Posted to Ben Finklea's blog on July 2nd, 2010

This Week in Drupal SEO News: DCC Pre-Conference Training, Why the Pilot Program Deserves $1, and Google News Redesign

Happy 4th of July Weekend! One of my favorite smelling holidays of the year: burning charcoal, cooking meat, freshly cut grass, chlorine and sunscreen, ice cream and pie, melting ice... I’m fresh off a patriotic injection a la Landon Donovan, and feeling like fireworks should happen every single day. But maybe not this year.

The summer slammed the Northern Hemisphere and Hurricane Alex slammed the Texas coast this week. While it appears to have been just a good practice run for most of the coastal residents, we are still glad to get the rain here in Austin.

Join me after the jump for DrupalCon Copenhagen training sessions, why you need to give a dollar to the Pilot Program, and how Google is now delivering your news.


DrupalCon Copenhagen: Pre-Conference Training Announced

On August 23rd, the day before DrupalCon Copenhagen officially kicks off, pre-conference training sessions are available for your savvy.

They will be held in the same venue as the conference, and will cover:

Performance & Scalability

E-commerce & Ubercart

Module Development

Security: process, code and hands-on training

Each training session is eight hours, so bring your attention span. And be sure to choose the one that best fits your skill and mind set at the moment. Find out easily. Each session is clearly spelled out with prerequisites, goals, agenda, and difficulty level. Choose wisely. then buy tickets.

You can buy tickets to these training sessions even if you are not going to the conference. But if you do purchase a training session ticket with your conference ticket, Drupal is dropping your ticket price by €30 (~$37).

Check out the official pre-conference training sessions page on

Are you going to DrupalCon Copenhagen? Leave me a comment below and maybe we can meet up.

ThinkDrop and MACILE Raising Funds to Teach Drupal Abroad

ThinkDrop Consulting of NYC, and MACILE (Math Science Language Engineering), are teaming up to launch the Pilot Program.

The Pilot Program is collaborative initiative to introduce open source technology and Drupal to children in disadvantaged communities around the world. The hope is that they can help these children “overcome the hurdles” that prevent them from learning without technology.

And they need your help. The Pilot Program is raising funds to travel to Itabo, Dominican Republic this month to teach a two-week class for 6th-12th graders and educators. The classes will cover Open Source, Internet Technology, and Drupal. But they need to raise $8,000 by July 12th, or this project isn’t funded. They haven’t reached their goal yet.

If you want to donate just measly $1, you will be helping them reach their goal.

Donate by clicking here. Hurry, because there is only a few days left to help out.


Google News Redesign Brings Customized Search Results to You

Google News just went live with a new redesign in order to deliver more “customizable and shareable” news. The new design attempts to better highlight news stories interesting to you that you may have missed. Sharing features also make it easier for you to share stories via all your favorite social sites.

The centerpiece to the homepage redesign is called “News for You”: a “stream of headlines automatically tailored to your interests.” Start off by personalizing your feed according to your interest – i.e. sports, politics, Drupal, bollywood, 2012 prophecies, dog shows, clown arrests, etc. – sit back, and let all the interesting information you are interested in come to you. Check out a screenshot below:

You can set up how you want results to be displayed, and decide what you would like to see more or less of in your feed. Hot topics of the day will be displayed in the Top Stories section on the left-hand side of your homepage, and feature stories with more lasting interest will be in a more prominent “Spotlight” section.

But let’s not forget about sharing. There is a drop-down menu in which you can share the story with your friends via Twitter, Facebook, Buzz, and Reader. For more information and a short walk-through, check out this video a la Google:

Sunrise and Sunset Features Added to Google

Tired of having to check the television for the sunrise or sunset times? Trying to plan a romantic walk with your significant other? Google’s got your back because now you can just search for it. The new Sunrise and Sunset Search feature gives you the times of sunrises and sunsets for anywhere in the world. It is calculated based upon your exact longitude, latitude and current time.

This is from my search yesterday while I was trying it out. Just type in “sunrise” or “sunset” and Google will figure out where you are located and give you the exact time for the next one. I know this isn’t rocket science but still a pretty cool feature that is now directly at your fingertips.

Share the News!

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Did I miss something important or newsworthy? I would love to learn about it with a comment below. Have a fun-filled 4th of July weekend!