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Drupal: The Power Behind Your Website

Friday, June 7th, 2013 by Erin Peters

Drupal is an open source content management platform powering millions of websites and applications. It’s built, used, and supported by an active and diverse community of people around the world. At the simplest level, it’s a piece of software that allows someone to easily manage the content of their website. It allows you to edit the content through a web browser. Drupal was built in 2000 by Belgians and released as open source in 2001. dupal blog image resized 600

A node is the basic building block of Drupal. A node is the content that is being managed and is at the heart of Drupal’s design.  There can be many different types of discrete content. Users can be given different permissions for each type of content. The underlying framework of Drupal also allows additional functionality and capabilities with their numerous modules.

Everything from personal blogs to enterprise applications can be designed and built within Drupal. And like unlimited legos, there are thousands of add-on modules and designs to build any site imaginable.

Drupal 8 represents the single largest change to the code-base ever, restructuring Drupal to use object-oriented practices. Using more sophisticated design patterns, developers can more cleanly extend almost any part of the system without having to duplicate functionality.drupal inforgraphic 200px

So, who uses Drupal?

  1. The Economist: Most of the site is powered in Drupal. The Economist evaluated several open source CMS and proprietary solutions aimed at media publishers. In the end, they chose Drupal for its vibrant community, and the ecosystem of modules that it produces.
  2. Examiner.com: Examiner.com is a content destination powered by over 100,000+ independent contributors.
  3. The White House: Some of the most brilliant minds of the free world chose Drupal. From the beginning, branding has been the Obama administration’s strong suit. In 2009, The White House team agreed they needed a fully functional content management system with an improved workflow and blogging features.  They also wanted to add community-building features. According to O’Reilly Radar, “The White House saw the opportunity to increase their flexibility. Drupal has a huge library of user-contributed modules that will provide functionality the White House can use to expand its social media capabilities, with everything from super-scalable live chats to multi-lingual support.” Speaking of, The White House understands the importance of social media, as noted on their home page.
  4. Gemini Lights: Gemini Lights is a high performance cycling light manufacturer. Drupal was chosen here for the extendable functionality and the open-source security. They were able to build a customized site and mold it exactly to fit their aesthetic desires. Key modules/themes used: Ubercart, Rules, Ubercart Global Quote, Ubercart Discount Coupons, Views
  5. Elle Décor Lookbook App for iPad: In 2012 Elle Décor sought a company to develop the application for their extremely popular “lookbook” resource. The Lookbook application boasts extremely responsive photo galleries and the ability for users to create and share their own design files (lookbooks) with others that might not even have the app. Key features? Elle Décor is able to manage content in the application without having to resubmit the application to the Apple App store. Drupal also allows for dynamic web sharing of Lookbooks while not requiring any type of user logins.

What do our developers say?

“Drupal is a very powerful platform. It has a high learning curve even for developers, but it is well structured, its code tends to be clean, and the developers follow strict conventions. Drupal has a large install base, so security vulnerabilities are detected and fixed quickly.
It has a good issue tracking system, which is monitored by a very large and active community. Drupal requires the most technical expertise out of Joomla and WordPress, but it is also the most powerful one. Drupal can be used to create simple sites, but it can also be used to create complex enterprise-level sites.

Drupal has been a CMS platform from its beginning, whereas WordPress started out as a Blogging platform. Being aware of Drupal’s complexity and high learning curve, we decide to add an abstraction layer by creating a simple, intuitive, user interface for our clients and still have all of its power available for our developers.”

We wanted a content management system that provides power, allure, security and a user-friendly platform all in one. Drupal is it.

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