State of jQuery and Drupal

Yesterday I had to opportunity to present at Drupalcon Boston 2008. It was a great experience to be able to mingle with the Drupal folks, hear their concerns, and see what kind of challenges they’re facing in everyday development.

Overwhelmingly Drupal users are not of the JavaScript persuasion and jQuery was a breath of fresh air in their development cycle. Users who had, literally, no JavaScript experience were able to produce interactions with little effort – which is precisely what jQuery is designed for.

There were already two introductory jQuery presentations at the conference so I decided to present on the state of jQuery and some of the advances that we’ve been making (especially in the way of plugin development and jQuery UI). My presentation is as follows:

Possibly my favorite experience was seeing Dmitri Gaskin present on jQuery and JavaScript. He’s a 12 year old programming prodigy – a module contributor to Durpal and a frequent presenter. I loved watching him deftly explain how JavaScript Object Prototypes work to a room of people 3x his senior.

I had the opportunity to clarify a minor point for someone asking a question during his presentation, which made for a great photo:

I think the experience is summed up nicely by a comment on the Flickr page:

The 12 year old in the front is teaching the 30 yr olds in the room how to use the programming tool created by the guy in the flannel.

I think it’s such an exciting time in which there can be a 900 person conference dedicated to a single piece of open source software. Drupal is a fantastic piece of work and I’m looking forward to seeing it grow and flourish.

Posted: March 7th, 2008

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