How to Use Drupal
What is Drupal?
Drupal is our CMS (content management system) that supports our college website. In fact, this site is in Drupal! Drupal is open source software that is widely used, especially in higher ed. We are using Drupal with the addition of something called Monster Menus, which was developed at Amherst College and is also used by Middlebury College, with great success and joy.
What is it like to use?
For users have only worked with Dreamweaver to update HTML websites, you will find updating and adding to your web pages very easy. It's as simple as logging in and clicking "Edit." Check out the Editing in Drupal page for an illustration of how it works.
How do I request new features in Drupal?
Email your ideas to the Drupal team, which is comprised of staff from Public Affairs (PA) and Library & Technology Services (LTS). PA shepherds website design and content while LTS supports Drupal and training.
We are currently in a migration and stabilization phase, but this will be the process for new feature requests:
- Send requests for new modules (Drupal has lots of them) or features to firstname.lastname@example.org
- In our regular Drupal meeting, we will decide who will research, evaluate, and test modules in our test environment.
- We will confer with PA and the requestor to make sure needs and requirements are met.
- At end of month, we will roll new modules/features from our test environment into our production (live) environment.
- We'll publicize what's new, in case others can benefit from the enhancements.
So, what does Drupal mean?
Originally written by Dries Buytaert as a message board, Drupal became an open source project in 2001. Drupal is an English rendering of the Dutch word “druppel”, which means “drop” (as in “a water droplet”). The name was taken from the now-defunct Drop.org website, whose code slowly evolved into Drupal. Buytaert wanted to call the site “dorp” (Dutch for “village”) for its community aspects, but mistyped it when checking the domain name and thought the error sounded better.