Hello 2023!
Moving Digital Commons forward

Author: Elena Talanker

When Digital Solutions teams said goodbye to 2022, we left behind one of the most productive and successful years in our history.

Last year we finished our long journey of migrating state agency websites to Drupal 9. A journey that started with in person co-workings at HQ Raleigh before the pandemic and under different leadership. We learned a lot while building and implementing a new theme, forming new teams (Digital Services and Digital Solutions Applications), and expanding the Digital Commons platform offerings.

Created under the Digital Transformation umbrella for a future constituent portal nc.gov, the new Portal theme provides a fresh look and feel for all 70+ state agency websites. Built on a modern Bootstrap 5 framework with mobile-first approach for fast load times while using less data, the new Portal theme has a lot of features built into its core. Our new platform design adheres to accessibility compliance standards to ensure all content is usable by everyone including those with disabilities. Committed to providing the best digital experience it has language translation capabilities available for every state website.

Important Features

Digital Commons started with an idea “To make accessing government services as easy as checking scores on a smartphone”. Extending that idea, we want to ensure that the state’s information and services are easily findable, so now syndicate How-to service pages from agency websites to nc.gov portal. This ensures that the visitor gets the most up-to-date information on our site, directly from the agency developed page.

Our new theme proudly distinguishes Digital Commons websites as “An official website of the State of North Carolina” providing privacy policy and security assurance to all site visitors.

Drupal 10

This year we will give a final farewell to Drupal 7, as our developers work to decommission the remaining elements and welcome Drupal 10!

The newest version of Drupal will offer significant improvements but without any work required from our web community for the upgrade. (Much like how the move to Drupal 9 was done quietly behind the scenes.) We will announce the Drupal 10 upgrade very soon. Look for a modern updated rich text editor ( CKEditor 5) among other new features.

Pride in the Digital Commons Platform

For the first time, there is an official acknowledgment that all our websites are “Hosted on Digital Commons platform”.  We work hard to ensure that our training and support documentation is consistent and clear. Currently, our teams are focused on updating all help information for the platform admin back-end.

Our wonderful web managers community, also known as Digital Content Ninja’s share credit for the Digital Commons success story. They help us shape the platform by suggesting new capabilities, finding bugs, and presenting use cases. Together we are working to create a seamless, online experience for all North Carolinians.

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