Drupal 8 for Applications

In the world of web development we developers are presented with a pallet of options when tasked with developing a solution. We have a wide array of server side programming languages, their respective frameworks, various DBMS systems, and a growing choice of client side presentation frameworks. Choosing the best software stack for given requirement can be overwhelming.

Over the past few years we have been interested in the ability of the Drupal CMS to be built for web applications and function more as a framework then as a predefined CMS platform. We spent a long time working with the inner workings of Drupal 6, Drupal 7, and now Drupal 8.  We have successfully implemented various systems using this framework that have real data models, users, and requirements. Over a few forth coming articles I would like to present some of the modules, tools, and techniques we have discovered along our journey. Some of the more interesting discoveries was the ability to setup true relational data models using the field system. The skill set required to build these apps is distributed in a slightly different way then the more “traditional” popular frameworks. It is almost reminiscent of when you developed small (non-shared) DB apps with Access. Field creation and their specs are defined using the web interface and as such can be performed by less skilled but trained staff. At the same time these fields can be consumed by developers to bundle specific application functions. I believe this is a powerful proposition for development shops and can prove useful for servicing customers of these apps.

In future posts I would like to delve into the specifics of these methods and share with the community the powerful framework the Drupal system can be used for. Drupal 8 represents a very positive shift in how we approach our solutions. It is truly exciting times!

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