[consulting] Drupal Certification

Kevin Stanek kevins at qfeinc.com
Wed Aug 12 01:22:03 UTC 2009

Caveat Emptor.

The Drupal community can discuss this until the proverbial cows come home to
no discernible effect.

Whomever pays for Drupal services/dev work, (not the Drupal community
itself) will ultimately decide any certification's inherent value.  I'll be
upfront here -- I'm not a fan of certification and think that Cisco has it
right only to the extent of testing/certifying at the very, very  highest
levels.  The M$ certification process, as most know,  is just a joke: as
long as you/your firm pays (and of course continues to pay over time) truly
significant $$ for it to any myriad of sycophant firms that can/would
probably give you the answers straight up!), it really spans the spectrum in
terms of quality.   Cisco's entry level CCNA certification really is
dubious, although surely one of the most profitable because of a simple
numbers game, and I know this from experience working with such as a PM
(some of those at the CCNA level with little experience and a good memory
can typically parrot back answers (I harp on the Token Ring stuff cuz its
just a shining example of the tests futility) but ask most to do practical,
real world implementations such as subnettting a bunch of VLANs and more
often than not, the typical response is much more often a duh!, blank stare
that is offered in return).  The highest levels of Cisco certification are
(as it should be) very, very difficult to obtain and results in an almost
certain level of competence, but remember, this is a very difficult
achievement and represents the creme de la creme.  If the Drupal community
wants to honor the best of the best by awarding certs similar to the top
Cisco certifications, I'd (in this case, as a customer) buy that anyday
because you *really do know* that the bozos have been eliminated and
practical, real world laboratory exercises and tests have been passed.  It's
the sycophant firms that I think the certification "deniers" object to here,
but clearly I can't speak for anyone but myself.

Just as those who (meaning buyers of services) use certification in an
absolute fashion will likely get burned at some point, those who do not even
consider a certification are of course equally vulnerable.  At the end of
the day, it likely won't matter a whit and somebody/some company might very
well profit handsomely by doing the creating/testing of the actual
certification.  OSS software is too plastic by it's very nature to certify.
For the sake of discussion and obviously exaggerating here, but do you
really want to hire a developer who is/was certified in Drupal 6.x when the
current version is now Drupal 15.5?  Sounds like a great way for the cert
company to make gobs of cash by having 9 different certifications to me.
Kinda like a very half-baked M$ strategy to me and doesn't sound like any
remote resemblance of the OSS philosophy either.

I think that many are concerned about some type of artificial economic
barrier -- having to pay someone to take a test/tests that may or may not
provide value and could be in conflict with the general OSS mindset.  And
the only completely, directly tangible benefactor is the
testing/certification company, right?  A sticky wicket indeed.  Can't have
it both ways...I do believe that if you do good work and keep your clients
happy, what else matters and who really cares?   Gets back to fulfilling the
clients requirements again....

Ultimately, I don't think it matters either way, and as usual it is the grey
area in between that needs to be dealt with in a sensible way.  But everyone
knows this already, so my apologies in advance for stating the obvious.


On Tue, Aug 11, 2009 at 2:27 PM, Jeff Greenberg <jeff at ayendesigns.com>wrote:

> I don't think that Dries saying he found his comments to be insightful
> necessarily means he agrees with every word. That said, even North Korea
> didn't tell Hillary Clinton to STFU. Perhaps if, instead, he had offered
> that the person is funny looking, like a bag lady... kidding. Lighten up
> people, we're supposed to be on the same team, even if we don't agree.
> Sam Cohen wrote:
>  ok, so it's acceptable on this list to say "shut the f*!k up if you don't
>> agree with me?"  Or do some of you just don't  know what STFU stands for?
> _______________________________________________
> consulting mailing list
> consulting at drupal.org
> http://lists.drupal.org/mailman/listinfo/consulting
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