With the new year comes many great things and hope for the future, not just in our personal lives but also in the Drupal community. This coming Spring, the 2017 DrupalCon will be held in Baltimore and promises to hold some great sessions and information about upcoming additions to Drupal 8. Monarch Digital has been attending the annual North America DrupalCons for many years now, and will be in attendance at Baltimore as well. (Come by our booth and say hello if you are there!)
On the Drupal 8 core development roadmap, we can see that REST services and the Big Pipe Drupal performance initiative are top priorities. Big Pipe is a big deal since it revolves around providing significant performance enhancements to the core rendering pipeline.
Besides the more interesting updates for Drupal 8 coming down the line, it is worth noting the tremendous effort the Drupal community has put forth into making more and more contributed modules stable for use in live Drupal 8 websites. While Drupal 8 had a great advantage for its early adoption by already having included many of the most popular contributed modules from Drupal 7, more are being upgraded all the time.
Finally, one area of particular importance is the collection of ongoing improvements to the Drupal 8 migration framework. Because of the lack (or feasibility really) of an “Upgrade Now” button for moving Drupal websites to the Drupal 8 version, the Drupal migration framework and supporting modules have been the best and most legitimate way to convert your older Drupal 7 or Drupal 6 website. While the initial setup provided for migrating websites to Drupal 8 immediately after the official launch was a little rough, many community members (including Monarch Digital team members) have contributed time to improving the plugins and tools used for migration.
With the culmination of all of this contributed work, we feel comfortable saying that Drupal 8 is in a great place right now. And the migration framework has come far enough, and Monarch Digital has completed quite a few Drupal 8 migrations, such that the cost and effort needed for the Drupal 8 migration is much more predictable. This greater predictability benefits you the customer and client by reducing not only your costs but also the potential for unknown factors that can hamper and delay a project.
If your website is still running on Drupal 6 or Drupal 7, now is a great time to get it converted and migrated to Drupal 8.