Proposed Sessions

Business + Community

Drupal is better than ever, but whether it is more successful is questionable. A pincer threatens Drupal. One side, Drupal's own power and complexity, discourages new users and contributors. The other, proprietary platforms, increasingly squeeze out custom web development through sheer economies of…
Mission-minded government digital service companies always intend to deliver measurable value with the public sector partners we serve. However, procurements rarely provide quality information on program outcomes and agency metrics for success. What questions must we ask of the prospective…
Everyone is starting to investigate artificial intelligence on websites, so the technology must have gotten easier to implement…right?  The technology has certainly come a long way, but there are many other considerations to take into account before you embark on your AI project.  We'll take a look…
Learn how Pattern Lab turns the Atomic Design philosophy into an efficient front-end development framework that hooks seamlessly into Drupal.
No one would assume that to move actual mountains, the right people and the right shovel will do the job, right? Then why launch into a major application upgrade with little to no preparation at all? To manage projects, you know that any change requires planning, particularly if you are shifting…
To design is to make decisions for others. Because it involves an exchange of power, however slight, design is best understood as a moral pursuit. When we build digital tools for authoring, managing, and shaping content on the web, we're responsible to humans—sometimes humans with conflicting…
I have two jobs. You may know me as the CEO of Volacci. While that role is very important to me, it's a distant second to my primary job. My first and most important job is that of stay-at-home Dad. Since my oldest was born in 2004, that has been my first calling and duty. This works because I’ve…
Want to grow your company’s connections with federal, state, and local governments - that results in increasing your team’s skills, revenue, and open source development? This brief talk is for you. We’ll cover how your organization can do it, all while making IRS approved tax write-offs that pays…
I’m JD and I have mental illness. I’m also not alone. Every year, roughly 20% of the US adult population deals with some form of mental illness, however that number is MUCH higher in the tech community. In this talk I tell my story of how I came to terms with the fact that I have mental illnesses,…
Drupal has emerged as a powerful platform to help governments successfully manage open data initiatives. During this session, we will present how Drupal will help government in Africa; especially in democratic republic of Congo develop several digital Open government solutions with reasonable costs…
Ever wonder what it takes to make Drupal GovCon a thing? Ever wonder how we started and why the name change (Looking at you Drupal Gov Days and Capital Camp)? Ever wonder about our budget or teams? Well, you are in luck. This year, I'm gonna share the history, the work and the costs associated with…
Avi will be sharing some advice on staying active while working remotely. When he began full-time remote work last year, Avi made a commitment to a go to the gym, mostly as a way to make sure he got out of the house at least a few times a week during the Chicago winter. After over a year of work…
You may not realize it, but your drupal.org profile is a form of resume.  Your profile likely needs a major remodeling. Imagine competing for a job, or as a team competing for business, and the person hiring you decides to check out your profile. Will it look the same as the day your registered…
How do you "sell" Drupal to a large, geographically and technologically distributed government organization with a deeply entrenched do-it-yourself web culture? How do you communicate the benefits of migrating to a centralized Drupal platform to 1,000+ content authors and other stakeholders, while…
I was a self-taught Google Analytics user. I thought I was getting by OK. But, since working with professional analysts, I’ve seen how my data wasn’t as complete or accurate as I thought I was. And with bad data, it’s easy to tell the wrong story. I’m here to level you up, and share best practices…
Your new hire has signed the contract. Now what? You invested the time to screen the right candidates but all too often organizations botch the most critical part of engaging a new employee -- a proper onboarding. Maybe there is so much work you need that person to jump right in and start making…
Did you know that if you print out all of the federal requirements for digital website it is over 2 inches thick?!  How do you keep up with everything that is out there?  How do you ensure that your organization is complying and provide accurate advice to stakeholders?  This session will take a…
I lead a company called TEN7 and up until the spring of 2017, we were all in on the idea that a company needed a physical space to function. In fact, I was so sold on the idea that my wife and I purchased commercial real estate in Downtown Minneapolis in 2011 just so that we were committed to…
We are told that we just need to take a vacation, buy something nice, or achieve work/life balance. But those action do not get to the heart of burnout. Within days, the stress returns as fierce as ever. Without addressing the causes of habitual stress, we will never experience the wholeness of our…
Rather than looking at systems such as your website and CRM as silos, wouldn’t it be better to understand how all of your tools fit together? In this session, walk through how to map your digital ecosystem, and how to use that insight to create a roadmap for improvements which could include…
How many times have you been in a situation where the client is never happy with the results, no matter what you do?  How many 'emergency' messages have you responded to because the site isn't quite right in some new way?  How many clients have you lost or fired because they honestly had no idea…
Projects that use Drupal obviously use open source code. How can we best position ourselves to contribute useful features back during the life-cycle of our projects? This talk explores strategies to help make sure that features developed during projects are committed back. We will also look at how…
The data is there. Somewhere. Can you find what you’re looking for? Can you find it again later? Can you share it with others? Tools like Google Analytics are powerful, but unwieldy and inscrutable to the uninitiated. The interface offers a ton of information, but how do you know where to quickly…
If you are planning a redesign or major features changes to your website, consider your new look in an upgraded home. With out-of-the-box features that Drupal 8 offers, this alone can minimize your level of effort compared to trying to rework and redesign your Drupal 7 site. This can translate to…
Any libre software, volunteer, or even startup project will have elements of do-ocracy (rule of those who do the work) but not all decisions should devolve to implementors. Rather, a basic principle is that decisions should be made by the people who are most affected. Particularly when a decision…
Those of us who work (and play) in the open-source software world tend to think of contributing back to open source software as something highly desirable to do. It's practically a given for most professionals who use open source software that we should contribute. Ideals of democracy,…
Many government agencies are talking about "digital modernization." But modernization means different things to different agencies--and websites are only part of it. Systems, data and constituents play a huge role in making modernization successful. But many of the terms and tools are still being…
What is the state of Drupal 9? What can I do now to prepare for the upcoming release? Learn how innovation happens in Drupal 9 through semantic versioning, scheduled releases, and experimental modules and why a new major release is still necessary. Hear about the various processes that are taking…
Finding good engineers is hard.  Finding great engineers can seem impossible. You have a job description. You think you know what you’re looking for but none of the candidates seem to meet your criteria.  You are hunting for a unicorn, the perfect engineer who doesn’t seem to exist. Maybe you’ve…
Hey, bro. Is your Drupal site headless? Decoupled? Headless and decoupled? Is it on a blockchain? Data-driven and cloud-first? Oh, and by site I of course mean ambitious omnichannel digital experience. Sorry for the (inevitable) confusion! Yeah, we're pretty tired of the buzzword arms race too.…
Session Track: Business & Community It’s a dangerous world out there -- and if you’re in government, your shop probably hasn’t supplied itself with the redundancy (or a clever deputy) that it will need if you fail to show-up at work for a day, a week, or more. That’s where our “Hit by a Bus”…

Project Management

Have you ever wanted to give feedback to a coworker or manager and were afraid of what their reaction would be? Have you ever had a project that was going off the rails and you were worried about how the client would react? We've all been there. No one likes having a difficult conversation, but…
Every project has a degree of risk, but most projects can be completed successfully with sufficient forethought, care, and process. We will share several of our hard-won lessons that have helped us turn potential disaster projects into successes (and we will share a few war stories along the way).…
What’s holding you back from elevating your project management skills? Most likely, ineffective communication. This is the main reason for unsuccessful projects 33% of the time, and overall negatively impacts project success more than 50% of the time. Recognizing and correctly identifying your…
Two years ago we started our Spanish translation project for ATF.gov. One year later, burnt out with no clear path to the finish line, we had to get creative and change our approach. Now we’ve launched 400 web pages of ATF.gov en español, and we want to share our hard-won lessons with you so that…
Consider the strange case of homo engineerus in its native environment. It is a solitary creature, communicating in unfamiliar symbols and possessing seemingly inscrutable motivations. If you are a member of the neighbor species homo projectmanagerus, this animal may prove especially difficult to…
Now the D8 seems stable and more modules are available, it seems like time to start the big move. But for us it will take a lot of planning and also content review from our content owners. We are working on a plan and a communication strategy for our users. I don't have a presentation yet.
Over the last year, Digital Services Georgia has worked with Lullabot and other vendors to design and produce a new Drupal 8 platform for their 85+ state agency and elected official sites, currently on Drupal 7. Starting with content strategy and design, pattern libraries and media management all…
You’re excited about the start of your new project and want it to be successful! What happens when your client claims Agile, but the approach actually feels more like Waterfall? How do you reconcile this? What barriers come into play that affect being Agile? How do you keep the project moving along…
Are you a Project Manager looking for inspiration and ideas? A Developer looking for ways to better lead your team, organize yourself, or get a different perspective on your project? Or, are you a project Stakeholder looking for ways to help move your project forward or optimize time spent in…
Our upgrade from D7 to D8 was…unexpectedly challenging. With D8 now powering uspto.gov, we’ll provide an overview of our migration milestones over the last 12 months -- what we successfully anticipated and planned for, what went well, what totally surprised us, and what we wouldn’t do again in…
Assuming your clients are already all-in for Drupal already, how can we ease their (sometimes voiced and sometimes not) concerns about security updates and version upgrades, both of which seem to be coming at them at a fast and furious pace? Specific topics discussed during this session include:…
The key to any strong client relationship is setting clear expectations from the start. For example, you can expect to be able to answer the following questions by the end of this session: 1. Why is setting client expectations so imperative? 2. What strategies should I use to set client…
So your team has gone agile? But the ecosystem has not fully moved…You’re sprinting, but not sure what work is being developed…You need stories to sprint, but still getting a 100 page requirements document…You want quick decisions, but still have the approval processes… You’ve won the RFP, you’ve…
Story: When a government project is not going well and you're caught up in compliance, reporting, and procedure the work can feel like a grind. What is often forgotten is that one of the greatest accomplishments in human history - landing a person on the Moon - was a U.S. Federal government project…
Please Note: this session is listed in PM and will span multiple tracks, touching on project management, information architecture, content strategy and coding. Reliable access to contraceptives is a key component to empowering women, reducing HIV prevalence, and building stronger communities. And…
Do inaccurate estimates frequently lead to you and your team burning the midnight oil or working through your weekends to meet project deadlines? Our team takes both meeting project deadlines and work-life balance seriously and we have developed a system to both accurately estimate projects and…
After nearly 10 years of self-hosting Drupal on Linux servers, we migrated four Drupal 7 sites to Pantheon. Come along for the journey as we discuss our decision to migrate, the preparation, migration, and lessons learned. And post-migration, adding an integration with Fastly has allowed us to…
Most of us have been trained to write user stories. As < type of user >, I want < some goal > so that < some reason >. We write these on whiteboards. We write these on notecards.  We write these in crazy software that promises to help us work more efficiently. In the end, they end…
Five ways managers can become champions of web accessibility… like a BOSS! As a manager, it’s very easy to feel overwhelmed by web accessibility with everything from acronyms and technical jargon to federal and state laws to learn. This talk seeks to help managers: engage with their leadership…
You have heard that D7 is going to be sunset next year, and that D9 is just around the corner. Now what? How do you get everyone onboard to move, how do you plan and prepare for that move, and how to smooth the way for upgrades in the future. This session will be a guide to building your plan to…
As an IT decision maker, there are now several ways to go about implementing sites and applications in the cloud. Carefully choosing the right framework is a major factor in ensuring your project's overall success. With countless options available now, deciding on a development framework has become…
Are you a Cersei, a Dany, or a Jon Snow? Do you rule with an iron fist or through collaboration with others? How do you utilize your team, process and technology choices to make decisions that will best benefit your organization? Successfully managing a platform requires more than just writing good…

Design, Theme + UX

A handful of visionary people in the city of Cambridge, Massachusetts wanted an online resource to help families easily find activities, services, and resources. Find It Cambridge was informed and further inspired by extensive initial research done by Code for Boston and the City of Cambridge.  As…
Slides: https://www.slideshare.net/MarcDrummond/a-forest-of-designs-without-subthemes Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sD8aMyhMWzY As Digital Services Georgia worked to move from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8, one of the front-end challenges was how to accommodate the design needs of 85+ sites, when…
You may have heard of the benefits of accessibility or know you need to prioritize it in your work. But you’re a little confused on what that means, where to start, and what steps you need to take. This session will clear up confusion and help you speak confidently about accessibility by providing…
Description Accessible design decisions are frequently relegated to “the right thing to do” or a “nice to have,” but within us is the power of accessible design to vastly improve impact, reach, and quality of the work. Our in-house accessibility expert, Catharine McNally, was the first person to…
Drupal 8 provides robust tools for theming that simplify the process and expand the capabilities for front-end developers as well as content authors. In this session we’ll present an overview of enhanced features that make it easier to build pages in a modular fashion with pre-defined templates and…
Want a sneak peek at beta.nsf.gov? We’re modernizing The National Science Foundation main website with a user-centered approach. We’ll share our UX processes, tools, and outcomes. As both external and internal user experiences are considered, we’re excited to show how we extend the NSF Material…
Content strategy plans for the creation, publication, and governance of useful, usable content and User Experience is basically everything that users feel or think while interacting with a product, which doesn’t necessarily need to be a digital one. Though user experience and content strategy seem…
Join Wes Ruvalcaba for magical debugging of CSS and Javascript.    
Gathering stakeholder and user input is critical before devoting time and resources toward developing your next project. Too often, that input can get de-valued when operating on a short timeline, or worse, can go on indefinitely, delaying start of the build or taking up developer time creating…
There’s plenty of talk on design systems—as well as debates on their efficacy. Some systems simply document an existing project, while others can be an effective method to guide and evolve an effective user experience. A well-implemented design system will help boost project success through…
Usability, Accessibility, and SEO are three disciplines that contribute to successful website projects. One is making the site easy to use for average visitors, one is for serving disabled visitors, and the last is to get the site to do well in search engine results. If you really think about it,…
The recently-released Version 2 of the U.S. Web Design System has changed significantly from Version 1, and we'll unpack all the differences. In this follow-up to "The Big (Government Website) Bang: Drupal and USWDS v2" panel discussion, we'll look at hands-on best uses of USWDS v2 for prototyping…
Accessibility is a big deal for government websites. Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act covers sight, hearing, Parkinson’s -- all sorts of challenges. But it doesn’t do much for folks with dyslexia, except establish a sort of “spirit of cooperation” between site owners and site users. Even if…
Ultimately, project success comes down to whether the needs of your users are satisfied. Ideally, this is covered in project discovery, and fleshed out in a detailed brief. But often—for any number of reasons—this isn’t the case. I’ll show you methods on how to accomplish this. In this session, you…
At NIAID, we encountered a question we could not accurately answer with analytics or interviews, regarding the placement of certain types of content and images. We determined that the best way to find out if users saw the content was to conduct an eye tracking study. In August, 2018, we conducted…
SLIDES: https://www.slideshare.net/btopro/future-proofing-design-work-with-web-components Web components are a W3C standard that's been adopted by all major browsers as of October 2018. The Version 1 specification is a joy to work with and brings the web into a composing context from a raw…
  The world's greatest Agile process can't save a project that was a bad idea from the start. In this session, we will review the principles of Human Centered Design, and how applying these principles well before you even install Drupal 8 core can dramatically improve project outcomes. The session…
This session offers a behind the scenes look at FDA.gov’s migration to Drupal 8. In particular, we will focus on how FDA.gov move to utilize more robust structured content, the redesign of the site to be user-focused and mobile friendly from the ground up and how we leveraged the Labcoat Design…
Pattern Lab is an incredibly powerful and flexible atomic design system that allows for rapid frontend development, and pairs well with our favorite CMS - Drupal. Much of the styling in Pattern Lab is a mixed bag of CSS, HTML, and Twig files; Twig being a template engine for the PHP programming…
Engineers, product owners, and managers. These are the members chosen to create the perfect little Drupal team. But an extra member has been added to the concoction —  a designer! Thus, the Power Team was born. Using their ultra-super talents and skills, they have dedicated their lives fighting bad…
No one likes a slow web page.  People’s attention spans are short. Every second of additional load time can cost you user engagement and less time spent on page.  This session will look at how you can weave end user performance into your sprints so that by the time you launch, your site is already…
We've figured out doorknobs, now let's tackle keyboards. The complexities of emerging technology, merging with the landscape of the legal realm has brought the shortfalls of digital accessibility to the forefront of the modern developer and designers minds. But in practice, as we boil the user away…
Think personalization is off limits because you run a government website? Well, it doesn’t have to be. We’ll present an actionable framework for how to develop and implement an impactful personalization program within privacy, security and compliance guard rails and help guide you on how to make it…
This principle that applies to good user experiences driven by equally good UI design: the degree of quality is determined by the ratio of relevant information (signal) to irrelevant information (noise) that appears in the UI. Noise reduces clarity, usability and value; it dilutes useful …
Building modern, accessible, mobile-first government websites is complex. Thankfully, we have Drupal and the new v2 U.S Web Design System. A panel of Drupal and USWDS experts will discuss the benefits and challenges of working with these two together so that teams can get up and running and turbo-…
“The medium, or process, of our time—electric technology—is reshaping and restructuring patterns of social interdependence and every aspect of our personal life. It is forcing us to reconsider and reevaluate practically every thought, every action, and every institution formerly taken for granted…
If you have been working with accessibility on the web, you’ll know that the current Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG version 2.0) have been around since 2008. In those nine years, the web and the way we interact with it has changed — a lot. Since version 2.0 was released the smartphone…
Someone once asked me, "Is there an executive summary of WCAG 2.1 that our upper management can use?" This session is for beginners who need an intro to WCAG and for upper management who need an insight into what is required.

Content Strategy

In this session, members of the U.Group Experience team will present our approach to tackling the digital strategy for Federal Agency clients looking to modernize and consolidate multiple legacy websites to Drupal 8. We will demonstrate how this approach aligns with the 21st Century IDEA Act,…
A common pattern in modern web projects is the archipelago—a single organization whose “website” is really a loosely connected cluster of sites on a common platform. Each archipelago’s history is different, but their problems are the same: How do you implement modern content standards across these…
In a user-first world, content is the basis for ensuring great user experience. A content audit lays the groundwork for aligning organizational objectives with site visitor needs. It is the preparatory work for the site architecture, content model, and page layouts. It addresses content governance…
When it works well, it’s a match made in Heaven. Your website shows up for the right search terms and has quality content that is useful for your audience. But SEO is more than just keywords and content strategy is more than just organizing content around those keywords. Both are multi-faceted and…
In 2008, Jeffrey Zeldman, founder of A List Apart, stated, “Content precedes design. Design in the absence of content is not design, it is decoration.” Thus, the content first approach was born. Visitors are coming to your site to consume your content. While it’s satisfying to look at designs, it…
Successful digital campaigns create the buzz you need to get awareness about your mission. They can kick start a movement, create brand ambassadors, and implement long-lasting change. Digital campaigns have many moving parts and often have crazy schedules. Maybe you have a small team and wonder how…
Photos, and videos, and audio files, Oh My! Finding a central location to store digital assets for an entire enterprise may seem like a long-shot, but we have the solution, and that solution is EMERALD. EMERALD is a digital asset management system designed to house openly available digital assets…
What do entity relationship diagrams (ERDs) and database design have to do with content strategy? More than you’d think. Web content lives in databases, and how you structure your content determines the shape of those databases. Learn how modelling your content can have benefits throughout a web…
Advocacy websites have a hard job to do; they have to inspire people to take action. In a time of decreasing attention spans, that is a big ask. In this session, we’ll review real world advocacy sites that effectively convert visitors into activists. Attendees will leave knowing how to break…
This session digs into how content moderation has been used over 2 years on a production Drupal 8 website with over 4,000 user authored nodes and a complex content approval process. Key Takeaways: How to implement content moderation on your Drupal site. How to build off of and enhance the already…
“Is my content strategy working?” “Do I need to do something different?” “Am I spending my budget effectively?” These are the questions that keep senior leadership awake at night. Often, the monthly analytics report does nothing to answer these questions. Full of charts of graphs about last month’s…
Oh, the dreaded monthly web analytics report! Compiling website -- and email and social media -- metrics into a regular report often falls to the content management team. But even though you spend hours each month creating these reports, you may feel like they don't provide the insights you need. …
Content! It’s everywhere! It’s displayed on websites and in apps. It’s streamed to smartphones, televisions, and watches. It’s heard on podcasts, read aloud by voice assistants, and explored in immersive, three-dimensional virtual realities. With so many platforms, how can you keep pace with the…
Content strategy has come a long way since the wild west days of the dot com era. And, gone are the ways of tables and gifs in design. But there are some aspects of content that stand the test of time. These fundamentals of content strategy will define the next round of trends to hit the digital…
We tend to look at content management as a digital concept, but for as long as humans have been creating content, we’ve been searching for solutions to better manage it. And unlike other aspects of your digital strategy, your content strategy will always require editorial – AKA human – decision-…
Think of your favorite books, their creation very likely started out with the author figuring out what they wanted to say, what message they wanted to communicate, and what story they were going to tell--they did not, I can almost guarantee, start out with the design of their cover, or by…

Site Building + Using Drupal

A naked Drupal Core installation is inconceivable. It’s the contributed extensions that make Drupal magnificent. But how do we decide which of the 23,706 projects to use? We’ll look at some popular (and some lesser known) modules, themes, and profiles, and delve into combinations and configurations…
In this session we'll introduce the tools and techniques to perform a health-check on your Drupal site using easy, off-the-shelf tools. We'll outline the goals of the health check, and what to do if you discover something wrong, or worse, how to recover from a hack. Knowledge of Drupal, business…
A "how-to" session for Drupal 8 site builders who don't know how to use D8 Configuration Management (CMI), and/or don't know how to version-control your site configuration, and/or aren't sure about committing configuration code. Target audience: people who've done site-building work in Drupal (…
Migrating content smoothly and efficiently is essential for any platform transition. Content migrations are challenging and labor-intensive, it involve preparing and analyzing, querying the data source database, mapping fields from the source database into the destination database, testing, rolling…
You manage a site for an organization which can be broken down into smaller groups; individual "microsites", each a little website unto itself, having members, menus, content, taxonomy, etc. This could be departments within a large government or corporate entity or a site for fans of certain bands…
This is NOT a session about upgrading to Drupal 8 (or 9, for that matter). This IS a session for people who have projects that keep limping along in Drupal 7 and there's no time or budget in sight to upgrade. This is about limiting pain points and making upkeep easier so that you can spend more…
You've been managing the process of building and/or renovating web sites and apps for a while, or managing projects that constantly need to be refactored... It's time to begin thinking about how you can build them in a more flexible manner so that you won't need to build and rebuild key…
That's it, I'm stuck. I'm never getting off D7 and D9 comes out June 2020?!?! How is this possible? I haven't even learned how to do anything in D8 and now D9 is coming out? If this is you, I'm in the same boat as you and honestly, there's no reason to Panic, really, there isn't. So, come join me…
Now that most people find websites through search engines and social media, we want to make sure our content looks its best on these platforms. Using structured metadata such as Open Graph and Schema.org allows us to control how our content appears through searches and sharing. This session will…
So you're committing your configuration to your codebase to version-control and deploy your functionality -- go you!! (No? Not yet? That's cool, but maybe check out Configuration Management for Beginners, first ;-) ) In this session, we'll take it to the NEXT LEVEL. More modules -- who doesn't…
Is the Drupal 8’s new Layout Builder UI the holy grail of editor user experience? We’ve created a new version of Lullabot.com using Drupal 8. A huge goal for this project is to put our Head of Marketing, a non-technical user, in total control of the site. Drupal 8 was just rolling out Layout…
Drupal’s extensibility allow us to create the perfect CMS for our organizations. But too often the same level of design is not considered when building out the editorial interfaces. The default tools are often scary for first-time Drupalers and include confusing words like ‘nodes’, ‘taxonomy’, and…
Your content management system can double as a data management system. With the addition of a few modules and some old fashioned “elbow grease,” you can add powerful new features, such as custom report building and data visualization. This session will serve as a show-and-tell of less-well-known…
For ages people have been building Drupal Multi-sites to handle similar but different websites. The allure of updating a single code base while maintaining separate databases was and still is very appealing. However, how do you overcome the need to share content, allow users and admins a single…
Having tackled two multilingual builds in the past year, one with just 2 languages and the next with 5 (!) -- including a Right-to-Left language -- we want to share what we've learned. We will walk you through the building blocks and the underlying concepts that go into creating a multilingual…
This session is a case study in using the Drupal 8 Filter API and Plugin API to render R Markdown research publications for the National Center for Charitable Statistics (NCCS). The Urban Institute has 12 policy centers and several more programs and initiatives. We publish new research almost daily…
Bureau of Indian Affairs Web Team will discuss accomplishments during the IndianAffairs.gov Drupal 7 migration in 2017 and further enhancements made to the site including customized content types, views, and templates.  
What is Sustainable Drupal? Sustainable Drupal is our approach to developing systems that can be used, maintained and enhanced as easily as possible, with the lowest level of knowledge required to be effective. As far as site-building approach, the basic development philosophy is to have a goal of…
Most of us here know the Drupal terminology since we have been using it, but if you are talking to somebody who wants to move their website to Drupal but doesn’t know the terminology, how do you talk to them so that they understand Drupal as a CMS be it during requirements gathering or be it during…
Are you looking for ways to make your content more interactive but don't have a dedicated developer? Come learn how to create a range of interactive features, such as quizzes (including multiple choice, drag-and-drop, and fill-in-the-blank), timelines, and course presentations. With its wealth of…
This presentation will explore how governments can leverage the Webform module for Drupal 8 to build accessible forms that securely collective massive amounts of data. We will discuss three big digital concerns for governments: accessibility, security, and scalability. Topics include……

Coding + Development

The ideal way of testing for website accessibility is human testing ... however there is rarely the budget to do that (except maybe for major releases). This is where testing tools come into the picture. They allow us to identify issues that can be spotted via a program. One that people are…
Layout Builder, the next generation page builder for Drupal, officially shipped as a stable part of Drupal Core in May 2019. This is a HUGE milestone for the Drupal community in supporting drag and drop content editing.  For those living in D7, it's the Drupal core successor to Panels in D8.    We…
Prior to Drupal 8, the most common way that a developer would make sure her/his module was extensible was by adding a "hook". While Drupal 8 still makes use of hooks in many places, there is a better way to do things. Actually there are two better ways to do things: Writing an Event Dispatcher…
Build voice-activated apps and chatbots, and integrate other channels to your Drupal system. Extend your existing Drupal technology beyond the web. This session will explore Google Dialogflow and how to create actions and contextual voice interfaces that can be fulfilled by your Drupal application…
When leveling up as a developer, one of the most intimidating aspects often is using the command line interface, or CLI.  In fact, it might seem downright terrifying.  The reality is: If you can type, you can use the command line.  Every senior level developer will remember a time when they got…
Having the right tool for the job makes everything easier. But what do you do when your project’s budget doesn’t cover “the right tool” -- or even any tools at all?  Those among us who have coded websites in Notepad will know this feeling. Thankfully, even when your resources are limited, your…
INTERNATIONAL FRANCHISING ASSOCIATION https://www.franchise.org/ Business model from all angles. Taoti and the International Franchise Association are a month away from a website launch – a project that entailed a complete digital overhaul for a powerful, global organization. Together, Taoti and…
DC Water came to us with a problem and we helped them develop a solution that tells a story and informs the public. Using near real-time data from the Tunnel Boring Machine "Chris" Taoti developed a solution using MapBox, GIS coordinates, a PHP library for calculating GIS Coordinates and Drupal 7…
In this session, members of the U.Group team present a case study documenting the strategy and methodologies behind the migration of the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum website into a Drupal 8 CMS. This website was comprised of data stored in multiple sources (76 separate…
Using Drupal just isn't enough at times. With the vastly growing SaaS market, organizations want to include more features with less overhead. Creating custom services and modules is not always the ideal way to tackle the latest technologies and enhancements. In this session, we will take a closer…
Composer is a must-have tool for any Drupal developers toolkit. Everyone has heard about it but isn't aware of the migration process to composer based Drupal management. This session will help you understand the importance of composer and walk you the pathway to implement Composer functionality in…
Creating Drupal Modules can be accomplished whether you are a master of PHP or a master of JavaScript or other programming languages. During this session, we will present a fully functional custom module that was created almost entirely using JavaScript.  By following these steps you too can create…
You’ve written the code. It’s running and you’re not seeing any errors, but somehow you’re not getting the output you expected. Something’s happening in there, but what? If only you could freeze time and look under the hood... With debugging tools, you can! Visual Studio Code (VSCode) is one of the…
Plan your Drupal implementation for a decoupled architecture. Using Drupal as a data platform, gain benefits for code reuse across different versions of Drupal. Use the latest front-end technologies and development workflows. This session will focus on the pros and cons, cost benefits, and real-…
How can we plan for the Drupal 9 migration? How can I communicate with my clients/stakeholders about what the Drupal 9 epoch looks like? Get these answers and more by attending a session about in-depth strategies to articulate and plan for the upcoming Drupal 9 release. In this session we will:…
With the announcement that the Google Search Appliance was End of Life, many government entities and universities started looking around for replacement options. At Palantir, we wanted to provide an open source option that could solve the following needs: A simple way to store, retrieve, and parse…
Development workflows, continuous integration and automated testing are a hot topics, and should be.  As teams rush to implement and improve their DevOps strategies, one thing hasn’t changed, testing is a afterthought.    Effective automated testing begins with effective User Acceptance Testing (…
Gatsby (https://www.gatsbyjs.org/) is a fun to use static application generator for React that makes it easy to create blazing fast websites. Drupal (https://www.drupal.org) is one of the most popular open-source content management systems in the world and makes it easy to create unique editorial…
Now we're gonna have some INTERMEDIATE FUN! I'll share some of my favorite things to do (cherry-pick, blame, change the author so it looks like my coworker did something I just did)... Wait, what's a tag? Wait, what's a release? (HINT: THEY'RE THE SAME. SORT OF. OMG I SAID SORT OF, CHILL OUT.)…
Ever wonder how the new Freedom Of Information Act national portal can process all federal requests in a single system? Get a look into the lifecycle of a FOIA request from webform submission through agency processing. We’ll share an API available for agencies to receive requests programmatically.…
Your organization's donor data lives in an external CRM. Your event planning team loves their third-party ticketing solution. A major content source for your website lives in an external API. And somehow, this is all supposed to come together in a way that is seamless to the user. Sound familiar?…
Preprocess functions are immensely powerful - but what ARE they, besides something that looks suspiciously like back-end code lurking in your theme? While preprocess functions may not fall under traditional the traditional HTML-CSS-JS trifecta of front-end development, mastering their basics can…
Entitree is an upcoming Drupal 8 module from Beaconfire RED that brings a hierarchical structure to entities within Drupal. This structure provides a centralized way to manage access controls, url alias generation, menus, and more. What once required multiple unrelated modules and delicate…
A brief introduction to Symfony and demonstrate how it can be used to build modern and performant PHP applications. This session will focus on Symfony 4 which according to https://dri.es/drupal-7-8-and-9 will power Drupal 9.  
In the age of decoupled CMSs and single page applications, users expect dynamic and performant web experiences. As the primary scripting language for the web, Javascript is an indispensable tool in transforming the user experience, but is it accessible for all users? Short answer: Yes but not…
We processed over 500,000 nodes with images, audio, video, and over 200,000 taxonomy terms. In this session, we’ll explain how we setup the legacy database information in preparation for importing that content into Drupal as nodes, taxonomies, and media. The majority of the import work was done…
If you’re a new Drupal 8 developer or you aspire to be one, you should seriously consider learning Symfony first! In this presentation, I will share eight reasons why. With the adoption of the Symfony framework, Drupal 8 became a better structured and robust content management system. The decision…
Whether it is for re-using the same code or deploying a bug fix or just for better document management, one of the most important leaps any site builder will ever take in their path towards becoming a developer is learning a version control system, or VCS.  Since Git is the standard VCS over 80% of…
The Drupal 7 sunset is scheduled for November 2021, so it’s high time to plan the migration or upgrade the legacy application to Drupal 8. With Migrate module in core, it is easier than ever to get on board with the migration process. In this session we’ll cover: Preparing for data migration,…
Even though migration has come a long way since D7, there are still numerous opportunities for headaches. This session is a case study of three issues I faced and how I resolved them: - Needing a video field type widget, prior to the release of Media, that could be added to any content type on any…
Do you space out when your hear about Design Patterns, Dependency Injection, and SOLID? It's easy to explain the syntax of Classes and Objects in PHP. It's another thing to have it all "click" and write code which is more than procedural functions written inside of a class. In this talk, we'll look…
Is your code any good? Programming is as much an art as it is a science, but that doesn't mean beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The PHP community has a growing suite of tools to help identify code which is too complicated, duplicated elsewhere, or tries to do too many things. In this sessions…
Drupal includes a powerful toolset for building and extending out-of-the box content types. Content architectures are typically designed around the features of nodes, taxonomy, media, and other core entities. But how do we know when our business-needs have grown beyond the common entity types? When…
Feel more comfortable about what you are delivering by learning how to perform basic load testing for your site with Locust.io, an open source load testing tool with user behavior defined with Python. This session will talk about getting a simple and easy to maintain test up and running with Locust…
Are you keeping up with PHP versions? PHP's maintainers have kept to their annual release cycle with the 7.x branch. Already, The 7.1 branch only receives security fixes, and it will be EOL'ed by the end of 2019. Of course, hosting providers and operating systems may not keep up with the pace. See…
This presentation is about code quality, and finding bugs before they hit production. Also, PHPStan is great for finding problems caused by future Drupal updates, ahead of time. I will show how to install and use PHPStan with Drupal code. In my examples, I will show how to analyze contrib modules…
Machine learning is the hot new buzzword in the technology industry with heavy funding from the tech titans. It promises new solutions to complex problems and is already showing its potential with advances in voice assisted technologies and driverless cars capturing the headlines. But what does any…
Our team built a high-performing, ultra fast search interface for a client Drupal site using React, Apache Solr, and the Drupal Search API module. This project allowed the client to leverage some of the well-established benefits of decoupling Drupal's content from the presentation layer, while also…
Services is a stable component of OOP PHP programming and is fundamental to programming in Drupal 8. The underlying architecture is the Symfony dependency injection component represented by the service container. Using services allows us to write code that perform certain tasks. These tasks can be…
Curious as to how you can configure your .gov Drupal site to be more Google friendly? Come hear case studies from an SEO who has launched and created SEO strategies for several federal .gov sites (HealthIT.gov, Cancer.gov., and Fisheries.NOAA.gov) and hear about what technical fixes she implemented…
Drupal Multi Sites can be a powerful tool for managing hundreds or even thousands of Drupal sites at once. They allow Editors and Site Builders to focus on the site, while the operation teams are responsible for the code and the versions of Drupal Modules. Disadvantages of Multi Sites can include:…
Drupal 8 has brought OOP (object-oriented programming) to Drupal module development, and while you can find plenty of tutorials and sessions on OOP basics, there are lots of things you've encountered that still look like magic. Let's spend some time going over code you've just copy-and-pasted, and…
Have you ever wanted to create a single Drupal instance that hosts multiple Microsites—without using the “Drupal multisite” paradigm? We wanted to allow content managers to create basic websites for Conferences, so we did exactly that. Now we want to show you how. Join this session to see how our…
“There are only two hard things in Computer Science: cache invalidation and naming things.” - Phil Karlton Everyone’s heard the adage, but when people share this bit of wisdom the aim is to usually exemplify the difficulty in the latter. Naming things is hard. But as the things we build continue to…
There are tons of tutorials to show you how to start testing your website with Behat. But how do you write effective tests? How do you know what sections and flows in your application need to be tested? In this talk, I'll share my experience over the last two years of diving into using tests for…
Over the years, I've been shocked at the number of colleagues and fellow Drupal developers who don't use a debugging tool like Xdebug.  These developers have been 'var_dump'ing and 'dpm'ing their entire career, and may not be aware of the immense time-save, clarity, and utility that a debugger/…
*Composer Beginners, that is ;-) ​​In this session, you'll learn the basic basics (technical term) of using composer to manage a Drupal 8 site. There's a steep, painful learning curve for many strong Drupal site builders who start using composer with their Drupal 8 sites.  This session will help…

Devops, Performance, Security + Privacy

Too often as developers we've all experienced the pains of working long a feature, making it run on our local environment only to discover that it does not run in production.  Docker-ize your Drupal site from Development to Production can help to improve development efficiency and the  stability of…
This session introduces Kubernetes (k8s), an open source container orchestrator that provides a production-tested cluster to run your Drupal site. This session will walk you through how to build your own k8s cluster, how to update your containers to run securely with Secrets and ConfigMaps, and how…
With constantly evolving technologies, there is an ever growing need for Continuous Integration and Delivery in the development lifecycle. With this being such a broad topic, where do you even start? Together we will dive into the world of CI/CD to explain necessary concepts as well as discuss what…
The Aegir Hosting System has been used for hosting thousands of Drupal sites for over 11 years, using Drupal as a web interface for managing your servers and sites. In classic Aegir 3.x and earlier, you still need root shell access to install and configure a few things before Aegir can work. in…
Ensuring the integrity of a site's code is an important aspect to ensuring the security of a site.  In an upcoming release, Backdrop & Silkscreen will add digital signatures to the module downloads to help ensure sites remain secure.  In this talk, John will provide a primer on digital…
Create a more robust regression suite by adding automation of node creation and verification with Selenium and Python. This session will cover automation techniques for completing content fields in the Drupal backend, saving the content, and verifying that the content appears as desired in the node…
Explore DevOps techniques, tools, and best practices for Drupal and other web applications. This session will expand on the following topics: DevOps philosophy Local development environments, version control, and development workflows Automation, testing tools, and deployment processes Storing …
Host Drupal in the cloud using a platform as a service model, with no virtual machines or managed infrastructure. This session will focus on the latest DevOps technologies, including trends using container technologies and deploying Drupal in the cloud. Microsoft Azure, AWS, Google overview…
In a world of endlessly approaching deadlines and pressure for always better results, who has time to do a retrospective?  It turns out, successful teams do.  Undertaking the necessary discipline it takes to develop the habit of this part of the Agile process does take effort but the end results…
The goal of this session is to provide you a complete walkthrough of how to set up a high-availability web application on AWS using various services like Elastic Load Balancer, EC2, EFS, RDS, and auto-scaling.   We will explore: The role of AMIs Launch Configuration and Auto-scaling groups  Elastic…
In 2005 I made the switch from Windows to Mac as my primary desktop working environment.  Thirteen years later I made a similar switch to Linux.   And eighteen months after the switch, this Apple 'fan boy' is not looking back. For a full stack Drupal developer, a Linux development environment makes…
Thinking about moving to Kubernetes but…  Wondering what all the fuss is about?  Unsure of how to manage cost?  Intimidated by the complexity?  Worried about components being FedRAMPed? This session will provide an in-depth, practical look at the challenges and considerations we encountered…
If you site is not running on a CDN, you are missing out. Modern websites receive enormous benefits in terms of speed & reliability when utilizing a content delivery network - and setting one up for your site has never been easier. CDNs offer the best in class support for making websites fast…
There’s a delicate balance in the Drupal world with ensuring that we provide our platform customers with the features they desire, while also guaranteeing they are following compliance standards. So, how do we keep that balance? We manage the Drupal Product or “Baseline” that our applications…
Okay, so what is this Koober-neetees thing anyway and what does it have to do with Drupal? We break down the hype around the world's most popular open-source container orchestration engine and discuss strategies for using it to power, well, the world's most popular open-source CMS, Drupal! Some…
Implementing Single Sign On (SSO) can be a struggle. This session will illuminate the reasons for using SSO, along with the use cases, and how-tos. We'll clarify the jargon and build an understanding of concepts as well as steps to install and configure SimpleSAML Service and Identity Providers.…
In this session, i will focus on the Jenkins CICD pipeline setup done for D8 project, which can be reused by majority of D8 project with minor tweak. The talk with touch upon Quick Walk-thru of Jenkins Setup Artifacts Building Code Coverage Combined this with some code quality using Sonarqube…
If you work in a cloud environment every day you very well might be using SSH every day. There are quite a few tips and tricks which can be not just quality of life improvements but also give you new tools to put in your toolbelt.   The following are some tips and tricks to working inside a secure…
As developers, we are capable of many amazing feats. We can create experiences that touch the lives of millions, brings aid to the corners of the world, empowers new businesses and bring a voice to the voiceless. But just because we can, should we? Additionally, with this capability, we must also…
How do we make site results more transparent, easy to understand, and repeatable? How do we provide a solution to alleviate the stress of making sure customers have all their site information at their fingertips? Answer: By implementing automated Site Audit Reports! With 20+ applications on the…
The goal of compliance frameworks like HIPPA, SOX and FISMA is to ensure that basic security controls are met. The Federal government and an increasing number of state and local governments look to NIST’s Risk Management Framework (RMF) as the baseline for compliance management. Because RMF is…

Keynote

Aimee Degnan founded Hook 42 with Kristen Pol in 2012. She runs Hook 42 as its CEO while also being a digital strategist, and Drupal Architect.   Degnan has 20+ years experience in Enterprise Internet Technologies with experience spanning consulting, information technology, entertainment software,…
Phim is a Hmong-American refugee who is interested in using art and design-thinking to impact sociocultural innovation. She is a marketing solutions manager at the Washington Post, where she leverages her strategic marketing and creative storytelling expertise to support democracy and the free…
Roy Varghese serves as the Assistant Chief Information Officer (ACIO) for the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA Fisheries). In this capacity, Roy is responsible for providing strategic vision and leadership in the design, development, and…