Feed aggregator

Madison PHP Conference 2015

Twin Cities Drupal Group -

Madison PHP Conference 2015

One day, three tracks, more fun than a barrel of elePHPants!

Join us for a one day, three-track conference that focuses on PHP and related web technologies. This event is organized by Madison PHP and is designed to offer something for attendees at all skill levels. It will be a day of networking, learning, sharing, and great fun!
It will be Saturday, November 14th, 2015 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, WI.

Blind bird tickets are currently on sale. Save $70 over the regular price by buying your ticket today:
http://2015.madisonphpconference.com/tickets/

Don't miss getting your ticket at the cheapest price available!

Have you ever wanted to speak at a conference? Now is your chance! Our Call for Papers is currently open:
http://cfp.madisonphpconference.com/

Submissions will be accepted until 11:59 PM CDT August 4th, 2015!

What do you need for a submission? You'll need a title and a description for your talk along with your bio and contact information. You do not have to have the talk completed before you submit. If you have questions on submitting a talk, just e-mail conference@madisonphp.com!

Want to submit, but need some help? Attend our workshop:
How to Speak at a Conference
Thursday, July 16th - 7pm
Beth Tucker Long, who has spoken over 30 times in the last few years at various conferences around the world, will give you some tips for finding a topic, creating your talk, and engaging your audience. After the talk, she will be on-hand to work with you to develop your talk ideas, write your abstract, and if you'd like, help you submit to an open Call for Papers.
RSVP:
http://www.meetup.com/madisonphp/events/223505061/

Drupal Watchdog: Build it with Backdrop

Planet Drupal -

Feature

Backdrop CMS is a fork of the Drupal project. Although Backdrop has different name, the 1.0 version is very similar to Drupal 7. Backdrop 1.0 provides an upgrade path from Drupal 7, and most modules or themes can be quickly ported to work on Backdrop.

Backdrop is focused on the needs of the small- to medium-sized businesses, non-profits, and those who may not be able to afford the jump from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8. Backdrop values backwards compatibility, and recognizes that the easier it is for developers to get things working, the less it will cost to build, maintain, and update comprehensive websites and web applications. By iterating code in incremental steps, innovation can happen more quickly in the areas that are most important.

The initial version of Backdrop provides major improvements over Drupal 7, including configuration management, a powerful new Layout system, and Views built-in.

What's Different From Drupal 7?

Backdrop CMS is, simply put: Drupal 7 plus built-in Configuration Management, Panels, and Views.

Solving the Deployment Dilemma

Database-driven systems have long suffered from the deployment dilemma: Once a site is live, how do you develop and deploy a new feature?

Sometimes there is only one copy of a site – the live site – and all development must be done on this live environment. But any mistakes made during the development of the new feature will be immediately experienced by visitors to the site.

It’s wiser to also have a separate development environment, which allows for creation of the new feature without putting the live site at risk. But what happens when that new feature has been completed, and needs to be deployed?

We already have a few great tools for solving this problem. When it comes to the code needed for the new feature we have great version control systems like Git. Commit all your work, merge if necessary, push when you’re happy, and then just pull from the live environment (and maybe clear some caches).

Acquia: Sustainable contribution, part 1 of 2: How Drupal has solved and evolved

Planet Drupal -

Language Undefined

Part 1 of 2 - Drupal user number 5622, John Faber, has been involved with Drupal since late 2003. He is a Managing Partner with Chapter Three, a San Francisco-based digital agency. Their slogan sums up well what a lot of us think about Drupal: "We build a better internet with Drupal." John and I got on a Google Hangout to talk about the business advantages of contribution and sustainability when basing your business on open source software. We also touch on Drupal 8's potential power as a toolset and for attracting new developers, doing business in an open source context, and more!

Cheeky Monkey Media: An introduction to AngularJS and Drupal

Planet Drupal -

If you are looking to create a rich and dynamic web app that has little to no latency, Drupal and AngularJS is the answer as they go hand in hand. In this article I will show you a brief intro of what AngularJS is. There is a bit of a learning curve in this awesome architecture, but if you know some basic JavaScript you will be ok.

AngularJS,  is a front-end JavaScript framework for making web apps and is created by our good pal Google.

Couple of cool facts about AngularJS:

  • Open Source
  • MVC pattern (ASP.NET developer soft spot)
  • Handles task like
  • ...

Issue 196

The Weekly Drop -

Issue 196 - July, 2nd 2015 From Our Sponsor Load Test Your Drupal 8 Site for a Successful Launch

If you are ready to launch your new Drupal 8 site, let Erik Webb show you how to make it a smooth one. Learn the key aspects of Drupal 8 load testing to identify traffic patterns and sources, upgrade existing sites and make development easy for stellar launches.

Articles 19 simple methods to improve the page speed performance of a Drupal site An Example Repository to Build Drupal with Composer on Travis Building a Slack Chatbot Powered by Drupal! Comparing Drupal Commerce & Magento Go custom or use a contributed module? Testing 1.2.3... Exploring the New Features in Behat 3 TWiT.tv launches content API and headless Drupal site Drupal 8 Recording from June 26th 2015 Drupal 8 critical issues discussion Seamless Migration to Drupal 8: Make it Yours Tutorials Drush "user-list" Command

Useful tip from Stanford Web Service's John Bickar.

Using Administration Menu and Shortcuts in Drupal Releases advagg 7.x-2.13 bear 7.x-1.13 commerce_coupon 7.x-2.0-rc2 commerce_registration 7.x-2.1 currency 7.x-2.5 drupal 8.0.0-beta12 environment_indicator 7.x-2.7 features 7.x-2.6 menu_block 7.x-2.7 metatag 7.x-1.6 mollom 8.x-1.0-alpha1 openlayers 7.x-1.0-beta4 openlayers 7.x-3.0-beta3 panels 8.x-3.0-alpha12 payment 7.x-1.15 redirect 7.x-1.0-rc2 redis 7.x-3.8 search_api 8.x-1.0-alpha6 webprofiler 8.x-1.1-beta12 Podcasts From consumption to contribution - Drupal business in India, Part 2 - Acquia Podcast Project Management - Drupalize.me Podcast Using the Math Field Module to Compute Values Without the PHP Filter with Caleb Thorne - Modules Unraveled Podcast Events Drupal GovCon 2015

July 22-24, 2015 at National Institutes Of Health Campus in Bethesda, MD.

News DrupalCon Programming Announced - Sessions and Training Selected! Scholarships and Grants Bring 23 Attendees to the Con Test the staging version of localize.drupal.org on Drupal 7 NOW! Jobs List Your Job on Drupal Jobs

Wanna get the word out about your great Drupal job? Get your job in front of hundreds of Drupal job seekers every day at Jobs.Drupal.Org.

Featured Jobs Technical Project Manager & Advocate: Remote

Origin Eight Anywhere

Senior Drupal Developer

Inflexion Interactive Hoboken/NJ/US

Experienced Drupal Developer or Development Team

Online Medical Anywhere


Open Source Training: OSTraining Will Release 200 Drupal 8 Videos for Free

Planet Drupal -

Yes, you read that right: we're going to release 200 free Drupal 8 videos.

We want Drupal 8 to be a success. One way we can help make that happen is to make reliable training available to as wide an audience as possible.

Back in April, we launched our Drupal 8 training Kickstarter project. The project closed in mid-May with enough sponsorship for 100 videos, but over the last 6 weeks we've been talking with more sponsors and now have backing for 200 videos!

Here's an overview of the all the free Drupal training, plus an introduction to the organizations who made it possible.

KatteKrab: Certification: Necessary Evil?

Planet Drupal -

Thursday, July 2, 2015 - 14:14

I wrote this as a comment in response to Dries' post about the Acquia certification program - I thought I'd share it here too. I've commented there before.

I've also been conflicted about certifications. I still am. And this is because I fully appreciate the pros and cons. The more I've followed the issue, the more conflicted I've become about it.

My current stand, is this. Certifications are a necessary evil. Let me say a little on why that is.
I know many in the Drupal community are not in favour of certification, mostly because it can't possibly adequately validate their experience.

It also feels like an insult to be expected to submit to external assessment after years of service contributing to the code-base, and to the broader landscape of documentation, training, and professional service delivery.

Those in the know, know how to evaluate a fellow Drupalist. We know what to look for, and more importantly where to look. We know how to decode the secret signs. We can mutter the right incantations. We can ask people smart questions that uncover their deeper knowledge, and reveal their relevant experience.

That's our massive head start. Or privilege. 

Drupal is now a mature platform for web and digital communications. The new challenge that comes with that maturity, is that non-Drupalists are using Drupal. And non specialists are tasked with ensuring sites are built by competent people. These people don't have time to learn what we know. The best way we can help them, is to support some form of certification.

But there's a flip side. We've all laughed at the learning curve cartoon about Drupal. Because it's true. It is hard. And many people don't know where to start. Whilst a certification isn't going to solve this completely, it will help to solve it, because it begins to codify the knowledge many of us take for granted.

Once that knowledge is codified, it can be studied. Formally in classes, or informally through self-directed exploration and discovery.

It's a starting point.

I empathise with the nay-sayers. I really do. I feel it too. But on balance, I think we have to do this. But even more, I hope we can embrace it with more enthusiasm.

I really wish the Drupal Association had the resources to run and champion the certification system, but the truth is, as Dries outlines above, it's a very time-consuming and expensive proposition to do this work.

So, Acquia - you have my deep, albeit somewhat reluctant, gratitude!

:-)

Thanks Dries - great post.

cheers,
Donna
(Drupal Association board member)

ActiveLAMP: How to Use Picture and Image Replace for Drupal 7

Planet Drupal -

The Picture module is a backport of Drupal 8 Responsive Image module. It allows you to select different images to be loaded for different devices and resolutions using media queries and Drupal’s image styles. You can also use the Image Replace module to specify a different image to load at certain breakpoints.

Freelock : Embed or integrate? The problem with widgets

Planet Drupal -

We hear it all the time:

Why do you recommend a 6 hour budget for a simple integration? Here's an embed widget right here -- if this were WordPress I could do it myself!

Well, in Drupal you can do it yourself, exactly the same way you might in WordPress. Add a block, use an input format that doesn't strip out Javascript, paste in your code, put the block where you want it on your page, and away you go.

Drupal PlanetPerformanceIntegrationEmbedSecurity

Acquia: Improve Your Site’s Security by Adding Two-Factor Authentication

Planet Drupal -

Identity theft and site compromises are all-too-common occurrences -- it seems a day rarely goes by without a news story detailing the latest batch of user passwords which have been compromised and publicly posted.

Passwords were first used in the 1960s when computers were shared among multiple people via time-sharing methods. Allowing multiple users on a single system required a way for users to prove they were who they claimed to be. As computer systems have grown more complex over the last 50 years, the same password concept has been baked into them as the core authentication method. That includes today’s Web sites, including those built using Drupal.

Why Better Protection Is Needed

Today, great lengths are taken to both protect a user’s password, and to protect users from choosing poor passwords. Drupal 7, for example, provided a major security upgrade in how passwords are stored. It also provides a visual indicator as to how complex a password is, in an attempt to describe how secure it might be.

The password_policy module is also available to enforce a matrix of requirements when a user chooses a password.

Both of these methods have helped to increase password security, but there’s still a fundamental problem. A password is simply asking a user to provide a value they know. To make this easier, the vast majority of people reuse the same password across multiple sites.

That means that no matter how well a site protects a user’s password, any other site that does a poor job could provide an attacker all they need to comprise your users’ accounts.

How Multi-Factor Authentication Works

Multi-Factor authentication is one way of solving this problem. There are three ways for a person to prove he is who he claims to be. These are known as factors and are the following:

  • Something you know - typically a password or passphrase
  • Something you have - a physical device such as a phone, ID, or keyfob
  • Something you are - biometric characteristics of the individual

Multi-factor authentication requests two or more of these factors. It makes it much more difficult for someone to impersonate a valid user. With it, if a user’s username and password were to be compromised, the attacker still wouldn’t be able to provide the user’s second form of authentication.

Here, we’ll be focusing on the most common multi-factor solution, something you know (existing password) and something you have (a cell phone).

This is the easiest method of multi-factor authentication, and is also known as two-factor authentication (TFA) because it uses two out of three factors. It’s already used by a large number of financial institutions, as well as large social websites such as Google, Facebook, and Twitter. Acquia implemented TFA for it’s users in 2014 as discussed in this blog post: Secure Acquia accounts with two-step verification and strong passwords.

How To Do It

A suite of modules are available for Drupal for multi-factor authentication. The Two-Factor Authentication module provides integration into Drupal’s existing user- and password-based authentication system. The module is built to be the base framework of any TFA solution, and so does not provide a second factor method itself. Instead the TFA Basic plugins module provides three plugins which are Google Authenticator, Trusted Device, and SMS using Twilio. TFA Basic can also be used as a guide to follow when creating custom plugins. You can find the documentation here: TFA plugin development.

You’ll find that it’s easy to protect your site and its users with TFA, and given its benefits, it’s a good idea to start now.

But before you do, check out the TFA documentation. Acquia Cloud Site Factory users can find documentation for configuring two-factor authentication for their accounts here.

For more advice, check out TFA tips from Drupal.org.

Tags:  acquia drupal planet

Another Drop in the Drupal Sea: How Much Will it Cost to Build this Website?

Planet Drupal -

As professionals in the web tech sector, we know that there is no one set answer to that question. And yet, we really don't want to be spending our time having to explain over and over to prospects why we can't just answer the question.

We could provide an analogy and respond by saying, "That's like asking a random custom home builder how much it's going to cost to build a house." We could continue by explaining that the builder will need to know the location of the house, the square footage of the house, the desired finishes on the house, etc.

read more

Welcome UK2 Group!

Cloudflare Blog -

Today we are thrilled to welcome UK2 Group as a CloudFlare partner. Customers of UK2 Group (including its brands UK2.net, Midphase, and Westhost) are now able to access CloudFlare’s web performance and security solutions with a single click. Backed by CloudFlare, UK2 Group’s customers can now protect their websites against security threats, ensure only clean traffic gets served, and speed up site performance no matter where visitors are located. Customers in need of advanced features, and even more performance and security, can sign up for CloudFlare Plus—a plan only offered through our reseller partners.

UK2 Group is one of the innovators of the hosting industry and operates globally. While its name points to its roots (located just down the road from the CloudFlare office in London), it also has an extensive presence in the US. We’re excited to partner with UK2 Group to provide the best web performance and security to its numerous customers.

Click here to learn more.

Advomatic: Protecting ACLU.org’s Privacy and Security

Planet Drupal -

Earlier this year, we launched a new site for the ACLU. The project required a migration from Drupal 6, building a library of interchangeable page components, complex responsive theming, and serious attention to accessibility, security and privacy. In this post, I’ll highlight some of the security and privacy-related features we implemented. Privacy As an organization, the... Read more »

Setting Go variables from the outside

Cloudflare Blog -

CloudFlare's DNS server, RRDNS, is written in Go and the DNS team used to generate a file called version.go in our Makefile. version.go looked something like this:

// THIS FILE IS AUTOGENERATED BY THE MAKEFILE. DO NOT EDIT. // +build make package version var ( Version = "2015.6.2-6-gfd7e2d1-dev" BuildTime = "2015-06-16-0431 UTC" )

and was used to embed version information in RRDNS. It was built inside the Makefile using sed and git describe from a template file. It worked, but was pretty ugly.

Today we noticed that another Go team at CloudFlare, the Data team, had a much smarter way to bake version numbers into binaries using the -X linker option.

The -X Go linker option, which you can set with -ldflags, sets the value of a string variable in the Go program being linked. You use it like this: -X main.version 1.0.0.

A simple example: let's say you have this source file saved as hello.go.

package main import "fmt" var who = "World" func main() { fmt.Printf("Hello, %s.\n", who) }

Then you can use go run (or other build commands like go build or go install) with the -ldflags option to modify the value of the who variable:

$ go run hello.go Hello, World. $ go run -ldflags="-X main.who CloudFlare" hello.go Hello, CloudFlare.

The format is importpath.name string, so it's possible to set the value of any string anywhere in the Go program, not just in main. Note that from Go 1.5 the syntax has changed to importpath.name=string. The old style is still supported but the linker will complain.

I was worried this would not work with external linking (for example when using cgo) but as we can see with -ldflags="-linkmode=external -v" the Go linker runs first anyway and takes care of our -X.

$ go build -x -ldflags="-X main.who CloudFlare -linkmode=external -v" hello.go WORK=/var/folders/v8/xdj2snz51sg2m2bnpmwl_91c0000gn/T/go-build149644699 mkdir -p $WORK/command-line-arguments/_obj/ cd /Users/filippo/tmp/X /usr/local/Cellar/go/1.4.2/libexec/pkg/tool/darwin_amd64/6g -o $WORK/command-line-arguments.a -trimpath $WORK -p command-line-arguments -complete -D _/Users/filippo/tmp/X -I $WORK -pack ./hello.go cd . /usr/local/Cellar/go/1.4.2/libexec/pkg/tool/darwin_amd64/6l -o hello -L $WORK -X main.hi hi -linkmode=external -v -extld=clang $WORK/command-line-arguments.a # command-line-arguments HEADER = -H1 -T0x2000 -D0x0 -R0x1000 searching for runtime.a in $WORK/runtime.a searching for runtime.a in /usr/local/Cellar/go/1.4.2/libexec/pkg/darwin_amd64/runtime.a 0.06 deadcode 0.07 pclntab=284969 bytes, funcdata total 49800 bytes 0.07 dodata 0.08 symsize = 0 0.08 symsize = 0 0.08 reloc 0.09 reloc 0.09 asmb 0.09 codeblk 0.09 datblk 0.09 dwarf 0.09 sym 0.09 headr host link: clang -m64 -gdwarf-2 -Wl,-no_pie,-pagezero_size,4000000 -o hello -Qunused-arguments /var/folders/v8/xdj2snz51sg2m2bnpmwl_91c0000gn/T//go-link-mFNNCD/000000.o /var/folders/v8/xdj2snz51sg2m2bnpmwl_91c0000gn/T//go-link-mFNNCD/000001.o /var/folders/v8/xdj2snz51sg2m2bnpmwl_91c0000gn/T//go-link-mFNNCD/go.o -g -O2 -g -O2 -lpthread 0.17 cpu time 33619 symbols 64 sizeof adr 216 sizeof prog 23412 liveness data

Do you want to work next to Go developers that can always make you learn a new trick? We are hiring in London, San Francisco and Singapore.

Agaric Collective: Performant bulk-redirection with Apache RewriteMap

Planet Drupal -

When continuing development of a web site, big changes occur every so often. One such change that may occur, frequently as a result of another change, is a bulk update of URLs. When this is necessary, you can greatly improve the response time experienced by your users—as they are redirected from the old path to the new path—by using a handy directive offered in Apache's mod_rewrite called RewriteMap.

At Agaric we regularly turn to Drupal for it's power and flexibility, so one might question why we didn't leverage Drupal's support for handling redirects. When we see an opportunity for our software/system to respond "as early as it can", it is worth investigating how that is handled. Apache handles redirects itself, making it entirely unnecessary to hand-off to PHP, never mind Drupal bootstrapping and retrieving up a redirect record in a database, just to tell a browser (or a search engine) to look somewhere else.

There were two conditions that existed making use of RewriteMap a great candidate. For one, there will be no changes to the list of redirects once they are set: these are for historical purposes only (the old URLs are no longer exposed anywhere else on the site). Also, because we could make the full set of hundreds of redirects via a single RewriteRule—thanks to the substitution capability afforded by RewriteMap—this solution offered a fitting and concise solution.

So, what did we do, and how did we do it?

We started with an existing set of URLs that followed the pattern: http://example.com/user-info/ID[/tab-name]. Subsequently we implemented a module on the site that produced aliases for our user page URLs. The new patten to the page was then (given exceptions for multiple J Smiths, etc via the suffix): http://example.com/user-info/firstname-lastname[-suffix#][/tab-name]. The mapping of ID to firstname-lastname[-suffix#] was readily available within Drupal, so we used an update_hook to write out the existing mappings to a file (in the Drupal public files folder, since we know that's writable by Drupal) . This file (which I called 'staffmapping.txt') is what we used for a simple text-based rewrite map. Sample output of the update hook looked like this:

# User ID to Name mapping: 1 admin-admin 2 john-smith 3 john-smith-2 4 jane-smith

The format of this file is pretty straight-forward: comments can be started on any line with a #, and the mapping lines themselves are composed of {lookupValue}{whitespace}{replacementValue}.

To actually consume this mapping somewhere in our rules, we must let Apache know about the mapping file itself. This is done with a RewriteMap directive, which can be placed in the Server config or else inside a VirtualHost directive. The format of the RewriteMap looks like this: RewriteMap MapName MapType:MapSource. In our case, the file is a simple text file mapping, so the MapType is 'txt'. The resulting string added to our VirtualHost section is then: RewriteMap staffremap txt:/path/to/staffmapping.txt This directive makes this rewrite mapping file available under the name "staffremap" in our RewriteRules. There are other MapTypes, including ones that uses random selection for the replacement values from a text file, using a hash map rather than a text file, using an internal function, or even using an external program or script to generate replacement values.

Now it's time to actually change incoming URLs using this mapping file, providing the 301 redirect we need. The rewrite rule we used, looks like this:

RewriteRule ^user-detail/([0-9]+)(.*) /user-detail/${staffremap:$1}$2 [R=301,L]

The initial argument to the rewrite rule identifies what incoming URLs this rule applies to. This is the string: "^user-detail/([0-9]+)(.*)". This particular rule looks for URLs starting with (signified by the special character ^) the string "user-detail/", then followed by one or more numbers: ([0-9]+), and finally, anything else that might appear at the end of the string: "(.*)". There's a particular feature of regex being used here as well: each of search terms in parenthesis are captured (or tagged) by the regex processor which then provides some references that can be used in the replacement string portion. These are available with $<captured position>—so, the first value captured by parenthesis is available in "$1"—this would be the user ID, and the second in "$2"—which for this expression would be anything else appearing after the user ID.

Following the whitespace is our new target URL expression: "/user-detail/${staffremap:$1}$2". We're keeping the beginning of the URL the same, and then following the expression syntax "${rewritemap:lookupvalue}", which in our case is: "${staffremap:$1}" we find the new user-name URL. This section could be read as: take the value from the rewrite map called "staffremap", where the lookup value is $1 (the first tagged expression in the search: the numeric value) and return the substitution value from that map in place of this expression. So, if we were attempting to visit the old URL /user-detail/1/about, the staffremap provides the value "admin-admin" from our table. The final portion of the replacement URL (which is just $2) copies everything else that was passed on the URL through to the redirected URL. So, for example, /user-detail/1/about includes the /about portion of the URL in the ultimate redirect URL: /user-detail/admin-admin/about

The final section of the sample RewriteRule is for applying additional flags. In this case, we are specifying the response status of 301, and the L indicates to mod_rewrite that this is the last rule it should process.
That's basically it! We've gone from an old URL pattern, to a new one with a redirect mapping file, and only two directives. For an added performance perk, especially if your list of lookup and replacement values is rather lengthy, you can easily change your text table file (type txt) with a HashMap (type dbm) that Apache's mod_rewrite also understands using a quick command and directive adjustment. Following our example, we'll first run:

$> httxt2dbm -i staffrepam.txt -o staffremap.map

Now that we have a hashmap file, we can adjust our RewriteMap directive accordingly, changing the type to map, and of course updating the file name, which becomes:

RewriteMap staffremap dbm:/path/to/staffremap.map

RewriteMap substitutions provide a straight-forward, and high-performance method for pretty extensive enhancement of RewriteRules. If you are not familiar with RewriteRules generally, at some point you should consider reviewing the Apache documentation on mod_rewrite—it's worthwhile knowledge to have.

Dries Buytaert: One year later: the Acquia Certification Program

Planet Drupal -

A little over a year ago we launched the Acquia Certification Program for Drupal. We ended up the first year with close to 1,000 exams taken, which exceeded our goal of 300-600. Today, I'm pleased to announce that the Acquia Certification Program passed another major milestone with over 1,000 exams passed (not just taken).

People have debated the pros and cons of software certifications for years (including myself) so I want to give an update on our certification program and some of the lessons learned.

Acquia's certification program has been a big success. A lot of Drupal users require Acquia Certification; from the Australian government to Johnson & Johnson. We also see many of our agency partners use the program as a tool in the hiring process. While a certification exam can not guarantee someone will be great at their job (e.g. we only test for technical expertise, not for attitude), it does give a frame of reference to work from. The feedback we have heard time and again is how the Acquia Certification Program is tough, but fair; validating skills and knowledge that are important to both customers and partners.

We also made the Certification Magazine Salary Survey as having one of the most desired credentials to obtain. To be a first year program identified among certification leaders like Cisco and Red Hat speaks volumes on the respect our program has established.

Creating a global certification program is resource intensive. We've learned that it requires the commitment of a team of Drupal experts to work on each and every exam. We know have four different exams: developer, front-end specialist, backend specialist and site builder. It roughly takes 40 work days for the initial development of one exam, and about 12 to 18 work days for each exam update. We update all four of our exams several times per year. In addition to creating and maintaining the certification programs, there is also the day-to-day operations for running the program, which includes providing support to participants and ensuring the exams are in place for testing around the globe, both on-line and at test centers. However, we believe that effort is worth it, given the overall positive effect on our community.

We also learned that benefits are an important part to participants and that we need to raise the profile of someone who achieves these credentials, especially those with the new Acquia Certified Grand Master credential (those who passed all three developer exams). We have a special Grand Master Registry and look to create a platform for these Grand Masters to help share their expertise and thoughts. We do believe that if you have a Grand Master working on a project, you have a tremendous asset working in your favor.

At DrupalCon LA, the Acquia Certification Program offered a test center at the event, and we ended up having 12 new Grand Masters by the end of the conference. We saw several companies stepping up to challenge their best people to achieve Grand Master status. We plan to offer the testing at DrupalCon Barcelona, so take advantage of the convenience of the on-site test center and the opportunity to meet and talk with Peter Manijak, who developed and leads our certification efforts, myself and an Acquia Certified Grand Master or two about Acquia Certification and how it can help you in your career!

One year later: the Acquia Certification Program

Drupal Fire -

Dries Buytaert (via DrupalFire)

A little over a year ago we launched the Acquia Certification Program for Drupal. We ended up the first year with close to 1,000 exams taken, which exceeded our goal of 300-600. Today, I'm pleased to announce that the Acquia Certification Program passed another major milestone with over 1,000 exams passed (not just taken).

People have debated the pros and cons of software certifications for years (including myself) so I want to give an update on our certification program and some of the lessons learned.

Acquia's certification program has been a big success. A lot of Drupal users require Acquia Certification; from the Australian government to Johnson & Johnson. We also see many of our agency partners use the program as a tool in the hiring process. While a certification exam can not guarantee someone will be great at their job (e.g. we only test for technical expertise, not for attitude), it does give a frame of reference to work from. The feedback we have heard time and again is how the Acquia Certification Program is tough, but fair; validating skills and knowledge that are important to both customers and partners.

We also made the Certification Magazine Salary Survey as having one of the most desired credentials to obtain. To be a first year program identified among certification leaders like Cisco and Red Hat speaks volumes on the respect our program has established.

Creating a global certification program is resource intensive. We've learned that it requires the commitment of a team of Drupal experts to work on each and every exam. We know have four different exams: developer, front-end specialist, backend specialist and site builder. It roughly takes 40 work days for the initial development of one exam, and about 12 to 18 work days for each exam update. We update all four of our exams several times per year. In addition to creating and maintaining the certification programs, there is also the day-to-day operations for running the program, which includes providing support to participants and ensuring the exams are in place for testing around the globe, both on-line and at test centers. However, we believe that effort is worth it, given the overall positive effect on our community.

We also learned that benefits are an important part to participants and that we need to raise the profile of someone who achieves these credentials, especially those with the new Acquia Certified Grand Master credential (those who passed all three developer exams). We have a special Grand Master Registry and look to create a platform for these Grand Masters to help share their expertise and thoughts. We do believe that if you have a Grand Master working on a project, you have a tremendous asset working in your favor.

At DrupalCon LA, the Acquia Certification Program offered a test center at the event, and we ended up having 12 new Grand Masters by the end of the conference. We saw several companies stepping up to challenge their best people to achieve Grand Master status. We plan to offer the testing at DrupalCon Barcelona, so take advantage of the convenience of the on-site test center and the opportunity to meet and talk with Peter Manijak, who developed and leads our certification efforts, myself and an Acquia Certified Grand Master or two about Acquia Certification and how it can help you in your career!

Pages

Subscribe to Cruiskeen Consulting LLC aggregator