Into The Drupal Community


I have been using WordPress for 2 years and haven’t tried out other CMS platforms. I heard about Drupal through the internet and via my I.T textbook of my school. But never got the time to try it out.

Now, I’m a participant of Google Code In, 2014 and Drupal was one of the Open Source organization in it. I tried Wikimedia last year but it was hard, because it was really big for me to work on. This year, I chose Drupal, because that it is a CMS platform used by millions around the world and I thought if many other programmers can work with it, Why can’t I ? Since I already have experience with WordPress, it wouldn’t be hard to understand too.

So, I claimed a task and worked on making a patch of a Test for a module. What really got me thinking and exciting was that, how awesome testing is. You don’t get testing stuff on WordPress or any other CMS platforms that I use. A module can test itself to see whether it will work with the version of Dupal. How cool is that ?

All you have to do to make a test file is to make a class, add code into it and Test ! The test file behaves like what a user would do in a browser and Drupal will make that code into action – browsing like a user.

Community is Big, really BIG

The best feature of Drupal is that it have a strong, able and big community. If you have any problems with Drupal or one of it’s modules, you can ask it up in the issues page as well as in the IRC. Since you have a live communication, solving the problems is very easy.

If I needed any help, the community is always there to help and there are many places where I could knock on to get help. It’s this community that makes Drupal what it is right now.

Drupal.org

Though there are many good things about Drupal which I experienced in a single task, there are also some stuff that I think would need to be improved.

Look & Feel

The homepage of Drupal is good. Though it would be nice to have a slideshow of the screenshots of websites created with Drupal. It would make a visitor going to the homepage thinking that “Wow, That {site} I go often was made with Drupal !”. This will attract lots of web developers, especially newbies who are looking to learn a CMS.

Drupal.org is a very fast site. Loading and performance is the best and I know it’s fast, because I have a slow internet connection. If any improvement is going to be made in the styling of the site, then the changes shouldn’t affect the speed of the site what is right now.

Module Install

If you want to install modules on Drupal, you have to get the download file URL or upload he file by yourself. This is an annoying thing. Instead like WordPress, a page inside Drupal, where you can search and install with a single button is needed. See this example yourself.

Documentation

The docs are too long and would take forever to completely read it. Instead, less words and more examples (tiny) will help to understand way better. Long docs should be moved into another section rather than as the main one. If you look into the docs, you can see what I mean.

Docs like this are good. But long docs with crowded texts like this should be separated into different sections.

Dashboard

By default, the admin dashboard of a Drupal site is empty with 3 blocks. Instead a default dashboard should be made and then allow the user to customize rather than forcing the user to create one himself like in WordPress.

Database

If you look at the database of Drupal, you will be absolutely confused. In my database only, there are 77 tables where as in WordPress, there will be only 11. I think this is because that Drupal is more advanced. But, for a developer to understand what happens in the background, he can’t. Because, it’s absolutely confusing and you won’t have any idea what is in the background. Check this out :

Conclusion

I would like to make a website myself with Drupal and see how it goes. Maybe, if it’s good then I’ll move this website from WordPress to Drupal itself. I learnt may about Drupal with a single task and what all could I learn if I do more tasks ? Drupal is greatbut it should be greater.