Posted on February 15, 2008 // Short URL

Contributing to Drupal

Addi Berry, Angie Byron, James Walker, and Jeff Robbins discuss why companies and individuals might want to contribute resources to Drupal and the various ways in which they can give back.

Comments

btopro

Case Studies for contributing to Drupal

I am currently creating proprietary Drupal code and trying to get approval to release my code openly. I know first hand the issues you've mention related to helping support the community with code developed for a business. I know that it's a good idea to get this stuff out to the public but most managers and administrators are still of the mind set that in an information economy, the IP provides a competitive advantage to the business.

I think it would really helpful demonstrating to corporations and institutions how they can benefit directly (and indirectly) from releasing things to the public. Perhaps a case-study of a popular module created in-house and then improved upon in the public / open-source community would be helpful. I know that's what we're hoping to accomplish by getting out modules out the door public domain but that getting things open in the first place is extremely difficult with just speculation of return on investment. (http://elearning.psu.edu/projects if anyone could help provide convincing evidence of this so we can get our stuff out there!)

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angie

A couple articles that touch on this...

Best Practices in Open Source Development: more on the code angle.
How to use open source (and how not to): a broad overview. with pictures! ;)

The main points to get across are:

1. By trying to protect IP with an open-source based project, you're effectively sidestepping arguably the /most/ important benefit of open source: 1,000 extra sets of eyes fixing bugs, adding new features, and pointing out flaws for anything that you do.

2. If your entire site's success hinges off solely functionality, you are effectively already screwed. Functionality can easily be created; it's community-building and content authoring that takes time and is the real draw to any site. You can create a Digg clone in Drupal in about 5 minutes, but in order to *be* Digg, you need to have a Digg-sized community behind you.

3. Lower maintenance costs, faster ramp-up on Drupal, and all the other benefits mentioned in this podcast. ;)

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theBorg

Great one!

I totally agree with the panel, I would only add that contributing is fun!! and the best way to enjoy being part of this wonderful community!

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EdHaber

Helping out

Hey lullabots,
After listening to this podcast I started hanging out on #drupal and #drupal-support and helping out where I can. It's great because even on problems i can't really help on i see the discussion and the answers and learn more. I know i have helped a few people now and it feels really good.

Now i just have to start creating patches and trying to contribute some code back.

-Ed

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addi

Woohoo!

Yeah, I learned a ton just spending time in the channels. Way to go!

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HS

Thanks for the podcasts, it

Thanks for the podcasts, it seems like my next port of call might be Podcast 60 as I am new to Drupal and I am keen to learn more about its capabilities, so it seems like I found your podcasts at the right time.

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Brook

Thanks

visiting the channels has been the best way for me to learn. The podcasts are amazing. I am new to Drupal as well. I really think that there are many capabilities that I have not yet discovered but I feel that soon enough I will be able to do the things I want. Slowly but surely. Thanks!

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