By: Shankar
January 15 2020

Happy nineteenth birthday, Drupal!

What started out as a hobby project of Dries Buytaert, is now a global project with millions of users, active contributors and a strong ecosystem. Drupal is truly a phenomenon. It has continued to see a surfeit of experimentations. Thanks to the perpetual support by the Drupal Community over the years as it has always chosen the path of innovation, reinvention and evolution. 15 January 2020 marks the nineteenth birthday of Drupal.

Infographics with stars on top and bottom and the text for nineteenth 19th birthday for Drupal in the middle


There have been several content management systems bursting onto the scene and fading into thin air. But Drupal, as an open-source project, has always stayed with us, evolved and continued to reach greater heights. It still offers a lot to ponder over, tinker around and build something new. With each passing year, impelled by Drupal Community’s efforts, it has started becoming more easier to use and is constantly growing at a staggering rate.

Tweet showing an image on top left and the text below for Drupal birthday


It all began in 2000 when Dries decided to put an internal site, that was used for socialising between a small group of people, online. Dorp, a Dutch word for village, was supposed to be used for the domain name. A mistyping by Dries eventually paved the way for drop.org. With more members thronging the site, having healthy discussions and using it as an experimentation platform, Dries decided to release the software behind drop.org. Drupal 1.0.0 was thus born on 15 January 2001. Open-sourcing this project allowed others to leverage and extend the experimentation platform and ultimately explore new ways of web development.

Screengrab of project Drupal on git with several lines of programming code
Code commit by Dries on 29 December 2000 where the project was called Drupal for the first time

Not only has Drupal scaled new heights but has also helped Drupal fraternity undergo a lot of personal reinvention. Drupalists, thus, have never missed an opportunity to celebrate Drupal's birthday every year since its launch.

Sometimes, a simple ‘Happy Birthday’ is more than enough to show your gratitude to Drupal.

Tweet showing image of person on top left and zebra below it


At other times, the community members have expressed their merriment on sharing the same birthday date.

Tweet showing an image on top left and text below


The typo, that happened before the birth of Drupal, never seems to get erased from the memories of the community. It has made an indelible mark in the hearts of Drupalists. Drupal Community members leave no stone unturned to show that they can be as witty as any great stand-up comedian. They can use ‘typo’ as the theme of their Drupal birthday celebrations.

Tweet showing images of a person on top left and centre with text covering rest of the area


A quirky style was once applied by Dries himself to celebrate Drupal's birthday.

Tweet showing image of a person on top left and text below


And, a birthday cake is always special. So, we, at OpenSense Labs, organised a cake-cutting ceremony and asked our Drupalists to put forth their love for Drupal on the whiteboard.

A whiteboard with scribbles of Drupal appreciation and number 19 written at the centre and a blue cake below


Teenage is deemed as one of the best periods of our youth. The new sensations, victories and obstacles make for an exciting collection of memories that we hark back to. These are the kind of memories where we immerse ourselves in and go into the state of nostalgia in the later stages of life. Drupal enters its last year of teenage too. A lot of fantastic developments have happened in the last few years vis-à-vis Drupal. There is still a lot of room for improvement and the community knows where the Drupal lags behind.

2019 has especially been wonderful for Drupal as it witnessed an increase in Drupal contributions, plentitude of efforts was taken for making Drupal more diverse and inclusive and the foundation for Drupal 9 release was laid out. We, along with millions of Drupal lovers all around the world, are waiting for the launch of Drupal 9 eagerly and hoping to celebrate many more birthdays of Drupal.