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At DrupalCon Denver, Dries Buytaert (project lead) announced the need for a strong focus on Drupal's authoring experience in his State of Drupal presentation. During the core conversation later in the week, the creation of a Drupal 7 distribution named "Spark" (formerly code-named "Phoenix") was announced. The goal of Spark was to act as an incubator for Drupal 8 authoring experience improvements that can be tested in the field.

Spark is a Drupal distribution which aims to work out solutions to authoring experience problems in the field and apply to latest development versions of Drupal. Therefore our work started implementing improvements as modules on Drupal 7 and then our focus shifted to working on incorporating and enhancing them in Drupal 8 for core inclusion.

Spark in Drupal 8 core

Our primary aim is to affect Drupal authoring experience significantly. The following improvements are included in Drupal 8 thanks (in part) to Spark:

  • A responsive toolbar that works well on mobile devices
  • Well configured CKEditor WYSIWYG tool with full text format integration
  • Image uploading capability right from the editor
  • An in-place editor that allows you to edit nodes, blocks, etc. in-place on the page
  • A much improved two column backend content editing screen
  • (proposed) A mobile device preview tool
  • Significantly improved accessibility

The Spark distribution for Drupal 8 has increasingly less difference from Drupal 8 itself as we get improvements into core and drop efforts that do not resonate with our technical direction and reviewer feedback.

Help improve Drupal 8 authoring experience!

Our current focus issues are tracked live in the issue tracker. We are working hard on Edit/CKEditor related issues currently. Get involved in patch reviews, test out improvements and refinements through these issues.

For the latest in Spark-related news, follow @sparkdrupal.

Distribution for Drupal 7

The Drupal 7 Spark distribution is a collection of contributed modules that greatly enhance the authoring experience on top of what Drupal 7 provides. Most key components from the Drupal 8 features are included and some more that did not make it into Drupal 8. The following features are included:

While the mobile device preview and in-place editor work best with the responsive toolbar, the features can be used independently. You can pick the functionality you like from the module list included with Spark and use the components you like in your projects.

Video demonstrations

While some of these video demonstrations are outdated, you can find several videos in Dries Buytaert's blog posts announcing key pieces of Spark.


An Acquia production. Drupal 7 version generously co-sponsored by Radio France.

Supporting organizations: 

Project information