Highlights from day 1 at DrupalCon Dublin

We're at DrupalCon Dublin this week! As promised, the Drupal-focused show is bigger and better than ever before, featuring hundreds of talks and activities.

With so much information flying around, our DrupalCon Dublin team have put pen to paper, and listed their top highlights from day 1 below.

DrupalCon Dublin

(From left to right) Dan Braghis, Rose Nichols, Johan Gant, Tom Readings, Rupert Jabelman & Justine Pocock

Notable highlights

  • The obligatory keynote from Dries Buytaert (creator of Drupal) focussed on how Drupal has changed since releasing version 8. The latest release, 8.2.0, brings features that aim to reduce the amount of context switching and complexity for managing things such as blocks, menus and even layouts.

  • Finding out how centralised media management is being planned and delivered for Drupal 8.

  • Discovering how projects such as BigPipe and RefreshLess can be used to improve the perceived performance of a complex website, and how Drupal 8 is geared to handle selective caching of dynamic content far better than ever before.

  • Streamlining frontend (FE) for larger projects by sharing twig templates between Drupal and Patternlab, allowing Drupal-agnostic FE whilst minimising code repetition, and mapping Drupal components to atomic design principles.

  • Being fully sold on using Docker for local Drupal development, unless you are on a Mac. Macs have some teething issues which are being worked on. The docker configuration files are very straightforward.

  • An interesting battle of the cache systems. The Drupal 8 ChainedFastBackend is a new caching mechanism that allows you to chain a fast in-memory backend and a consistent backend chain. But it suffers from clearing out entire cache bins when only one item changes. Solutions like LCache fix that. LCache aims to become a default for future versions of Drupal.

  • Using Drupal console (in particular interactive scaffolding) to enable junior developers to 'self-train' in their own language and to allow those new to Drupal 8, to learn it ‘from the inside out’. 

  • It is paramount to automate mundane processes such as security updates. Other companies in the field are also of the opinion that highly critical security update should be applied, then tested, rather than having to clean up a compromised site.

  • Scheduled/timeboxed releases have helped Drupal regain focus and deliver great features again. This is something that Wagtail uses and benefits from too.

We'll be back again tomorrow, to share highlights from day 2. If you have any questions for our dedicated DrupalCon team, why not message them on Twitter. @joblogs83, @wigglykoala, @rupertjabelman, @zerolab, @tomreadings and @rosenichols are more than happy to answer any questions you have. 

Johan Gant

Johan GantDrupal Team Manager