MD Systems and Acquia join forces to push Drupal 8 media forward

It is no secret that we at MD Systems take community very seriously. We have invested time and money in many Drupal 8 initiatives in the past 3 years. This has helped us adopting Drupal 8 sooner than the majority of the community and also resulted in MD Systems becoming the number one contributor to Drupal.

MD Systems, Drupal 8 and media

It is probably not that obvious why we are heavily involved in the media and publishing field. Together with our partners we developed NP8, the enterprise digital media distribution on Drupal 8. As a result of that we have been and still are working with many media clients and have already launched several media websites on the Drupal 8:

When developing NP8, we have significantly contributed to the Media ecosystem in Drupal 8 and have helped to bring it to a fairly mature state. We have built many modules that solve specific problems and if one knows how to combine them sensibly, it is possible to cover most use cases that our clients have. However, there is always room for improvement. At this point we’d like to stabilize the most important components of the ecosystem and provide pre-configured solution modules on top of them. This should encourage more users to start actively using what we’ve built so far.

Many modules released recently

To solve the first problem we recently joined forces with Acquia. More precisely its Drupal 8 module acceleration program. This allowed us to dedicate some more time to working on the modules of the media ecosystem and push them to a more stable state. This resulted in many commited issues over the course of the last month or so:

  • Media entity 8.x-1.0: Storage layer designed with lean support for remotely hosted media assets in mind. At the same time we also released many of it's plugins: image, slideshow, Twitter, Instagram and audio. There are also plugins for embedded videos and documents, which were developed and released by their maintainers.

  • File entity (fieldable files) 8.x-1.0-beta1: This very well known module from Drupal 7 finally got its Drupal 8 version. It upgrades core's files to full featured entities to be fieldable and displayed on their own.

  • Field formatter 8.x-1.0-beta1: Provides a few very useful generic formatters. They allow us to display a single field from a referenced entity or wrap output of any other formatter with a link. 

  • Fallback formatter 8.x-1.0-beta1: Another generic formatter. It allows us to use more than one formatter on a single field.

Beta blockers removed

Additional to that we fixed all but one beta blocker (cache-related) of Entity embed, our WYSIWYG embedding tool. This module is already very stable and in use on many live websites. We are striving to release first beta in next few weeks, but we'd like to encourage you to give it a try right now.

Our main focus at this point is Entity browser. We still have some issues which need our attention there. Those focus mostly on improving the site-builder’s and editor’s experience. We are adding support for conditions related to the expected selection and the ability to edit existing selection. The first issue will make the browser aware of the nature of the entities expected from it, which will prevent many cases of mis-configuration and confusion that comes from that. The second issue will enable us to build editorial workflows that are not possible at the moment, which will vastly improve the content creation experience.  We are planning to finish those tasks and release beta in approximately one month.

The last two modules are our main priority at the moment. Work on them will continue throughout June. We will also attend sprints and present about media in general at DevDays Milan and NYC Drupal camp.

Help us improving media

Test the tools that we mentioned, let us know if you experience any problems and submit patches. We also need to improve our documentation. If helping other people excites you, check D8 media guidebook and submit pull requests with improvements.

Join us on sprints. We are always happy to help new contributors to get started.

Spread the word. It is absolutely crucial that we raise awareness about our work and encourage people to use our tools.

Tell your friend about it, present at your local meetup or simply tweet this post. Everything helps!

MD Systems offers support

Would you like to start building your next media project on Drupal 8, but you’re a bit scared or not sure where to start? We are always happy to help. Get in touch and let us know how we can help you. 

We will write more posts as we have new exciting news to share with the community. Stay tuned! 

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