Drupal getting major overhaul

· Products

Looks like the upcoming version of Drupal with have some significant improvements:

The Drupal developers have been little busy bees ever since the new development branch has been created about 1.5 months ago. Those that do not track the CVS commit messages or read the mailing lists might wonder what we have been up to, so let me provide you with a quick run-down of the progress we have made.

Early on, just before the CVS tree was opened up for development, the developers were asked to identify the “smellier parts” of Drupal. As soon these areas were identified, we immediately began to tackle them….:

  • The theme system has been refactored … for both consistency and ease of use. While we were at it, PHPDoc/Doxygen-style documentation has been added.[Editorial comment: Hallelujah!]
  • [I]mproving Drupal’s usability… breadcrumb navigation … page titles look consistent….
  • With accessibility in mind, we made the themes degrade gracefully [and] started grouping [and labeling] form elements….
  • The Drupal menu/callback system has been extended to drive all pages, not just administrative pages. This is continuing the work done for Drupal 4.3.x which integrated the administrative menu with the user menu. We now have consistency between administrative and “normal” pages.
  • [P]erformance improvements. Serving cached pages is up to ten times faster due to better module loading, and it is made possible to automatically disable modules and blocks when under heavy load.
  • In addition to the Blogger API, Drupal [will also support] the MetaWeblog API and the Movable Type extensions. [Yea!]

Having been toiling on Drupal-related documentation (for DeanSpace), I’m eager to see the new documentation, and it will be great if themes get easier to use. Support for the Metaweblog API and related MT extensions is also great news. Now, I just need a Mac version of Zempt and my posting-to-multiple-blogs inconvenience problems will ease considerably.