Personal Democracy Plus Our premium content network. LEARN MORE You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

White House to Drupal Community: "Here, We Made These"

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, April 21 2010

Credit: Drupal.org
Credit: DrupalConSF/Brightcove

When the Obama White House switched WhiteHouse.gov from a proprietary content management system to the open-source Drupal system in October last, a lingering question was whether WhiteHouse.gov would not only be Drupal, but be of Drupal. Less pretentiously, would this White House be active participants in the robust Drupal community that is one of the things that sets Drupal apart as a endeavor?

At the DrupalCon San Francisco event today, WhiteHouse.gov's site director Dave Cole announced that the White House was pushing some of the code it had worked up into the common Drupal pot for anyone to use. (Thanks Nick Judd) Blogged Cole on WhiteHouse.gov, "By releasing some of our code, we get the benefit of more people reviewing and improving it. In fact, the majority of the code for WhiteHouse.gov is already open source as part of the Drupal project. The code we're releasing today adds to Drupal's functionality in three key ways."

Cole went on to detail four new modules the White House is contributing back to Drupal -- ones that should prove particularly useful if you, too, are handling the website of the leader of the free world. The first two modules contributed back to Drupal by the Obama White House have to do with scalability. The first of the pair helps to tell web servers how to handle certain pages through metadata, and the second connects sites to Akamai, the content delivery system that makes sure WhiteHouse.gov never, ever (cross you fingers) goes down. The third module ties the Drupal CMS to the email service that many government entities use. The fourth is aimed at making rich multimedia content accessible to people with disabilities.

All four White House-developed modules are now available on Drupal.org. "The development of this module was done as part of the Whitehouse.gov project," read the credits on the contributed nodes, "and was sponsored by The Executive Office of the President."

Also worth noting: Cole's post on the White House blog marks the creation of a tantalizing new section on the White House website: WhiteHouse.gov/Tech. Oh, yes.

News Briefs

RSS Feed wednesday >

First POST: Responding

The aftermath of Ferguson continues to reverberate; how one Senate campaign took advantage of Facebook's micro-targeting tools; the new Congress' tech agenda; and much, much more GO

tuesday >

First POST: Sad Reality

How social media changed the course of the Ferguson story; Ready for Hillary's 3-million-member email list; why Mark Cuban opposes net neutrality rules; and much, much more. GO

monday >

First POST: All Against All

Why Uber isn't "the future" of cities; why journalists lost control of journalism; how Sean Parker is spending his political money; and much, much more. GO

friday >

First POST: Power Frames

The differences between "old power" and "new power"; Uber as a new/old power hybrid; debating Clay Shirky's feminist cred; and much, much more. GO

thursday >

First POST: Creeping

Senator Al Franken's tough questions for Uber's CEO; how the NSA could make its phone metadata program permanent; global privacy groups launch a personal spyware catcher called Detekt; and much, much more. GO

Recreation.gov and other Govt Projects Move Toward Embracing New Digital Approach

A draft request for proposals for the revamping of Recreation.gov will include a requirement that reservation availability data be publicly accessible and that all proposals detail how they will enable third-party sales, as two members of the United States Digital Services have joined the government team overseeing the RFP, meeting some key demands of civic technologists and consumer oriented technology companies. GO

More