Why EdWeb is not Drupal
In the early days of developing EdWeb, especially before taking a final decision regarding the name of the new University Central CMS service, we referred to the new system as ‘Drupal’ (and some around the University still do!). This is not accurate as, even though EdWeb is based on Drupal, it is not the same thing. To understand the difference, we need to revisit each service’s identity.
Drupal is an open-source content management framework, which can be used to build websites with a variety of sizes, complexities and audiences. A certain level of technical expertise is required for installing, configuring and theming the ‘out of the box’ Drupal provision to fulfil ‘fit for purpose’ business criteria and ‘fit for use’ user requirements. This is actually the process which the project team undertook to develop the new University Central CMS, EdWeb. The goal was to not only deliver a Polopoly replacement, but to significantly change the University website publishing landscape, by providing a new, revamped service, in all of its aspects. This is better expressed by our project vision. This process is ongoing, as we continue development with the 2015/16 EdWeb enhancements project and strengthen the service delivery.
The difference between Drupal and EdWeb is that the former provides a solid, tested and globally used development framework, while the latter is the user-focused result of years of research and development that provides the University with a quick, easy and reliable web content editing platform, based on the Drupal framework. Surely enough, the ‘out of the box’ Drupal provision has the potential to deliver an excellent user and content editor experience, but to achieve this requires, as I’ve mentioned, technical configuration, with EdWeb having covered that ground already.
This explains the fact that EdWeb provides a totally different editorial experience compared to any ‘out of the box’ Drupal installation. Furthermore, it explains why an experienced Drupal developer might take some time to understand better and familiarise herself with the EdWeb Distribution. And, finally, it explains why EdWeb is not, and should not be referred to as, Drupal.