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Urban Insight: Location-Based Alerts Using iOS, Gimbal and Drupal

Thu, 12/06/2014 - 04:54

When you next visit the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and have LACMA's iOS app installed, you'll be greeted with an alert welcoming you. As you tour the campus, occasional pop-up notifications within the app will alert you to featured museum activities, exhibitions and attractions. These alerts provide visitors with personalized and hopefully relevant notifications based on your location within the museum.

Categories: Elsewhere

DrupalCon Amsterdam: We're in the final week for submitting a session for DrupalCon Amsterdam and we want to hear from you!

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 23:37

We've got a shiny new track this year focusing on PHP, and we're looking for great speakers that can cover topics that help Drupalists to be better PHP developers and feel more confident around new concepts and techniques that will impact our performance as developers.

Drupal 8 is will be the major topic for the Coding and Development track. But we're not only looking for Drupal or Drupal 8 content. As developers, we need to be up to date on the best practices and industry standards, so sessions on behavioral development, testing and software design, among others, will be closely considered.

Pedro Cambra, Larry Garfield and Cameron Tod will be happy to answer any questions you might have regarding the submission and selection processes. Do you have knowledge to share with the community? Go ahead and submit your session!

Categories: Elsewhere

Exaltation of Larks: Everybody Loves Friday5: The Crowdfunding Platform for Nonprofits

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 23:01

Exaltation of Larks is proud to work with Friday5, a Los Angeles startup we think is worth paying attention to. Friday5 is an innovative crowd-funding platform that helps take the guesswork out of finding worthy causes and making tax-deductible donations.

Members who sign up at enter their credit card information, select the amount they want to donate to a nonprofit each week, and then receive a weekly email detailing which cause Friday5 has carefully curated for that week’s crowd-funded donation.

In short, Friday5 is helping change the world — one Friday at a time — and they’ve been praised in publications such as Forbes and PandoDaily.

Exaltation of Larks has worked with many nonprofits over the years but the opportunity to work together with Friday5 and support a new nonprofit each and every week was one we couldn’t pass up.

The role that we have with Friday5 is twofold: we provide the technical expertise and project management needed for Friday5’s online operations, and Christefano Reyes, an executive at Exaltation of Larks, serves on the Friday5 board and helps guide and advise the technical direction for the company. “Exaltation of Larks has a long history of working with both startups and with cause-based organizations,” Christefano said, “and our work with Friday5 has been a a great match for both companies.”


Our collaboration with Friday5 began in 2013, when Friday5 founder Mike Berman found himself needing a team to help maintain, implement features requested by Friday5’s partners, and prepare for growth.

When Friday5’s lead developer left the company, Mike began looking for someone new. After a month of searching for a new team, he reached out to Ben Stewart at ShareMagnet, another Los Angeles startup that Exaltation of Larks has worked with and has a 1st-degree connection. “From day one, we’ve felt that we’ve been in great hands with Larks,” Mike says. “They quickly and accurately assessed our needs, and we’ve been more than impressed with their work.”


Friday5’s site hadn’t been updated for several months by the time Exaltation of Larks came on board. We performed our standard site audit and included a security review.

The results of our site audit identified several technical issues that needed to be addressed, from server maintenance and security issues to general bug fixes and ways to streamline and optimize the payment process. We also performed a business assessment and documented the platform and its systems and helped Friday5 plan for its next phase.

Recognizing the need to ensure that Friday5 had as seamless a transition to our services as possible, we worked with Friday5’s former lead developer over the course of several meetings to perform site discovery and produce all related documentation.

Managed Hosting
The payment gateway Friday5 uses, Network for Good, requires its customers’ servers to have a fixed IP address. This eliminates the option of using some grid and cloud hosting platforms. While the hosting costs at the time were higher than necessary, we advised against migrating to a new server environment. The transition cost of migrating to a new server or webhost were greater than the immediate short-term benefits.

Fortunately, their webhost changed its pricing options in April, 2014, and is now much more affordable. By using our server administration tools and our familiarity with the website and systems, we were able to build a completely new server infrastructure and fully migrate the Drupal site to it in less than 30 minutes.

As part of our managed hosting services, we provide Friday5 with rock solid backup and disaster recovery services. Systems we’ve implemented create backups of the database and codebase and these are regularly saved to a number of locations, including Amazon S3. Together with the documentation we’ve compiled for Friday5, we help ensure Friday5’s business continuity.

Network for Good
Network for Good is a specialty payment gateway set up to provide services to nonprofits. Exaltation of Larks maintains the Network for Good integration module that connect Drupal sites with Network for Good’s API, and has shared this module with the larger Drupal developer community. “We contributed this module during the code sprint at a Drupal Coworking Friday,” Christefano said. “These events combine mini code sprints and free coworking days and are a great way for us to mentor other Drupal developers.”

Data-Driven Development
When joining the project, we immediately documented Friday5’s systems and features that existed at that moment in time. This gave us a clear starting point for developing the product’s roadmap.

Our project planning for the next phase of feature development uses a data-driven approach. The features we’ve developed so far include better reporting tools to measure key indicators and enable business decisions on critical issues and opportunities. We’re expanding this to allow for more clarity in the day to day management of the organization, as well as insight for future planning.

Support and Maintenance
Exaltation of Larks performs ongoing maintenance and support for Friday5. These services give Friday5 the comprehensive coverage they need, from basic maintenance to emergency support. For example, the Friday5 website had an issue when the company was in the middle of an important business meeting. Friday5 used our emergency support system and the issue was resolved within the hour.


Exaltation of Larks has given Friday5 solid footing in the area it most needed it: technical leadership and support. We continue to act as a technical resource for Friday5, advising Mike and his team on the company’s infrastructure for growth. “With Larks,” Mike said, “we have instant access to great programmers, and we only pay for what we need. As we grow, we’ll need more development time and expertise — Larks has us completely covered.”

We are proud to see Friday5 succeeding in the market and see Friday5 as an important addition to the Los Angeles startup landscape — and also the national nonprofit landscape. Friday5 has proven to be a pioneer in crowd-funded charity giving. Indeed, about 6 months after Friday5 launched, Google effectively validated Friday5’s business model by introducing One Today, in which users donate $1 per cause per day using a system very similar to Friday5’s — including Network for Good integration.

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Categories: Elsewhere

LightSky: Using Linkit to Link in Drupal

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 20:54

So in my mad searchings of Drupal modules the other day I came across a really cool module that simplifies content entry and linking to other content on your Drupal site.  The first thing I could think is where has this been my entire life?  The second thing was to add it to our standard Drupal installation.  Linkit allows you to link to content on your Drupal site without knowing the URL or path to the content.  If you are like me, you write your content, then you open another tab and go to all the pages that you need to link so that you can get the URL's.  Now I open up another tab, realize that I installed Linkit, and close that other tab and do it the easy way.  Eventually I will remember that I have Linkit installed and skip the open another tab step, but old habits die hard.  

So lets look at the module a little bit.


Linkit is a pretty simple module to install, it uses the standard Drupal module installation procedure.  So if you are familiar with that you are good to go, if you use Drush, then the drush dl and drush en commands are really all you need to get started.  

There is a little bit of configuration that needs to be complete as you will need to add the Linkit button to your WYSIWYG editor.  So for us that just involves going to CKEditor's configuration and adding the button to the profiles that you are using.  You might be tempted to create a special profile for this and just attach that profile to your user as to not share this great tool with your colleague, but I wouldn't recommend it.  

After that you will also need to enable support for Linkit in your editor as you see above.  

Linkit is pretty powerful though, you can do a lot of customization in the module as well through it's own configuration interface.  Through that interface you can enable it for use in editors or fields as appropriate, choose how Linkit will search your content, and even set it up to search through IMCE files.  There are lots of different use scenarios here so I won't go into a lot of detail about exactly how you should set it up.  Pick the terms and items you will use the most, and don't be afraid to tweak.

Using Linkit

Linkit is super simple to use.  I have added the button next to our normal link button in the editor.  Now if I am linking internally I click the Linkit button that displays the box you see to the right.  When you type in a search term, it will comb your content, rather quickly I might add, and give you a list that is inline with what you are looking for.  Simply click the item you want and your link gets added automatically.

No more having to search through your content to find the path to what you are looking for.

Are you already a Linkit user?  What content creation tools to you implement with your Drupal sites?

Categories: Elsewhere the floating-point divide: Sorting of products in Drupal Commerce Add To Cart form

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 20:49

This is a quick post regarding the sort order of option elements in the Drupal Commerce Add to Cart form as part of Product Reference fields.

I was confused as to how this was sorting. It does not sort by the Product title. It does not sort by the Product entity identifier. On my development site, the options seemed to be sorting by SKU.

There were a couple options to look into:

1. hook_form_alter().

I initially decided to give up and go the custom code route disparagingly. Although this option did in fact allow me to change the sort order to an arbitrary one, the Add to Cart form had already loaded the Product price of the default value meaning that the wrong price was displayed for the Product on initial page load.

In order to change that I’d have to write even more custom code.

Not good…

2. Change the SKU.

I found that the list was sorted by SKU. However this was not an option because changing SKUs will mess with history. And though I tried this option, it did not change the sort order. This might have worked given the actual issue below.

Not good…

The actual issue

The product list is stored as part of a Product Reference field, which can be a multi-value field. The product ids are ordered by field “delta” or in other words the ordinal in which they were stored.

The Select List field widget (and Checklist field widget) stores multi-value field items in the order of the options. So if initially the Select List grabbed the order by SKU, then that’s the storage order.

Commerce also provides an Autocomplete field widget. Field items are assigned their delta left-to-right. The Autocomplete field widget would allow sort ordering of Commerce Products.

If Product Reference field were an Entity Reference field, then select lists could pull an ordered list from a view or sort by a particular entity property or field.

Categories: Elsewhere

Get Pantheon Blog: DrupalCon Austin: Coming into our own

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 20:26

Was it just me or was this a really up-beat DrupalCon? In contrast to last year in Portland the energy was noticeably higher, more positive and optimistic, and I don't think it was just because of the nice weather.

Drupal 8 is still in a building stage — alpha release — but it feels like core is rolling. That's the most common theme I heard from everyone I asked, and it makes sense that a good feeling in core would ripple out through everything else.

The decision to embrace Symfony2 as a framework was a bold move, one that caused considerable angst over the past year; that's now passed. Folks who haven't been thrilled with some of the compromises involved are largely at peace with the situation, focused on moving forward. Others who were more ardent in their rejection have stepped away, or at least a ways back.

As a result, it feels like everyone is on the same page. From the business summit on Monday to the code sprints on Friday, there's a feeling of consistency. That kind of alignment is a sign of a mature project.

Of course there's always got to be some Drupal Drama. I got a taste of that in The Great Multisite Debate. Recapping that is a whole other blog post, coming soon I promise. But who can feel all that upset with folks like this guy walking the floor:

Overall the conference was extremely smooth. Well run. Well attended. A good time was had by all! But DrupalCon is about more than great presentations and great parties.

"We're Impact Junkies"

The thing that I find most compelling about the Drupal community, even the companies around the project, is how many people are focused on outcomes. In the language of Jobs, we're here to put a little dent in the universe.

There's some natural tension between that desire and the increasingly diverse and sophisticated commercial ecosystem, especially considering Drupal's roots in the non-profit/social-good space. Some people were uncomfortable with Dries's keynote example of "using google glass to buy a neat jacket you just saw," but the vision behind that example is one I share.

As I say in my Drupal's Destiny presentation, I think Drupal has a special role to play in the evolution of the internet and how it affects humanity. I believe this precisely because of the kind of multi-directional "digital hub" capability that Dries was explaining.

Andrew Hoppin, who's working on an Open SaaS solution based on Drupal to radically open up access to public data said it best: we're impact junkies. Changing the way we shop might not be the most radical way to imagine our impact on the world, but it's practical and specific. That's important when you're trying to convey an ambitious, long term vision. I'm on board.

You grows up and you grows up and you grows up

Drupal is far from done developing, but it feels like the project is emerging from an awkward teenage phase. There have been structural changes and growing pains, some false starts, but now a stronger sense of self.

The web is going to continue to evolve as more and more people come online, and more and more devices that are integrated into daily life are connected. Drupal's magic isn't just that it's an industrial strength CMS — though clearly that's a strength — but in the way it fits into the future of a dynamic and integrated web.

Headless Drupal. It's a thing. Get on board now.

It's not just the tech though: more and more members of the community are rising to take a strategic or leadership role in their work, especially professional work with clients. People who've been doing Drupal for a while tend to know a lot about the web, about what works and what doesn't, not just in terms of what modules work well together, but in terms of business outcomes. It's good to see folks owning that expertise, and bringing it to bear to help people.

At previous conferences I've felt the reality of Drupal maturing mostly in individual terms: people getting older, starting families, getting a few grey hairs, going to bed earlier, etc. In Austin I think I felt something more, a sprawling, complex, quirky, many-headed open source software project starting to come into its own.

There's still a long road to travel, but from my perspective the way ahead is clearer than ever. It's a good feeling.

Blog Categories: Partners
Categories: Elsewhere

Drupal Watchdog: RedHen: A Drupal CRM System

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 18:49

Organizations of all types must keep track of their customers, clients, contributors, and other contacts — whether they be individuals or organizations themselves. When dedicated customer relationship management (CRM) solutions were introduced in the business world, they took the form of enterprise-level software. But this category is gradually being supplanted (or sometimes supplemented) by CRM-capable websites, including many built on Drupal.

For several years, the most popular CRM option for Drupal websites was — and continues to be — CiviCRM, which is an open source and highly capable system. However, it is standalone and not designed for Drupal, but rather “bolted on”: its integration with Drupal is rather convoluted; it typically utilizes a separate database (assuming no table prefixing); and it often leads to duplication of data. CiviCRM has a different templating engine and API, making customization and troubleshooting problematic at best. Developers frequently complain that it is quite difficult to change forms and workflows, or even figure out where to begin such attempts. Its nonintuitive administrative interface can increase staff confusion and technical support costs. Compared to Drupal itself, CiviCRM is large and complex, and effectively results in more than a tripling of the number of files on disk and the number of lines of code.

An Answer Most Fowl

Consequently, a few alternatives to CiviCRM have emerged, including RedHen CRM, created by ThinkShout, a boutique open source web agency based in Portland, Oregon. RedHen is intended to help users in “managing detailed information on, and connections between, contacts and organizations, membership services, event registrations, and constituent engagement.” Best of all for Drupal developers, RedHen is entirely native to Drupal, is designed for flexibility, and does not lock implementers into any fixed information architecture or presentation.

Michael J. Ross
Categories: Elsewhere

Drupal Easy: Live, Online Web Developer Workshops

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 17:25

Calling all aspiring web developers! DrupalEasy Academy’s super popular Zero-to-Drupal workshop, (and all the awesome learning resources that go with it) is available anywhere, live through our online classroom June 18th and 19th (and on scheduled dates every other month!) Register now!


read more

Categories: Elsewhere

drunomics: #d8rules reaches 100% on Drupalfund!

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 17:00

Today is a big day for the #d8rules initiative! Our crowd funding campaign was successfully funded and reached 100 % on Drupalfund. We really want to thank all you great 137+ supporters from the community: together you made this happen. Fago & klausi may continue with the progress that has been made already for porting Rules to Drupal 8 now and we are looking forward to gather additional funds in order to make sure that all 3 milestones can be reached in time!

#d8rules reaches 100% on Drupalfund

Why collect funds in the first place?

Before Drupal Dev Days Szeged, fago & me decided to collect funds for porting Rules to Drupal 8 because of the following reasons:

  • We felt there is a need for Rules in Drupal 8
  • Fago doesn't have enough free time because he runs drunomics, works on the Entity initiative for Drupal 8 and maintains several high-profile modules in Drupal 7 already
  • We felt that Rules should be ported as soon as possible, so that other contrib modules can have their integrations ported and we can fix some Drupal 8 issues like Conditions API & a Ctools-like Context system that is also required for the layouts initiative
  • As much as we love working on client projects, developing modules and giving back to the community on a large scale as with the Rules module is definitely something that we are passionate about 
So how did that all work out? Didn't think that crowd funding in Drupal was possible?

To be honest, we really underestimated the effort required to run this whole campaign. I stopped counting hours at some point, but I can assure that there were several hundreds of hours invested mostly from our free time to assure that everything is set up properly. So here's a wrap-up of how we did it, and be assured we have learned some lessons on the way :)

Setting up a project plan & defining our mission of course was critical in the beginning. That's probably something that you already do for your regular projects, so nothing really special in here. The only difference is that you don't know where your budget will come from.

  • Estimated hours: 1048
  • Community rate: € 45 / hour (drunomics and epiqo agreed to let fago & klausi work on Rules for the self-costs)
  • Milestone 1: € 13,500­  (~ $ 18,600) 
  • Milestone 2: € 15,660­ (~ $ 21,600­) 
  • Milestone 3: € 18,000 (~ $ 24,815) 
  • Total goal: € 47,160 (~ $ 65,000)

For a regular Drupal project that is probably a medium-sized budget, but for collecting funds that goal felt pretty ambitious. Before the #d8rules initiative, the projects funded via Drupalfund were $ 2400 maximum. 

This is why we decided to go for both corporate and crowd funding:

Corporate funding vs. Crowd funding

Sponsor packages for corporates vary between $ 650 - $ 11000 and Drupalfund perks were classified from $ 10 to $ 270.

We didn't want to loose much money on benefits so we tried to keep them focused at marketing (logos in different sizes on the website and other forms of saying thank you).

For the Drupalfund, we were able to add a physical incentive which seems to have motivated quite some people to donate:

The #d8rules Ruler was sold out a few days before ending the campaign and rumors are that Laserbox has created a second limited yellow edition for those who pledge last minute on the Drupalfund :)

In general, we tried to find sponsor package / perk names that encourage people to identify with supporting the project and which are directly related to the Rules module such as "Event dispatcher", "Batch processor" or "Data selection guru".

Calculating perks & a financial insight

Fees include Drupalfund platform (7,5 %), Paypal (3,5 %), Currency conversion USD to EUR (2 %) and VAT (20 %). This was a bit scary at the beginning, so we offer invoices for all donations $ 35+ in order to remove the VAT burden. Based on those fees, we put together estimations of how many perks we have to sell in order to achieve the goal: The plan was $ 10 x 70, $ 20 x 60, $ 30 x 60, $ 65 x 50, $ 90 x 50, $ 150 x 15, $ 270 x 5 which is a total of 310 people who pledge.

Let's have a look at what we got: 137+ people pledged as of June 11, 3pm CEST and the distribution is a bit different than expected:

Actually more people pledged larger amounts of money and within the $ 649+ range there are some pretty large donations which helped the fund succeed at the very end. 

Picking a crowd funding platform

We evaluated Kickstarter, Indiegogo & Drupalfund as three possible options to do the crowd funding. Kickstarter was too complicated to set up, because you need a legal entity in the US / UK. Indiegogo was tempting because it is quite established, has lower fees, offers a smoother user experience, you can do EUR or USD funding and choose between fixed or flexible funding models. On the other hand, we really liked the idea of Drupalfund becoming a role model for the Drupal community and felt like going with another platform would be counter-productive from a community standpoint.

Thanks to the great support from the Drupalfund team, setting up the campaign website was pretty easy. We could get some small usability enhancements in (you can now click on perks to donate) and they were very supportive throughout the whole campaign by promoting us on their blog for example.

So I think we picked the right trade-off in terms of choosing a funding platform and have shown that you may also run larger campaigns on Drupalfund. Still keep in mind that without those $649+ donations our campaign would probably have failed due to a lack of momentum around DrupalCon.

Generating & keeping momentum

Having the right momentum at the right time, I guess, is the hardest with setting up any campaign. Especially if you are asking for money, you'll need to bring people to your side. Luckily, we had lots of supporters from the community already: the Rules module has more than 200,000 reported installations and fago is well known all around Drupal.

I used the buffer app to constantly schedule tweets for the d8rules twitter account. Of course using an easy and positive hashtag such as #d8rules helped a lot. 

I also think that the Rules logo redesign by Nico Grienauer substancially supported the campaign. 

Rules logo with #d8rules hashtag icon by Nico Grienauer

Every campagin needs a video

Thanks to the great support from 11 Drupal community members at Drupal Dev Days, we were able to get some user voices captured which we then included in our campaign video. Dominik Kiss spontaneously offered to shoot and edit the video and I'm really thankful for the great work he did on a volunteer basis within the short time constraints of one week before launching the campaign on Drupalfund! 

#d8rules video on Youtube:

Are we there yet?

Our colleague Max Mikus spontaneously offered to created some handcrafted indicators that visualize the funding process of #d8rules: The Drupalfund sucessfully filled up 50% of Milestone 1 but we still need more Sponsors to get there:

And then, Milestones 2 and 3 obviously would also be great to get funded.

But for now, we'd like to say thank you to everyone who believed in our project and pledged on the Drupalfund. It's awesome to see how many have supported us on the way either by donating, spreading the word and even offering volunteer help. Also note that there are already 10 contributors to the Rules 8.x repository on GitHub.

Let's have a discussion about: What's next for #d8rules and crowd funding in Drupal?

We will keep working, developing Rules 8.x based on the funds and limited free time that we have. I guess we have pushed the boundaries for crowd funding in Drupal a bit further, but there are also several questions to be discussed and resolved along the way:

  • How can we make contributing to Drupal more sustainable?
  • Is crowd funding a valid approach to gather funds?
  • How can we better attract non-contributors to fund and donate?

​Specifically for #d8rules, the next questions are:

  • How can we get Milestones 1-3 fully funded?
  • How can we attract large organisations to fund Rules in Drupal 8?
  • Should we do another round of crowd funding and how can we attract a wider audience?

Related issues

I would love to hear your feedback on the campaign. Asking for money in an open source world is tricky some times, but at least for the people I know: when we graduate from university we tend to have less time for contribution and spend more on client projects. Finding the right balance between contributing in the job is something that we always strive for at drunomics, but for huge initatives like porting Rules to Drupal 8, we really would love to get your input on how that should be accomplished. 

Thank you so much all funders on the Drupalfundour sponsors and everyone involved in the #d8rules initiative so far! We are just at the beginning :)

Categories: Elsewhere

Théodore 'nod_' Biadala: Core conversations track call for sessions

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 15:20

DrupalCon Austin just wrapped up and if you want to discuss Drupal future in Amsterdam, it's time to submit your core conversation session proposal. The topic for core conversations is Achieving sustainability. There are great proposals already but not enough to fill the whole track.

To expand a little on the topic of sustainability, Drupal is still the star of the show but the context in which it is developed takes more importance as Drupal codebase and our community grows. The most visible example is the need for funding. Big initiatives need it: Views in core, more recently Search API, Rules and core developers would like to rely on it. Funding is not the only topic we need to get a hard and overdue look at though. Here are the ones we would like to have discussions on:

  • Improving (website, testbot, issue queue process)
  • Funding core
  • Performance and tracking data overtime
  • Welcoming designers, UX professionals, and architects
  • Behat/Frontend testing
  • … and anything else you think is relevant!

This is a core conversation track, we can give ideas about what is important — and this is by no mean the whole list — but more than other tracks, it will be what you'll make of it.

Also note that there is one big change for core conversations in Amsterdam, the deadline is not extended, June 13th midnight (Amsterdam time!) is the deadline to
submit your session proposal.

Categories: Elsewhere

Blair Wadman: Save time managing Features with Drush

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 15:10

The Features module is a vital tool in the Drupal developers and site builders arsenal. It is used to export configuration that is held in the database to a Drupal module, making it easier to version control, deploy and use on other sites. Like the rest of Drupal, you can do everything in the UI but this can be time consuming. Fortunately Features comes with a set of handy Drush commands which should save you valuable time. Let’s go through them one at a time.

Tags: FeaturesDrushPlanet Drupal
Categories: Elsewhere

Hook 42: DrupalCon Austin - A Few of Our Favorite Things

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 07:37

DrupalCon is an amazing experience. We come together as a community and learn and share and have a fun time. The Hook 42 team was fortunate to have 5 team members (Aimee, Kristen, Lindsay, Marc & Patrick) in Austin and we shared an Airbnb house (Casa de DrupalCon) a few blocks from the convention center with two wonderful Drupalers, Darryl Richman and Jon Peck. We had an awesome time and wanted to share some of our highlights with you.

Drupal Community at DrupalCon Austin. Photo credit: Michael Schmid.


While we were enjoying ourselves at DrupalCon, one of our wonderful Drupal community leaders, Gábor Hojtsy, and his dear wife were enduring a harrowing experience back in Hungary. We wish them the best and send lots of hugs!!!

Hugs to Gábor and Zsuzsi. Photo credit: Michael Schmid.


There were tons of great keynotes, sessions, BoFs, and sprints. The keynotes and sessions were recorded so check those out.

Dries getting wrapped up in toliet paper at Super Hero session. Photo credit: Michael Schmid.

Aimee’s Favorite Session

Cathy They’s Issue Queue core conversation was the most personally pivotal for me. As my professional responsibilities evolve into more business and less on the technical side, being able to contribute by improving process and educate the masses sounds like a wonderful way to provide a non-coding contribution. We need a “Cloning Cathy” initiative. :)

Darryl’s Favorite Session

Drupal 8 Entity API and Drupal 8 Plugin System talks. Got to get up to speed on this stuff! Also, I took and passed the Acquia Certified Developer exam. I probably wouldn’t have done that if they weren’t offering a free re-take if you failed.

Jon’s Favorite Session

Does sprinting count? Now that Drupal 8 is getting closer to a beta, I wanted to start getting my feet wet, and there was a nice trio of sessions that gave me a good look under the hood from a practical point of view. Started with fago's Drupal 8 Entity API, then fmitchell's 30 Drupal 8 API functions you should already know, and finally Schnitzel's building a full site in Drupal 8 alpha. The annual Drush presentation (Config commands, a Boris shell, Views support, and other new features in Drush 7) was interesting, especially with the potential for collaboration with jmolivas and his fantastic Drupal 8 console scaffolding module generator. Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the best (and funniest) session, pirog and populist's Local Dev for the Masses: Vagrant + Virtual Box + Puppet + Kalabox - great tools with a lot of potential, hit up the Kickstarter!

Kristen’s Favorite Session

I didn’t go to many this ‘con due to many informal hallway conversations but Cathy They’s core conversation on making the issue selection process better was my favorite because it is hard and needs to be fixed. I concur with Aimee that we need a “Clone Cathy” initiative! :)

Core conversation with Cathy Theys. Photo credit: Mike Gifford.

Lindsay’s Favorite Session

I really enjoyed the Twig Playground talk with Morten Birch. The enthusiasm and excitement about Twig really pulled me in, and the advantages of Twig only grew my interest. Twig is fast, concise, and something I’m really interested in contributing to and learning. Learn more here:

Marc’s Favorite Session

Drupal 8 Entity API, The Battle for the Body Field: Drupal and the Future of WYSIWYG, Viewception are just a handful of the sessions I enjoyed attending. I’m watching the videos to many others still. My learning wasn’t limited to the scheduled sessions. Pretty much everyone took time to share, speak and educate me. Collectively combining all sessions attended, visiting main vendor area, and being involved in the important hallway-chats-between-sessions provided so much knowledge and excitement that anyone would be swept up in the Drupal tide.

Patrick’s Favorite Session

I was thrilled at the Kalabox session run by Mike Pirog and Matt Cheney. It’s awesome to see someone working hard to make a “Pantheon for local development” and I’m excited to hear about the changes upcoming for Kalabox 2.0. It’s a free, one click setup, Pantheon integrated local development beast. Feel free to try out Kalabox 1.0 here but please join me in supporting Kalabox 2.0 here.


DrupalCon tshirts. Photo credit: Kristen Pol.

There were some really fun tshirts in Austin. We brought 3 new designs of our own, thanks to our very talented team artist, Joe To, including Drup Oil, Features Reaper (happy version), and Drupal Woman (our Wonder Woman tribute) to fill out our growing number of awesome doodles. Going to Amsterdam? Become Aimee’s friend and she might bring you one! ;)

Aimee’s Favorite Tshirt

Four Kittens driving in a matte black, freshly DrupOil-ed El Camino wearing “I Make the Internet” t-shirts yelling “Grüezi Y’all!” (Four Kitchens, Hook 42, Pantheon, Amazee Labs).

Darryl’s Favorite Tshirt

Drup Oil!

Jon’s Favorite Tshirt

Four Kittens (Four Kitchens) was the funniest, DrupOil (Hook 42) was the coolest, but with the close second to the Borg (Cheeky Monkey Media).

Kristen’s Favorite Tshirt

Tough call but I saw a few people walking around with a Cyborg Druplicon tshirt that was quite awesome. Let me know if you know where to get a “fitted style” of one of those! ;)

Lindsay’s Favorite Tshirt

Four Kittens wins. Hands down.

Marc’s Favorite Tshirt

The Borg (Cheeky Monkey Media) really called to the geek in me for my favorite shirt. Several other shirts were really good too.

Patrick’s Favorite Tshirt

No doubt for me it’s the Drupal Watchdog God mode Bull. It’s a Drupal Bull with the DOOM styled God mode eyes.


Pantheon Partner Dinner at Eden East. Photo credit: Kristen Pol.

Aimee’s Favorite Food

Franklin Barbecue, hands down. And hands full of BBQ sauce.

Darryl’s Favorite Food

A Brazilian steakhouse! Different kinds of meat!

Jon’s Favorite Food

Franklin Barbecue has ruined me. I’ve had regional BBQ in New York, North Carolina, Georgia, and Tennessee... and this was on another level. Also, Craft Pride FTW (beer is food, right?). Huge thanks to Four Kitchens for a unique Austin experience.

Kristen’s Favorite Food

Wow… I don’t eat a lot a meat but had the best I’ve ever had at Franklin Barbecue. The hype is real though I don’t think I’d stand in line for 3 hours like the locals do (I was lucky enough to go thanks to Four Kitchens!).

Lindsay’s Favorite Food

Franklin Barbecue. There has not been a word created to explain the deliciousness of Franklin Barbecue.

Marc’s Favorite Food

The Brazilian meat was really good and there was an endless supply -- I didn’t need to eat for 2 days after that dinner :).

Patrick’s Favorite Food

I had all the white chip macadamia nut cookies. ALL of them. Like a hundred.


Trivia night with Patrick, Marc, Lindsay, Darryl & Jon. Photo credit: Kristen Pol.

Aimee’s Favorite Person

There are so many lovely people in the Drupal Community, so I’ll clump them by groups. Companies: The whole Pantheon team <3, Four Kitchens for being a lovely “guide” to the best of Austin, and all of the generous party sponsors (Lullabot, Lingotek, MediaCurrent, and more!). Buddies: I loved to experience DrupalCon through the eyes of our three first-time attendees. Being with Kristen and I, they were instantly immersed with the dedicated and passionate core sprint groups, exposed to the the different business folks and agencies from all over the world, and encouraged to explore with fervor (party). Which they did! It was great to hang with our extended family of sprinters (Ryan Weal) and additional “honorary Hook 42 team members” (Jon Peck and Darryl Richman) that shared the AirBnB house. It was a most entertaining time. New Friends: In the Business Summit I met Brian, a New York transplant who landed in New Mexico working as a Drupal developer. It was his first DrupalCon, he was rolling solo, and he was interested in contributing to core. He was a natural personality fit for our team and joined us for many of our Austin antics. I hadn’t really spent a lot of time with Ryan Weal, but had the pleasure to this week. He really is a bright and passionate fellow. And FUNNY!

Darryl’s Favorite Person

I enjoyed chatting with John (I have to dig out his card from my swag bag) at the Community Summit. He was leading the “micro sites” topic. Hanging with the Hooksters was great!

Jon’s Favorite Person

Don’t make me choose! This is not in particular order, I’m going to forget to mention some people and feel terrible, so I’ll have to blame beer and hope to be forgiven. It was great to see all sorts of people and groups who I usually interact with through a webcam. Four Kitchens was great, including Matt Grill, Mike Minecki, Caris Hurd, Suzy Bates, Chris Ruppel, Todd Nienkerk, Leah Mason, Elia Albarran, and Cecy Correa - wonderful conversations and great hosts. Also, meeting in-person with the end clients was fantastic, it’s one thing to work together, it’s another to enjoy BBQ and relax and see people in a different context. The Kalamuna crew kicked all sorts of ass, of course. Mike Pirog had a great presentation, networking and collaboration with Andrew Mallis on shuffleboard (team beard dominated, of course). Glad to meet John Ouellet, Emanuel Greucean, and Thiago de Mello Bueno. Thanks also to Alec Reynolds, Andrew Ward, Shannon O'Malley, and everyone else for your hospitality and being awesome! It was awesome collaborating with Ben Jeavons on site_audit and security_review integration. Had a really productive conversation with John Pugh and the Hostmaster (Aegir) team about adding more providers to Switchboard. Nice catching up with WNY / DUGTO friends like Darko Antic, Cleaver Barnes and Chris Luckhardt, along with the SANDCamp crew like Jacob Tooman, Matt Young, Doug Hoffman and Tim Bozeman. Good times with Ricky Pugh, Matt Cheney, Ben Sheldon, Josh Koenig, Suzanne Aldrich, David Strauss, Nick Stielau, Timani Tunduwani and Jessi Fischer from Pantheon. Hope I get to see Jesus Manuel Olivas, Matias Blazquez and others down in Bogotá! Finally, thank you to the entire Hook 42 crew - it was wonderful sharing such a great event with you, including many great nights and talks! To many more!

Kristen’s Favorite Person

I got very stressed out on Wednesday after an unexpected experience so was shaky and distressed. I got a big hug from Cathy Theys which was a great help and Brian, an EMT from New Mexico, gave me his chair, reminded me to take deep breaths, and suggested I eat some chocolate. So, remember, when you get stressed out: 1) get hugs, 2) relax and breathe, and 3) eat chocolate! :) It was also great fun to hang out with the new Hook 42 teammates and our extended team buddies, Darryl & Jon.

Lindsay’s Favorite Person

So many people, but if I have to pick out one person, it would be Morten Birch. 1. He is a complete badass. 2. Facial hair. 3. His undying enthusiasm and excitement for Twig.

Morten Birch at trivia night. Photo credit: Michael Schmid.

Marc’s Favorite Person

Collectively the whole community really impressed me. Being a noob to DrupalCon, I admired the collaboration between all levels of companies and attendees. Everyone had the same goal, openness, natural drive to help and grow one another in whatever capacity they were. I am thankful for the sponsors (big & small) to hold this event and the attendees for attending - there are too many to name. One person who really impressed me was Chris Weber from The Nerdery, who took the time to show some very helpful tools in PHP Storm to use with the GIT-hokey-pokey, code review, patch install, etc... In fact, a whole crowd gathered behind the few of us at the sprint table to watch also. Going one step further, Chris went to the adjacent room with the video and presented the same helpful tips for a greater audience. I really enjoyed and felt motivated from keynote speakers Erynn Petersen and Hugh Forrest.

Patrick’s Favorite Person

Suzanne Dergacheva is my favorite person right now. She really helped me feel at ease while I was lost in session trying to figure out exactly what was being said. We really bonded over our mutual love of teaching others anything that we know and how it leads to the best feelings in the world. She’s a kindred spirit, and she added me on LinkedIn confirming our friendship for life.

Social Event

Wow! The social event calendar was packed for Austin. We had a hard time getting to everything but did what we could. ;) 

Pantheon Party at Banger’s. Photo credit:  .

Aimee’s Favorite Social Event

Pantheon Party!! YAY!! Bangers, bands, buddies, and brews!!

Darryl’s Favorite Social Event

Pantheon Party!! YAY!! (but the one on Sunday night)

Jon’s Favorite Social Event

The after-sprint event at Craft Pride was the best conclusion to a great event; so many awesome people in the shade of a pecan tree enjoying a fantastic beer selection.

Kristen’s Favorite

Lots of great ones, but definitely trivia night for me. I got to judge this time and got to use my Bad Judgement to give Drupalers who were trying to lose a +1 instead of a +0. :P

Trivia Night at DrupalCon Austin. Photo credit: Michael Schmid.

Lindsay’s Favorite Social Event

Pantheon party. All she wants to do is dance, dance, dance.

Marc’s Favorite Social Event

Pantheon Party; the food, people, fun and music were all great!

Patrick’s Favorite Social Event

It was definitely Lullabot’s Wednesday night bar hub. It was a great night where I got to spend time with so many interesting and new individuals in my life such as Suzanne Degacheva, Lindsay Gaudinier, Aimee Degnan, Brian, Patrick, and so many more. It also ended by being biked home by a fellow Boston native who has moved out to Austin… which is something I might be doing in the very near future.

“Keep Austin Weird” Experience

Nothing would be complete without some “Keep Austin Weird” experiences. Hope you got a little taste of Austin weirdness too! :)

DrupalCon Austin Dries Bat. Photo credit: Paul Johnson.

Aimee’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

An ornately framed piece of red velvet in the master bedroom in our AirBnB house. It has a random scratch through the center. It has been named “Scratch on Velvet”.

Darryl’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

Bizarre “closed sidewalk” that you could take three steps around at either end and use the sidewalk, which other than the fencing, was in good working order.

Jon’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

Singing show tunes at the Swan Dive at midnight. Yup, that happened.

Kristen’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

After trivia night, a few of us got tacos at the Bomb Tacos truck. The Drupaler next to me (Shawn De Armond) had a beetle on his shoulder so I grabbed it so that it wouldn’t crawl into his hair… then I hear, ‘That’s not a beetle, that’s a “water bug”’. Fortunately, we had already eaten. ;)

Lindsay’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

Taking a pedicab around 2 am around Austin. That’s what sold me. Thanks Austin!

Marc’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

Psycho Dog: On a walk back to the house with Lindsay in the dark - this little dog flew out of nowhere barking with teeth showing and both of us were startled. The next fleeting thoughts were of Garfield (the cat) booting Odie (the dog) several feet. Luckily this ferocious dog decided it would be wiser to stop about a foot or two from us.

Patrick’s Favorite “Keep Austin Weird” Experience

I unfortunately had experienced Vertigo on Monday and my world was spinning for about 48 hours. I ended up leaving DrupalCon one day as I was too sick to function and walking the mile to my temporary casa which was locked not by key, but by a code. After about a half hour of entering the code correctly and being unable to open the door I ended up breaking into the own area I live. By removing the window from it’s frame and climbing in all while humming this pop culture tour de force song in my head.

That’s a wrap!

Thanks to the Drupal Association and all the volunteers for making DC Austin a huge success. Please leave a comment with some of your favorite things! And… see you in L.A. :)

DrupalCon Austin Bat Glasses. Photo credit: Paul Johnson.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014 Hook 42 Topics:
Categories: Elsewhere

Jackson River: Learning and Fun at DrupalCon Austin

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 06:37

DrupalCon Austin may have just rolled out of town but things certainly haven’t settled.  This was my third DrupalCon (Chicago, Denver and Austin) and, I have to say, it gets better every time!

Photo Credit: Michael Schmid

In just four short days, the Jackson River team packed in a lot of training, community building, knowledge sharing, socializing, and general Drupally hi-jinx that will impact our day-to-day work and the direction of our products and services for a long time to come. Here are a few highlights from the week:

  • I had the pleasure of attending the Advanced SASS and Compass for Responsive Web Design training session presented by Sam Richard, Chris Ruppel and Ian Carrico.  We took a deep dive into the workflow of building responsively and a suite of tools (Gulp, Singularity, Style Prototype, etc.) that can support and expand our responsive toolkit.  Responsive web design was a hot topic throughout the week!
  • Semantic Site Architecture presented by Jody Hamilton from Zivtech and Type, Responsively: Design For Readability & Meaning on Any Screen presented by Jason Pamental of H+W Design were my highlight sessions for Tuesday.  Semantic Site Architecture touched on the importance of planning and structure to the effectiveness and sustainability of a build with emphasis on great tools like the Build Spec. Type, Responsively explored the best practices for type scale across screen sizes, measurement units, the complexities of @font-face and the techniques you can use to provide a consistent experience.
  • Thanks to the Four Kitchens crew, Phillip and I got to try the world famous Franklin’s BBQ!  
  • The front-end and site building tracks kept rolling Wednesday. Viewception: Three Levels Deep, presented by Brandon Ratzloff, showcased his technique of creating nested views to display complex data. It never fails that I can always learn something new and wonderful to do with Views at DrupalCon! Managing Complex Projects with Design Components, presented by John Albin Wilkins, explored new techniques with web components, CSS layering, utilizing SMACSS and BEM to create more sustainable themes.
  • Hands down, the best party I attended all week was Patheon and New Relic’s shindig at Bangers Sausage House & Beer Garden. Drupalistas know how to have a good time and this party was no exception.
  • By the end of the conference, I know I wasn’t the only one feeling a little overwhelmed, so it was only fitting to wrap up with the My Brain is Full: Keeping Pace with Front-End & UX Innovations session presented by Brian Wald and David Hwang.  Brian and David facilitated a really great conversation about the pace of front-end innovation and how we, as a Drupal community, can make Drupal a more flexible platform for front-end.
  • The Jackson River crew met up one last time before heading out at Easy Tiger for a few beers and maybe the biggest (and best!) pretzels in town!  

DrupalCon was a fantastic learning experience, a great hub for community building, and an opportunity to show off my current favorite city to friends, colleagues and clients!

Tags: drupalcondrupalprofessional developmentCompanyConferences and SpeakingTechnologyDrupal Planet
Categories: Elsewhere

Drupal Commerce: Adding Paid Content to an Existing Drupal Blog

Wed, 11/06/2014 - 00:59

One of the most powerful things that you can do to a Drupal site is to add Drupal Commerce. With some modules and a bit of time, you can transform any Drupal 7 site into a revenue generation engine — no matter if you are selling physical products, file downloads, or just wanting to monetize digital content or access. The ability to simply enable commerce on an existing site is very powerful and can open up opportunities that you might not have considered.

One of those possibilities is paid content. This post will walk you through adding paid content to an existing blog site using two modules from our Digital Commerce Suite: Commerce License (CL) and Commerce License Billing (CLB). At DrupalCon 2014 in Austin, in the second half of Commerce by Example, we walked through the process of setting up a blog. The instructions and the demo site archive are here (link above) so you can walk through at your own pace.

Categories: Elsewhere