For all those modules that are in a class of their own...

Update: Check out Boris Mann's ideas on the subject. They are better thought out than the ones I shared in this post.

While studying the mystic ways of jquery, I noticed something: Jquery has granted some plugins an "offical" status. Its easy to inference that these official plugins exist because:

  1. They provide a robust solution to a common problem.
  2. They're code quality is top tier.
  3. They are too specific, and too large to include in core jquery.

The "official" status seems to work well for jquery plugins. There are a large number of plugins that are extensions of extensions, which obviously reduces duplication of efforts.

It seems to me drupal could gain quite a bit from honoring a select few of its contributed modules with an "official stamp of approval". As for who decides what is an "official" contribution, I'd imagine the core developers would be up to the task. 

Having a top tier of contributions would have a host of benefits, including:

1. Having authortive list that guides new users to the best, and most commonly need contributions that drupal has to offer.

2. Providing module developers with a tangible incentive to write modules that have quality code, and solid apis.

3. With the honor would come the responsibility of keeping the module secure, free of show stopping bugs, and in compliance with the latest drupal APIs.

4. The higher prominance of official contribs would encourage more contributions, more extension modules (e.g. calandar for views, date for CCK), and less duplication of their efforts.

5. My obsolete list of 10 modules from 2005 would quickly lose popularity.

As for what modules would make to official status, there are clearly some obvious candidates, that in my expereince do a certain thing better than anything else available:

  1. CCK
  2. TinyMCE
  3. Event
  4. Location (does it work in 5 yet?)
  5. Devel
  6. SimpleNews
  7. Views (put last so everyone knows this isn't in any particular order)

To bad people have to digg through the assorted ramblings of myself and others to find out about them.


Jquery's offical plugins are a great example of compromise. They offer a quick way to find the best solutions that jquery has to offer without bloating the underlying framework. At the very least, there's gotta be a better filter for the best drupal modules than some random schmoe and his blog.