Tag Archives: conferences

DrupalCon 2010 Trip Report – Day 3

After attending a conference, I usually think, “Wow, we’re so far ahead here at Middlebury!” Not this time! DrupalCon was incredibly helpful in demonstrating all of the ways we can improve our site with better performance, better search, better content, and better code. I’m also really excited about the upcoming release of Drupal 7 and both confident we can move our site onto this new version and eager to use all the new features.

Here are the highlights from the last day: Continue reading

DrupalCon 2010 Trip Report – Day 2

Here is an overview and some notes from day 2 of the DrupalCon conference that Ian and I are attending in San Francisco. As Ian mentioned in yesterday’s report, day 1 of DrupalCon was mostly focused on the future of Drupal, specifically on the changes and improvements in the upcoming Drupal 7. Today’s sessions dealt much more with the current Drupal release, as well as with version-neutral topics.

Read on for more on the following topics:

  • Drupal deployment strategies
  • The Chaos tools for Drupal module development
  • Drupal in Education
  • Searching with Apache Solr
  • Recent MySQL happenings

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DrupalCon 2010 Trip Report – Day 0

Here is an overview and some notes from the Drupal Scalability and Performance Workshop I attended before the start of the DrupalCon conference that Ian and I are attending in San Francisco. As the title suggests, this workshop was focused on making Drupal (and web-applications in general) run fast. Really fast. I hope to apply the techniques learned in this workshop over the next weeks and months to make our sites run fast enough to handle any traffic load that might be thrown at them, even were an event to occur that would send major public traffic to our sites.

Read on if you are interested in the performance and scalability of Drupal, MySQL databases, and web applications in general.

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DrupalCon 2010 Trip Report Day 1

Hello from San Francisco! I was waylaid in Chicago and missed the morning presentations, but I wanted to share what I’ve learned so far at DrupalCon. First, a quick bullet point summary for those who don’t want to dive into the details:

  • Drupal now powers over 1% of the total websites, closely tied with Joomla. WordPress powers about 8.5%.
  • Drupal 7’s forms will allow us to add conditional form fields that appear for the user without requiring a postback to the server. See the (very relevent for us) example here: http://d7.drupalexamples.info/form_example/states
  • Drupal 7’s User Experience (UX) team has made improvements to the interface that on our site is called the “Edit Console”. You can read more about their project at their website: http://www.d7ux.org/content/
  • We can improve our site performance by moving functionality out of the template files and into theme functions. Basically, the way we currently do things, we have to read a file off the server’s disk every time anyone loads anything on the site. By using theme functions instead of template functions we avoid this disk read and dramatically improve performance.
  • You can watch many of today’s presentations at http://sf2010.drupal.org/conference/schedule for free! Many of those without video have their slides up. The presentations from Monday are at the bottom of the page since, at the time I’m posting this, they’ve already happened and aren’t as interesting to the conference attendees.
  • Monster Menus, the module the Amherst developed that lets you add sub-pages and manage permissions is a few weeks away from being refactored to eliminate any Amherst-dependent code. The version we’re currently running assumes that Amherst’s version of Banner exists, which we’ve had to work around. The new version will make this easy for us and open MM up for other schools to use.

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VLA – early bird deadline is April 1st

Thinking of going to VLA this year? The early bird deadline is April 1st.
Registration is now open for the 2010 Vermont Library Conference.
Registration fees are as follows:
VSLA or VLA Members
$50.00 Early Registration (Before April 1st)
$55.00 Late Registration (After April 1st)
$75.00 Early Registration (Before April 1st)
$80.00 Late Registration (After April 1st)
Registration includes morning coffee with pastries, Key Note Address, workshops, lunch in the Green Mountain Dining Hall, and the End Note Address.
To register check the VLA site.

Staff Development on a Shoestring Conference

Bryan Carson and I recently presented our Fall ’08 Tasty Tech Tidbits series at the Dartmouth College 2009 October Conference
We used a new web presentation tool called Prezi (thanks Joe A!) to deliver our talk. Our presentation was one of several for the 1-day conference – and it was nice to see the friendly faces of Brenda, Terry, Joy and Karen (spouse of Mike) Lynch in the audience.  All presentations are now posted on the Dartmouth Conference site.  Check it out – there are some interesting ideas – including using Jing to develop tutorials and a learning 2.0 program using the 23 Things concept.

Nelinet IT Conference 2009: Open Source in Your Library


June 10, 2009

“Rainy Day” Edition

NELINET IT Conference 2009: Open Source in Your Library
October 9, 2009 – Olin College, Needham, MA




NELINET is proud to present its 5th Annual IT Conference, “Open Source in Your Library.” This exciting event will show you how libraries are implementing open source products for a variety of uses and will expand your understanding of the advantages of using open source products in libraries. Listen to our panel discussion delve more deeply into this topic and learn first hand about implementation and maintenance of open source products from those who are using them!  A fantastic group of open source innovators include:Dan Scott, Systems Librarian for Laurentian University, barista, library geek, and open source dabbler will be NELINET’s keynote speaker. You may know him from such projects as PHP (PEAR’s File_MARC package and PDO documentation), Apache Derby, and the Evergreen open-source ILS project.
Karen Coombs, Library Journal 2009 Mover and Shaker, trend spotter and Head of Web Services at the University of Houston Libraries, will discuss how her library is using Drupal for its intranet and for a pilot project involving digital library materials.

Joe Lucia is the University Librarian and director of Falvey Memorial Library at Villanova University. His advocacy for open source led his library to develop VuFind, an open-source discovery layer for library catalogs.




Conference Cost for Unlimited Members: $85   (Middlebury is an unlimited member)

Attention Accidental Webmasters!
Accidental Webmaster Series: Just Enough MySQL – Just Enough PHP

Starts July 14th – ONLINE SERIES
In this six-week series, you will learn just enough PHP and MySQL to explore, understand and implement dynamic tools and content. Each week, you will take part in a 1.5-hour online lecture and discussion to introduce new concepts and techniques. Between online live meetings, you will work at your own pace to practice what you’ve learned, share ideas with colleagues and receive individualized guidance and feedback in Moodle, our open source online learning management system.

Workshop Series cost: $150

Big Events!

How to Stay Relevant in Your Institution
June 24, 2009 – NELINET, Southborough, MA

Co-sponsored by the Boston Chapter of the Special Libraries Association





Introduction to METS
July 7, 2009 – NELINET, Southborough, MA



Robert L. Cunningham Annual
Bibliographic Services Conference 2009
November 13, 2009 – College of Holy Cross, Worcester, MA