[consulting] Drupal considerd dangerous

Kieran Lal kieran at civicspacelabs.org
Tue Dec 26 17:24:35 UTC 2006

On Dec 26, 2006, at 5:29 AM, Morbus Iff wrote:

>> out about it when the got stuck and had to pay some core developers
>> really high rates per hour to get them unstuck. Of course core  
>> guys can
>> build what ever they want. The swim in the code all day long and have
>> done so for years. This does not mean it is the right choice for a  
>> startup.
> I'd like to point that it is VERY unlikely that "paying a core guy"
> would actually cause THEM to modify *core* (where "core" is  
> described as
> anything that ships with Drupal). Any decent Drupal developer who  
> thinks
> the solution is modifying core is *not a decent Drupal developer*.  
> Your
> admonition that "knowing core" is required to be good at Drupal is
> incorrect: core developers, and the code they write, serve the lofty
> goal of making it easier to *never modify core*. Quality Drupal devs
> know how to do magick using only the APIs that core provides.

I am now in contact, or about to be with at least six different start- 
ups that are using Drupal.  I am trying to get to the core of these  
problems, but I already have some suspicions.

The web 2.0 bubble has been in play for at least three years.  I  
suspect that many of these start-ups that were hurt were early  
adopters and picked Drupal in 4.5 or 4.6.  In particular, the 13  
month release cycle of Drupal 4.7 meant that companies that started  
on Drupal 4.6 or Drupal head in September 2005 did not have the  
ability to use the Forms API to override things.  In many cases, it  
may have made sense to hack core to satisfy a client or CEO in 4.6 or  
Drupal Head pre-forms API.

A classic example is the LogginTobbagan module which attempted to  
override a consumer unfriendly login in Drupal 4.6 and to some extent  
4.7.  This demonstrated it was possible to override basic  
functionality in core, the user module, but it has not got the  
maintenance and support it needs.  In the hands of Jeff Robbins,  
Chad, and Angela it made sense to extend Drupal this way.  For the  
lead developer of a Drupal start-up who's management is interviewing  
off-shore developers for 1/20th of their salary, it made sense to  
hack core (patch user.module) and be done with it.

When we hear these complaints about Drupal we are thinking about what  
Drupal can do in 5.0.  Not what Drupal was doing 20 months ago when  
that start-ups burn rate was $50-100K a month and Drupal 4.7 was no  
where in sight.  I suspect that for Drupal failures to become common  
knowledge that these technology choices were probably made 20 months  
ago, Drupal didn't meet expectation, and business funds weren't able  
to recover from the expenditures made.

I hope that provides some context.

With that said, we now have to admit our past weaknesses and market  
how our new strengths can over come, to ensure significant investment  
continues to be made in Drupal as a platform.


> -- 
> Morbus Iff ( rootle-dee-tootle-dee-toot! )
> Technical: http://www.oreillynet.com/pub/au/779
> Culture: http://www.disobey.com/ and http://www.gamegrene.com/
> icq: 2927491 / aim: akaMorbus / yahoo: morbus_iff / jabber.org: morbus
> _______________________________________________
> consulting mailing list
> consulting at drupal.org
> http://lists.drupal.org/mailman/listinfo/consulting

More information about the consulting mailing list