-source visionaries Dries Buytaert and Matt Mullenweg on the stage at the same time. Dries is the founder of Drupal and Matt is the founder of WordPress.

Their WordPress-Drupal talk at SchipulCon 2011 moderated by David was absolutely inspiring to me. Here were two men who give their product away for FREE but still create jobs with over 100 employees each. The video is on WordPress.tv here.

One thing Matt said during the talk was:

People being told what to do and working for money are never going to match people working for passion and a community.

— MATT MULLENWEG

Matt’s right. I do things for free with a greater passion than what I do for the almighty dollar. I’ll spend 5 hours editing photos for a volunteer event out of passion for the arts. Or to support and remember our troops. Because I am passionate about both. I am passionate about non-profits and service to community and country, which is what drove me to start programming Tendenci in 2001! And yet paradoxically I have always kept Tendenci proprietary. My vision for the company is:

To Connect and Organize the World’s People. Do Good.

Thus we are making our code open source for the NPO community to use, build upon, download and do as they wish. And yes, we fully realize our competitors will be the first to download. But hey, maybe they have some great ideas for integration plugins and they can make a profit too. It will be released on GitHub to coincide with the NTEN conference in San Francisco next month.

Why am I doing this? It is me (Ed) making an ideological decision. I didn’t say “logical” I said “ideological.” I want to change the world. After travelling extensively and earning a degree in Political Science I’ve become more aware that we are part of a global community. I want to leave the world a better place than when I arrived. Yes, seriously!

Open Source enables us to DO GOOD at a higher level than our pure proprietary model allows. “To connect and organize the worlds’ people. Do good.” As goes the vision so goes the company. Enzo the (talking) dog in the amazing book The Art of Racing in the Rain says:

That which you manifest becomes you.

What Enzo was saying is that when you are driving a race car you can’t look at the wall to stay away from it. You need to look at the road way up ahead so you are prepared BEFORE you get there. And proprietary is limited by resources in ways that open source is not. We can manifest more good being open source.

Matt and Dries convinced me that we can build an open source product through a global community to change the world, AND still create jobs and make a profit. Thus after 14 years in business and having started programming Tendenci in 2001 (11 years!) I am ready to make the jump to open source.

What technology is behind it? It was originally written in ASP. Not anymore. On January 22nd 2009 our programming team convinced me we needed a complete rewrite because the only people who know the Tendenci 4 framework are people who work at Schipul because I never documented it. Ooops. So over the last three years we have done a COMPLETE rewrite of Tendenci from the ground up using the best-of-breed open source technology. At a technical level our programming team recommended the Django/Python/mySQL/Ubuntu “stack.”

That was a big decision. I’m committed and I am 100% positive this is the right path forward for us, our clients and NPOs everywhere. (We plan to have a github repository available by NTEN if not sooner. See you in San Francisco y’all!)

Thanks,

Ed

QUESTIONS?  (POST IN COMMENTS WITH MORE QUESTIONS)

Is Tendenci really built specifically for non-profits and will memberships be included in the open source download?

Yes and yes. Memberships are included in the base download. As are membership benefits like pricing for events etc.

Can businesses still use Tendenci?

Yes, most definitely. In fact with the new plug-in architecture and the new templating system, you will have even greater flexibility.

For example, WordPress is used as a great CMS system and we build a BUNCH of WP sites for businesses, organizations, individuals, artists, and non-profit organizations. WordPress rocks. It has a ton of great add-ons. Yet its DNA is fundamentally a blogging platform. Tendenci is fundamentally a CMS for non-profits.

Will Schipul, the company behind Tendenci, continue to build and support Tendenci?

Yes. Absolutely. I LOVE THIS SOFTWARE! And our programming team is excited to be a part of the open source community. We are not going anywhere. Quite the opposite – we are getting even more energized about it!

While I like being able to download it if I want, I’d rather not deal with all of that. Does Tendenci offer hosting?

Absolutely. Visit www.tendenci.com and click the “Free Trial” button and you are up and running. Work with your own developer to configure it to your specifications or call us at 281 497 6567 and we can help.

We are a web design firm. Can we sell Tendenci sites and host them on our own servers?

Yes. That is how open source works. And we need design partners as well to help with clients who choose to host with us. And theme and plug in-developers too.  You can find out more by checking out our Partner Programs.

How will you stay in business if you just give away your product?

I not only expect to “stay in business” but I expect our profit and revenue to go up through lower cost cloud based hosting at Amazon and increased volume. Lower costs means higher usage pretty much in every economic model I have ever seen.

And Tendenci being open source creates an ecosystem for other developers to develop apps on that meet the needs of their specific clients.

Why make Tendenci Open Source now, in 2012? Why the timing?

What better time? Thanks to our clients we grew another 20% in revenue and earned a fair profit last year. We have been profitable since 2002 and are completely self funded so I didn’t have to call a banker or a board that doesn’t understand SaaS and open source to get approval to make this decision. I simply listened to our clients. I listened to our employees. I listened to our stakeholders. I listened to Matt and Dries. And I made a decision that is best for everyone including non-profits all over the world given Django is multi-language.

And hey, financially we are strong and what better time to give to the open source community than during a recession and at a time of strength? I would have done this years ago but you can’t build an open source community around a proprietary technology like ASP (what I originally wrote it in). It was the rewrite of Tendenci by our young and talented programming team that is allowing us to make the move now.

Why is open source so important for NPOs? Do they really care?

Yes, yes and more yes. Just ask them.

According to the NTEN 2011 survey 33% custom built their web sites (perhaps on top of open source), 10% used proprietary products, cloud based or not. The remaining 57% strictly use open source software. Excluding non-profit hospitals and other niche verticals, I believe open source web technology probably accounts for close to 70% of the market by number of NPOs. PHP based CMS systems like Drupal, WordPress and Joomla currently fill this need, and they are great products.

I believe opening Tendenci up as open source provides a fourth viable option to meet the specific needs of non-profit web sites. And Tendenci is built in the Python programming language on the Django framework which opens opportunities up to developers who prefer Python.

Or to put it another way, I believe proprietary SaaS products that target the non-profit community will only survive if they focus on very specific niches because they are excluding almost 60% of their target audience. As a VC would say, that sort of limits your “addressable market.” Our proprietary competitors don’t share this belief. And I didn’t either last year. I’m a convert. And I ask you,

Would YOU rather know you can download all of the technology for your site if you wanted to?

Of course your answer is yes. You want open source because you want and deserve to control the destiny of your web presence.

That is why my personal blog and this blog are on WORDPRESS! I believe WordPress is the best blogging platform around. I love it. I started with a paid hosted site at www.wordpress.com. And at some point I wanted more control so I migrated to my own server (we have a few. #heh). Shouldn’t you have that same freedom as a non-profit?

Well, now you do.

How can I get a copy of the source code and start working on it now? (I’m writing this on 3/15/12 – the Ides of March indeed)

We hope to have a public repository available on github by NTEN next month. The (slight) delay is simply because we built our hosted environment to use three distinct servers, search index, web server and CDN. That won’t make sense to 99% of the people reading this. In English it means “we built it for BIG HUGE SITES. We need to make that part optional so a small NPO can download and run it on their own web server without having to buy three slices at Amazon. We’re working on it! And I can’t wait!

In the meantime, you can sign-up on our website and we’ll be sending an email with the download link to you as soon as it is ready.

(Note: We do have a few select beta testers with early access working on the SpacePoints site. We’ll get it available to everyone soon.)

What other questions do you have? Hit us up in the comments below!

#peace

https://www.tendenci.com/help-files/topic/94/

Drupal and WordPress at SchipulCon: One Stage, One Open Source Love

Open Source Discussion with the Founders of Drupal and WordPress from Schipul – The Web Marketing Co. on Vimeo.

“People being told what to do and working for money are never going to match people working for passion and a community.”
~Matt Mullenweg

“With every cell in my body, I believe that Open Source is the way forward.  Especially when it comes to websites, but also beyond just websites.”
~Dries Buytaert

We were beyond honored to host Drupal founder Dries Buytaert and WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg at our SchipulCon 2011 event.

Guided by David Stagg, the open source conversation survived epic microphone turmoil  years of open source competitiveness to showcase the true brilliance and passion of these open source leaders.

Dries Buytaert and Matt Mullenweg share the SchipulCon stage

Around Designers vs Developers Flocking to WordPress and Drupal (Respectively)

Matt:  “I learned a ton about code and programming and back end systems… mainly because I had sort of a vision of something that I wanted a user to realize…. and so we made certain design choices from a technical view that to me are more intuitive.

There were two big pressures early in WordPress’ life:  1) everyone wanted us to adopt a templating system because everyone at the time had one  and 2) they wanted us to go a strict object oriented model.  So you could extend everything WordPress does through classes essentially.

We took an action oriented plug-in approach… which is perhaps not as correct from a programmer’s point of view, but easier for beginner users.”

Dries:  “When I started Drupal, I was in college to get a computer science degree – almost an engineer.  So I wasn’t too concerned about user experience – more obsessed with the architecture and the right APIs and all of these things.

When I finally released Drupal as open source, it really attracted an audience of developers.  The initial community was a developer community and began to expand to more and more developers.  That emphasis on architecture was reinforced.   [We’re] trying to change that and it’s slowly starting to work – it’s very much historical.”

>>> Cool side notes:  Matt has been a Drupal member for 8 years and one week.  His interests on his profile include typography and simplicity (the only person to include this in their profile).  Years back,  Matt gave a credit to Drupal and reminded Dries that he had some code in WordPress very early on — time for Matt to contribute to Drupal!

Wordpress and Drupal at SchipulCon

What Do you Wish you had Done that the Other Did?

Dries:  Matt did a lot of things right, he started his company sooner, WordPress.com is a tremendous asset to get more people involved and his focus on design and usability is key – a very important thing to do very early on.  In a way, Drupal is paying the penalty for not doing this early on.

Matt:  When I look at the Drupal community, the thing that I like is that the software runs the community itself.  The bug tracker is Drupal, the forum, the issues – everything is Drupal.  Also the 3rd party developer community – even though WP has more websites, we have fewer of the large consulting firms.  Drupal has a lot more large development firms building these giant websites, that’s not as common with WordPress.

How Do you Benefit from the Other Existing?

Dries:  If WordPress wins, Drupal wins.  Because that means Open Source is winning.

Matt:  Competition is good.  Anytime any firm or product does something amazing, the bar has been raised.

Want more SchipulCon brain candy and memories?

Dries Buytaert and Matt Mullenweg jumping like mad

We’ve got some great SchipulCon speaker videos going live in the next couple of weeks, just be sure to keep an eye on our SchipulCon video gallery! Matt and Dries chat photo album has lots of great photos of these great guys and be sure to find yourself in all of our albums from the event.

Thanks again for being such a special part of SchipulCon!

Matt Mullenweg + Dries Buytaert on the SchipulCon stage!!

Matt Mullenweg and Dries Buytaert at SchipulCon

With SchipulCon starting in only one day, we have our most exciting announcement yet!!  Matt Mullenweg (founder of WordPress) will be sharing the Friday luncheon stage with Dries Buytaert (founder of Drupal) – for the first time ever!

Their discussion, moderated by Schipulite David Stagg, will cover the two enormous open source communities’ growth, development and future direction.

Learn how both geek-preneurs have cultivated their very unique development and user communities, as well as what the future holds for open source in general.  THIS is not a discussion to be missed.

Join us for an amazing look at two of the brightest minds in technology today!   With Drupal, WordPress, Facebook, NASA and so many other great speaker organizations stepping up to share their brain candy – you’ll grow your brain as never before at SchipulCon.

SXSWi 2011 – The Extended Version

We all like a little closure.  Last week Scooter dropped her South by Southwest Interactive takeaways. Today we’ve compiled favorite takeaways from other  SXSWi Schipulites to share with you.

SXSWi 2011 Takeaways

From Melissa

Photo via www.fastcompany.com (SXSWi 2011 Scvngr feature)

The highlight of SXSW 2011 for me was definitely SCVNGR CEO Seth Priebatsch’s keynote address.   Priebatsch explained how the developing “game layer” in the virtual world can be applied to solve problems in the physical world by taking advantage of principles of game play, including rules, rewards, and levels.   He even concluded the talk with a short game involving the audience to illustrate how game play can motivate people to work together to accomplish communal goals, regardless of locale of the players.

Not only did the talk itself cover a lot of real world problems (such as the inherent  problems with school model) and present some interesting solutions, but Priebatcsch’s energy and enthusiasm was unmatched and inspiring.  Listen to the audio of Seth Priebatsch’s Keynote Address

The high-profile presence of Gowalla and their SXSW-focused game of checking-in and collecting stamps throughout the conference was a lot of fun, too!

Also, I attended a panel session called Time Traveling: Interfaces for Geotemporal Visualization. The panel discussed how much data we are creating and storing in online systems, such as Google Maps, now that so many more people have access.

It’s easy to show either time or space/geography in visualizations, but combining them together makes visualizing the data a lot trickier.     It’s a new challenge and new opportunity to create and use tools to learn about history, current events, and trends and also presents new ways for storytelling on the web.

One of the panelists, Nick Rabinowitz, who works mainly as an information consultant with a focus on non-profit organizations, created a JavaScript library called Timemap.js that can be used to display geotemporal data in tons of ways, including progressing loading as you scroll through time.   He and his brother, panel moderator, Assistant Professor and Director of University of Texas’ Institute of Classical Archaeology Adam Rabinowitz, also created GEODIA, a system that visualizes the temporal, geographic and material aspects of ancient Mediterranean civilizations.

From David

We went to SXSWi with a strict goal to promote Schipul as a leader in the Drupal community, and while we promoted our Drupal Monster video, we had a wonderful time engaging the SXSW crowd with a content management system some were new to.

As part of our strategy, we printed out Moocards with a simple link on them, and we handed them out  guerrilla-style.

Drupal Monster Moocards

We got more of a response from DrupalCon the week before SXSWi. But that’s to be expected since the video is Drupal-related. That being said, our promotion at SXSWi kept the snowball rolling. Watch the Drupal Monster video.

From  Derek

Groupon SXSWi 2011

The panel that made a lasting impression on me was by Aaron With from Groupon called “Strange Business: Corporate Creativity that Doesn’t Suck.” It was about a lot of things they do that most people see as wasting endless amounts of time and money for no reason. They do fun, interesting things that have no plan at first then actually end up having value at some point (try unsubscribing and you’ll see). My favorite quote was Aaron describing one of their activities: “We made it for no good reason then it ended up having a business benefit.”

At Schipul,  we don’t go to the extremes Groupon does, but it’s good to see the idea reinforced by a large company. Our company realizes the potential of “wasting time” even when it may mean lack of productivity at that specific period of time. The Drupal Monster video or Plasma Car races are perfect examples.  Listen to the audio version of this panel

Random Photo Time!

While in Austin, we took every opportunity to live it up: nerd-style. That means Lyndia and I cuddled the xtranormals (you may remember them from @urbanhoustonian’s video); I met Dule Hill from  psych (USA) and The West Wing (NBC)  ; and between panels, the Schipulites enjoyed the beautiful weather on patios with free wireless internet access.

xtranormal cuddlies at SXSWi 2011
Lyndia and I cuddled the xtranormals.

 

Me to Dule Hill: Dude. You're hot.

 

We're mapping out the parties that have free beer. Priorities. Nerdery.

Looking ahead

We had a few SXSWi first-timers in our group (including me). Since the conference we’ve had opportunities to apply much of what we’ve learned in small doses. Between now and the next SXSWi, it’ll be interesting to see how we, and how others, expand on information from panels.

If you missed it, I’ve updated my takeaways with audio links to the panels. Check them out  here. And please feel free to share your takeaways and links with us. We’d love to hear from you!

DrupalCon Day 2: A whole lot of nerdery

DrupalCon Day 1 was a blast with a ton of good information, but Day 2 was a whole lot nerdier in our sessions. So, as with our last post, there may be a nerd alert necessary.

Making Maps Beautiful

If you’re a Drupaler and want to make sure your maps look beautiful, we attended a session on ways to make Drupal maps beautiful. Hint: You don’t always need to use Google Maps.

  1. Check out the OpenLayers module. It’s an open source javascript library that allows theme-ing of maps so you can make them look way more beautiful.
  2. Open Stream Maps is an open source mapping system that is similar/rivals Google Maps. There are (believe it or not) instances where clients cannot use Gmap (or Drupal’s Google Maps module); Open Stream allows for another option.
  3. Bring it all together by using the MapBox module which allows you to provide layers (e.g. selected boxes that show/hide information) on your maps (even Google Maps!).
  4. And let’s not forget about TileMill. You can use it to create custom tile sets—it’s a WYSIWYGish editor to create a look for a map and map interactions. As they say, they’re a “a modern map design studio
    powered by open source technology.” They do all the heavy CSS-lifting to making your maps pretty. USE THIS.

Drush Make

I was completely, totally, and utterly humbled by dmitrig01. Here’s the nerdy part: Below is a basic Drush Make file (there’s a lot that goes in before this, but hit up Schipul and we can help you out). The idea is that within literally a few lines of code, you can launch a “News” site or a “Video” site, all using Features and Drush.

By the way, dmitrig01 is a 15-year-old 10th grader who is an incredible speaker and actually wrote Drush Make. He spoke at 12-years-old at DrupalCon. I was still learning what women were when I was 15.

A basic, annotated Drush Make file

Hopefully this can get you started:

core = 6.x (Tell it what version of Drupal you're using)
api = 2 (What version of Drush Make we're running, found on Drush Make download page)

projects[cck] = 2.9 (Tell it which version of the module you're grabbing)
projects[features] = 1.0
etc...

projects[news_item][type][module]
projects[news_item][download][type] = get
projects[news_item][download][url] = URL (can be localhost, e.g. http://localhost/...)
projects[news_items][subdir] = features

We’ll be back tomorrow to drop some more nerdery on your ass!

DrupalCon Day 1: The future of Drupal, HTML5, and the Media Module in D7

We’ve come to the end of Day 1 of DrupalCon in Chicago. Al Hughes and David Stagg are back at DrupalCon (big ups to San Francisco last year!), ready to share some more Drupal knowledge with you all.

Al Hughes, Kieran Lal, David Stagg, and Dries Buytaert at DrupalCon Chicago
Al Hughes (PM at Schipul), Kieran Lal (Drupal Community Adventure Guide from Acquia), David Stagg (Creative Director at Schipul), and Dries Buytaert (Drupal Founder and Lead) with our man Morten Heide taking the photo at DrupalCon Chicago

Day 0: Party!

Of course, at the end of Day 0, the Drupalers gather at the local hotel bar and go to town. We have to give mad love to all those we partied with: Kieran Lal, Morten Heide, Dries Buytaert, Liza Kindred, Jonathon DeLaigle, Marco Carbone, and more!

The Future of Drupal (8)

  1. For the most part of the keynote, Dries hammered home the fact that Drupal 8 must work for all devices (no longer the desktop); the number of smartphones in the past year has increased exponentially and it would be egregious to miss that market.
  2. Dries also wanted to note that if you have two platforms, Drupal and some other CMS, the one that always wins out is the one with the better “ecosystem.” For example, the reason the iPhone wins out over competitors (that might even have a better product or coverage), is due to the ecosystem they’ve created: the App Store, the Apps themselves, the culture, etc. Dries wants to ensure that the Drupal ecosystem is not just stable, but thrives moving into the next generation Web platform.
  3. When creating Drupal 7, Dries met with 20 major market CTOs (e.g. Time Magazine), and asked them what the biggest issues facing the then current state of Drupal was. He said two bubbled to the top: Configuration and Administration. These were added directly to the direction of D8.

HTML5

D.Stagg attended a session by the wonderful speaker Jen Simmons about the future of HTML5 specifically in regards to Drupal. Rockin’ HTML5 with Drupal provided a number of good insights:

Coming up: Nerd alert!

  1. You can use ARIA (short for Accessible Rich Internet Applications) roles for descriptions, e.g. <nav role=”main-nav”>, to target and separate your HTML structures.
  2. Rule of thumb: Use the new <section> tag to group similarly related items (e.g. footer link menus), and use <div> tags to group somewhat unrelated items (e.g. a main content area and a sidebar).
  3. Really cool tip: On <input> fields, add type=”url” or type=”email” to change the keyboard layout on smartphones.

Media Module for Drupal 7 only

Albert Hughes spent some of his time in a session that discussed the way Drupal 7 will handle and update media in the Drupal system:

  1. Media is now treated closer to what one would consider a “node”, e.g. you can add fields like “caption”.
  2. You can also now upload a file and reference it throughout the site, as opposed to have it attached to a custom content type node.
  3. “Uploads” or the “File Attachments” have been taken away to make things more clean and streamlined.
  4. However, one of the main reasons this was taken away isn’t because of the Media module, but because the FileField module in Drupal 6 was added to core.

“Monster (Drupal Remix)”

And of course, both A.Hughes and D.Stagg spent a lot of time throwing out moocards getting people to visit http://bit.ly/drupalmonster. And if you don’t want to click, we’ll provide the embed for you 😉

“Monster (Drupal Remix feat. A.Hughes and D.Stagg)” from Schipul – The Web Marketing Co. on Vimeo.

“Monster (Drupal Remix feat. A.Hughes and D.Stagg)” music video released

Last year, A.Hughes and QCait dropped a Drupal remix of Successful by Drake for Schipul’s bi-annual conference SchipulCon in 2010. We were lucky enough to have Dries himself link to the video.

This year, though, A.Hughes teamed up with writing partner D.Stagg (both Schipul employees), taking it up a notch, dropping “Monster (Drupal Remix feat. A.Hughes and D.Stagg)”, complete with video, for DrupalCon 2011.

“Monster (Drupal Remix feat. A.Hughes and D.Stagg)”

“Monster (Drupal Remix feat. A.Hughes and D.Stagg)” from Schipul – The Web Marketing Co. on Vimeo.

Mad love to Brian Potter for the editing and direction.

Lyrics

D.Stagg
CMS is a monster
Blue on ya monitor
site bombin on ya
Now look where Drupal poppin up
As look through ya pocketbook
Site need a new look
try a Drupal sample
Hughes’ll demo an example

Hook
Drupal Drupal gotta lotta users
I’m a need to see a lot sites on this movement
I’m a need to see more Drupal sites watch us prove it
I’m a need to see more Drupal sites watch us prove it

Drupal, Drupal, everybody Drupal (x3)

A.Hughes
took my first site live on Drupal 5
that was ’08 i was trying to survive
got my suit straight and bought 2 ties
the lord blessed me with a gig now we on the rise
html i knew css
dreamweaver jquery and a cms
on my resume and in my cover letter
everyday i’m goin in and i’m getting better
up all night i done learned php
I’m on that on lullabot for a phd
in the Drupal game i’m a do my thang
managing projects on my way to fame
and we don’t see the same i got better views
in different regions doing fields like some soccer shoes
yeah its a.hughes i’ll replace ya name like a token
and you better back up before your site is broken

Hook
Drupal Drupal gotta lotta users
I’m a need to see a lot sites on this movement
I’m a need to see more Drupal sites watch us prove it
I’m a need to see more Drupal sites watch us prove it

Drupal, Drupal, everybody Drupal (x3)

D.Stagg
Drupal Drupal got a lot of users
Gotta build a site that’ll scale like weight losers
Gotta load fast using solr and some views
Gotta look better like Bentleys over land cruisers
Weak CMS sites boy we be trashing them
Call EMS those sites Drupal bashin them
Like Perez Hilton talkin’ trash bout yo fashion
Gotta have a clean back end like kardashian
Source code on LSD all tabbed out
Using css3, I’m a brag about
The Drupal 7 drop, stagg’ll always be about
Killin these sites with some node templates maxxed out
Give me a fresh install and an IDE
Hooked on hooks, modulating like I’m Whitney
Hook_form-alter like I’m doin’ plastic surgery
Takin’ these sites to a level like you never seen

Southwest Drupal Summit: Day 1

A Druplicon Chia Pet from our friends at Acquia!

Southwest Drupal Summit is in full swing! Yesterday was a flurry of speakers, panels, Scrum revolutions, open source passion, and awesome Drupal loot, and the Schipulites drank it all in. It’s always fun to get together with the rest of the Drupal community to learn more about how we can bring the best to our clients and get inspired.

The day started with an awesome intro to Drupal 7 with Lullabot‘s Angie Byron (famous for her appearances in the Lullabot Drupal training videos that we love at Schipul). We learned about all the performance, functionality and usability improvements in the latest version of Drupal. We also learned about the sometimes painful process that brings new versions of Drupal to us — thanks Dries, Angie and crew for all your hard work. Needless to say, we can’t wait to dig into Drupal 7.

We learned about open source from Liza at Lullabot, Scrum from the Level Ten crew, and Drush from our friend Bronius. Our very own David Stagg also gave a killer presentation on location-based views in Drupal. There’s no way you could possibly learn more in 50 minutes.

Today, we’re looking forward to learning more about event websites in Drupal, designing with your wonderful clients, and integrating Drupal with social APIs. A few of the Schipulites will be answering questions this morning on managing client expectations using Drupal as their CMS. Be sure to check them out in the Acquia room at 9:30!

Tune in next week for a full recap of the event and everything we learned in this two-day Drupal lovefest.

Happy Drupal 7 launch day!

Drupal badge

As Web marketers, the Schipul team gets to play around with a LOT of technology for client and company projects.   But few come remotely close to the flexibility and customization of Drupal – a software force to be reckoned with in the CMS world.

You’ve already been on a Drupal site, even if you haven’t realized it.   The Whitehouse.gov, Popular Science magazine and The Onion are just the tip of the Drupal iceberg (Drupal-berg?).   Our team has developed great client sites like IKEA Houston, PlasmaCar, Envoy Mortgage and Locke Bryan productions, to name just a few.

Today (1/7/11) is the official Drupal 7 launch day.   Three years in the making, this new version of Drupal brings a number of exciting updates:

  • CCK (Content Construction Kit) is now a built-in feature, making it easier to create custom content types in your site
  • Great new User Interface with a brand new default administration menu
  • Better theming options to keep your design looking fantastic
  • Increased overall security
  • So much more!

What’s exciting about this launch is not just the great updates, but the community celebration around the tremendous group effort that these updates have incorporated.   It’s the open source spirit personified!

There are guides to ‘rocking your Drupal 7 release party‘ and more celebrations than we can count in cities all across the country.   Our team is making appearances at the Austin Drupal 7 launch party and at the Houston Geek Gathering with the upcoming SW Drupal Summit organizers.

SW Drupal Summit 2011

And before you go Googling Drupal-built sites, make sure you watch our Drupal Rap video – and let us know how we can help you rock out in the Drupal world:

Drupal Rap Video – Schipulcon09 from Schipul – The Web Marketing Co. on Vimeo.

Photo thanks to Flickr user GregoryH