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The key is building a community - The White House blogs on success with Drupal

A few weeks ago I said that Barak Obhama beoming president for a second term was a win for Drupal (indeed open source in general). The White House started selected Drupal as a platform for their web presence almost immediately Obhama was elected.
A couple of days ago I stumbled across by Peter Welsch, Deputy Director of Online Platform for the Office of Digital Strategy at The White House. He talks about the improbable way open source software is built and how it can benefit organisations and the success they've achieved thanks to Drupal and it's community. It is an interesting read.

You say sure. When she returns the screwdriver a couple days later, your friend mentions that she made an improvement: now it works with both Phillips and flat head screws. Another friend hears this and asks if he can take a look, too. When he returns the screwdriver, it's been upgraded again: now it's a power screwdriver. Then a third friend gets excited and adds some extra speeds and a better battery.

Contributing back to Drupal
The White House recently created a Drupal.org user account and have created a poject FortyFour, a base theme currently in alpha. They also have a Git Repo containing open sourced Drupal modules. You can hear Tom Cochran talk about the "We the people" project which he presented at DrupalCon Denver.
It will be interesting to see what developments occur during the next presidential term and what positive impact this has on open source adoption beyond government.

Remote speakers at local Drupal Meetups

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Attracting speakers to present at Drupal Meetups can be a challenge. During preparations as a co-panelist at DrupalCon Munich "To Beer Or Not To Beer? Making meetups work" I came across the idea of virtual meetups. These are held not in a place but using Skype or Google Hangouts. Many people are unable to attend meetups due to time or location contstraints, these are a perfect solution.

The virtual meetup concept got me thinking about attracting speakers to meetups, from remote locations. There are plenty of Drupalers globally who would like to speak to a wider audience, being a remote speaker opens a huge opportunity to do so.

Whilst chatting to Dave Hall, via Twitter, about his Drupal Beans module, he tabled the idea that he could present a session at the North West Drupal User Group (UK) via skype from Australia.

We've arranged for Dave to speak at the NWDUG August meetup at Madlab in Manchester about Drupal Beans. I will let you know how it goes, and if you are in the Manchester area Wednesday 1st August why not come along?

North West Drupal User Group

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