It’s hard to believe Drupal celebrates its 20th anniversary this year! We are proud to have many team members at Tag1 Consulting who have been there from the very beginning and have a long, storied history as leaders of the Drupal community. For example, Tag1’s lead engineers helped develop the software and designed and managed the infrastructure for the first Top 100 web property on Drupal, which was responsible for creating over 30% of Drupal 7 Core.
While Drupal started off in a college dormitory, it is now second only to WordPress as the most popular CMS among the top 1 million websites. Today, Drupal powers some of the largest and most complex websites on the planet -- Fortune 500 companies including Tag1 clients like Symantec and Fortive; leading non-profit organizations including the ACLU, the AFL-CIO and the Smithsonian Institution; universities and educational centers including Stanford University, and the University of Michigan; news services including Al-Jazeera, and many government agencies from the largest government website in the world, WhiteHouse.gov, and countless international government websites such as the European Union.
Changes that powered Drupal forward
Our team members and our company are honored to have played major roles and shared in the success and growth of Drupal over the last 20 years. As Drupal has evolved over time, Tag1 team members have been a driving force in an unprecedented number of the important, consequential changes that have improved and defined the platform. To celebrate Drupal’s 20th anniversary, we’d like to highlight Tag1 team members’ contributions that have been a driving force in propelling Drupal to new heights.
Tag1 team members, including Managing Director Michael Meyers, spearheaded the efforts to include tests as part of Drupal core commits, leading to the practice becoming a standard. The introduction of a robust test harness was instrumental to the increase in Drupal adoption by enterprises.
Senior Architect Moshe Weitzman is responsible for overseeing and leading the creation of the first unit testing system.
As part of our partnership with the Drupal Association, Tag1 helps run and supports the Drupal.org automated QA system, which checks every code contribution to the Drupal platform — performing the equivalent of nearly 10 concurrent years of testing in a single year — enabling it to evolve rapidly and allowing the open source community to iterate on incremental improvements and releases.
Drush (Drupal shell), a command line interface used by the entire Drupal community, was developed for Drupal 4.7 and has been maintained by Moshe Weitzman for the last seven years. Drush made many of the routine administrative tasks for Drupal, such as checking for updates, resetting passwords, managing variables, and a multitude of other functions., quicker and easier. Drush has become a part of every serious Drupal developer's toolbox.
D6 Long Term Support (LTS) and D7 Extended Support (D7ES)
Tag1 helped create the Long Term Support model and is one of two companies currently authorized to provide Drupal 6 Long Term Support (D6 LTS), enabling tens of thousands of organizations to run websites on the platform five years (and counting) after the D6 platform reached its End of Life (EOL). The model Tag1 helped create will be used for Drupal 7 Extended Support (D7ES), and we’re one of four companies authorized to provide this service. Tag1 Quo is being actively enhanced to be the best-in-breed solution for anyone requiring more life from their Drupal 7 websites.
Created by Doug Green in 2006, the Coder tool provides the baseline for Drupal coding standards and best practices. In some cases, it can even correct your code. Coder has been a boon to new and seasoned developers alike, impartially catching and correcting mistakes, and ensuring everyone has the same expectations when they’re contributing to each others’ work.
The Views module was one of the biggest shifts in the ability of non-developers to use Drupal. Prior to the introduction of Views, database queries were hand-written, hard coded, and manually styled. Earl Miles originally committed the first Views version to Drupal 4.6, in October of 2005. Views, through its multiple iterations and its eventual inclusion in Drupal 8 core, changed all that. It enabled users who were not SQL experts to write queries, for relatively easy changes to queries without having to modify code or make deploys to change a page, and to style displays of lists without having to write a lot of CSS on your own. Tag1 members have contributed patches, documentation, and helped maintain Views documentation as well as code in Drupal core as part of our commitment to the project.
Drupal.org and Drupal Development Tools
Tag1’s infrastructure team has partnered with the Drupal Association for over a decade to help run and manage the infrastructure and software systems that power all of the Drupal projects software systems, tooling, and websites.
Maintainers, Committers, and Thought Leadership
Tag1’s team members have been involved in building the community not only through individual contributions, but as part of a team working to benefit the entire community.
- Narayan Newton has been part of the infrastructure team for over a decade, helping keep Drupal.org up and running from its early days - from doing Drupal infrastructure work while a student at OSU, to becoming the CTO of Tag1 and a nearly dedicated resource to the Drupal Association.
- In addition to being a major long-term individual contributor, Nathaniel Catchpole has been the person responsible for maintaining the Drupal 8 framework and is a release manager and core committer for that version. Fabian Franz helped create and now maintains the current caching system and is a Drupal 7 core committer. Former Tag1 member Roy Scholten is one of the four product managers for Drupal 8 core.
- Tag1 team members maintain over a dozen Drupal Core modules, as well as over a hundred of contributed modules.
- Tag1 created Drupal Watchdog, the first print magazine dedicated to Drupal and the community. During its five year run from 2011-2016, the pioneering publication shared information, how-tos, and commentary from all levels of Drupal community members.
- Over the years, several of Tag1’s team members have published books and other materials on Drupal.
- In addition to traditional publishing, Tag1 team members have made around 600 updates to Drupal documentation over the years.
It’s really been 20 years
Over the years, Drupal has become one of the biggest open source drivers of web software, and the Drupal community has expanded from some college students in a dorm to thousands of attendees at dozens of DrupalCons and DrupalCamps every year, and thousands of individual contributors around the world. Companies large and small continue to adopt and contribute to Drupal to ensure its place in the CMS software business into the future.
In the coming weeks, Tag1 will be featuring Team Talks with some of its long time Drupal contributors. Check back here, or follow the blog to see these interviews as they become available:
- Jeremy Andrews
- Doug Green
- Fabian Franz
- Narayan Newton
- Francesco Placella
- Greg Lund-Chaix
- Marco Molinari
- Michael Meyers
- Moshe Weitzman
- Nat Catchpole