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Website progress report

I've been giving some long-needed attention lately, and because some changes might start getting noticed I thought I'd provide an update on where we're at and where we might be going.

First a brief background: Almost six years ago, we uprooted our basic website from and rebuilt it under our new domain name. We went with Drupal, a content management system known for its power and flexibility. We wanted to be ready for anything.

That was Drupal 4.7. This is Drupal 7.14. Times have changed and the new version is a different beast. The upgrade path, which we completed in two major leaps over the past year, left in its wake a number of obsolete modules (building blocks that contribute to the site's structure and functionality). In some cases, the functions of those modules entered Drupal core (the "heart" of the CMS) and some others were gracefully updated along the way, but in a few important cases they were largely or completely abandoned by their developers.

This month's move to D7 is a major step in the right direction. Using the latest release allows us to take advantage of the current state of the Drupal art. Where we have irretrievably "lost" important modules, we can find present-day replacements to go with this solid foundation. Our next steps will be to incrementally improve the user experience. This will take a bit of time, as the learning curve for Drupal is infamously steep and we've got rig building, antenna raising, and operating to do, too.

Meanwhile, here are a few of the recent improvements:

  1. Security: Being up to date means being less susceptible to trouble.
  2. Content Editor: If you're a blogger here, you'll find some fine-tuning has occurred in the WYSIWYG editor.
  3. Image Sharing: It's now possible to display up to 10 images in a blog post. More refinements are coming soon for this feature. (Returning to full-fledged image galleries is going to take a bit more time, as is recovering the old galleries with their 1,000+ images.)
  4. Administrative Ease: Yes, for those few brave NEQRPers who work "behind the scenes," new tools have made life a little simpler.

That's it for now. We look forward to offering more in the not-too-distant future. If by chance you have Drupal knowledge, experience, or enthusiasm, please speak up. We'd love to have help from anyone who would say "The Excitement Is Building.... Websites."