Dries Buytaert Recap

I had the opportunity to meet Dries Buytaert, the founder of Drupal, thanks to Turner.  The sessions I attended were a keynote presentation and technical breakout session.  It was very inspiring, so I wanted to capture the event, and recap the key take-away learnings for posterity.

First, it is hard not to respect and admire the guy.  Dries is very smart, and his personality has a unifying effect.  He has a PhD in CS, so technically he is Dr. Dries Buytaert, but he is too modest to utilize his academic success. Drupal is the largest and most successful open-source project.  If you click on the link above, you will go to his personal blog, and I hope you are as impressed as I am at the amount and quality of information he willingly shares.  I couldn’t help thinking he embodies what Steven Covey called the Abundance mentality.

The Presentation

Key Points

  1. Continuous Innovation sets great companies apart
    If you are sitting on your current skills, you are on the path of decline. Kodak once owned the analog photography market and developed the first digital camera, but failed to keep innovating their business.
  2. Open-Source -> Collaboration -> Community -> Innovation
    Open Source software encourages collaboration, which builds a community which can achieve innovation.
  3. Drupal SWOT analysis
    • Strengths
      • Community
      • Time to deploy
      • Ability to handle video and text on scale
    • Weaknesses
      • Talent starvation – a small drupal talent pool
      • Rudimentary Authoring experience
      • Aging Development framework
    • Opportunities
      • Moving from a web framework to an application framework
      • Websites with a better mobile experience
    • Threats
      • Not innovating fast enough
  4. The Drupal action plan
    • Improve the content authoring experience
    • Improve the development framework, looking to build talent pool
      • Collaboration with Symfony
        • Object-oriented
        • Common Design patterns for “non-Drupal” developers
    • Drupal 8 expected around August of 2013
      • Migrate your D6 sites to D7
      • Begin to understand symfony