About this Book

There was a time not long ago that the idea of putting a database supported site on the web wasn’t something just anyone would consider. Many people accepted that an HTML site was all they would feel comfortable creating on their own. Only those with large budgets and much to gain from having a dynamic and interactive site would invest in database driven sites.

With the availability of open source content management systems designed to allow the everyday web enthusiast to develop a database driven and interactive site, the meaning of web development has changed. Different content management systems offer their users different options when designing and developing a site. Drupal is one of the open source content management systems being chosen by all levels of web developers. Drupal’s framework offers web developers what feels like unlimited options when it comes to putting a site on the web.

Drupal’s framework, its flexibility, comes with a price. Since 1996, I have worked with clients who wanted a Drupal-based site. They had been told by friends and colleagues that Drupal was the way to go. But many have found that if you don’t have a background in one of several web development disciplines you can become quickly overwhelmed by the possibilities Drupal and its modules have to offer. Diving into Drupal without a plan makes the development process a challenged.

Here’s the catch. How can you plan a Drupal site if you don’t first have experience using Drupal to build a site? What came first, the chicken or the egg? This book offers insights into a planning process from a Drupal perspective. I am not going to give you click-by-click instructions on how to install Drupal and its modules; there are a lot of good books and video tutorials that demonstrate Drupal and modules installation. This book helps you define what you want for your Drupal site, making it easier to:

  • Choose the right online strategy to meet your needs
  • Determine how to organize your content to meet your needs.
  • Define the best method for getting your content into your site.
  • Identify which modules you will need and why.
  • Plan how to grow and change your site over time.

These are only a few tasks you will be able to accomplish with the methods and techniques discussed in this book. Although the strategies that are covered can be used to make decisions about any kind of website (simple HTML site or a site built with a content management system), examples, insights, and tips will focus on Drupal.

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