|Research, training, consultancy and software to reduce IT costs|
What do Ozzy Osbourne and Tim Berners-Lee have in common? Whatever it is, it could be disrupting your IT department very soon.
Ozzy Osbourne and Tim Berners-Lee both use the Drupal content management system (CMS). We started looking at CMSs to support a new venture to publish karate resources on the web (Shotokan Unleashed). After looking at the alternatives, Drupal was the obvious choice:
As somebody who has spent years building IT systems, I was astounded at what you get "out of the box" with Drupal. After a simple install and on-line configuration, Drupal starts up with user accounts, security, menus, searching, and content management functions. There are hundreds of free add-on modules you can use to build websites that do pretty much anything.
Drupal is an excellent product, but that is not what interests me most about it. I think products like Drupal will have a hugely disruptive impact on mainstream IT.
We have had collaborative tools, cheap tools and end-user tools for years, but not all combined like this. A lot of what we currently do in IT, at huge cost and time, could be done in virtually no time and no cost by the users themselves.
I am not being naive. I know there is a lot of complicated back-end IT that this does not replace. If information is much more flexible, there is an even greater need for analysis to understand and organise it well. Large-scale long-term IT needs professional IT management.
But we must not stick our heads in the sand. Powerful, simple, cheap, collaborative, web-based tools like Drupal change the rules. If you work in IT and you do not understand tools like this, you could be swept away.
If the Prince of Darkness and the Creator of the Web agree, we had all better take notice.Next: DocBook
Minimal IT: research, training, consultancy and software to reduce IT costs.