Strategic Initiatives for in 2015

Reposted from is an amazing installation of Drupal. At nearly 13 years old, it is one of the largest, continuously operating examples of Drupal. It is difficult to fathom, but has been upgraded in place from version to version for this entire timespan. I can think of no other site that has gone this long without a significant content and structure migration.

Over the years, has grown from a single server owned by a contributor to multiple racks at the OSL data center, plus cloud resources and content distribution networks spread across the globe. is more than a single site. There are over 20 services and subsites that make up the ecosystem that powers the Drupal community. Each month, over 20 TB of data passes through the infrastructure.

With such a huge impact, it is important that we have a strong plan for the direction of With that, we would like to introduce you to the Roadmap. Roadmap

Read on to find out how we set this strategic direction.


Volunteers built up these systems focusing on their passions with community initiatives. Many times these volunteers gave up days of their life - unpaid - to make sure that people could continue to build websites with Drupal and to build Drupal and its contributed projects.

While the result is impressive, there are many areas of that received little or no attention in this model of development. If a developer burned out, or there was no one in the community with a passion for the area of needed improvements, that area remained unmaintained.

For several years, the Drupal Association has funded the infrastructure that runs The Association pays for the hosting facilities and the hardware to keep running.

The evolving role of the Drupal Association

In 2013, the Drupal Association board made the decision to begin building up an engineering team. This team would support both the infrastructure and software development activities behind Our goal is to accelerate the development of the new features and to help build a cohesive roadmap so that would help unite a global community to build the best of the Web with Drupal. (Hint: that is the mission of the Drupal Association.)

Hired in March of 2014, the Drupal Association CTO was tasked with building a team and gathering feedback from Working Groups and the Board of Directors to set a strategic direction for

Prioritizing the work

There are three primary working groups that guide the development of Content Working Group (DCWG), Software Working Group (DSWG) and Infrastructure Working Group (DIWG).

New development of features for the community of sites and services was determined through weeks of careful deliberation and research:

One of the key influences in our prioritization process was the user research that was conducted during and after DrupalCon Austin in June of 2014. We interviewed over 30 individuals that represented a wide range of users from those that were just starting with Drupal, to longtime members of the community, and even those that had once used Drupal and had transitioned their careers to different technologies.

This gave us four key areas in which to focus:

Sustaining support and maintenance

These efforts are the ongoing work that keeps the servers up and running and performing well. The Infrastructure issue queue is the primary place for this work, but there are several other related queues where staff and volunteers from the infrastructure team are focusing their work. Work that staff is tackling will be assigned to a staff member and tagged with d.o support.

Fund and future tools

While the majority of funds supporting come from our partner programs (Supporting Partner, Technology Partner, Hosting Partner), we are looking for ways to diversify where we raise funds.

Board and Working Group Priorities: Staff Initiatives

These initiatives represent the work that Drupal Association technology and engineering staff will be focused on in the near term through 2015. By being focused on these initiatives, we will get the related features launched on faster. We will still need help to vet and test these features, so follow the issue tags you are interested in and get involved in the related issues.

The Roadmap provides much more detail about these key initiatives.

Community Initiatives

There is always more work to do on We need committed and active volunteers to help with key initiatives that showed up in both our user research and the prioritization from the working groups. These are projects that we can support the efforts of contributors that have the time and skills to push these initiatives forward. Three examples with strong community leadership include:

You can help

In addition to these initiatives, we would love to support a community member that would be willing to step up and lead an initiative to organize our Q&A and support on There is a huge need for people to be able to find answers to their Drupal questions. Stack Overflow fills part of this role, but there are many more opportunities on itself.

We will also need a community driven effort to help us establish project ratings and reviews once these tools are in place. It will take a group effort to make these affective quickly.

All of our initiatives need community involvement. Whether it is commenting on issues posted to these projects or joining in at sprints to move these initiatives forward, we can use your time and commitment.

Thank you

This planning and work would not have been possible without the financial support from our partners, the direction and leadership of the board, the time commitment of our Working Group members, and an incredibly dedicated Drupal Association staff.