Drupal 8

Getting off the island in 2013

Larry Garfield highlights that Drupal 8 will use a lot of different PHP libraries:

In the Drupal world, though, 2012 will go down as the year Drupal finally began replacing NIH with PIE. Compare Drupal's 8.x branch a year ago with it today. A year ago, we had one class of 3rd party PHP code, in an uninteresting corner of the update system. Today, it contains 3rd party code from no less than five different projects: Symfony, Doctrine, Guzzle, Assetic, and Twig. Those libraries are included via Composer, the new and ground-breaking PHP-library-management-system-that-actually-finally-works. Code from at least one more should be landing soon.

And Larry continues with the challenge to attend at least one non-Drupal conference in 2013.

Drupal 8 feature freeze extended

Dries announced an extended Drupal 8 feature freeze period:

The purpose of this phase will be to provide dedicated time to tie up loose ends on any features that have either been committed already, or features still in the queue that have demonstrated substantial progress before December 1, but are not quite "there" yet.

Drupal 8 progress from my / MongoDB perspective: update #6

nk keeps working away on making Drupal work with MongoDB:

Two, I am working on the MongoDB D8 port itself with the help of Rok Zlender and marcingy from Examiner. marcingy ported the file usage code, Rok said he made inroads with the cache porting and I did KeyValue and created an install profile. This works and verifies the larger points work well. Also, the ungodly hacking I needed to do to get the party on the road totally highlighted that while the pluggability-via-service-container works we badly need to clean our bootstrap up.

Views merged in Drupal 8

Dries just tweeted that views has been merged into Drupal 8.

Views in Drupal 8

Dries recently announced that Views will be in Drupal core. That'll make Drupal 8 easily the biggest release ever, and probably push back the release date by months. Reasons:

  • Learnability: First-time users of Drupal often don't realize what is possible with contributed modules. Having Views in core will mean that new site builders can more quickly understand Drupal's capabilities out-of-the-box.
  • Release cycle: The stability of Views has in the past been an indicator of when the community considers a release of Drupal "ready". Drupal 7 usage did not start to increase until a development version of Views was available for D7, and it did not pass Drupal 6 usage until Views was stable.

Big Changes Coming in Drupal 8

Alex Rayu previews the biggest changes in Drupal 8:

  1. Core: Drupal 8 has Symfony for a framework
  2. Theming: Drupal 8 theming engine will be Twig
  3. Mobile: Drupal 8 will be responsive and work with HTML 5 and CSS 3
  4. Authoring and Media: Drupal 8 will deliver much higher authoring experience
  5. Internationalization: Drupal 8 will have better multilingual support
  6. Configuration: Moving Drupal 8 to CMI

Most of this is useful, but we are sceptical on CMIs (unique identifiers as keys), it's mentally much harder to work with for a developer, even given the advantages, and Twig?? Back to xtemplate. PHP is a templating language, and many Drupal projects have been rescued because you could put in some PHP in the template.

Also, can this all be done in the time frame allotted? We doubt it.

Why I'm Excited for Drupal 8

Sheldon Kreger is excited about Drupal 8. He mentions 5 points, let me high-light one everyone will find very convenient:

One of the most challenging aspects of working as a professional Drupal developer is handling deployments. When we build a web site - or make changes to an existing site - we don't do it live on the web. Sites have to be duplicated, worked on, and tested BEFORE any changes are made to a live site. Then, we have to figure out the best way to move those changes online. With inconsistent hosting environments and inherently unpredictable behavior of modules such as Features, this process becomes tricky. Changes that may appear to be simple can be complicated by the problem of deployment.

Drupal 8 will offer a more consistent way to transfer configuration settings - built right into core.

Updated Drupal 8 release schedule

Dries released some update in the Drupal 8 release schedule. Code freeze is on December 1, rc1 is on April 1, 2013:

In talking to Drupal developers at DrupalCon, it was clear that there are some questions about the Drupal 8 feature freeze and code freeze. Questions like: What can we still work on after feature freeze? When do I start porting my Drupal modules to Drupal 8? When can I start testing Drupal 8? Let's address these questions and more in this blog post.

More details on what every stage entails in Dries' post.

Symphony in Drupal 8

There are some interesting new features coming in Drupal 8, for example many core Symphony libraries will become available.

So a lot of sessions during Drupal developer days 2012 about this:

So what parts of symfony are coming to Drupal 8 then? For now these ones are confirmed:

Class loader
Service container
Event dispatcher
HTTP foundation
Http kernel



But Symfony is not the only new thing in Drupal 8. A few days ago Assetic and Doctrine so keep your eyes open for all the new stuff!

The post also discusses nodejs in Drupal and Drupal's Apache solr modules.