What a component isn't

It's widely said that naming things is hard.

As designers and developers in the Drupal world, we've seen how our terminology can collide with people outside the bubble who use the same words: module, block, plugin, etc. Yes, 'thingamabob' and 'widget' are still general enough, but the word in web for the last few years that means both everything and nothing is 'component'.

Let's take a look at the history of the word, what it means in different contexts, dive into what it even means for words to mean things in the first place, and via process of elimination try to understand what a component is and isn't.

What makes this topic interesting?
Lots of web work comes down to logically subdividing big things like websites or pages into smaller chunks. Technical and Information Architects spend their entire days doing that, while for designers and developers it might be less of a priority. By taking a deep dive into a single concept that touches so many areas of practice, hopefully we can all come away with a better bedrock understanding, then debate the finer points over lunch.

Who is the target audience?
Web practitioners. Architects, developers, site builders, and designers all interact with components as part of their work directly, with project managers and business folks benefiting from speaking the implementation peoples' language.

Why should people attend?
By golly, because it's an interesting topic! Also, I tend to put a lot of effort into unique slides, maybe some jokes, and I haven't ruled out prizes and party favors.

Why should the selection committee accept this topic?
The subject matter is far-reaching and interesting enough, so it's great for a slot that has a lot of hyper-specific sessions at the same time. Attendees who aren't interested in a niche topic will gravitate toward this one. And if I do a good job it could be a well-watched recording.

What should attendees already know in order to get the most out of this topic?
Session will be written for beginners, so there are no prerequisites. Attendees with expertise on an aspect of the topic will be encouraged to share their perspective.

Brad Czerniak
Proprietor and Drupal lead @ Solve it once
Brad Czerniak is a web developer and freelance librarian in Metro Detroit, Michigan, specializing in Drupal and the JAMstack. You can hire his unique blend of skills through his company, Solve it once and contribute to his open-source initiative via Lower barriers.

In his down time, Brad enjoys classic films, sitcoms, trivia and British panel shows, and documentaries. He occasionally leaves his bungalow headquarters to play frisbee sports. You may see him jogging the streets of his town as well.


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