Largest gathering of Drupal experts in the Southwest.

Friday 30th June 2017

Keynote by Jeffrey A. "Jam" McGuire (45 minutes)

Keynote by Jeffrey A. "Jam" McGuire.

Get ready for GDPR
Talk by Rob Humphries (45 minutes)

The General Data Protection Regulation is coming and the Drupal community is way under-prepared! Rob's talk is a quick start guide for the uninitiated on the whats, whys, whens and hows of GDPR.

YHA, Acquia and agency relationships
Talk by David Lillington, Jon Smith (45 minutes)

The Youth Hostel Association (England & Wales): a well-established UK charity that has been helping young people, schools, families and friends to explore every part of England and Wales for more than 80 years, and yet recognised that their digital structure was causing them problems. Their business was split over several websites which created the potential for customer confusion and inconsistency of experience and branding. The YHA groups and school trips website, in particular, was slow, difficult to update and outdated. The solution was to bring together all the different sites under one roof, with the help of Acquia, Drupal 8 and Microserve. By doing this the team were able to use an array of new and exciting services, which enabled them to create a smoother and more engaging customer journey and in turn dramatically increased both traffic and engagement on their site. In addition, the new platform opens up a raft of opportunity to simplify the user journey, connect online and offline digital experiences, and improve back-office management efficiency. Jon and David talk you through this journey, and explore a new 'hybrid’ client, agency methodology they trialled to deliver the first stage of YHA’s digital transformation.

The wrong users
Talk by Matt Jukes (45 minutes)

The mission of mySociety is to ' the digital tools that give people power to get things changed' but at FixMyStreet are we empowering the people who need it or just reinforcing existing privileges? Is this a service design problem? How can we break the un-virtuous circle: people don’t believe anything will get fixed —> so don’t report anything —> so nothing gets fixed. This talk will talk about what we have learned from a decade at the front-line of that most British of past-times, complaining about their neighbourhoods, and some ideas for how we might empower more people to make more change.

Drupal isn't what you're selling
Talk by Luke Aikman (45 minutes)

As site builders the value in our services has shifted hugely with the improvement of platforms, frameworks and SAAS. Luke explores where you can add value throughout the build to become the most important link in the value chain.

Making Drupal more GLAMorous
Talk by Ian Noah, Alison Bancroft (45 minutes)

The Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums (GLAM) sector are responsible for maintaining and preserving the culture heritage of our society. Yet, in communities across the country, funded and voluntary groups are faced with finding solutions to help digitise cultural and heritage collections and make them accessible online whilst coping with increasing limited resources. Although new to Drupal, and not professional developers, Alison and Ian, as consultants, have successfully leveraged their professional skills from the corporate and community sectors, in order to advise upon and build suitable media solutions for a variety of projects, groups and organisations. They believe that insufficient work is being done to address the needs of GLAM groups in the community who assume that other software, such as Wordpress or Wix, will serve their needs. Drupal, as an open-source CMS, obviously has the potential to play a key role in providing a better, more robust and flexible solutions for the GLAM sector. Using their own case studies of projects in England and Scotland, in particular, the British Entertainment History Project (, as well as the experiences of the audience, this session aims to explore the uses of Drupal in GLAM projects and the opportunity to develop a more coherent, co-ordinated, and collaborative approach from developers in the Drupal community.

Why we use open source
Talk by Alick Mighall (45 minutes)

This session looks at the various benefits of using open source software for content managed solutions, covering why it's good for product quality, business processes as well as how it can help you evolve your business.

Saturday 1st July 2017

Open Source: self-care and supporting others
Keynote by Emma Karayiannis (45 minutes)

Open Source communities allow us to contribute to so many things. There will always be work available and it never stops. It's all too easy to get caught up in everything and neglect our own health and wellbeing. We naturally want to help out, to improve something, to support others, to take on responsibilities, and to make our ideas a reality. This session aims to give you the advice and tools to support your Open Source ambitions without ploughing yourself into the ground. Humans are not designed to work tirelessly and endlessly. At times we have to stop to look after ourselves. Taking a break might not be the easiest or most obvious thing to do. Many of us have responsibilities within the community and a lot of pressure sitting on our shoulders. It's okay to stop and look after yourself. This session explains how to activate self-care mode to let yourself recover. All whilst not letting anyone down in the process. Many of us in the community are plagued by worrying concerns that hinder us in some way. Such things as, imposter syndrome, feeling overwhelmed, not feeling heard, not feeling accepted, and feeling scared. This session will face these demons head on. Communicating effectively online is key within an Open Source community. We are a huge team from all over the world, and the majority of our communication takes place online. Miscommunication is all too easy when posting online. Worst case scenario it can lead to unnecessary frustration, conflict, upset, exclusion of others, and people leaving the community. This session contains the facts about online communities plus best practices for communicating online. If we are to be part of an Open Source community, we must support others. We are all in this together and we depend on each other to get things done. Beginners need support to become part of the community. Long time contributors also need support, more than you think. We have witnessed people crash and burn, and also leave the community completely. There are many simple things we can do to support each other, this session will provide the tools to do so.

From request to response: how Drupal 8 works
Talk by Deji Akala in Lecture theatre 2 (45 minutes)

An exploration of what happens from the moment a request is received by Drupal 8 and a response is returned.

Is what you've coded what you mean?
Talk by Dave Liddament in Lecture theatre 3 (45 minutes)

Imagine a venn diagram of your last software project. Consider three parts: what the code should do, what the code actually does and what the developers think the code does. The greater the overlap the more successful and bug free your software is likely to be. This talk examines how to increase this overlap. We'll look at the importance of type hinting, assertions and things called value objects. We'll then look at how these techniques can be combined with modern IDEs. By the end of the talk you'll have picked up tips on how to write cleaner software with fewer bugs that does what it's supposed to do.

Pattern libraries: how to make your backend love your frontend
Talk by Keir Moffatt in Lecture theatre 1 (45 minutes)

I was once taught to 'code obvious, not clever’ - as a freelancer, it is critical that the code I handover is easy to understand, extend and integrate. Let me take you through my process of developing pattern libraries and show the myriad of benefits this approach offers all aspects of the development cycle.

Going accessibility-first
Talk by James South in Lecture theatre 3 (20 minutes)

A look at how making accessibility a key concern results in higher quality web experiences for everyone. Covering why accessibility matters, common challenges and how the web content accessibility guidelines can inform a better build.

Task runners for giant Drupal projects
Talk by Ross Gratton in Lecture theatre 2 (20 minutes)

Drupal has themes, git has branches, gulp has tasks. What happens when your Drupal project has many themes and modules that all require task runners, when your git repo has overlapping work streams with different conflicting deployment dates and your sass, javascript and icon font resources are split between all of this. In an ideal world you build against this issue, in a real world you have to work around or with it. I'd like to share my thinking and experiences of creating a shared theme resource for a giant, global, multi-lingual, legacy, Drupal site.

Help! This composer stuff is confusing
Talk by Erik Erskine in Lecture theatre 3 (20 minutes)

Drupal 8 makes use of Composer - a tool widely used in PHP for managing dependencies. Composer's introduction hasn't been plain sailing. There are now several different ways you can install Drupal, and a concern that this is one more barrier to entry for new Drupal users. We'll try to address some of the confusion surrounding Composer, by answering these questions: * What problem does Composer solve? Do we even have that problem? * Drupal's documentation mentions "drupal/drupal" and "drupal-composer/drupal-project" as two alternative ways to install it? * * * * * What's the difference? Can't you just tell me which one to use? * The installation instructions I see talk about "8.x-dev". What if I don't want to use a dev version? * I'm not very familiar with the command line. Is that now essential for Drupal development? We'll also look at some practical tips if you decide to use Composer: * Should I use exact versions or patterns for module dependencies? * Do the dependencies go in the code repository? * Do I need to run composer on my server?

14:00 Insurance company case study: making Commerce, Webform & Group modules play nicely together
Talk by Chandeep Khosa in Lecture theatre 1 (45 minutes)

I recently worked on a complex Drupal website for an insurance company. I'll be going through how architectural decisions were made, the challenges and solutions chosen. I'll be helping you avoid mistakes that were made or nearly made. I'll be showing how I built a Quote builder in Webform, and based on the criteria selected, chose relevant Drupal Commerce products from a list of 5000 and added them to the cart. I'll be sharing how I harnessed the power of the Group module to build 4 tiers of access control including staff, branches, head office and client.

Website insecurity - how your CMS site will get hacked and how to prevent it
Talk by George Boobyer in Lecture theatre 2 (45 minutes)

Public facing web sites are constantly under attack and keeping websites protected is an arms race, yet security rarely gets a look-in at specification and budget allocation stages of delivering a web site - or at best is an afterthought. Yet everyone has an expectation of security and QOS that implies it is central to every project. Security considerations should pervade all stages of a project from initial specification, throughout development and testing and on to ongoing hosting and maintenance. In this session I will cover: * Common threats to web security with real world case studies of compromised sites, * Simple approaches to mitigating common threats/vulnerabilities, * Defence in depth – an overview of the various components of web security, * Drupal specific measures that standard penetration testing often does not account for. * An overview of how to benefit from: * Security monitoring and log analysis * Intrusion Detection Systems & Firewalls * Security headers and Content Security Policies (CSP).

Decoupled UIs - what we've learned from building Drupal sites which don't have a standard front end
Talk by Louis Sawtell, Adam Browne in Lecture theatre 1 (45 minutes)

In this talk Adam and Louis, from miggle, will talk through some examples of ‘headless’ Drupal in both D7 and D8, where the user interface hasn’t been Drupal (or even screen-based). We’ll cover: * How we integrated Drupal 8 with The Student Room’s page building layer/machine; Nova, all of the other technology they use and the considerations we had to make. * How we explored other methods of data presentation by writing Alexa skills for the Amazon Echo * How we used Drupal 7 to manage JSON feeds which were used by other display media, like OOH billboards

Freelancers - tips and tricks I picked up along the way
Talk by Ana Hassel in Lecture theatre 2 (20 minutes)

This is a site builders level talk, and focusses on some of the breakthrough ah-ha moments I have had in my time as a freelancer. I did this talk at Drupal Show & Tell, London at the beginning of the year. The idea for the talk came about when I was talking about how I wished that somebody had done a talk to try and bridge that knowledge gap and nudge people that don’t code into the right direction, using some of the more simple terminal commands and definitely drush and some drush aliases for syncing. Once I started to use some of these tools my workflow became “supercharged” … I also briefly go into some things in that area: about what it is like to be a freelancer and how the right tools for the job help us out here too ...

Develop developing developers
Talk by Johan Gant in Lecture theatre 2 (20 minutes)

Employers always want the best developers. Developers want to be the best. Blog posts, Twitter and Medium articles are rife with tips and tricks to be better, to hack/sling/ship/craft/bodge out better code more quickly, to be more productive etc etc... and if you're not top of the heap you're doing it all wrong and everything sucks! Allegedly. I'm a web developer, now also managing a team of developers at an award winning digital agency (Torchbox). In this session I want to share my understanding of what qualities, priorities and behaviours really make a difference for developers of all skill levels and how to apply them to deliver value into any project or organisation you happen to be in.

16:05 Code reviews and how to improve them
Talk by Lee Stone in Lecture theatre 2 (45 minutes)

We know that code reviews are considered an important part of creating high quality software and to making ourselves and our teams better - some of us even do them! Why are they beneficial though, what pitfalls are there and how could the process be improved? Lee talks about some of his experiences with the code review phase of the development process and the steps he is taking to try and make it more informative, smoother and quicker for the entire team.

Why I'm a maker
Talk by Ben Everard in Lecture theatre 1 (20 minutes)

A short and light-hearted talk on why I'm a maker, told through a story from when the seed was planted to now. Talking about projects I've made or am planning, I aim to promote making in general, but also by drawing comparisons to other aspects of life, career etc. I'll go on to show examples of what other people are up to as well, to demonstrate the accessibility of making.