Celebrating 20 years of Drupal

Problem/Motivation

Drupal 1.0 was released 15 Jan 2001. 15 Jan 2021 is the 20th anniversary. People want to mark this milestone by looking back on those 20 years. This visualization is one of many celebration efforts.

Proposed resolution

Collect and highlight important milestones. Like the drupal community, this is not all about code, but code is relevant. Please consider events that are about milestones that impacted the direction of Drupal: project decisions, documentation, performance, accessibility, usability, testing, collaboration, educational events, leadership, and community.

Get the word out to acknowledge January 15 2021, Drupal's 20th anniversary. Use the hashtag #CelebrateDrupal

Timeline

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PHP 8.0 is a major update of the PHP language. It contains many new features and optimizations including named arguments, union types, attributes, constructor property promotion, match expression, nullsafe operator, JIT, and improvements in the type system, error handling, and consistency.


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Drupal contributors may now collaborate using git branches and merge requests. Until this day, code collaboration on drupal.org featured uploaded patch files.


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The package manager that assembles virtually all modern Drupal sites gets a significant performance and memory utilization boost. Developer productivity and mood noticeably improve.


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Amidst a pandemic, the Open Source Digital experience conference itself becomes a digital experience. Speakers, attendees, and sponsors enjoy the interactive chat and video features powered by Hopin.


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9.0

The first Drupal release with no new functionality - and that's great! Drupal 9 has the same functionality as Drupal 8.9, but without a lot of backward compatibility code. The release parties were virtual, as this happened during the times of Covid.


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Drupal's initial experience goes from a boring river of news to a food magazine replete with tasty looking recipes. This fine meal was cooked by the Out of the Box Initiative led by kjay, markconroy, smaz, and laurii. It shows all of Drupal's spices working together: design, product management, engineering and accessibility.


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Drupal was doing Move Fast and Break Things a few years before Facebook. New features were routinely committed to Drupal without backward compatibility. Recognizing its large installed base, Drupal announces that all changes must be backward compatible, and that major version upgrades will be easy forever.


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A major language renewal comes with the new Zend Engine 3 (PHPNG), It’s also twice as fast as the previous PHP 5.6 release.


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Drupal's fun/art side thrives at these late night Drupalcon parties. This year Drupalers chatted among fire throwers and wild art installations at the Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus in New Orleans.


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8.0

Five years in the making, Drupal 8 embraces objects and declarative configuration. Entity API, Twig, and Accessibility are the talk at the Celebr8 worldwide release parties.


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wimleers and fabianx rescue Drupal 8 performance with an API where Drupal caches rendered content, varying the keys as specified by a developer. Cache tags precisely invalidate related content as edits are submitted.


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webflo showed the world how to build a Drupal codebase with Composer. Prior to this day some sites assembled code with Drush Make. drupal.org later built upon this work for its Packagist facade and Composer templates.


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jam & robertDouglass wake us up for an infotainment extravaganza featuring sing-a-longs; bad jokes; Git tutorials, yodelling, use of alphabet, or beer pouring technique. On this day we belted out a Drupal flavored Let it Go from Frozen.


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Drupal had always relied on a single release manager to review and merge core changes. On this day Drupal embraces multiple committer roles and adds a process for adding new committers. In 2020 are about a dozen core committers.



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Many thousands of Drupal sites are compromised by Drupal core's first major security vulnerability.


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Drupal core adopts semantic versioning and a sustainable, predictable minor release schedule.


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Crell leads a push to replace Drupal's bootstrap with Symfony flavored request handling. This large change nearly assassinated Drupal 8, but the mighty Drop prevailed


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Before this change, it was customary to post a comment with only the word subscribe in order to start following an issue. Unfortunately, this marked the issue as new and spammed all other followers. This practice ended when the community used Chip-In to fund a flag module implementation.


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Alan Burke proposes an in-person, team based trivia contest on the last night of Drupalcon Chicago. Drupalers have a jolly time, nobody recalls who wins, and Irish Drupal hosts many more trivia nights.


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Drupalcon Chicago culminates in a dinner party at the Field Museum of Natural History. Dining with us in the main hall is Sue, the world's most complete Tyrannosaurus rex. Kudos to Tiffany and George from Palantir for a great Drupalcon and party.


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Drupalcon attendees open their tote bags and find Drupal Watchdog magazine, the first print magazine dedicated entirely to Drupal. The first issue features Dries on the cover. Tag1, the publisher, makes the magazine available for purchase in bookstores in 2014. The name comes from Drupal's hook_watchdog function.


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After 7 years in Contrib, the simpletest module is added in Drupal 7, along with a substantial test suite. qa.drupal.org and then DrupalCI ensure that each patch passes tests before merging. Drupal Test Traits later brings this framework to client sites. Other major contributors here were chx, rfay, and Sun.


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7.0

More than 250 parties in over 90 countries were held to celebrate this great release. Drupal 7 is still the most popular Drupal release, featuring the Seven theme, designed by Mark Boulton and Leisa Reichelt.


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xjm and catch begin leading core office hours on IRC 12 hours apart, providing global coverage. This generous spirit soon manifests at DrupalCon Denver as the first Core Mentoring contribution day, where new contributors are guided through their first core issue. YesCT later leads this effort.


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webchick opens a two week discussion assessing bzr and git for our next VCS. Then she reviews the discussion and announces that Git has been chosen. This is how bike sheds are overcome. The initiative is named the The Great Git Migration, and involves integration of several drupal modules, and even a custom SSH daemon to handle drupal.org high load. sdboyer leads the initiative, and receives help from lots of people on the implementation. Among them are chizu, dww, eliza411, halstead, marvil07, mikey_p, mikl, neclimdul, and tizzo.


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Certified To Rock is a new form of certification built to match the unique nature of the Drupal community. Give back more, and your score rises.


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An early distro, and a shining light in terms of visual design, user experience, and software architecture.


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First edition of the yearly european event Drupal Dev Days. The event is independently organized in a different country every year and gathers hundreds of developers or contributors.


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Barack Obama's administration launches whitehouse.gov and We the People, a site where constituents can directly petition the White House for change. The projects are featured at Drupalcon San Francisco.


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David Strauss and collaborators maintain a distribution that helps Drupal scale. Their improvements are later incorporated into Drupal 7.


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Launch of this new central web-based translation service meant a great leap towards community collaboration on more consistent, higher quality UI translations for all Drupal projects.


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Drush is no longer a module, helping it install a site, perform DB backups, etc. Drush becomes Drupal's de facto command line tool. Thanks to Moshe Weitzman and Greg Anderson for maintaining this vital tool.


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6.0

This release features a rewritten menu system, and an Update Status module which prompts admins to update their modules, especially after a security release.


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Drupal.org becomes too popular for its home grown web hosting, and starts throwing errors regularly. Sun Microsystems donates its servers and restores stability to our home.


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Acquia, a startup by Dries Buytaert and Jay Batson, announces its intention to offer commercial support and hosting for Drupal. Acquia continues to be the largest sponsor of Drupal development, and its largest web hosting platform.


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This large, annual event remains free to this day. Kudos to Jen Lampton for her many years of organizing. Other notable Camps include Design 4 Drupal, Drupal Dev Days, Frontend United, and Midwest Developer Summit


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5.0

This release incorporates jQuery, a young open source project. Drupal's support helps jQuery gain attention and then it rises to huge popularity. jQuery adds a second license (MIT+GPL) at Drupal's request. This release also introduces install profiles and a web based installer.


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Drupal contributed projects are able to make tagged releases, ending the era of date-based tarballs and CVS projects inside SVN checkouts. The release system built on prior work to partition commit access by project owner.


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merlinofchaos introduces Views, a list builder/layout UI. Many modules quickly plug into Views both as data providers and layout providers. Along with CCK, these form the early beating heart of Drupal. Views graduates into Drupal core with D8.


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Drupal's governance formalizes from BDFL to a non-profit model. Led by Jacob Redding, VZW is initially a money manager only. Drupal VZW transforms into the Drupal Association in 2011 and becomes more prominent in promoting Drupal and runs Drupalcon.


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4.7

The new Form API by Adrian Rossouw strengthens Drupal's secure-by-default approach. XSS protections, validation of choices, and only processing POST data that was actually on the form.


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CCK was incorporated into Drupal 7 as the Field API. JonBob led a session about it at very first Drupalcon, and made the first iteration in Flexinode module. yched and KarenS evolved that work into CCK.


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Moshe Weitzman introduced this portal for local user groups to have an online rallying place. Groups helped the Drupal community grow tighter, and helped newbies climb its learning curve. Later led by joshk, greggles, and ezra-g.


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This podcast, founded by Jeff Robbins, still runs today. This marks a growth in the marketing and communication of Drupal.


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Robert Douglass authors the first Drupal book, recognizing a growing demand for Drupal education.Later popular books include Pro Drupal Development, Cracking Drupal (greggles), and High Performance Drupal (nnewton, catch, jeffsheltren).


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This volunteer team is first led by chx. The team dutifully protects Drupal core and all the contrib modules that opt into its coverage. Future leaders would be Heine, greggles, and mlhess.


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Drupal enthusiasts meet in person for the first time. Amazingly, 45 people fly to Antwerp from all over the globe. Marc Canter (Macromedia founder) and Chris Messina (aka FactoryJoe, later invented the #hashtag) attended. Photos by Dries.


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Deanspace was a milestone in the rise of the Internet for political campaigns and grassroots initiatives. It also kicked off a long love affair between Drupal and non-profits (e.g. Greenpeace, American Cancer Society, Red Nose Day, ...).


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4.0

Marco wrote taxonomy because he needed a way to group forums into categories. Drupal's rich taxonomy system foreshadows what will become known as tags/labels in Delicious, Flickr, Twitter, etc


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3.0

3.0 major had a whopping 6 month development cycle. Nodes are introduced as a building block for content. They can be specialized into many content types.


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Drupal's famous logo, featuring infinity eyes and remixed into thousands of variants, is introduced by Steven Wittens (UnConeD) and Kristjan Jansen.


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2.0

A mere 2 months after 1.0, Drupal ships 2.0. Backward compatibility was not yet a concern. The translation system is introduced, with its brilliantly simple t() function.


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1.0

Dries Buytaert shares the initial release of his 'dormitory bulletin board'. It includes 18 files that are called modules. It features a hook system where modules interact with each other and the core framework. On this very day, Wikipedia is also born as a bespoke LAMP site. Had that happened 6 months later, it would probably be a Drupal site!.


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