Since DrupalCon, we’ve been having a lot of conversations around the office about the coming release of Drupal 8 and what it means not only for the Drupal community, but for our clients as well. Based on what we heard at DrupalCon LA, the goal is to have Drupal 8 released around DrupalCon Barcelona. But even though it has yet to have an official release, we hear many organizations have already taken the leap and switched their production sites to Drupal 8.
Drupal users may notice that the administration interface of Drupal 8 is very similar to Drupal 7 - the ease of use for site builders, administrators, and content editors remains the same. There are other similarities too. Nodes, entities, forms, fields, and views, which are used in the standard Drupal site, are also essentially the same from 7 to 8, however there are significant changes under the hood.
The backend changes in Drupal 8 are drastic, which is great news for users seeking a very powerful platform, but they do create a learning curve for people who have been working with Drupal for years. It’s particularly exciting that the heavily modernized core architecture will allow non-Drupal developers to easily get more involved with Drupal development while allowing Drupal developers to become familiar with modern PHP design patterns.
Calling the Community
The key thing to remember is that Drupal 8 is a community-driven framework. That means the more people who use it, report bugs, and submit patches, the faster it will be ready for implementation for more commercial projects. Contributed modules drive so much of Drupal’s functionality and while most critical contributed modules are still in development for Drupal 8, many have moved into core so it is possible to build websites that only require out-of-the-box features.
What It Means To You
“Built with marketers in mind,” Drupal 8 employs the latest standards and best practices allowing users to develop more complex applications and better integrate with other technologies. This means there will be plenty more to love about the Drupal platform, especially for marketers (you know who you are!) who love to push the boundaries of technology and web development.