Welcome to the new site - actually the first under this domain!
I've been playing with a bunch of different CMS and CMS type applications recently. My history is in Drupal (actually close to 15 years site building and development work with what is a marvelous framework for developers). Since a few of my sites and at least one client use Drupal 7 and the EOL is almost upon us, there has been some urgency to figure out the best/fastest/easiest transition for those sites. For a lot of the smaller clients, Backcdrop CMS seems like the logical next step.
Drupal 8/9 are amazing. But the more I work with them, the more they seem geared towards the Enterprise market. I've done some work on them and build a couple of small modules, but they always seem overkill for a lot of what I do. If the need is for a robust, large-scale web app host or a large data store for a headless application, D8/9 would be my choice. Especially if starting from scratch. But there are a lot of organizations out there that don't fall under these needs case. For them, Backdrop can be a good step forward without a lot of fuss.
BD is a fork of Drupal 7 with a lot of features that reflect those more useful things in the D8/9 world:
- Configurations independent of the database (yeah!)
- Multi-use block architecture for more flexible pages
- An admin accessible Layout system that vastly improves page and site building
it also mostly maintains the code base of D7 so a lot of the skills built up by that community of developers is maintained. This is not all positive, as there was a lot of legacy nonsense in the D7 code, but the BD core developers seem to be trying to weed these out.
For developers, the main difference is the underlying architecture and standards of the code. As I mentioned earlier, this is a fork of D7. It maintains the mostly procedural coding style. D8/9 are largely based in the Symfony OOP world, which is a good place, but with a large learning curve. Even with a bit of Symfony work I had before, D8/9 was a challenge to get my head around. Since most of the sites I work on have been smaller clients, D7 and now BD have made more sense, especially if they think the alternative is Wordpress (shudder).
Enough for the first post. Hopefully I'll be able to keep this up a bit better than in the past. Tune in to see what happens as I learn more about the different CMS in the world - even those without PHP roots...