Drupal Development

We are very excited to announce the launch of the DCTV and Beyond Bullets websites. DCTV is a very cool media arts center based in New York. DCTV's firehouse was home to Democracy Now and currently trains 2,000 students a year. The relatively small organization can boast to winning 15 Emmy awards! This project was particularly fulfilling because of DCTV's interest in learning Drupal. We are passionate about Drupal and how it empowers people who want to share and communicate. We enjoy sharing this passion with our clients and enabling them to site build, add modules, and theme as much as possible.

Part of the beauty of Drupal is that it doesn't exist in a black box. Its code and process are open. The barrier to entry is a computer, an understanding of Drupal process, and willingness to participate. Drupal's commitment to transparency is what really makes it an empowering technology. Drupal treats everyone as a potential developer. Anyone can sign up and file a bug report or write documentation. After learning a certain amount anyone can begin creating patches, responding to issues, or making modules.

We started this process with DCTV by encouraging them to come to our public Site Building and Theming classes at the end of September. Both Miles and Jesse from DCTV had some html/css and site building experience and were quick learners. We built the full Beyond Bullets site and half of the DCTV site to start. Howard then spent a day on-site with Miles and Jesse reviewing Views and CCK and other site building tools, showing them how we had the different site elements set up, and showing them how they could extend what we had already built. We also taught them the basics of SVN and developer best practice. We created a workflow in which they made SVN commits. We like to keep our servers locked down so instead of giving them ssh access we added a button in the Drupal admin that updates (using a site variable and cron) the repository on the server to trunk. DCTV staff then built and themed a large part of the DCTV site themselves. We assisted when necessary and built out some of the more complicated elements including some custom mapping work, ubercart setup, and parts of a Filemaker Pro integration. The result are two beautiful sites that were built collaboratively. It was a fun process and we are really happy with the results.

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