Next-level Drupal: Applied progressive decoupling with JavaScript


How do you balance the demands of your content editors and site builders against the need to stay abreast of the most up-and-coming technologies? Do you have a JavaScript development team itching to pursue new ideas at a faster rate than the rest of your developers or even Drupal itself can accommodate? How can you best avoid the pitfalls of fully decoupling Drupal and reinventing the many wheels you lose, such as layout management and a seamless administrative experience?

Join Matt Davis (Mediacurrent), Preston So (Acquia), and John Kennedy (Acquia) as we discuss the practice behind the theory of progressively decoupled Drupal, an approach that infuses graceful application-like interactivity into your site without jettisoning the features that make Drupal great on the front end. In this session, we’ll also delve into the key motivations for harnessing Drupal’s power as a CMS alongside another powerful framework on the front end via progressive decoupling.

Here are just a few of the questions we’ll answer together:

  • What should you think about when you decouple a Drupal site, whether fully or progressively?

  • What are the different flavors of decoupled Drupal increasingly emerging in the wild?

  • How has progressive decoupling been leveraged in production with success at scale?

  • How can you enable your front-end development team and content or site building team to pursue their own velocities without blocking one another?

  • Why is progressive decoupling the right approach for Drupal 8 as an assembled web tool?

And here are the themes and topics we’ll dive into:

  • “Headless” Drupal: The promise and perils of fully decoupling Drupal

  • Why front-end developers want to fully decouple, but editorial teams don't

  • Strict and broad definitions of progressive decoupling

  • Top five reasons to progressively decouple Drupal

  • Concrete architectures to implement progressive decoupling

  • Case study: and progressively decoupled Panels

  • Advantages and disadvantages of other decoupled cases

  • The spectrum of progressive decoupling: From 1-99% of the page

  • Balancing the needs of your site builders, content editors, and developers

This session is for decision-makers (technical managers, architects, directors of technology), front-end developers (particularly JavaScript developers), Drupal developers, and UX designers who are interested in learning more about progressively decoupled Drupal and how it advances the interests of both front-end developers working primarily in JavaScript and users working in Drupal site assembly and content creation.

You should expect to walk away from this session with a broad understanding of the range of possibilities that exist when considering a progressively decoupled architecture, the benefits and drawbacks of each, and concrete examples to guide you in picking the right approach among them to satisfy all the stakeholders for your next project.

Session Track


Experience Level


Drupal Version

When & Where

Tuesday, 10 May, 2016 - 11:00 to 12:00
260-261 [Pantheon]