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The Kookaburra modules are Backlight's next-gen suite of modules, currently works-in-progress.

B-but, why ... ?!

Pangolin remains awesome, but it's also been around now for quite some time. We want to do some new things, and to change some old things to work in new ways. If we did all of this within Pangolin, it would be extremely disruptive to existing Pangolin websites. Kookaburra allows us to explore and experiment and build new things without breaking existing sites.

Use Pangolin in the meantime, and migrate to Kookaburra in your own time, as it continues to mature.


The defining features of the Kookaburra family of modules are as follows.

Keyboard Accessibility

Kookaburra pages (albums, etc.) are fully navigable using the keyboard alone. Use Tab and Shift-Tab to navigate the page, and the Enter key to activate interactive elements. To the best of our ability, Kookaburra strives to be compliant with the WAI guidelines for keyboard accessibility.


Kookaburra utilizes JavaScript sparingly, and only natural JavaScript; not jQuery, nor any similar libraries. This minimizes page overhead, ensuring faster page loads, and ...

Performance, Accessibility, Best Practices, SEO

We are trying to keep Kookaburra in the green for Lighthouse scores.

Kookaburra Lighthouse Scores

So far, so good! These scores may slip somewhat as development progresses and Kookaburra evolves, but we'll be minding them along the way. If we do allow scores to slip, it will be an intentional tradeoff of performance vs. desired features.

High-definition Image Renditions

Images published to Kookaburra albums will generate 1x and 2x renditions for photos and thumbnails, and will be displayed using the srcset property. In short, images look just gorgeous in Kookaburra albums.

To take full advantage of this feature, upload images at 2x the Photo Width/Height specified for the "Photos" rendition in Kookaburra Album. For example, if width and height are there defined as 1024, then upload images 2048-pixels on the long edge.


Page-first Design

Kookaburra shifts more responsibility to the Page module, including some responsibilities previously assigned to the Album and Album Set templates (for example, in Pangolin).

Examples include customization of the standard image grid, singe-image pages, and slideshows.

More to come ...