Drupal Funstrations

Can I just tell you how much fun Drupal is? It’s not fun in the traditional “Oh look mommy, a new toy” kind of way. It’s fun in the frustrating “gotta beat the next level of this game, but that stupid monster keeps eating me”. I just set up another instance of Drupal for a little work experiment, and the taxonomy still gets me. If you’re writing a book, you probably don’t want to use a big nested taxonomy because you probably want to use the book modules method of nesting pages into chapters. But, if you want to use the forum module, you do want to create a big nested taxonomy. Drupal is sometimes very confusing. It doesn’s sport the best documentation, although the community is very helpful. There are some default UI elements for regular users that are less than intuitive, the same for the settings.

This is the glory and the pain of using open source software. You have all this power to use it or change it however you want. But, you’re allowed no expectation of support or documentation and you might just hit a deadend with nowhere to go (for the new site, I ended up redoing the taxonomy three or four times until I got it “just so”). I haven’t had the time to learn PHP yet, so I can’t just go hack it apart and make it do what I want.

And it’s not that I don’t like it. I really do (this internal site will be my second with it, you know about the first already). Drupal has some outstanding features right out of the box (the forums are awesome, and I really dig the books module). There are some really cool modules out there, provided by really nice people. It could use some… polish. Yeah, that’s the word I’m looking for. I’m sure it’ll happen, someday.

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