Unless you've been living under a rock, by now you've heard about the case that is certain to keep the armchair lawyers busy for years to come: Oracle vs. Google. It's already been dissected elsewhere, but in a nutshell: Sun owned their GPL-licensed Java virtual machine, and various patents on it; Google wrote their own JVM for the Android platform, Dalvik; Oracle bought Sun; Oracle uses those patents to sue Google over their JVM; Hilarity ensues.
So what? How does that affect us, as PHP and Drupal developers? Well it doesn't... except indirectly via another product that Oracle bought as part of Sun: MySQL.
Unless you've been living under a rock for the last six month, you should have already heard about Drupal 7's new-and-shiny database layer, DBTNG. That was only the beginning, though! Much has happened since then to the database, and there's much yet to do. That's where you come in...
OK, I admit it. I'm not the most active Cubs fan around. I wouldn't say I'm a fair weather fan (the Cubs don't have fair weather that often) but I don't follow the team that closely. Perhaps I should start doing so, because I think this may be our year.
No, it's not because this is the 100th anniversary of when the Cubs last won the World Series. It's because the Databases: TNG patch for Drupal 7 has finally landed.
And there has been much rejoicing.
The new database system for Drupal 7 that I've been talking about for the past few months is nearly ready for submission. With chx's visit to Chicago we were able to refactor it for far better modularity and cleanliness. As of yesterday, the system is able to navigate around Drupal, submit forms, create and edit nodes, and view the insanely heavy modules admin page. I still need to make it work with the installer, but it's looking very promising. A very recent copy of the new code base, pre-Drupal-integration, is available in my sandbox.
Here's a brief list of the features it offers:
For those who may not have noticed it, it looks like Drupal 7 is going to require not only PHP 5.2, but MySQL 5.0 as well. It makes sense to do. Drupal 7 won't actually ship for another year, by which point MySQL 4.1 will be on life support anyway. It will also lose all support during the Drupal 7 life cycle. So if you're planning a new server, get ahead of the curve and Go MySQL 5! :-)
Drupal 7: The version that gets over the 20th century.
There has been some discussion recently, in IRC, issue queues, and blogs, about the Drupal 7 database API and its impact on supporting different database engines. While I am still trying to avoid large amounts of public distraction, especially when we're supposed to be trying to get a Drupal 6 beta 1 out the door, I feel it's important to get a few points cleared up lest they lead to confusion later.