An Introduction to Static Site Generators for Drupalists

A presentation at DrupalCon Seattle in in Seattle, WA, USA by Brian Perry

With the continued rise of static site generators that can play nicely with Drupal it has never been easier to take advantage of the speed, security, and scalability of static sites. But for those comfortable working with Drupal it may be difficult to identify the projects that would benefit from a static site build, and also to determine which of the many static site generator options are right for you.

This session aims to provide an overview of the static site generator landscape from a Drupal perspective, including:

  • What exactly is a static site generator, and why would I use one with Drupal?
  • Navigating potential roadblocks to a static site build
  • Approaches to triggering automatic builds based on content updates.

We’ll also briefly compare three static site generator projects - Jekyll (a Ruby based option), Gatsby (a React based option) and Tome (a Drupal based option), focusing on:

  • How they differ
  • How they interface with Drupal
  • Why you might choose one over the other
  • Recommended next steps to learn more

By the conclusion of this talk you will have a better understanding of why a static site build may or may not be right for your project, have a better feel for which static site generator would fit your workflow, and may even walk away with some existential questions about the overall nature of dynamic content on the web (heavy, right?)


The following resources were mentioned during the presentation or are useful additional information.

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