History of PECE Development

The development of PECE as a stand-alone platform began in 2011. Since then, the PECE design team has gone through several iterations of the platform. In 2013, we began development of PECE on the content management system Plone; however due to the technical and epistemological challenges that the system posed, we moved to the content management system Drupal in 2014. The first attempt to design PECE with Drupal involved configuring factory standard Drupal features and add-on modules, using administrative menus offered through-the-Web. Using the Features module, we were able to standardize certain configurations on one instance and then push them out to other instances of the platform. However, in order to package PECE into a distribution that could be downloaded and used by any ethnographic project, we realized that we would need to hire developers to formalize our configurations, secure our permissions system, and develop new software modules.

In 2015, we hired the Brazil-based Drupal development company Taller to begin developing PECE as a Github distribution. Since 2015, we have formalized a data model, a permissions system, a workflow, and several user interfaces. The first version of the distribution was released in March 2016, and since then we have released 3 updates to the distribution, each offering additional features and improved user interfaces. We also hired the development company Agaric to work on specific modules for PECE in the fall of 2015. Agaric took over development of a module to integrate Zotero feeds with Drupal platforms and developed a module to integrate Archival Resource Keys in Drupal platforms. Both of these modules are available through the Drupal site at https://www.drupal.org/platform-for-experimental-collaborative-ethnography. The Zotero module has been configured and is available in the PECE distribution and the ARK module should be available through PECE shortly. Today, we have one lead developer, Renato Vasconcellos Gomes, working full-time to add new features to the platform.