Community & Nonprofits

Building a Community or Nonprofit Website in Drupal

One of the earliest and still most common uses of Drupal is to build websites for community organizations and nonprofits. The reasons are obvious: as open source software, there's no up-front or continuing cost, and the Drupal modules provide enormous functionality right out of the box (or out of the download to be more specific).

In addition, the wide array of social media/social web modules means that you can have a modern website up and running quickly. My rule of thumb is that it typically takes half a day to a day to put up a site like this. That means a site that has appropriate security settings so that a variety of people can update and maintain it and so that its long-term prospects for survival are good. One of the problems with webmaster-based websites is that when the webmaster moves on to another project, the website languishes.

This series is based on experiences, comments, and questions many of which have come from others for which many thanks.

I'm trying to keep the technology in the background. It's based on my book, Sams Teach Yourself Drupal in 24 Hours which covers just about all of the technology here. In addition, there are updates about the modules mentioned on

This is a work in progress, so comments and requests for other topics are welcome.


National Weather Service Plans to Track the Changing Storm

As Hurrican Sandy turns into Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) will be turning over advisories to the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center (HPC). Here's an interesting notice from the National Weather Service about how and why. The two types of storms are tracked and measured differently. 

News on Mobile Devices: The Pew Report

We'll be talking about news on mobile devices on The Roundtable, October 16, 2012 at 11:30 on WAMC. We'll start off with some of the highlights from the just-released report from the Pew Research Center Project for Excellence in Journalism: The Future of Mobile News -- The Explosion of Mobile Devices and a Close Look at What it Means for News (download here).

Smartphone Ownership Approaches 50% of the Population (Pew)

We'll be talking about what it means when any day now half American adults will own a smartphone. How do you communicators adapt when the people they are communicating to are carrying devices with them that have access to the Internet, location, and all the other wonders.