A time consuming task for all software users is testing.
It takes time to find all the download links, to set up a test environment and to install all the additional software you need.
Simplytest.me is an ingenious solution for Drupal. Simplytest.me will install Drupal sites for you, as well as modules and themes that you want to use. Here's a brief introduction to this very useful site.
How to plan a Drupal Project
When a client comes to you with an amazing idea for the project that is going to change EVERYTHING in a market, enthusiasm for getting down and building before thinking through how that goal might be achieved is very common. You may get a "plan" on the back of napkin. There are a few approaches that you can take to reach the client's ultimate goal.
Angularjs and Drupal - A new power couple in the open web space.
This lets you build complex single page applications in a predictable and standardized way.
It also presents an interesting approach on how to address some of the more common customer scenarios..
We have seen many customers that are stuck in some kind of Drupal Hell with codebase from Drupal 5 stuck in time because their original developer hacked core or views and they never had the budget to upgrade.
It's extremely challenging to provide value to this type of customer but we've found an interesting pattern using Angularjs to create modern cutting edge interfaces even within the weirdest sphagetticoded nightmares.
So let's say we have a Drupal5 site stuck in 2008...
- Create a content type called angularapp
- Overide page.tpl.php as page-node-angularapp.tpl.php (Drupal 5 needed custom code in template.php
- Load the angular.js library and dependencies plus your apps code
- Comment out the print of the $content in you're overiden template and instead add
- The code above renders the angular app based on the code
<section ng-app="appname"><div ng-view></div></section>
The idea is to replace the rendering of $content all together when the angularjs is rendered.Is there anybody out there?
It doesn't matter how much amount of frontend wizardry goes on we still need someone to answer those angular services and provide the frontend with the data coming from the Drupal site.
We do a fair amount of node.js server side programming so sometimes drupal isn't even part of the equation but when Drupal is the server side there are several options to address it.
1. Services module (Drupal - 5-8)
2. restws module (Drupal 7)
3. As Will Vincent pointed out you can roll your own with returning drupal_json_output in your hook_menu.
For the Angular curious - I created a gist (rendered belowe) - walking through the relevant steps in an angular app -
Just going to DrupalCon to watch is awe inspiring. The amount of people there, all sharing one common goal: to learn more and grow the power of Drupal, thereby empowering themselves... it's all really inspiring stuff. There's more than a few reasons I keep coming back.Stay ahead of the curve.
The most important thing I've gotten out of DrupalCons is a glimpse of the future. Drupal, like most open source software technologies, moves fast. People are always working on the next version. If you don't spend some time this year paying attention to whats going on, you won't be ready next year when the curve passes you by.
We built and launched our first website for ThinkDrop in the days before DrupalCon 2010 San Francisco, around April 19th. We used an alpha release of Drupal 7. We knew we only wanted a barebones design to start so we went ahead and tried it, and Drupal 7 worked well enough to get online for the next few months.
Then, we learned enough at the convention to realize that might have been a bad idea. A few data migrations and alpha2alpha hacking we got up to speed with the latest and greated versions of Drupal 7. We hit the 7.0 release in January 2011, almost 9 months later.
We were ready and motivated for Drupal 7 because of DrupalCon, which we already had experience with when it was first released.See how open-source gets done... "In Real Life".
These conventions are where everyone comes together to get more work done than any other week of the year. It is an impressive sight to see all of the pieces moving at once.
The Core Conversations are a window into how Drupal gets planned and built.
It is even more stunning to see a DrupalCon Sprint. At DrupalCon Denver, people filled two gigantic rooms, all to work on core Drupal 8. It was abuzz like a stock exchange floor or a newsroom at the Daily Planet. It will make your jaw hang open walking into that space.Meet People, Learn Personalities
To come to DrupalCon, you get to see the faces of everyone that's built the things you use every day. Knowing a username and knowing a person are two totally different things.
Five minutes in person with someone will give you more information about an individual's personality than 100 page long comment threads on Drupal.org will. I can guarantee that.
Even if you don't directly engage in a conversation, Just seeing a speaker and knowing their username along with their voice, mannerisms, and appearance will change how you might interact with that person online.
Interacting with people on the internet is hard. Working with them on the internet can be even harder. Sometimes all you have to go by is a single username. The only way to really get an idea of someone online is by reading as much of their writing as possible. It's very easy to make assumptions about someone's personality when all you see is written words, which we all read as we interpret them.
It's much, much easier to work and communicate with people when you are familiar with their personalities, and have met at least once. To be a member of any open source community, it really helps to have at least a semi-realistic idea in your head of who people really are.Work Hard, Play Hard
I know its a bad stereotype, conference goers and partying. But when done properly, you will forge relationships for business and friendship that might last forever. When done improperly, you will forge memories for all those that witness your temporary lapse(s) in judgement.
Stay wise and use the buddy sytem.Make it what you need it to be.
DrupalCon is what you make it. Don't expect it to cater directly to you. It's really up to you to go out and make the most of it, for you, whatever your position might be. Even if you end the conference and feel like nothing specific comes out of it for you, at least it motivated you to clean up your resume or polish up your old modules. Make the most of it.
DrupalCon is a huge opportunity to learn about a huge variety of topics, and meet a huge variety of people.
Just walking around the various spaces of DrupalCon you will overhear things that will make your head spin, things you find obvious, and everything in between. It's knowledge being transfered at a phenomenal rate, all around you.
Don't stop learning!Tags: DrupalConPlanet Drupal
It seems like we are always trying to stay one step ahead of proposed web standards in an attempt to future-proof our sites and take advantage of emerging technologies. One such proposed standard that is exciting – yet difficult to implement at times in existing frameworks – is the new responsive PICTURE element.
Not so fast… The element is still in the “unofficial draft” state, so it has limited support (some advance versions of newer browsers might have it, but nothing in production to date). However, there are some solutions out there that will serve up the element if the browser supports it, but fallback to the polyfill solution if not. One that is turning out to be incredibly helpful is the combination of the Picture and Breakpoints modules to help future-proof D7 sites that implement responsive themes like Omega.
How does it work? Pretty simple – (once you get the hang of it, after setting a few up):
- Install the Breakpoints and Picture modules.
- Define breakpoints for your images (and additionally core image styles for those breakpoints if you don’t already have some you’d like to leverage).
- Define breakpoint groups that will be used by the Picture module to associate breakpoints to image styles.
- Map image styles to breakpoints in each group.
- Under Manage Display for an image field, select the Picture field formatter instead of Image and select the picture group (aka breakpoint group) you want to use for this field. Other settings are similar to the Image field formatter.
- Check out your new images!
What you should see on a browser that does not support the PICTURE element yet is a collection of IMG and SCRIPT tags to manage the polyfills leveraging weblinc’s picture library. On a browser that supports the element, you will see a PICTURE element generated using the CSS3 media queries defined by the Breakpoints module and the images being served up from image style paths as mapped by the Picture module. The beauty of this solution in Drupal is that you can apply it to existing image fields with minimal impact since the implementation is encapsulated in a field formatter, with only wrapper-level CSS changes being your biggest hurdle.
For a more detailed tutorial on setting up and leveraging these incredibly useful modules, check out the tutorial on drupal.org.
Every small finding is worth sharing. This blog post is no except for this fact.Google Plus One Linkedin Share Button Tweet Widget Facebook Like
I've needed to build a regular expression filter for a view I'm working on, so I'm sharing the code here because it might be helpful to other people as well. My specific case is that I am building a Blocks administration VBO.
Lately I’ve been quite busy working on my first Drupal 7 theme that is getting ready to launch. The idea stemmed from my perception that there are not enough responsive themes out there for Drupal.
The following blog post was written by Donna Benjamin of Kattekrab.net, and is also read by Donna Benjamin. You can find the original article which contains all of the links mentioned in the post, at kattekrab.net/twigs-bones-themes-stones. Enjoy!Tags: Audioblog, planet-drupal
You can either get on the Drupal 8 bus now, or get run over by it later.
It's true. Drupal 8 is coming, and it will be big. Not just lines of code (that too), but big in the sense that Drupal 8 changes more of Drupal than any major release in the last 10 years. The adoption of so many 3rd party components (from Symfony and otherwise) is only part of that picture. That offers challenges for many, but also enormous opportunity. Drupal 8 will allow Drupal to expand into new types of application and new markets, which is a great thing for those who make their living off of Drupal. But where do you get started with learning about Drupal 8?
At DrupalCon Portland, that's where!
There are many sessions slated for Portland at both DrupalCon and at Symfony Live that deal with Drupal 8, either directly or indirectly. Below is my recommended hitlist for Portland for those wanting to get the lowdown on Drupal 8.
What, you're not already signed up? There's still time! Go register for either DrupalCon or Symfony Live, and be sure to get a Combo Ticket so that you are able to attend both conferences as well as Web Visions! (The combo ticket is the same price either way.)
Hi! Welcome to the very first Audioblog sponsored by Modules Unraveled. This is Brian Lewis, and if you're listening to this, it probably means that you prefer to digest your content audibly, rather than reading long blog posts. Well, I'm the same way, and I kept coming across blog posts that I wouldn't normally read, but something about them would catch my eye, and I'd dive in. Almost without fail, I'd come away glad I did decide to read the post. The problem is, I don't have time to read everything that I think looks interesting. But I do have a lot of time to listen to things in my car.Tags: Audioblog, planet-drupal
There are a myriad of books about pretty much every open-source editor/IDE on the market today, but it seems like most people try to avoid writing about commercial IDEs. There has long been a need for a good book about commercial IDEs, and PhpStorm in particular. Today, I have been invited to review Włodzimierz Gajda's new book, Instant PhpStorm Starter.
(for you gringos, that's May 5th)
photo via Forest MarsTry my vegetarian recipes:Bean burritos y arroz con frijolesPro Bowl GuacamoleThis remains the 10th most popular post on my blog, up from 8709 views a year ago to 15,037 now
We tested Views in Drupal 8 at BADCamp 2012 and this uncovered a large number of usability issues. Since then we have been hard at work resolving them.
We resolved over 20 identified usability issues. Most of the issues revolve around the following fundamental issues:
- What can views do? People are overwhelmed by the plethora of options and often don't quickly find the right approach.
- Handler listings are overwhelming, and this causes people to miss the right handler.
- People occasionally miss the "save" button, making them move off the page before saving.
- On the detail level a lot of copywriting is overly descriptive, this makes people miss important help text.
We have a number of major issues that we encountered. Most of these revolve around workflow and scan ability of listing pages:
- Users feel overwhelmed by handler listings
- Users miss "save" button and can't distinguish "editable" and "preview" areas
- Add “place block in region’ to the Views wizard to help workflow
These issues will distract but not keep people from using the Views interface:
- The views UI should display "All Displays" option only when there are more 1 displays.
- In the Views UI, the interaction pattern of “All displays”/ “Override this display” is confusing
- Remove the "More" area from the bottom of handler configuration
- "Create a label" should be off by default, with an opt-in for style plugins
Finally, we have dozens of minor issues that often require little coding but have quite an impact on making individual forms better:
Edit + "Field" Views (table, grid, etc.)
Revamp descriptions of items in handler listings
Views UI gives no indication that you are editing a disabled view
Title setting in views UI does not indicate when the title might be overridden
The views UI should display "All Displays" option only when there are more 1 displays.
Let users set the block instance title for Views blocks in the Block UI
Add some settings on the block display to allow overrides on the block instance configuration
Provide helpful editing links on "admin/structure/block" for different blocks (menu, views etc.)
We have been working hard at solving many of these issues starting with the copywriting. However we are currently running up against a few issues that will need some serious help in the PHP department.
You can track views issues by following the tags Usability + VDC.
We look forward to your help, feel free to drop by #durpal-usability or #drupal-vdc if you have any questions.
Drupal Association News: Guest blog: Global Training Day notes and resources from the "Denver Dataman"
Guest blogger Robb Neumann and trainer Steve "Denver Dataman" Kessler share their observations on March's Global Training Day in Denver, Colorado. Don't miss the link to Steve's free training resources toward the end of the post!Personal blog tags: Drupal Global Training Dayguest blog
I was working with new contributors tonight. They had worked on 2-4 issues before. They wanted to test a patch in dealing with a Drupal 8 multilingual issue. Sure, testing d8mi issues is a bit more tricky than regular core issues. Because a module usually needs to be enabled first, like Language or Content translation. But I think the lessons learned from this experience apply to any core issue.Steps to reproduce in a comment are nice. Putting them in the issue summary is even better.
This issue had Steps to reproduce in comment 3 out of 25, which is really great. Some issues do not have any steps to reproduce. Even though this issue had Steps to reproduce, I saw these two contributors spend 15 minutes wondering how to get to the settings page that needed testing. And then they wondered how to get the translation bits to show there. Once I pointed out the comment that had the steps, they were on their way. One did the testing... and the other updated the issue summary and put the Steps to reproduce right there in the issue summary. They wanted to make sure that the next person to come across the issue had an easier time testing than they did.
In this episode, we have Greg Dunlap (heyrocker) join Addi to talk about being a Drupal 8 initiative lead, not from the perspective of the software, but as someone who needs to pay rent. We talk about Greg's efforts to raise funding for his work as the Drupal 8 Configuration Management Initiative (CMI) lead, why he needed to go knocking on doors, and what that means going forward. What is money's role in a sustainable future for Drupal core development?Sustainable Drupal core development requires money
Many people have asked how COD, otherwise known as the Conference Organizing Distribution, is going. Currently its a community supported project, with lots of great new features going into the 7.x branch!
This weekend, Acquia was at Linuxfest Northwest (LFNW, http://www.linuxfestnorthwest.org), a regional conference of about 1500 open source enthusiasts, and COD was running behind the scenes to help make the fest run as smoothly as possible.