Skip directly to content

Big steps for the Drupal-Initiative, planning sprint report

on Sun, 12/13/2009 - 19:32

Edit: I totally had the dates wrong for the Drupal Developer Days in Munich - they're May 5-7 :P The Drupal-Initiative e.V. is a German non-profit organization dedicated to driving the growth of Drupal in German speaking countries. Yesterday was an important milestone for this group as we had our first ever planning sprint that was open to the public. The sprint was in Essen, in a neat location called the Unperfekthaus (the imperfect house), and we had 17 people from across Germany who came to help us plan, divide the work, take on responsibility, and breathe life into an organization which has until this point been the work of 5-6 individuals. The history of the Drupal-Initiative starts in mid 2008 when members of the Cologne-Bonn Drupal Users Group decided to host a DrupalCamp in Cologne. We knew that we'd need some structures in place, such as a bank account, a website, and so forth. We also had our eyes on a bid to host the international DrupalCon in Germany at some point, so we thought that building a strong, formal entity, such as a non-profit organization, was the best way to achieve these goals. Some months later, in January, 2009, we hosted DrupalCamp Cologne which saw over 200 people show up - a great success. Shortly after that we actually finished the legal proceedings, including becoming an e.V. (eingetragener Verein), and securing a license from Dries Buytaert to use the word "Drupal" in our name. Eventually we launched a membership program and have been quietly growing, with both individual and corporate memberships, ever since. The planning sprint in Essen was the first time that we'd set out to involve our current members beyond the founding core, and to raise the level of awareness about what we do, and most importantly, how people can help. Some of the results of the sprint include: 1. We're going to redesign the hastily created website. We have a "Feuerwehr" team (Fire department) to attack the most obvious and easily fixed problems, and a long term team to do a proper needs assessment, design, and implementation of a comprehensive site. 2. We're going to be involved in more national events. There are two events immediately on the horizon: DrupalCamp Essen in February 2010, and Drupal Developer Days Munich, in May 2010. Both of these events are now officially Drupal-Initiative events, which shows an unprecedented amount of cooperation amongst the German Drupal community. 3. We're going to organize an effort to write a series of articles for the TN3 magazine to promote the launch of Drupal 7. 3. We're going to start sending newsletter issues about Drupal and Drupal-Initiative activities. Sign up here if you'd like to get these. 4. We're going to launch a site (Why Drupal?) which will, similar to, be a shiny landing page and dispatcher for people looking for places to start. 5. We're in the process of moving our sites and infrastructure from private servers to a server rented by the Drupal-Initiative, and to build a redundant and empowered team of sysadmins and developers who can maintain our current and future sites in a structured and sustainable way. 6. If Berlin is selected to host DrupalCon 2011, the Drupal-Initiative and it's members will likely have a large role to play. We're ready! Special thanks to Daniel Niehaus for taking the lead with organizing the sprint. When you meet Daniel, make sure to ask him why his nickname is Jack Plain - it's a worthy story =)