Drupal 7 short stack – Review from accsva.org presentation

Rather remarkably we’ve managed to avoid the top xxx module list for Drupal 7… however to recap the presentation yesterday at ACCSVa.org here it goes….

A Drupal Roadmap with Rich Gregory – Look in to some critical dev tools like Drush and other things to get you going.

1.  Display Suite (putting Views at the top almost redundant….) – thanks to Display Suite and it’s buddy Field Group Drupal 7′s core content creation kit is a flexible dashboard delivery tool.  With a few clicks you can now turn a lengthy and unintuitive form into a dashboard – i’m seeing hope for a wordpress like content adding area.

and after

and after DS + FG

Forms before Display Suite and Field Group

Forms before Display Suite and Field Group

2. Views – it should go without saying, and now that it’s going to be a part of Drupal 8 core I’m going to leave it at that… you need views to do anything worth doing.  We’ve got a half dozen or more tutorials on views here, so dig in.

3. Context – this is your logic layout tool – pick conditions and reaction.  There are numerous modules to extend context as well – in the presentation I mentioned http://drupal.org/project/context_reaction_theme however this only has a D6 option.   You’ll probably need to use http://drupal.org/project/context_addassets to do essentially the same thing.  Also note that Mobile Tools allows you to use contexts to do dramatic theming changes based on the mobile device.

First up choose the conditions for your layout

First up choose the conditions for your layout

The choose your reactions

The choose your reactions

4.Rules: Rules allows your site to become a dynamic workflow management intranet style workhorse. The amount of flexibility here, much like Views, extends beyond the scope of a simple “short stack” review, however in essence you’re taking events that happen within the site, or custom crontab events, setting conditions and triggering actions. Coupled with modules like Views Rules the possibilities are amazing.

5. Entity reference - extending CCK (part of drupal 7 core) the up-and-coming successor to References. Allow content to reference other content, and as mentioned this allows View Relationships to create a SQL JOIN on your content – get more information about your Content Author, and many more options…this post here is particularly fun with references referencing references…

6. Honorable mention: Feeds – this is the bulk content migration tool of choice for folks like myself.  It’s intuitive and lets you harvest content from various sources and ingest it in to your content types, user tables, etc.. we have a few tutorials on feeds that may help you with some specifics – it’s a powerful tool, and coupled with tools like feeds tamper there are a lot of options.

7. Honorable mention: Flag.  Give your users buttons and they’ll push them.  Flags allow your users to have simple on/off buttons – categorize content, flag spam, etc…  they of course work with views, rules, and the rest of the gang :)

So there’s my short stack for Drupal 7 – I’m sure entities and entity forms probably belong on there, however for most basic sites I think this is a good start… heck probably need to talk wysiwyg editors too…. so many modules!  Thanks again to ACCSVA.org for the conference, Rich Gregory for the great tunes and the lift, and  Blue Cat Networks – the hat is bangin.

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7 Responses to Drupal 7 short stack – Review from accsva.org presentation

  1. rooby says:

    I would say feeds and flag are not something for every site (in my experience).

    Also, the entityreference module is preferred over the references module.
    There was even talk of references being depreciated in favour of entityreference.

    • alibama says:

      re: flags and feeds – totally agree – however for some reason they end up on just about every site I build…. I’ll make the change on references to make that clearer

      • rooby says:

        Ah sorry, I missed your reference to entityreference as it says “entity form reference”.

        • alibama says:

          doh… thanks again… also need to ask you some questions about feeds image grabber some time – it seems like a cool module, however I haven’t used it.

          • rooby says:

            No worries.
            Feeds imagegrabber is very useful.
            It is in a working state but I would like to do a bit more work on it when I get a chance.

    • alibama says:

      I notice from your profile you’ve done a fair bit of work and development with location and the gMap modules among others – I’m trying to help a friend get a map of Zimbabwe set up to handle elections – something that’d do colors based on who is winning… do you have any suggestions for this? Basically they’ll be manually updating ~120 districts with voter counts and the districts should somehow visually display that information. Thanks (and thanks again for leaving a note on here)

      • rooby says:

        Recently for anything mapping I have used the http://drupal.org/project/geofield module for storing the geo data and either custom developed google maps implementations (for things that are super simple or things that don’t really fit out of the box drupal modules) or the openlayers module.

        Openlayers is very flexible and extendable, but it can take a bit of learning and configuration at times. It is especially good if you want to show regions as opposed to individual points.