An open source project's strength comes from the power of its base of contributors, and the Drupal project is no different. Although every line of code added or changed in Drupal core goes through rigorous peer review, contributed modules are more of a "Wild West" where anyone who jumps through a few basic hoops can add modules for everyone to download. The Drupal community strives to keep the barriers to contributing code back as low as possible in order to facilitate growing Drupal's thriving development community. This approach has both pros (for almost any problem, there's a module that either can get you fully or at least partway there) and cons (developers' experience levels are varied, so contributed code can have inefficiencies and security problems, and developers can become overextended and unable to keep up with maintenance of their modules).
Whether or not a module is well-maintained, its overall code quality, and how well-used it is in the overall community are all important factors to consider when selecting modules. This section will talk about determining these factors by closely inspecting the tools Drupal.org provides, starting with the central feature of all Drupal modules: the project page.
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