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I watched the DriesNote from DrupalCon Lille this morning and I’m pretty excited about the future plans for Drupal!  Dries talked about a lot of things (in a pretty creative narrative!!), including a new marketing initiative which I think is awesome, but these are the big ones for me.  

There are some changes coming to the UI and field creation/re-use (10.2), a new toolbar (10.3), automatic updates (10.3) and probably the most exciting innovation is the next generation page builder, which looks a lot like Gutenberg to be honest - very “WordPressy” which is just fine by me (no target release).

  1. A new and faster way to add fields.  The next version of Drupal will use a modal pop-up with available field types and a lot more information when selecting one.  As a field is created, you’ll have one less click and the machine name generation will be much faster.
modal for fields
  1. A new administration toolbar.  Coming in Drupal 10.3 (June 2024) we’ll need a dramatic change to the default administration toolbar.  It will be positioned on the left and re-structured after a lot of testing.  Probably the nicest feature is the new “Create” button that will allow you to create a node, block, media etc. (depending on permissions) with just 2 clicks.

    There is a lot testing going into this one (of course).  The creators of the Gin theme (my favorite admin theme) are contributing ideas as well which is awesome.  I’m personally not a fan of left side menus - they are a pain on a mobile device like an iPad where I do a lot of work - but again - I’m seeing a ton of UX improvements here.
new toolbar
  1. Next Generation Page Builder.  This one is HUGE.  It’s the #1 complaint against Drupal by the Site Builders and marketers for whom I do training.  It looks like it’s going to take a lot of queues from WordPress and the Gutenberg experience, but incorporating some things from Acquia’s Site Studio and more.
page builder 1
page builder 2
page builder 3

In my opinion - if they get this right - it will be the main thing that ensures Drupal’s future.

Yes, I know Drupal has a ton going for it - I happen to think it’s the best CMS out there, but the numbers don’t lie.  Wordpress has a 67% market share.  Drupal is still #3 in the Open Source market, and that’s not even including Adobe (Drupal’s main competitor for large enterprise) and other proprietary systems.

The people who build pages for their business websites don’t care about underlying code, Symfony or even openness, inclusivity, and community.  They care about the solution that makes their life easier. Period.

One more thing…

It seems I got included in one of his slides!!!! How cool!!! (#drupalhumor)


To watch the keynote - fast forward the video below to 1:31:00

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