Today we're proud to announce that Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. (MSLO) is running Drupal! MSLO partnered with Lullabot on many aspects of the technical architecture and development efforts of this project. The Lullabot and MSLO teams worked closely over the past year to create a high-demand, high-performance Drupal installation specifically customized to the needs of this global company.

The Lullabot effort was led by Karen Stevenson, managed by Seth Brown, and developed by James Sansbury, Eric Duran and the MSLO Digital team. Lullabot performed a Discovery Audit of MSLO’s existing websites early last year and then produced analysis documents along with an extensive blueprint for the transition to Drupal. These documents became the foundation for the project.

Throughout the project, Lullabot worked side-by-side with MSLO’s development team, led by Ira Tau, VP of Internet Technology at MSLO. During the development process, the joint team created an enterprise content library to unify all of MSLO’s extensive recipes, images, video, articles, and other media on a Drupal instance that serves data to the front-facing websites. In addition, Karen Stevenson led the charge in analysing cross-functional needs and designing a robust content architecture to make the processes around content creation easier and more flexible.

James Sansbury built functionality that allows Drupal 6 and Drupal 7 instances to interact, enabling D7 to act as a central dispatcher for some of the sites’ dynamic features and services. Drupal 7 was chosen because of its extensible comment functionality and other new features and optimizations. Integration with Varnish and CDN’s keeps the sites performant and scalable.

A major part of MSLO’s transition to Drupal was the migration of data from multiple sources in varying formats, including databases and XML feeds. Data migration specialist Cyrve (www.cyrve.com), and Cyrve's Mike Ryan helped to create a continuous migration process, and MSLO sponsored important commits to Migrate and other modules based on the project’s needs. We also collaborated on some other aspects of the project with Northpoint Solutions (www.northps.com), a New York/New England-based consulting and development company that specializes in content management systems using various technologies, including Drupal.

The result is a network of interconnected Drupal installations that serve as both the primary front-end websites and back-end content repositories to power several different MSLO properties. By distributing functionality and traffic across multiple installations of Drupal, we were able to take advantage of the best parts of Drupal 6, Drupal 7, and other services, while keeping focus on enterprise scalability.

Drupal now powers the home page, main landing pages and the search functionality. The sites are being transitioned in ongoing, strategic phases, with the goal being for all of MSLO’s websites to be powered by Drupal in the coming months. MSLO’s current websites include: www.marthastewart.com, www.marthastewartweddings.com, www.wholeliving.com and www.emerils.com. In addition, a listing of MSLO’s blogs is available at www.marthastewart.com/blogs.

“Our experience with Drupal at MSLO has thus far been extremely positive and exciting,” said Mr. Tau, “thanks in large part to our work with Lullabot, Cyrve and Northpoint. We are looking forward to our continued work, forthcoming updates to our consumer experiences and additional contributions to the Drupal Community.”

Jeff Robbins

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Jeff is a co-founder of Lullabot and the company's former CEO.