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ThinkShout: Commerce iATS 2.0

ven, 16/05/2014 - 17:00

Last month, we released the 2.0-beta release of the Commerce iATS module, a Drupal module that leverages Drupal Commerce and the iATS Payments PHP Wrapper to add support for payment processing via iATS Payments.

We also promised to deliver ACH/EFT and Direct Debit payment functionality before DrupalCon Austin. It took a few long days, but we're proud to announce the release of Commerce iATS 2.0.

Commerce iATS 2.0 is packed with new features that allow you to fully take advantage of the services offered by iATS Payments.

New Payment Methods

In addition to supporting credit card payments, Commerce iATS now supports ACH/EFT, meaning your users can now make payments directly from their bank account.

Because iATS Payments supports international payments, we made sure that you can too. Commerce iATS 2.0 fully supports Direct Debit for the UK.

If you're familiar with Direct Debit, you'll know that any website offering the service is required to implement a very specific checkout process.

With assistance from iATS Payments, we've done all the work for you. Commerce iATS now provides a set of custom checkout panes for the complete Direct Debit checkout process. You don't even have to worry about the 12-day lead time on initial payments; the module figures it out and gives your users a choice of start dates.

More Options for Recurring Payments

Recurring payments are great for donations, which fits in with iATS Payments' goal of supporting the needs of nonprofit organizations.

With Drupal Commerce, you always had the option of recurring payments using the Commerce Card on File module, but iATS Payments handles that for you. With Commerce iATS 2.0, you can opt to have iATS Payments bill your customers on a recurring schedule rather than have your Drupal site do all the work.

The Drupal Commerce order stays updated with recurring transactions thanks to iATS Payment's ReportLink service. Commerce iATS implements a cron task to pull in daily transaction reports from iATS, updating your orders in the process.

In addition to the new features, we took time to make the module more robust. Some of our improvements are:

  • The Payment Methods Admin Page now warns of any unconfigured payment methods
  • Error handling in the checkout process is much more user-friendly
  • Payment method settings are clearer and easier to understand
See you at DrupalCon

ThinkShout and iATS Payments will be attending DrupalCon Austin. Don't miss the chance to talk nonprofit payment processing with iATS at booth 508. We'll be spending time at the iATS booth to talk about Commerce iATS. Follow us on Twitter for updates on when we'll be around.

Get Commerce iATS from our project page.

Catégories: Elsewhere Language lessons: Think first!

ven, 16/05/2014 - 16:56

Catégories: Elsewhere

Mark Koester: Node.js Rules Chatterbox: Customizable Realtime Messages on a Drupal site

ven, 16/05/2014 - 16:30

This is a the module I wish I had when I started to integrate node.js with Drupal.

In its essence, Node.js Rules Chatterbox is a simple way to make your site spit out real-time messages to your site users.

Whether it's a warning message to admin or notification to certain members, it provides a simple way to customize display messages using Rules. For a site builder, it gives you the real-time notifications power of node.js with the ease of creating customized events and reactions via Drupal Rules UI.

Node.js Rules Chatterbox for Drupal provides a general purpose integration between Drupal and a Node.js backend. Essentially you can configure different events to trigger messages that are subsequently displayed to connected users in realtime.

Drupal doesn’t do realtime. Node.js does. Node.js Rules Chatterbox bridges the gap and creates a flexible system for site builders and developers to display messages in blocks. If you can create a Block and configure a Rule, then you can use this module.

In this post, I’ll to briefly explain how Node.js works (compared to Drupal), then explain how to setup and use Node.js Rules Chatterbox and finally provide a few simple examples and practical use cases.

Node.js and Drupal

Node.js is built for speed and as such, this technology solves one of the major deficiencies of a PHP-based CMS like Drupal or WordPress: fast realtime connections and messaging.

Drupal is a powerful and flexible system for organizing managing content, media and users. The addition of Drupal Commerce turns a Drupal site into one of the best “non cookie cutter” ecommerce solutions available today. Unfortunately, though Drupal might excel at organizing and displaying various types of content, by default it is not the fastest system out there and it was never intended for real-time functionality. In fact, PHP itself is not designed or intended to handle realtime, asynchronous connections.

Enter Node.js for Drupal. This Drupal API module provides an integration between a Drupal site and a realtime node.js backend.

While I often here the the comment from non-Drupal folks about how Drupal is a closed system on PHP, in reality Drupal is a system built to interact with other system. Whether it’s your Apache Solr Server or even a 3rd party service, Drupal is huge mashup of technologies when you need it to be.

Quick Definition: What is Node.js?

Let’s start with a definition. Node.js as defined by Wikipedia is:

Node.js is a software system designed for writing highly scalable Internet applications, notably web servers. Programs are written in JavaScript, using event-driven, asynchronous I/O to minimize overhead and maximize scalability.

Let’s break that down a bit in technical terms (if the technical stuff is over your head, skip to next part)

  1. Node.js is javascript that is meant to run on the server (as opposed to traditional usage of javascript which is used to make web pages do fancy stuff).
  2. It’s often coupled with websockets protocol in modern web browsers to all very efficient connections between multiple users.
  3. It’s a thinned down application setup (unlike modern CMS and application setups like Drupal or Ruby on Rails) that focus on the minimal modules according to an applications needs.
  4. It uses Asynchronous I/O (or non-blocking I/O or input/output) processing that allows other processes to continue even before the transmission has completed.

See more at: Drupal Case Study: Using Node.js to Create Live Instant Stock Notifications

If this definition and list of features didn’t confuse you, just focus on the fact that node.js adds non-blocking speed and can provide a way to connect to multiple users efficiently and then push messages to those connected users.

Node.js for Drupal: Installation and Setup

The actual installation of a Node.js and integrating it with Drupal goes a bit beyond this post. Unfortunately, node.js setup can be a pain depending on your server skills. If you are a linux-based server, then the Documentation on Installation will likely work for you.

In my opinion, the easiest way is to use Heroku for your first node.js instance. Just follow this tutorial. Amitai Burstein describes this in detail with code samples in "Drupal, Node.js, Pantheon, and Heroku.” You can see my own post about the Chatroom demo site, which uses this same method.

Once node.js is setup and connected to your Drupal site, then it’s relatively easy to use and integrate one of various contrib modules.

In particularly I’ve used Chatroom module a lot. I’ve even contributed back the Chatroom Sounds module to provide alert sounds when new messages are received. For example on Coghlan Capital, we used a customized version of this module to create a realtime messaging space for financial trades between members and experts. Subscription members receive instant alerts of market changes and recent trades from industry experts.

Arguably the node.js installation is the hardest step and things get easier from here, especially with a module like Node.js Rules Chatterbox.

Node.js Rules Chatterbox: Installation and Initial Setup

Once you have a working node.js server, just enable “Node.js Rules Chatterbox” like a normal module. Then go to the initial configuration page at admin/config/nodejs/rules/channels and "Create Notification Channel Block.”

This is the block that will display messages from configured Rules Reactions to users in real-time. In this configuration, you set the title and channel name as well as the number of messages you wish to display.

Once you've created the channel, you now have a block that you can position and control its visibility like you would any normal block.

If you aren’t familiar with node.js and, it’s good to take a step back here and explain what’s going on. Essentially, we are creating a special messaging channel that users will connect to when they visit a page. There are number of authentication steps that Drupal’s Node.js API module handles, but once completed the user is part of the channel. In our case, this channel is used to pass messages from Drupal PHP to the node.js backend, then display to the user on their screen.

Once configured make sure the block is visible and accessible on the site according the page or pages you want it displayed.

Using Rules Events and Reactions to Trigger Messages to Node.js Rules Chatterbox

Like Views, Rules module is one of the most important site builder tools modules you should master. If you aren't familar with Rules, check out the free video series Learn Rules Framework from NodeOne. It provides both the fundamentals as well as some useful, lesser known integrations.

For the sake of explanation, let's create a simple Rule to post a message each time a user logins. First, create a Rule with the Event "User has logged in." Then, add a Reaction "Notify to Nodejs Channel." Here are the relevant Rules configurations:

The only really important thing to note is where or which channel you want the message posted to. In our case, we only have one channel created, so we used that one.

It's that simple: *1. Create a Node.js Channel, 2. Configure Block Display, and then 3. Add a Rule to Trigger Messages to be sent to the Block.

Quick Technical Note: Using the API to trigger messages

While this post focused on the site builder, this module also provides a simple API for using code to trigger messages.

First, call nodejs_rules_chatterbox_notify($message,$uid = '') in your module to send a custom notification:

Userid of sender. Default value is logged in user.

Second, implement hook_chatterbox_notify_alter($message) in your module, to modify the notification message before it get published. It's that simple.


Node.js is one of the best technology choices for fast real-time messaging. Drupal remains one of the best CMSs available and continues to improve. Drupal's Node.js API module makes it simple to integrate node.js backend with Drupal. Several modules are already providing some node.js integration with Drupal and many people are building custom code to mashup Drupal and Node.js.

Node.js Rules Chatterbox fills a gap by making it easy for site builders to use Rules to trigger real-time notifications to their site users.

For example, you could create on the dashboard a real-time notification for new users or newly logged in users. You could create a block that provides messages when new posts or comments are add.

These are just a few examples of how it might be used. What ideas do you have? How might this module be used to solve your site builder needs?

Tags: Node.jsdrupalRulesReal-timeDrupal PlanetPlanet Drupal Mark Koester @markwkoester Mark has worked on Drupal since the early days of D6. He is passionate about open source as well as entrepreneurship. When he isn't building, he enjoys traveling and speaking one of his many foreign languages. Chengdu, China
Catégories: Elsewhere

Drupal Association News: Please Welcome Mike Lamb & Rob Gill to the Drupal Association Board of Directors

ven, 16/05/2014 - 15:24

I’m excited to announce that the Drupal Association Board of Directors has filled two open seats on the Board. Please welcome Mike Lamb of Pfizer and Rob Gill of NBC Universal. Mike and Rob fill board-appointed seats rather than the At-Large seats that are filled via community vote (by the way, stay tuned for communications about the next community vote for 2015 At-Large seats).   

We couldn’t be more thrilled about Mike and Rob joining the board. Because they both have extensive experience as end-users of Drupal, we believe they will provide valuable input from a perspective that currently isn’t fully realized on the board.

Mike, who lives in Wales, has been with Pfizer for the past ten years. He has a background in web development, business management, and project management, and currently is the Director of Marketing Technology Strategy.

Rob is based in the U.S. and is the Vice President of Media Products at NBCUniversal, Inc, where he advocates open source as a method of rapid content creation and delivery in a quickly shifting media landscape. Both Rob and Mike are well-versed in Drupal and have been great advocates for the project in their respective organizations.

Both of the new board members will attend their first face-to-face board meeting at DrupalCon Austin. If you will be attending the event, please stop by the board meeting on Wednesday June 4 and say hello.

We are excited about the addition of Mike and Rob. We’re looking forward to the next two years with them, and know they will be fantastic members of the Drupal Association Board of Directors.

Catégories: Elsewhere

Lullabot: Content Delivery Networks (CDNs)

ven, 16/05/2014 - 15:08

In this episode Addison Berry talks with special guest Will Hetherington (from NetroMedia), along with Lullabots Joe Shindelar and Ben Chavet, about content delivery networks, otherwise known as CDNs. The term is thrown around quite a lot, especially when talking about ways to improve your site performance, but what exactly is a CDN and how do they work?

Catégories: Elsewhere

Code Karate: Drupal 7 Image Styles

ven, 16/05/2014 - 13:53

The Image Styles modules is part of Drupal 7 core modules. While simple, this module is a backbone to an enormous amount of use cases within Drupal.

In this episode you will learn:

Catégories: Elsewhere

Microserve: Universal Analytics and Drupal - What do you need to know?

ven, 16/05/2014 - 11:19

Universal Analytics is the latest improvement to Google Analytics and primarily aims to provide a more user-centric view so you can see how users are engaging with your website across a wide range of different devices.

This post aims to cover some of the key areas such as why you should upgrade and how to upgrade.

Please feel free to skip to relevant sections:

Universal Vs Classic

New members are automatically signed up to Universal, with existing members being offered the choice to upgrade at their own will. Google will however automatically move all members over at some point soon.

Universal Analytics offers the same features and services as the classic Google Analytics, but offers a number of additional features which you may find useful.

What new features can I make use of? User ID feature

Universal Analytics can receive data in relation to a specific User ID, which means you can now track multiple sessions for a single user over different devices with a persistent ID.  For example, a user may have registered on your site during the day using their phone then returned later that evening to make a purchase using their desktop PC. It’s now possible to view this kind of cross device and cross session user engagement.

New and more flexible data collection methods

Three new data collection methods are introduced with Universal Analytics, which means you can now track behavior on any digital device rather than just websites. Apps, game consoles and information kiosks for example can now all be tracked!

Timezone based processing

Google Analytics previously processed data in Pacific Standard Time, but with Universal Analytics data is now processed based on the timezone set in your specific view.

Organic search sources

Analytics recognises traffic from popular search engines as organic search traffic and attributes all other directed traffic as referred traffic. You can now modify the list of search engines to control how Analytics displays traffic from search engines which aren’t on its list.

Referral and Search exclusions

You can now exclude specific websites from being listed within referred traffic, and exclude specific terms from being listed within organic search traffic.

Common use cases for this maybe where you want to discount customers who found you by searching for your company/brand name from organic search traffic, or to discount URLs from referred traffic which are a third party service of your website (such as a redirect as part of a commerce workflow).

Session and campaign timeout handling

Universal Analytics allows you to manually set session and campaign durations to make them more applicable to the business requirements of your website.

What do I need to do to upgrade to Universal Analytics?

To upgrade to the new Universal Analytics you must upgrade your GA property first via the admin section in your Google account. You must have the edit permission assigned to your account to do this, and the transfer should take between 1 and 2 days to fully complete.

There are a number of things to consider before you upgrade, so see if any of them apply to you first.

Once the GA property has been upgraded you will need to update your website tracking code, however this step is optional and not doing so will only prevent you from utilising the new features, as all existing features will still work correctly.

Note: You must upgrade the property first, as upgrading the code before upgrading the property will cause data to no longer be tracked.

Updating the Drupal tracking code

At the time of writing there are 2 different versions of the Drupal 7 Google Analytics module; 7.x-1.4 and 7.x-2.x-dev.

The 7.x-1.4 branch is the current stable release which has been available for a number of years and uses the standard Google Analytics (GA.js support).

The 7.x-2.x-dev branch is the new development version to support the new Universal Analytics, and is currently unstable. Further information is provided by hass (the modules primary maintainer) as follows:

“This branch is not yet fully functional and removes a lot of well known features like:

  • AdSense (Not yet available)

Known to be broken:

  • Custom Variables are now custom dimensions/metrics and not yet implemented.”

However others have reported that the upgrading to the new module appeared to be seamless.

It should be noted that if you use both the old ga.js script and the new analytics.js script together then pageviews will be over-counted in reports, therefore the updated script should replace the old script.

If you wish to use the new script but do not want to upgrade to the new 7.x-2.x-dev branch then I would recommend disabling the Google Analytics module and adding the new script to the head of your html.tpl.php file, which as pointed out by John Downing at Drupal Camp Ottowa  is fine in practice, but not preferred as support provided by the module is ideal and offers additional functionality such as custom reporting.

Additional tracking code syntax changes

Other syntax changes have been made which may require code to be updated such as changes to how events and ecommerce are tracked.

Here at Microserve we often add custom events tracking code to track clicks on menus and promotional items to enable us to see which content the user is most interested in, which means we would need to also manually change the JS code for any sites we upgrade.

Codewise, events were previously tracked with a code snippet like this:

gaq.push(['_trackEvent', 'category', 'action', 'opt_label', opt_value, opt_noninteraction]);

however the new tracking code requires them to be tracked like this:

ga('send', 'event', 'category', 'action', 'opt_label', opt_value, {'nonInteraction': 1});

A full list of tracking code changes can be found here.

How does this affect me and do I need to act now?

The most important thing we would recommend is to not blindly update to Universal Analytics before consulting your developer(s), as you need to be sure that the changes will not negatively impact your site.

True, reporting will still work without any code changes needed, but are there any custom variables or snippets which your site uses that the new Universal Analytics is no longer compatible with?

We would also recommend you don’t completely ignore the update, as it's much better to upgrade painlessly or be prepared to upgrade when required, rather than waiting for Google to automatically upgrade your site to Universal Analytics for you.

Catégories: Elsewhere

Mogdesign: Basic 2 legged oAuth client

ven, 16/05/2014 - 10:44

Catégories: Elsewhere

Modules Unraveled: 108 Updates on Drupal 8 Development with Larry Garfield - Modules Unraveled Podcast

ven, 16/05/2014 - 07:00
Published: Fri, 05/16/14Download this episodeDrupal 8
  • What’s the status of WSCCI, SCOTCH etc?
  • What do you think will be held off until Drupal 8.1
  • What else have you been working on since the last time we talked?
    • Getting off the island
    • FIG
  • How have all of the initiatives influenced each other.
  • Changes for developers?
    • OOP
    • Drupal 8 Acquia Webinar
  • Changes for sitebuilders?
Questions from Twitter
  • Marc Drummond
    Are you arguing with @eaton right now? How about now? What about this moment? Or the next?
  • Marc Drummond
    Serious question. I'm trying but still struggle with learning OO concepts and patterns. Good resources?
  • Marc Drummond
    I keep trying to get my head around concepts like Factory methods and things like that. Hurts my brain!
  • MD
    D8 API documentation? You're D7 Module Development book was excellent in content and timing. Anything similar?
  • Ted Bowman
    What new types of things will b possible n Contrib modules in #drupal8 that weren't possible previously
  • M Parker
    There’s a new in-code documentation portal at and has more
  • Jesus Manuel Olivas
    Interesting contributed projects already on #drupal8 or that could be great to have as webprofiler, @stackphp?
Episode Links: Larry on drupal.orgLarry on TwitterPrevious interviewPalantir.netAustin SessionPrague session on new release cyclePHP 5.4 Traits Blog PostDrupal 8 and non-PHP developers blog postHacking Core Without Killing Kittens PostEaton/Crell keynotePHP the right wayMastering Object Oriented PHPPHP.netThe Drupal 8 scaffolding tool#drupal-wscci channel on IRCTags: 
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PreviousNext: For The Love Of The Content Editors

ven, 16/05/2014 - 00:52

Pamela Barone presents her DrupalSouth Wellington talk at Jam's (virtual) DrupalCamp.


Catégories: Elsewhere

Drupal core announcements: These two weeks in Drupal Core

ven, 16/05/2014 - 00:30
What's new with Drupal 8?

The past two weeks saw the Drupal community rally together to support each other and recognize the hard work involved in making Drupal awesome, starting with the launch of the Drupal Core Gittip Team and the news that Alex Pott had been hired by Chapter Three to work on Drupal 8 development full-time. It also saw some great performance improvements in Drupal 8 and a handful of Developer Experience improvements.

Drupal Core Gittip Team

On Friday, May 2nd, Cathy Theys (YesCT) and Alex Pott (alexpott) launched the Drupal Core Gittip Team, a new funding effort to allow companies and individuals to support the people who are regularly contributing their own time, without compensation, to Drupal Core development. (See their announcement and Team FAQ for more information.) A weekly contribution to the Core Gittip team is a great way for individuals and companies (and you!) to both help Drupal 8 and improve the long-term sustainability of Drupal Core development.

Sponsored Drupal 8 development

On Tuesday May 6th, Alex Pott announced that Chapter Three had hired him to work on Drupal 8 full-time, and that he would be using his Gittip income to support the rest of the Drupal Core Gittip team. This came a year and thirty-five days after he became a Drupal co-maintainer and nine months after he asked for the community's help to continue to support his Drupal 8 development work.

In response to Alex's announcement, Dries blogged about the investment case for employing a Drupal core contributor and Jennifer Hodgdon responded with the case for a small Drupal shop contributing to Drupal.

Contrib fundraising initiatives

Nick Veenhof announced that the Search API team were able to meet (and exceed!) their goal to fund the porting of Search API to Drupal 8 along with the next sprint date.

And, Wolfgang Ziegler (fago) announced the #d8rules initiative, an effort to get the Rules module ported to Drupal 8.

Where's Drupal 8 at in terms of release?

Last week, we fixed 13 critical issues and 16 major issues, and opened 11 criticals and 12 majors. That puts us overall at 115 release-blocking critical issues and 545 major issues.

4 beta-blocking issues were fixed last week. There are still 20 of 163 beta blockers that must be resolved before we can release a Drupal 8 beta.

Where can I help? Top criticals to hit this week

Each week, we check with core maintainers and contributors for the "extra critical" criticals that are blocking other work. These issues are often tough problems with a long history. If you're familiar with the problem space of one of these issues and have the time to dig in, help drive it forward by reviewing, improving, and testing its patch, and by making sure the issue's summary is up to date and any API changes are documented with a draft change record.

More ways to help

As always, if you're new to contributing to core, check out Core contribution mentoring hours. Twice per week, you can log into IRC and helpful Drupal core mentors will get you set up with answers to any of your questions, plus provide some useful issues to work on.

You can also help by sponsoring Drupal core development on Gittip.

Notable Commits

The best of git log --since "2014-04-30" --pretty=oneline (147 commits in total):

There were a number of commits that improved performance directly and indirectly:

  • Issue #2099131 by jessebeach, Wim Leers, catch, Berdir, benjifisher, martin107, andypost: Use #pr_render pattern for entity render caching.
    This slight change to the render pipeline allows Drupal to cache the render array, in addition to the resulting HTML. Preliminary tests showed that, from a warm cache, this change makes full page loads between 15 and 25% faster. Woohoo!
  • Issue #2226761 by Wim Leers: Change all default settings and config to fast/safe production value.
    This changes the default settings for new sites so that HTML and Twig caching, CSS and JavaScript aggregation are all turned on, and Twig debugging and Twig auto-reloading is turned off.
    It also introduced an example.settings.local.php with examples of how to toggle these settings on development sites.
  • Issue #2257709 by znerol, Wim Leers: Remove the interdependence between the internal page cache and management of the Cache-Control header for external caches.
    This commit is part of an ongoing effort to modernize the page caching mechanisms in core. This change makes the Symfony Response object responsible for setting the Cache-Control HTTP header.
  • Issue #2228261 by beejeebus, kim.pepper, alexpott, Wim Leers | catch: Add a local, PhpStorage-based cache backend.
    This will make it possible to cache data on the filesystem when it makes sense to do so.
  • Issue #2241249 by Wim Leers: First step in making search results pages cacheable: add the associated SearchPage's cache tag.

To improve the developer experience (DX):

  • Issue #2079797 by ParisLiakos, Xano, amateescu, tim.plunkett: Provide a trait for $this->t() and this->formatPlural().
    Previously, any class that containing at least one translatable string needed to define a t() function that called \Drupal::translation()->translate(...) in order for the string extractor to determine what needed to be translated.
    This patch reduces the boilerplate code to a single line: use StringTranslationTrait; through the use of a PHP Trait. Classes with this trait can still call $this->t() to make strings translatable.
    Reducing boilerplate code for the win!
  • Issue #2241633 by sun: Simplify site-specific service overrides.
    You can now override a service in your module by simply adding a services.yml file.
  • Issue #2257835 by tim.plunkett, sun, Jalandhar: Move form submission logic out of FormBuilder int a new class.


  • Issue #2039163 by Reinmar, Wim Leers: Update CKEditor library to 4.4.
    Did you know that the CKEditor Widgets feature introduced in CKEditor 4.3 was specifically developed for Drupal 8 as a way to make accessible, easy-to-use templates in body content?
    This patch updated CKEditor from 4.2 to 4.4, adding this feature and unblocking a couple of other ones.
  • Issue #2116363 by Berdir, jessebeach | fago: Unified repository of field definitions (cache + API)>
    This milestone Entity Field API commit concludes work begun at DrupalCon Prague and unblocks the removal of legacy D7 field API code.

You can also always check the Change records for Drupal core for the full list of Drupal 8 API changes from Drupal 7.

Drupal 8 Around the Interwebs

Here are a selection of the best blog posts about Drupal 8 in the past few weeks:

Drupal 8 in "Real Life"

There are a whole bunch of camps and sprints happening this coming weekend (May 16, 17th and 18th)!

  • Drupal Open Days 2014 in Dublin, Ireland on May 16th and 17th, with a session on building Multilingual sites in D8.
  • DrupalCamp Wrocław in Wrocław, Poland on May 16th, 17th and 18th has sessions on CKEditor in Drupal 8, Drupal 8 on mobile platforms, and a session on what to look for today so as not to get left behind when Drupal 8 is released.
  • DrupalCamp Spain 2014 in Valencia, Spain on May 16th, 17th and 18th with a Drupal Core Criticals sprint and sessions about CMI, Sessions in D8, Commerce in D8 and a couple of talks on Migrate in D8.
  • MoldCamp 2014 in Chisinau, Moldova on May 17th and 18th, featuring sessions on Guzzle and what to expect in Drupal 8.
  • Drupal Camp Alpe-Adria in Portoroz, Slovenia on May 17th and 18th, with sessions on the D8 Entity API, Rules in D8 and CMI; and with D8 sprints.
  • TC Drupal Spring Sprint in Minneapolis, MN on May 17th, featuring a documentation sprint!
  • Albany Drupal Sprint Day in Albany, NY on May 18th.

Also coming up are:

  • DrupalCamp Helsinki on May 23rd and 24th in Helsinki, Finland, featuring sessions on Symfony, Media Management in Drupal 7 and 8, D8 JavaScript, D8 Routing and Menus, D8 Theming and multiple sessions on Twig. And, to top it all off, there will be code sprints.
  • DrupalCamp Soleil 2014 in Montpellier in the south of France on May 24th and 25th, featuring an non-non-conference on Drupal 8.
  • A Drupal 8 Code Sprint in Leuven, Belgium on May 25th.
  • DrupalCamp Yorkshire 2014 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England on May 31st and June 1st.

Don't forget that DrupalCon Austin is quickly approaching! The extended sprints start on May 31st and run until June 8th. If you plan to participate in any way (remotely or in-person), please sign up ahead of time so we can plan for your attendance!

Whew! That's a wrap!

Do you follow Drupal Planet with devotion, or keep a close eye on the Drupal event calendar, or git pull origin 8.x every morning without fail before your coffee? We're looking for more contributors to help compile these posts. You could either take a few hours once every six weeks or so to put together a whole post, or help with one section more regularly. Contact xjm if you'd like to help communicate all the interesting happenings in Drupal 8!

Catégories: Elsewhere

Drupal Association News: Happy Global Accessibility Awareness Day

jeu, 15/05/2014 - 22:11

Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and people and companies from all around the globe are participating. I had the privilege of giving a speech this morning on how Drupal is one of the best content management systems for accessibility. It’s always inspiring to see the Drupal community’s commitment to accessibility.

What is accessibility?

Accessibility is about making a product, device or service as widely available as possible. With websites this means providing greater accommodation, generally through a web browser, to a wider diversity of humanity. Web accessibility works to support the whole population, not just those who have perfect vision and are easily able to use a keyboard and mouse. Scalable text, semantics like headings, and even mobile responsive capabilities all fall under the umbrella of accessibility.

Why is Drupal great for accessibility?

The Drupal community has chosen to address accessibility at the source. In Drupal 8 we are adding meaning through new semantic HTML5 elements in a way that is easy and gives screen reader users much needed context. This structure also applies to Drupal 8’s out-of-the-box mobile capabilities, giving screen reader users the ability to navigate and even administer their site through their phone.

Additionally, Drupal’s multilingual functionality is fantastic. Because of the community’s early commitment to internationalization, it’s easy to have more than one language at a time enabled on a website, and Drupal’s internationalization structure has made it easier to build in accessibility for multiple languages at once.

Drupal 8, builds on the accessibility work done in previous releases. We’re incorporating aural alerts, better tab ordering, forced alt text, and more to make it even easier for individuals with disabilities.  With Views being incorporated into Core, Views UI has been made more accessible, as has the table output which is now used throughout the admin interface.

How can I help?

Drupal’s accessibility is great, but just because your website is built with it doesn’t mean it is accessible. It is always useful to engage with people who have disabilities, and use automated testing tools, educate yourself on the issue and have an expert provide an audit of your site. Seek feedback from users with different abilities, and really listen thoughtfully to what they have to say. Together, we can make a difference!

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Drupal core announcements: Drupal 8 alpha 12 on May 21

jeu, 15/05/2014 - 20:30

The next alpha for Drupal 8 will be alpha 12! Here is the schedule for the alpha release.

May 18-20, 2014 Only critical and major patches committed May 21, 2014 Drupal 8.0-alpha12 released. Emergency commits only. May 22-25, 2014 Disruptive patch window
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Cheppers blog: Bundlerize your SASSy themes!

jeu, 15/05/2014 - 16:08

Nowadays many web-frontend developer use Compass framework to easily manage the CSS side of the currently developed project. We at Cheppers use Compass to compile the SASS files in our custom theme projects. If you do too, and you ever ran into an ugly circular gem file dependency problem, you definitely should use Bundler.

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Drupal core announcements: Accessibility Issues That Affect Administrators (Part 2 of D8 A11y Update)

mer, 14/05/2014 - 23:02

In Part 1, I mentioned Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG) although most of the analysis here will be geared to achieving Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 AA. Drupal is both about web content and the process of authoring that content and ATAG 2.0 is about both. For the most part we’ve looked at seeing that the admin side of Drupal is as accessible as the public facing components. The interface also has a strong role in producing better, more accessible content. Being able to force alt text for images is a part of this, but it is just the beginning.

Many of the elements mentioned in Part 1 will also be present on the admin side. For instance, we’ve adopted similar approaches to both Bartik & the default admin theme Seven when it comes to ARIA & HTML5.

Administering any CMS, you are ultimately navigating web forms to manage the content. We’ve done lots of little things to clean up the accessibility of the admin side from silencing the “*” for screen readers to adding missing titles. There are lots of places where LABELS were used for markup rather than as a semantic relationship, and we’ve fixed most of those now (see 1811216, 2044521, 1932068 & 882666). We’ve also enlarged the font size for things like the table sorting link so it is easier for people who have mobility challenges to find and use.

We also cleaned up the accessibility contextual links (849926 & 1905340). Removed blank table headers, fixed up file uploads so that screen readers get some notifications and made sure that parents didn't show up if there were no child elements present. dealing with parents. Lots of little items like this have been cleaned up throughout the interface, but since the understanding about web accessibility has grown so much Drupal 8 contributors it is a lot less than it used to be. Accessibility is talked about by much more than the accessibility team.

These forms ultimately encourage content authors to follow best practice in the creation of their content, including web forms. By using Drupal properly and following the examples in Core it will be much easier for everyone to create accessible content by default, an important part of ATAG 2.0 AA compliance. A simple example of this is that we expanded the allowed filters in Drupal 8 to encourage users to use HTML headings in the default Filtered HTML text format.

On the admin side we made internationalization more accessible by improving the String Translation UI and ensuring that the original language is set semantically. We have also allowed the ability to synchronize alt and titles text for multi-lingual images. Most of the other accessibility challenges with multi-lingual sites are then just taken care of when the content is presented to the users. A great illustration of ATAG 2.0.

As with the public facing links, we have continued to ensure that the “purpose of each link can be determined from the link text alone” and have done so both in the Forums as well as with the main Add content links.

We increased the maximum allowed text size for alt and title strings to be 1024 characters allowing for more complex descriptions of images. Although not in Core yet, through CKEditor it is possible to add longdesc links for other images.

jQuery UI’s modal dialogs are used all over in the admin side and are a great example of the Proudly Invented Elsewhere concept, as is the adoption of CKEditor. Serious work went into choosing which WYSIWYG editor went into Drupal 8 and accessibility was a big component of the decision. With that we get a lot of accessibility gains as IBM and others have worked to improve CKEditor’s accessibility over the years. With Drupal we have improved our own configuration pages so that it can be administered with people using assistive technologies. We will also get benefits from accessibility enhancements made to CKEditor, like the Language of Parts improvements which are scheduled for a 4.3 release.

Views. The most powerful module in Drupal 6 and 7 got brought into Core. With that it got cleaned up a great deal, particularly for it’s accessibility. Now it is even easier for administrators with disabilities to use this incredibly powerful query engine. There were a bunch of basic improvements like:

None of these will affect the output of Views, but there were also improvements to the output as well. The mini-pagers in views needed a header and additional context to understand the purpose of the previous/next links. This brings it up with the accessibility levels for pagers in the rest of Drupal Core.

The tables are also significantly improved as there is now proper id/header semantics included by default. This makes it easier for users to know where they are on large data tables. To keep up with data tables in HTML5 we have had to add captions and descriptions and removed the summary element for tables. Having this ability to control the captions and descriptions of tables is a really strong advantage for Drupal.

Another nice element is that many core admin listing pages are being migrated over to Views, so that this semantic presentation is available for many of the lists that are required critical for Drupal 8.

Plug: I will be presenting about the Drupal Accessibility Advantage at 7am ET (May 15th) as part of Inclusive Design 24. There will be 24 such videos, one for every hour of Global Accessibility Awareness Day. These videos should be available in the future for those who miss tomorrow's presentation.

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Propeople Blog: 23 Acquia Certified Drupal Developers (and Counting)

mer, 14/05/2014 - 22:10

Every day at Propeople, I get to interact and work with a top-notch team of Drupal experts. And even though those of us at Propeople, as well as our clients, can vouch for the high caliber of our team, it never hurts to have some solid facts that show the awesome talent that we’re lucky enough to have on our team. This includes receiving awards, taking on some of the largest Drupal projects in the world, and, now, the Acquia Certification Program - a new program created by Acquia to validate the skills and knowledge of Drupal developers.

Acquia just launched the certification at the beginning of April, and already Propeople counts 23 of our developers among those that have successfully gone through the Acquia certification exam! That's right...23 developers! We couldn't be more proud, and we’re excited to see that number keep growing as more members of our technical team are able to take the certification exam.

So far, Propeople Drupal developers from across our offices in the US, Denmark, Ukraine, Moldova, and Bulgaria have become certified through the program.

As an Acquia Enterprise Partner, Propeople is proud to be an early adopter of Acquia’s Certification Program. With the Drupal community and marketplace continuing to grow, having such a measure of knowledge and expertise is a benefit to us, and to our clients. Top businesses and organizations that are currently using (or looking to use) Drupal seek out the best Drupal talent in the industry - and Acquia’s Certification Program provides us with some hard evidence that Propeople’s Drupal specialists are some of the best in the world.

To learn more about how Propeople’s qualified team can help you make your next Drupal project a success, make sure check out what services we offer and reach out to us.



Tags: DrupalAcquiaDevelopersCertificationCheck this option to include this post in Planet Drupal aggregator: planetTopics: Tech & Development
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Forum One: Relaunching

mer, 14/05/2014 - 21:42

Last Tuesday, 240 of the country’s top climate scientists and experts released the third National Climate Assessment (NCA). The report details the current and best understanding of how climate change is already impacting Americans’ health and livelihoods in every region of the country. The takeaway from the report is that if you live in the United States, you’re either already dealing with climate change, or it is coming soon to your neighborhood.

When Forum One began working with the U.S. Global Change Research Program (GCRP) last year on a new design for, we knew we had a big job, but we didn’t know we’d have such a big audience.

Our goal in redesigning was to help GCRP bring context and transparency to global change research within the federal government. The release of the new NCA is an opportunity to draw attention to the issue of global change - and to showcase the wide range of related Federal information. As an example, our Browse section includes reports and datasets from the Global Change Information System (GCIS), a federal portal which houses climate change research drawn from thirteen federal agencies and organizations who study climate. In the long-term, we want to make it easy to trace the connections between the individual pieces of research that constitute “what we know” about climate change. 

Though our project team had lofty goals, we faced a lot of common website design challenges. One of GCRP’s organizational goals is to make their science accessible. If the scientific findings aren’t explained clearly, then the chances of anyone actually doing anything about it are slim. However, the site also has to work for scientists sharing their research, and policymakers and planners who want to understand how climate change will affect their communities. We needed a design that would help all of GCRP’s audiences find the information they need to make smart climate decisions. John Schneider, one of our senior user-experience designers, designed the overall information architecture that created unique paths through the site for each of GCRP’s key audiences.

One of our team’s first ideas was the Understand section of the site, which helps those new to climate change understand the “big picture” story of what’s happening, what it means, and how we know. The Explore section gives visitors a direct path to aggregation pages for the regions and topics that provide details and context to the overall NCA findings. The Browse section, as mentioned above, is the portal into the GCIS and all the climate data and research you could ever want. Through the Follow section, users can subscribe to GCRP news or social feeds, and the Engage section provides info on public events or other opportunities to get involved with the assessment process itself.

For visual design, we turned to our long-term partners at Antistatic Design to create the “slick” look & feel that beautifully showcases the stark reality of climate change on your desktop, mobile, or tablet device. Finally, our site search allows users to quickly find content within the overall website or just within the NCA report module itself, developed by the firm Habitat Seven and NOAA’s Cooperative Institute for Climate & Satellites.

Between interesting design challenges and working with the brilliant and engaged staff over at GCRP, we had plenty to focus on beyond any attention from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Once we started to hear and see the attention on the recent IPCC report release, the whole project took on a new urgency. We were confident in the quality of our design, but at that point we knew that we needed to be equally confident in our hosting infrastructure. Suddenly it was clear that there was a lot of attention on the climate issue, and a hunger for new scientific research. We got wind of some traffic numbers from the IPCC report website, which we used to extrapolate a baseline expectation for our launch. We deployed a content delivery network (CloudFlare), and a page caching solution (Varnish). We conducted load testing and refined our hosting setup until we were confident that we could handle anything short of a highly-orchestrated DDOS attack. We also implemented FISMA compliance measures to ensure that the site and data was secure and only authorized users from GCRP and the development team were able to access administrative functions on the site.

On launch day, we knew pretty quickly that we were going to hit our targets. The site went online just after 8am, and by noon we had seen over 50,000 visitors. Over the next 48 hours, over a quarter-million people would browse the site or read the report. Dozens of reporters covered the White House stakeholders event – where our site received quite the hurrah from Presidential advisor John Podesta – and morning shows across the country were invited to send their meteorologists to interview the President. Throughout the day, our site held up as the numbers kept climbing and climbing. At least one person on Twitter seemed impressed:

There may not have been a lot of good news for the country in the latest NCA report, but we loved working with GCRP and our other partners on the new At Forum One, we spend a lot of time geeking out on the latest coding trick or UX trend, but what motivates us more than anything is helping our clients make progress on issues that matter, and this is a big one.

The message of the Third NCA is that climate isn’t a problem for tomorrow, but for today. Like climate change itself, changing the political consensus can be a staggeringly slow and incremental process, but once in a while, something new at the right moment can trigger rapid, cascading change. That’s what we need on the issue of climate change, and we hope that the redesigned helps the American people understand why.

When Forum One began working with the U.S. Global Change Research Program (GCRP) last year on a new design for, we knew we had a big job, but we didn’t know we’d have such a big audience.


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Drupal Association News: Add the Drupal Project to your professional experience on LinkedIn

mer, 14/05/2014 - 21:38

For many in the Drupal community, working on the Project can become like a full-time job. Maintaining modules, patching bugs, organizing camps and responding to issues in the issue queue can be a lot of work, and now, you can get professional recognition on LinkedIn for your efforts.

There is now a company page for the Drupal Project available to anyone who wants to cite their work with Drupal as professional experience on LinkedIn. This is a great opportunity to get recognition from employers and colleagues for your hard work, and to signal to future employers that you’re a Drupal expert and/or contributor.

You can find the LinkedIn page here. To add it to your work experience, treat it like you would any other company: edit your profile, and when you type in Drupal Project under “Experience,” it should pop up.

Let us know if you have any questions or feedback. Thank you for all your hard work on the Drupal project.

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Chapter Three: The future of the internet is as stake

mer, 14/05/2014 - 21:31

America’s online freedoms are under attack. FCC Chairman Wheeler wants to give Internet service providers like Comcast and Verizon the power to block access to the Web unless content providers pay an extra fee. The Internet pipeline will be divided into different streams of varying quality, and sites will be required to pay premiums based on the performance of their users connections.

Net neutrality or bust

The demise of net neutrality will give big companies with lots of money premium access to digital networks and make it difficult for independent communities to thrive. The Web’s openness makes it possible for open source projects with meager funding, like Drupal, to compete against wealthy, established brands such as Adobe. If had to pay premiums for Internet access, it may have never been feasible to exist alongside companies with enourmous budgets.

Chairman Wheeler’s so-called “fast lane” proposal for Internet traffic will give Internet service providers unprecedented power to control our access to culture and politics. The magnitude of this issue has driven me to spend the past few weeks scouring the news, signing petitions and telling everyone I know about the situation.

Taking to the streets

I even went as far as trying to mastermind a political demonstration in downtown San Francisco to tell our senators that net neutrality is important and to demand the FCC to keep it that way. The event was essentially a flop, but technically, I pulled it off. At the very least, I got to speak with a representative from Senator Feinstein’s office who came down to chat with me in the plaza.

Organizing the demonstration was an excellent learning experience, regardless the outcome. It pushed me out of my comfort zone while giving me a richer perspective on the issue and democracy in general. It also made me think about better ways to influence change by leveraging my strengths instead of naively rush into the unknown.

My manic, sleep deprived dreams of political manifesto were, if anything, a cry for help. It was a plea for the nation to band together and tell our representatives that keeping the Web open is important. We must demand that our representatives urge the FCC to uphold net neutrality or lose the promise of a connected world.

Only YOU can save net neutrality

Take action now and sign this petition to the FCC telling them that net neutrality is vital to the web’s future. Internet access is now a fundamental part of our society and it is necessary for a vibrant, healthy economy. We are increasingly dependent on the Web to distribute information, exchange ideas, and create new tools. Senator Al Franken is right about the net neutrality debate being the civil rights issue of our time. We can’t let huge media monopolies take control of such an influential tool.

We at Chapter Three have taken a stand on the issue by signing the Declaration of Internet independence. Encourage your employers to support freedom online by doing the same. Check out this list of resources from the FreePress organization to discover even more ways to help.

Can you think of any more ways to reach out? What have you already done to protect the integrity of the Web and what tactics do you find most effective? I believe we can live in the world of our dreams but not without fighting for it first.

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DrupalCon Austin News: So you're going to DrupalCon Austin. Now What?

mer, 14/05/2014 - 16:30

You've got your tickets to DrupalCon Austin. What happens next? This fun and helpful infographic maps out the next steps for you. From reserving a space to sleep to selecting your schedule and keeping up with all the latest news, this infographic comes complete with links to help you plan out your DrupalCon Austin adventure.

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