Drupal Development

By Mike Gifford on 09/06/2010
For the last month we've been actively organizing to set up a showcase of Drupal sites in Government here in Ottawa. There are a lot of departments that are using this great CMS and this is the first event of it's kind working to get the public sector together and talk about the work they've done.
We've already got more than 50 people signed up for the event on Tuesday, June 15th. We are quite happy with our list of speakers and know this will be a great opportunity for people to hear about the variety of ways this tool is being used in the public sector.
Lee Hunter will start by providing an...
By Mike Gifford on 25/11/2009
I was listening to a podcast by AbilityNet in the UK the other day and liked what they were doing so I sent them a note on Twitter suggesting that their community might find the developments in Drupal interesting.  I got into a conversation with them and ended up producing an MP3 with the following introduction to Drupal 7.  After Drupal 7 is released we'll have to do a piece highlighting all the pieces that got in, but for now this is a good introduction.
Looking at the right end of the problem

The Internet is an increasingly important tool for citizens around the world.  There are millions...
By Mike Gifford on 13/10/2009
A lot has changed since our initial posting about the AODA in 2009. For folks looking for general information (particularly pertaining to the web), I would suggest reading our more recent articles. If you're particularly interested in enforcement of this law I would suggest looking towards posts by Blakes(March 2011), Weirfoulds (July 2011) and FirstReference (August 2011).
Ontario implemented the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) in 2005 and in January 2010 it will begin to enhance the level of services that people in this province can expect from their governments. ...
By Mike Gifford on 20/08/2009
It was the first sunny day we've had in a week, a perfect day to spend on a patio after work drinking a pint. However 35 people made their way to The Code Factory to attend the Drupal in Government Showcase. This was the largest Drupal event ever held in Ottawa and it clearly demonstrated that there is interest in this Content Management System.
Having organized the event we wanted to highlight the CLF 2.0 theme that are providing to the community as well as the extensive work that we have done on introducing accessibility enhancements to Drupal.
NOTE: We have since followed up with another...
By Mike Gifford on 19/05/2009
Last week was rather busy week for presentations involving Drupal. Most of them were associated with FOSSLC Summer Camp 2009, which fortunately were being taped by the organizers. The only non-FOSSLC event was participating in a panel discussion organized by the Translation Bureau of Canada.
Drupal Install Workshop
The week's presentations began with Steve McCullough & I leading a Drupal installation workshop. This went quite well for most of the participants because we were starting with a MAMP or WAMP install of the environment and then adding Drupal on top of that. Ran into a couple...
By Mike Gifford on 04/04/2009
Many people celebrate spring by doing an intensive cleaning of their house, getting rid of stuff that isn't needed any more, putting away the winter clothes/jackets and cleaning in those places that you don't get to on a daily basis.  It occurred to me that most CMS admins should take on a practice like this at least every year when I started looking at broken links. 
Checking for Bad Links
Now the dead links are inevitable in any website that's up for any length of time.  I was looking for a way to provide a list of broken links when I came upon the Dead Link Checker site.  Just read that if...
By Mike Gifford on 22/03/2009
It was Friday afternoon and went over to search for terms on Twitter that I like to keep an eye on when I ran into a post from @haggaret. It was a call to convert an Earth Hour WordPress Plugin over to Drupal.  Now I'm very aware of environmental issues, but there are 8765 (or so) other hours in the year to worry about, so what's the big deal about this one.  I'm still not sure, but in solidarity I decided to check it out and see when it was, unfortunately it was 8 days later on the last Saturday of March. 
But really, how hard could it be?  A bit of CSS, tad of JavaScript, and heck, most of...
By Mike Gifford on 12/03/2009
I've been trying to lead the charge on accessibility issues with Drupal 7 leading up to DrupalCon DC.  As Dries outlined in his keynote, we've got until Sept 1, 2009 before the feature freeze takes place, so time's precious.  Also, as Angie Byron noted, there are some accessibility issues that have been identified but not resolved for years.  So, now that WCAG 2.0 is out and there seems to be a renewed interest in accessibility I was quite happy to see the interest in participants at the conference.
Between the two Bird of a Feather (geeky breakout group) workshops that were organized on...
By Mike Gifford on 13/02/2009
Getting a survey of what software is used across all of the departments within the Government of Canada would be an extremely exhaustive process.  I'm quite sure that there are many employees of the federal government who already are spending considerable time counting their proprietary licenses.  So, how is it possible to get a quick overview of how open source is being used, since there are no contractual responsibilities to report it?
With websites a lot of basic information is generally offered up from the server, and with a well established site like Netcraft we can do a quick audit of...
By Mike Gifford on 07/02/2009
This past week we completed the final steps to become a Acquia Silver Partner.  This is something we've had a number of discussions about within the shop and are happy with the opportunities that this partnership provides for us and our larger clients. 
OpenConcept is already the premier Drupal shop supporting the Canadian government, federal unions and national non-profit organizations.  Our longstanding work with multi-lingual content management systems has placed us in a great space to work with bilingual organizations.  The work we've done on accessibility leads us to help support more...