Here we go again? Not quite.

Jul 1 · 3 min read

In 2018 September I reached out to the Drupal Community Working Group (CWG) with the intent to contribute again. Not chx again I can almost hear some people groan and they are right: the plan is to have a new account (planned username: Charlie “ChX” Negyesi) and a clear break from the past. As you know from my previous post I much more understand now how our words matter. I wish I saw all this so much earlier, I truly am sorry for all the strife I caused.

I feel I need to give you a little personal background: I attended the first DrupalCon (wasn’t even called that) in Antwerp in 2005 on borrowed money and couchsurfing as I had no money at the time. By 2009, on the back of working with Drupal, I was able to immigrate to Vancouver and purchase my dream apartment. Just four years. In another four years, by 2013, Drupal 8 was under way and it was a lot of change compared to what has brought me great fortune and a lot of fame to Drupal itself and so I resisted the change. Vehemently. I got really bitter and angry and then the bitterness has overflown and the anger has bursted and I rightly got banned from all Drupal before another four years has passed (2016 Nov).

A colleague in 2018 summer said Drupal developers are the equivalent of COBOL developers of our era. This was one of the few transformational moments of my life: upon much reflection I realized not only they are right but I actually like being such. Once Drupal was bleeding edge software, an experimental platform to learn from and apply new web technologies to and the lack of backwards compatibility was a virtue. But these were more than a decade ago, now Drupal 9 is developed inside Drupal 8 emphasizing backwards compatibility and noone would call a PHP project bleeding edge any more. This is very helpful in the context of what I can even plan to do: big changes are no longer possible and I accept this.

My intentions have changed just as much. I just want to contribute back my patches I have at the workplace. Nothing more. In the past I was maintaining parts of core, but I do not want that any more and this is part of my agreement with the CWG, one easily reached. If the community agrees with my changes and if they get into a release, my job is that much easier. If not? That’s where I am right now and the sky (surprise!) didn’t fall. I promise I will just walk away. Truly, not my circus, not my monkeys, not any more.

And I want to be able to say kind words on issues like this, something like “yeah, that’s old phrasing, we would phrase it differently today”. More kind words are more important than more code and I wish I said less unkind words in the past. While I can’t undo the past mistakes, I truly hope they won’t repeat. I do not want to save the world any more, I just want to make my job a little easier and make Drupal suck even less.

I will also check in with the CWG regularly to make sure things run smoothly.

Ps. for full disclosure, if necessary I plan to temporarily seek co-maintainership some contrib modules like bricks which haven’t seen a commit in a year but we use it and have fixes. I will try to limit how much I get involved in any such and try to find maintainers to replace me as soon as I can.


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