Day 3 at BADCamp started out very much the same as my first two mornings in the Bay Area. I headed out early, made my way East through the waking streets of San Francisco, and hopped aboard the BART Train to Berkely, muffin in hand. I arrived at the now familiar campus of UC Berkeley and made my way to the Pauley Ballroom with a bit of time to spare before the start of BADCamp's Keynote Address by Drupal Godfather, Dries Buytaert. While Dries was giving an update on the worldwide status of the Drupal project, my eyes were on the clock because I didn't want to miss the 10:30 session, "The Angry Themer" by Morten Birch.
I should have known better than to expect other events to start on time while the Keynote ran late and stayed put to watch Dries commit TWIG to Drupal 8 core, but I walked through the beautiful campus to the building where Morten's presentation was to be held and waited for the man of the hour to arrive and announce that Drupal's template engine was being replaced for Drupal 8. Morten's presentation was centred around his mission to clean-up the excessive markup in Drupal core, the philosophy behind his Mothership theme.
Before heading out into the town of Berkeley for another great lunch, I headed back to the Pauley Ballroom to watch Matt Cheney and Brad Bowman's presentation on Panopoly. Panopoly is an install profile (or distribution) that provides a very neat solution for a Panels-based Drupal site, giving the site's developer many layout options and other neat features to harness the power of Panels. It was nice to have Panopoly explained so well, as I was working on a WxT-based Drupal site with a larger team back in Ottawa and WxT uses many elements of Panopoly.
After lunch, I headed to the most crowded session I'd see at BADCamp - Panels for Themers, presented by David Needham and Eric Casequin. As I wrestled for breathing room in my little corner of the room, it occurred to me that I wasn't the only Drupal developer who focuses primarily on front-end development and is intrigued to find out how using Panels might impact my work - either for better or for worse. It was useful to have attended the presentation on Panopoly in the morning, to have had time to digest that approach to development over lunch and then to see how David and Eric were getting into the guts of Panels and borrowing some ideas from Panopoly.
I headed back to the Pauley Ballroom for my next to back-to-back sessions. The first was Learning Drupal 7 Theming in a Snap!, presented by John Albin Wilkins, who had presented on the previous day as part of the UI/UX Summit. This was a fairly high level presentation on how to put together Drupal themes and subthemes and led nicely into the following session, Theme preprocess functions: An Introduction, presented by Carl Wiedemann. Carl is a great presenter and went a little deeper into how the template files of a drupal theme come together to build the html that you see on the screen.
Day 3 at BADCamp was a busy one, as I mingled in the halls of the Dwinelle Building in between sessions and checked out the various booths of other Drupal shops and support companies that were handing out schwag to anyone and everyone. As I rode the BART Train back through Oakland to San Francisco to meet my friends for dinner at the Alamo Square Seafood Grill (which was amazing, as always), I was exhausted, inspired and excited to see what I might learn at Day 4 of Bay Area Drupal Camp!
In the City's Drupal implementation we focused on the implementation of mapping services, improving accessibility and managing the thousands of old URLs to the new location. We also implemented a bilingual and accessible Drupal distribution which was developed as part of the Government of Canada's Web Experience Toolkit.
One very common task faced by web developers worldwide is the need to move data from an old site to a new site. Frequently I have been faced with data migrations where the old and the new system are not even compatible systems (i.e. another CMS -> Drupal, or better yet, custom ASP + HTML -> Drupal! Fun!). Drupal's Migrate module is an extremely powerful and robust tool for managing this often complicated task.
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