Planet Drupal

Hacking Managing News, part 1: Adding a Starred channel

For my work with AdHack, I've started using Managing News as a Drupal-based solution for brand monitoring. As with most Development Seed products, it's a well-designed piece of software that is a joy to work with and enhance.

One of my first tasks was to allow users to mark articles with a star, and to find those starred items in their own channel. In MN, channels are lists of articles that are tagged with a specific set of tags.

Drupal community shows love!

I received today an Amazon gift from a Drupal member who's been using my Sheetnode module. What a great surprise! As I've said before, I feel privileged to be part of Drupal's great community, and I will keep contributing my modest efforts to make Drupal the most awesome Web platform. Many thanks Reamur!

Event-driven bulk updates using VBO and Rules

Here's the situation: when a change occurs on a node, you want to modify a bunch of related nodes accordingly. On my site, when a Job's state moves from "accepting proposals" to "in progress", I want to change all pending Job Offers (those that haven't been accepted yet) to "closed".

Feeds + OAuth

Feeds, the successor to FeedAPI, is shaping up to be an awesome module. I am planning to use it in many, many applications, including retrieving feeds from Twitter, making video channels from YouTube, and importing credit card transactions from CSV.

A few days ago I posted about using Drupal to analyze Twitter data, and since then I've been thinking on how to implement this functionality using Feeds.

Dynamic transitions with the Workflow module

Workflows are a basic building block of business applications. While the Workflow module provides a good base to start building workflows in Drupal, it has not kept up with the rise in complexity of Drupal application requirements.

Central to a workflow is the notion of state transition: when does a "Job Bid" node move from state "Proposed" to state "Accepted" or "Rejected"? Who can trigger this transition? There are obviously n2 possible transitions for an n-state workflow, making what is commonly called a state transition matrix.

Functors for your single-parameter callback blues

When using PHP functions such as array_map, usort or preg_replace_callback, you are forced to pass in a single-parameter callback function, making it impossible to send additional context information to the callback. But it ain't necessarily so.

Function objects, aka Functors, are here to help.

Using Drupal to analyze Twitter data

The Twitter dataset is an insanely valuable source of useful social networking information. That explains the huge number of Twitter-related sites that spring up, each one performing one specific analysis of Twitter data. The one I was looking at today is TwitterSheep which just creates a tagadelic-type cloud of keywords, from a user's followers' bios. Pretty neat idea, but it was frustrating that the Web application didn't let me actually see who of my followers are in which category - and make a list out of them, and email them, etc.

ImageField Archive: an action to download zipped images

One of the recurring requests in the Views Bulk Operations issue queue is to create a downloadable archive of files attached to nodes. While the general case is not trivial to solve, I was recently hired by research on BLOGS to write a more specific action: create a Zip archive of all images stored in imagefields.

Actions REST, a poor man's URI interface to actions

I rely on actions extensively to build functionality in my sites. I find them convenient for business logic because they are packaged chunks of functionality that can be called from many places, including Trigger, Rules, and VBO. Today, I've added a new place where actions can be called: the URL. Actions REST provides this functionality.

Consider a job site where a supplier receives an invitation to participate in a project. The supplier logs on the site and views the invitation, then wants to accept or decline it.

Using default arguments to relate nodes by their common taxonomy terms

Given a list of videos tagged with a specific vocabulary, I wanted to show a view of these videos on the page of another node type (a "channel") that is also tagged with the same vocabulary. The idea is to create video channels that implicitly relate to videos by sharing taxonomy terms, instead of explicitly relating the videos to their channel (using node references for example). The videos should show on the channel's node page.

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