Development News

Mediacurrent: Introducing Mediacurrent Multisite+

Main Drupal Feed - Thu, 05/28/2020 - 12:10

One of the most powerful features with Drupal is the ability to create multiple site instances from the same base platform. The Drupal multisite system is great for managing university departments, government agencies, and corporate microsites wanting to standardize design and features across many sites.

The problem with the standard multisite setup is that it’s not easy to spin up new sites without the help of a developer. Mediacurrent makes this process painless with our new launch tool for multisite! The Mediacurrent Multisite+ solution allows site administrators to create a new site from a simple web form located in their website’s Drupal 8 admin interface. Creating a new site instance now takes a matter of minutes. 

Read on to find out how this works, or contact us now for a free demo.

Here’s how Multisite+ works

We will get you up and running in 3 steps. For our initial launch, we support Drupal 8 on’s hosting platform with Acquia support in Q3, 2020 and Drupal 9 coming soon. 

Step 1 - Configuring the Application

The first thing we will do is set up the application environment to be compatible with a multisite environment. Drupal 8, by default, is built to be multisite-compatible by allowing configuration to be re-used across multiple site instances. 

For the Pantheon hosting environment, we will create a custom Upstream from the desired Drupal 8 application. Our Multisite+ integration will leverage this Upstream to provision new sites, each with their own dedicated resources.

Example of Upstreams created by Mediacurrent

Step 2 - Setting up Automation

As a next step, our DevOps team will set up the automation that allows the Drupal application to interact with the hosting environment. This process does the “heavy lifting” of actually spinning up the site instance and running the installation process.

Step 3 - Enabling the Multisite+ Module

Finally, we will add and configure our Multisite+ module for the primary Drupal 8 application that needs to kickoff new site installations. This module connects your application to the automation that does the actual work to set up your new website instance.

When we’re done with this one-time setup, a new form becomes available that administrators can use to initiate a new website build.

Multisite+ form example

And that’s it! Now your administrators have the keys to create new campaign sites, microsites, or any other type of site that leverages an existing Drupal 8 application.

Ready to get started?

Mediacurrent would love to work with you to better enable your teams to manage multiple Drupal websites. For more information on how to get your organization set up, please visit our contact page or chat with us right now (see bottom right corner of the page). We would be happy to talk more about your project or schedule a demonstration.

OpenSense Labs: Drupal Distribution: Vardoc. For Documentation & Organisational Communication

Main Drupal Feed - Thu, 05/28/2020 - 07:13
Drupal Distribution: Vardoc. For Documentation & Organisational Communication Tuba Ayyubi Thu, 05/28/2020 - 12:43

Vardoc, a Drupal distribution, is a knowledge base system, a wiki system, and a document management system designed to host a massive amount of content in a structured and easy-to-find format. With Vardoc, your content can be easily structured, and scheduled. It allows you to personalize your content easily and contribute your expertise in the knowledge base.

You can build a connected organization, product, or knowledge area to allow everyone involved to find the answers they seek and contribute their expertise in the knowledge base with the help of Vardoc. Think of it as a wiki site of your product, user manuals, or organizational processes with an easy structure, collaborative tools, and a friendly design.

An insight into Vardoc's elements Who can benefit from Vardoc? 

Let’s get to the part where we understand who this system is for. The agencies who want to document their software, product documentation sites and website based interactive user manuals can benefit from Vardoc. It also works a great deal for documentation of Open Source projects and inter-organisational processes. Vardoc is cost friendly and saves the usual development time.

What makes Vardoc wonderful? Search

A by default powerful search which searches through the vast repository of the documents and provides the relevant results. The search mechanism is already set and tailored for the knowledge base system by prioritizing headings and titles more than the content's body.

Editorial features

The distribution supports editorial features which help keep the documents up to date. The editing mode is also tailored for quick review and vetting of information. Vardoc’s media library is full of interesting features that provide an appealing way to display media libraries. Vardoc also allows one image to have many previews with the help of image cropping and settings present within the CMS. And, it provides simple and easy ways to create and manage new and existing pages respectively.


Being a knowledge base, the website at its core provides powerful features to structure the framework in which the documents are to be stored. This gives the user the power to tailor the structure and present the data in a hierarchy which best suits the organization.

User Management

To control and regulate the engagement of the website the admin will have full control of their roles and permission. You don’t need to worry about losing the important experience that is needed when a team member retires or leaves. Vardoc helps you to engage users from various departments to use the information that is needed in one space.

Customisable themes

It is essential to have proper theming on your website. You can brand your website by modifying the starter theme with some easy-to-make and quick CSS changes.


When potential users are searching the web, make sure your website is there to be found. On Vardoc you are immediately optimized for search engines when you update your sitemap.xml, create and set customized URL paths and custom page titles, and include specific keywords.

Accessibility compliance

The Vardoc based website already complies with the accessibility requirements (WCAG 2.0) for various user groups.

Social media Integration

Out-of-the-box social media integration which enables governments to link their social handles to the website.


Vardoc provides a front-end design to work with all the latest versions of all the commonly used web browsers. Vardoc makes sure that you are able to reach your audience across all devices and web browsers. It is completely optimized for mobile and other devices to access whenever and wherever you want to.

Multilingual options

Vardoc provides access to several languages with localized and translated content, date formats, country flags, modern fonts etc.


Vardoc’s real-time analytics feature allows users to measure and monitor the site activity in real-time through google analytics professional integration. 

Summing Up

It is much cost friendly and saves the industry-standard development time. It has everything under one roof. Organisations may find it easy to decide but depending on their current website’s dynamics, our resource involvement depends. 

Vardoc is currently available for download for Drupal 8 and has stable releases that are covered by security advisory policy. For more information on its Drupal 9 readiness, check here.

OpenSense Labs has always been keen towards finding the appropriate solution for clients and prospects in general. Feel free to reach us out at for help.​

blog banner blog image Drupal 8 Drupal distributions Vardoc Blog Type Articles Is it a good read ? On

WPTavern: New Carbon Offset Plugin Aims to Make WordPress Sites More Eco-Friendly

Wordpress Planet - Thu, 05/28/2020 - 01:48
photo credit: Valeriy Poltorak

As developers and internet users become increasingly aware of the CO2 footprint of their data usage, renewed interest in carbon offsetting programs has cropped up in recent years. These programs allow individuals and organizations to “offset” their carbon dioxide emissions by funding environmental endeavors, which range from planting trees to clean energy projects, with lots of variety in between.

Carbon offsetting schemes remain controversial, as they do not actually directly cancel out emissions. The programs allow corporations to appear “environmentally friendly” with their contributions while continuing to burn fossil fuels. Ideally, corporations will work on both reducing their emissions and “neutralizing” the damage done with projects that renew the earth.

For web developers, awareness of your product’s CO2 footprint is the first step, and carbon offsetting programs are usually fine-tuned to make this data relatable. This awareness is especially critical if the software you are building is used on millions of devices. Aris Stathopoulos, a WordPress developer known best for authoring the Kirki Customizer Framework, has created a plugin called Carbon Offset that calculates the greenhouse emissions from your website visits and integrates with the Cloverly API for offsets and payments.

“The internet is a huge machine consuming vast amounts of energy,” Stathopoulos said. “The whole chain from server farms to ISPs to client devices are usually powered by non-renewable sources of power. What really rang the ‘danger’ bell in my mind was reading Mozilla’s Internet-Health report two years ago.

“Since then I’ve been trying to help make the web a bit more sustainable. Sometimes that means converting a script to vanilla JS, building a theme, or just talking to people about things they can do to make their site more performant and more eco-friendly/sustainable. Carbon Offset is my latest effort on that front.”

The first version of the plugin includes a details page with the calculated impact of your site’s carbon footprint, displayed next to the weight of the carbon offset. I could see this page evolving to be more visually compelling in the future. The settings page is where users can hook up their sites the Cloverly API.

Cloverly offers offsets on demand, which means that users fund clean energy for one of the projects the company has selected. These include initiatives that do things like capture fugitive gas emissions, improve forest management, and convert methane from manure into renewable energy.

Browsing the plugin repository, it seems the platform only has a handful of plugins designed to raise users’ awareness about carbon emissions. The Website Carbon plugin gives users a broad overview of the impact of their site’s emissions, including reporting on if the data center the site is hosted in is powered by renewable energy. CO2ok for WooCommerce is another plugin that integrates with a service for purchasing offsets.

Stathopoulos wants to expand his plugin to integrate with additional services so that users have more choices in offsetting their websites’ carbon footprints. He has no affiliation with Cloverly. He said the only reason he chose to integrate with it is because they have a great API that is easy to work with. He made his implementation extensible so that adding extra services will be easy when he finds another one with a good API.

Breaking Website Owners Out of Complacency: Awareness Is the First Step Towards Reducing Emissions

“There are sites out there that measure a site’s carbon footprint and they give an idea of how much carbon is generated whenever someone visits a webpage,” Stathopoulos said. “If you start testing websites you see some good, some bad and some shockingly costly. Take for example Each visit produces 0.68g of carbon emissions, and that’s one of the good sites. generates 3.2grams of carbon every time someone visits their site.”

Stathopoulos wants to use his plugin to raise awareness among WordPress site owners, since the software is so widely used but oftentimes weighed down by third-party extensions.

“With WordPress powering 30%+ of the web, we’re talking about millions of daily views,” he said. “In the unlikely optimistic scenario that all of them generate no more than 0.5g per page-load, WP sites generate no less than 500 metric tons of carbon/day. This has nothing to do with WordPress. Instead it’s about the 5MB image that the user wants on their frontpage, the fancy wiggling JS animation that requires that extra 5kb of JS, developers insisting on using jQuery in their themes and plugins, the unused 300kb of CSS that a site has, the Facebook widget, social sharing buttons than use 100kb of JS, or the horrendous use of images of text instead of plain text.

“It’s all data that gets downloaded every single time and each time it does, the server runs a few milliseconds more, the browser takes a few more milliseconds to render. It all adds up to wasted energy, energy that took real resources to generate and in the process of doing that, it generated some more carbon emissions.”

It’s easy for anyone to get complacent when the data usage seems to run on magic and doesn’t immediately impact the site owner. Plugins like Carbon Offset aim to make wasted resources more of a reality. Stathopoulos is currently working to add e-commerce support that will allow customers to offset the carbon footprint of their purchases’ delivery, or even allow shop owners to fund the offset instead. He said this will usually amount to a few cents per sale, but it can make a meaningful impact if done on a large scale.

“One of my hopes is that it will help increase sensitivity and awareness,” Stathopoulos said. “Hopefully, some people will understand that their website is part of the problem. Hopefully, it will urge them to rethink how they build their sites and want to be part of the solution – ideally by striving to lower the carbon emissions of our websites.

“But since for various reasons that is not always possible, the plugin will show how much our website costs the environment, and some may choose to give something back.”

Stathopoulos said that purchasing offsets was “surprisingly cheap.” He purchased offsets for 50kg of CO2 for approximately $4, and his website ‘burns’ 0.2g/visit.

“This means I’m good for the next 2.5 million visits,” he said. “If my site was as heavy as the NYTimes, then that would buy me 15k views worth of damage to the environment, which would be a pretty good indication that I have to change some things on my site.

“The cost is not the point. The point is being conscious about what we build, how much damage we do, and helping undo that damage as much as possible. After all, a sustainable website is a lot faster and more performant than a non-sustainable one. Everyone wins.”

Promet Source: Anticipating Post Pandemic Web Design Trends

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 23:57
Is a design revolution on the way? History says yes.

WPTavern: Happy 17th, WordPress

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 19:53

Seventeen. It is almost a lost year between sweet 16 and the adulthood that comes along with 18. For many, 17 is a rebellious age when they feel like they have already reached grown-up status but still have some hard lessons to learn, some growing to do. The past year of WordPress’s life has felt much the same. Our community has worked and is still working through some rough patches. We are still learning. We are still growing. For better or worse, we are still coming together to build a better web.

By its next birthday, we should expect to see a much different WordPress. It will have grown from a simple blogging platform to nearly a full site builder. The community will likely stumble a few times as users and developers acquaint themselves with an evolving platform. With luck, we can work through most of the kinks before that day arrives. For now, we will need to suffer a bit through this messy teenage rebellion.

Teens often see the world differently than those of us well into adulthood do. We must be there to temper the worst ideas but encourage the hopes and dreams that accompany the vision of youth. It is this vision that will change the world. I expect no less from WordPress in the coming years.

Currently, WordPress powers 36.7% of the top 10 million websites. It has come a long way since its humble beginnings as the basic fork of B2/cafelog that Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little kick-started in 2003. It has brought online publishing to millions and provided careers for 1,000s — I have been blessed with a 12-year career thanks to WordPress.

The first official release of WordPress landed on May 27, 2003. The platform included texturize (so good it’ll make your quotes curl), a link manager for building blogrolls, improved automatic line breaks, manual excerpts, XHTML 1.1, new default templates, and a fresh admin interface. Needless to say, the software has changed since its first release — can we make blogrolls cool again?

Perhaps the saddest part of WordPress’s 17th birthday is that most of us cannot celebrate it together in person. No slices of birthday cake will be passed to WordCamp attendees. We cannot share a hug or a handshake. We cannot clink our glasses together in a toast. However, we can still celebrate in spirit.

In Celebrate Seventeen, Mullenweg urges the community to enjoy this day:

If you’d like to celebrate with me, put on some jazz, eat some BBQ, light a candle for the contributors who have passed on, help a friend or stranger less technical than you build a home online, and remember that technology is at its best when it brings people together.

My addition to his list would be to hop over to your WordPress website and write a blog post. It can be anything. Write in celebration of WordPress turning 17. Write about your children, cats, or dogs. Share your feelings surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Whatever it is, just write. The best celebration of WordPress is to use the platform to do the one thing it was meant to do 17 years ago — publish something on the web.

Then, take a moment to appreciate the ability that we have to share our thoughts with the world. WordPress represents the most important, inalienable right that all humans share — freedom of expression. It has provided an avenue for people all over the world to share their thoughts for 17 years. That is not something to be taken lightly. So, let today be a celebration, despite the rough patch the world is going through. Let today be a celebration, regardless of our weekly arguments about the project’s future. Let today be a celebration of the people from all walks of life who have come together to build this amazing piece of software.

Most of all, take time to appreciate that we have an even brighter future to look forward to. WordPress may be a bit of a dinosaur in this fast-paced world of technological advancement, but it is not done yet. It may be going through a huge transitional phase at the moment, but we are not to the halfway point. We are just getting to the good stuff.

Buckle up. Look for the next 17 years to be an even wilder ride. I welcome the adventure.

Matt: Celebrate Seventeen

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 15:48

May 27th, 17 years ago, the first release of WordPress was put into the world by Mike Little and myself. It did not have an installer, upgrades, WYSIWYG editor (or hardly any Javascript), comment spam protection, clean permalinks, caching, widgets, themes, plugins, business model, or any funding.

The main feedback we got at the time was that the blogging software market was saturated and there wasn’t room or need for anything new.

WordPress did have a philosophy, an active blog, a license that protected the freedom of its users and developers, a love of typography, a belief that code is poetry, fantastic support forums and mailing lists and IRC, and firm sense that building software is more fun when you do it together as a community.

We have relentlessly iterated across 38 major releases since then, and here we are.

If you’d like to celebrate with me, put on some jazz, eat some BBQ, light a candle for the contributors who have passed on, help a friend or stranger less technical than you build a home online, and remember that technology is at its best when it brings people together.

Lullabot: Should You Upgrade from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9?

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 14:37

Drupal 7, our much-loved CMS that was released in 2011, is nearing the end of its life. No, that's not hyperbole; Drupal 7 is scheduled to reach end-of-life in November 2021. Drupal 8 has been out for a few years, but at the time of this writing, Drupal core usage statistics indicate that only about 350,000 of the more than 1.1 million reporting Drupal core sites are using Drupal 8.x. Over 730,000 of those sites are still using Drupal 7.

Droptica: Why Do Developers Choose Drupal as a System for Building Web Applications?

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 14:32

Drupal is one of the most popular CMS-es in the world. Currently, over a million websites use Drupal. The larger the website, the more likely it is that it was built on Drupal. Why should you choose it for your project? Take a look at what programmers are saying about this topic. 


Robert develops web applications on a daily basis. He has been doing this for over seven years. 

Why did he decide to work using such a technology?

"Drupal has a ready-made system with clear documentation. It is also a safe tool for building websites. We can be sure that it will work properly and will not be hacked. Confidential data is therefore secure. 
Drupal provides many ready-made modules at, making it is easy to organise a website like from building blocks."


Grzegorz has been working with Droptica for almost three years. Every day he further develops Droopler – thus he offers a real contribution to Open Source. Why does he use Drupal?

"Drupal is different from other CMS-es with which it is often compared. Its characteristic feature is open architecture. As website creators, we can choose what data we want to present on the web and how it should be edited. We are not limited to the article/category/static page model – we can freely model the content, responding to even the most specific needs. Building a basic, functional website is extremely fast when compared to other solutions."


Bartek is not only a PHP developer, but he also has set up his online Drupal-based store.

"I have built a simple platform for selling electronic products that will be easily accessible to those who have paid for the order – everything is automatic, without any additional admin work.

It required installing and configuring several modules and adding a dozen or so lines of my own PHP code. It took several hours of work. The question is: what will help you do it faster?"

Why should you consider Drupal for your next project?

This is a more complicated issue, so: 

1. Immediately after the installation, I have a working page with the most important functionalities for many types of pages:
  • logging in,
  • skins,
  • creating various types of content (fully extensible forms),
  • simple interface for building queries in order to present data in various ways.
 2. Unlimited expansion options:
  • There are many additional modules that add even such complicated functionalities as a store with just a click of a button.
  • Drupal has extensive documentation and a well-described API. If like me, you are not a programmer, you can always use the help of a professional.
  • Drupal uses Symfony components and has a similar structure. If you are familiar with this framework, you will find your way around it quickly.
3. Security

Drupal's security team operates on a very high level. Security updates are being released immediately after finding and fixing any problem with the system.

4. Drupal is Open Source What does it mean exactly?
  • It is free,
  • you can modify it according to your own needs,
  • you are independent of other service providers, so you can develop it yourself or it can be done by any team associated with Drupal.

"Drupal 8 is the best CMS written in PHP with programmers in mind. It is also an Open Source platform – accessible by everyone. It is built on Symfony components. It is a very rich API, with a very good and – most importantly – reliable documentation. Why am I a Drupal supporter? It has a huge community that is active and participates in contrib projects. By choosing Drupal as a technology for your website, you get the support of a huge community with members from around the whole world."


These are just a few examples of the programmers' opinions about Drupal. The longer someone works with Drupal, the more clearly, they see its huge number of advantages. Clients also notice this and intentionally choose Drupal as a technology for building their websites, e.g. Bossa or

If you are thinking about choosing a technology for your company website or web application, consider Drupal. You can find the complete information on Drupal at "Why Drupal".


OpenSense Labs: Rooting for gender-inclusive web design

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 14:16
Rooting for gender-inclusive web design Tuba Ayyubi Wed, 05/27/2020 - 19:46

Usually, the restrooms are marked as ‘men/male’ or ‘ladies/female/women at offices, restaurants and other public places. Have you ever imagined yourself being in a state of utter confusion while deciding which restroom to use? No? Well, this is an everyday issue in the life of trans genders and gender-nonconforming people. The sad truth is that they fear harassment and keep running into such unnecessary barriers which makes their life harder. No wonder a report on gender and sexuality by J. Walter Thompson Innovation Group had some staggering revelations to make.

With the world gone digital, web designs are one of the barriers in the life of these people. While filling a form or signing up for something, the options for genders are most likely to be male and female. Rarely, we find websites with either no gender options (when not required) or other preferable options to choose from.

In order to provide the best user experience, you need to understand how the facet of their lives intersects with your website. For that, it becomes important to educate ourselves about the LGBTQ terminologies and issues so that you develop a sense of when and what is appropriate to say or ask. If you want to increase the lifetime value of your customers, you need to make your website more trans-inclusive which will enhance the user experience for everyone.

Getting things right

Using gender inclusive language and designs means writing or speaking in a way that does not discriminate against a particular sex or gender role. Moreover, it promotes gender equality and stands against gender bias.

Designers should not limit the gender options to male and female, and definitely not make it mandatory! In fact, gender should not be asked where it is not needed. And wherever required, the gender options should not be limited.

Key Considerations for gender-inclusive design

Before asking for the gender of a person, make sure you have a good reason behind why you need that information. And when you are sure that it is needed, make sure you give more diverse options to choose from. ‘Prefer to self identify’ or ‘add your own’ are great additional options. 

When people are not identified as male or female, they do not like being referred to as ‘he’ or ‘she’. Hence, you can ask for pronouns, so they can be referred to correctly during their experience with your website or app.

Images representing different body sizes, genders on the websites and ads allow room for representation. You can hire models for photoshoots. If you cannot have your own photoshoot, you can use the trans-inclusive stock photo collection launched by Broadly which is free for wide use.

If you ask needless questions or limit the options for the users to select, you lose value in the eyes of the users. Designers should make sure that they put in options that do not perpetuate gender stereotypes. 

There should also not be any sort of restrictions to make changes. Once, someone creates a web address, username or complete profile, they should be allowed to make changes if required. The users should be made aware that their information will not be shared with anyone. And if there is some kind of information that needs to be shared, let the users know. This will make them feel safe and build trust.

It is important to have a name change process. It is likely that you have one for marriage related name changes already. Create a process that allows anyone to change their names without any legal documents.

Many websites and applications incorporate gender in their designs and products even though the product is gender neutral. Like, clothing, wine or toys etc. Brands should evaluate an alternative and see what else can be done. Several OTT platforms ask for gender while signing up which is not really needed.

Zee 5, an Indian OTT app, while signing up had male and female as the only two options while asking for gender.


Snapchat profile setting menu does not ask for gender.

There are a lot of gender options and so it is not possible to use all of them. And even if you want to, you will have to change the control you use. For example, consider this screenshot.

Source: keepitusableConclusion

We all want to be treated with dignity and respect regardless of our gender, religion, or where we come from. So, make sure that these diverse groups feel at home when they visit your website. Eliminating gender inequality is the future of design. 

So tell us, are you ready to ‘trans-form’ your website?

blog banner blog image Web Design Inclusive Web Design Diversity And Inclusion Diversity Trans-inclusive web design Gender-inclusive web design Gender neutral Inclusion Blog Type Articles Is it a good read ? On

Drupal blog: Drupal in COVID-19 Series: Homeschooling support during a pandemic

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 13:08

Continuing our short series of articles highlighting ways that the Drupal software and its community are building solutions to help combat the effect of COVID-19, today we hear from Greg Harvey of Code Enigma. Here, he describes their project at the the National STEM Centre in York, England

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. STEM Learning is the company that built and operates the National STEM Centre in York, England. They provide specialist training in STEM subjects to teachers from across the UK. As well as classroom training opportunities in state of the art facilities, they provide free, high-quality online education resources via their website. They have been using Drupal to deliver this important content since 2015.

Supported by their principle Drupal services supplier, Code Enigma, STEM Learning increased their server capacity when it became clear the COVID-19 pandemic was going to hit and many children in the UK would soon be homeschooling. 

STEM anticipated increased demand (having seen how online education resources in France were beginning to feel the strain of school closures (one of Code Enigma’s directors is a parent in France) and decided to react before it became an issue. 

Code Enigma is also an AWS Select Tier partner. The website is hosted at AWS, so it was possible to quickly scale the solution using AWS’s public cloud products and services. The fact that Drupal is ready to Enterprise-scale right out of the box, with the right support, was also extremely helpful.

Consequently, when the UK Department for Education contacted STEM Learning to inform them they wanted to sign-post teachers and parents to the website from the main UK government website, everything was already in place. Code Enigma’s developers and designers worked quickly with STEM Learning to adapt the front page to help people find homeschooling resources efficiently. They also designed and created some new landing pages, such as this one for parents, to help people get straight to the relevant content.

In short, thanks to Drupal, STEM Learning is actively supporting homeschooling in the UK during this global pandemic, by providing high-quality teaching resources online and for free.

Web Wash: Drupal Live Site Build (Part 2) – Create Layout Builder Section, Bootstrap Carousel

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 11:45

In the show notes below, I outline what we implement in part 2 of the Drupal live site build. We start off by fixing a few bugs, which I introduced and didn’t notice until I started playing around with the site after the first video. For example, we couldn’t drag-and-drop any of the card components because I overrode the inline-block template.

Part 2 (this video) is a little more advanced because we create a custom module, implement two layouts and implement a hook_preprocess_HOOK.

So we start off by creating a Row layout which fixes the bug from part 1 and we implement the Bootstrap Carousel component (clients love carousels) using block types. Blog: Why you need a future-ready development team

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 10:18

In this post, we’ll dive deeper into the importance of a development team that’s future-ready, explain what future readiness even means, and look at some tried and tested methods for acquiring a team of future-ready developers.


Amazee Labs: Multilingual Drupal - Part 1: The Process

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 08:43
In this series about building multilingual sites, we will use Drupal as our central content management system. In this blog, we will dive into how we can implement translation for different features based on defined user stories with Drupal core and contributed modules.

HeroPress: How the WordPress community contributes to human development

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 08:00

In the beginning WordPress being an “open-source” platform concept was only an idea by Matt Mullenweg that was supposed to gather people to contribute for free for a greater cause with no guaranteed success. The idea to gather people around a vague and non-profit cause would not have succeeded without the generosity of WordPress pioneers, believing in humanity and transferring their knowledge to others for free.

Nowadays, the WordPress community gathers millions of professionals worldwide. 

WordPress enthusiasts have changed the world we live in and contributed to human development from many aspects.

In the later text we will explain how contributing to WordPress would be considered contributing to humanity development, similar to “ubuntu” African philosophy.


So, let’s start from the beginning.

Many socio-economic theorists condition the survival of humanity by their members’ regular contribution. So, physicists or chemists work jointly as professional communities contributing to overall science development. Farmers work closely with the agricultural industry in finding the solution to resolve the issue of hunger worldwide, etc.

All those community members contribute in many different forms; either by revealing their discoveries to other members, or testing their new hypotheses. Sustainability and survival of communities depend on the contribution of their members.

Thanks to Internet development and its ease of access, breakthroughs in human development are just a click away from us.

As such, web designers and developers play an important role in numerous web data systematizations and content design of each website, enabling a wider global audience to find relevant information and apply those new discoveries in their activities.

Sometimes one-click localization is required, or a plugin/theme code change. Very often those requests  are repetitive and come from different territories, and this is where the WordPress community jumps in with their skills relevant to resolving those requests.

Roughly there are 6.500 different languages in the world.  If there were no WP community efforts, each WordPress developer would have to localize or translate each plugin for themselves for instance. Just imagine the amount of time each of us would have had to spend in order to create a desired website.

WordPress group contributions save significant amount of time for #MakersOfTheWeb, assisting the global non-tech community to present their business or philanthropic achievements worldwide. Timely published information or findings could change people’s lives.

Deductive conclusion could be that efforts related to WordPress development are the direct assistance to human sustainable development.

Time of crisis

Nowadays more than ever, solidarity and compassion have become building blocks of humanity. One could say that hard times bring people together; or perhaps could bring out the best in them, consciously or subconsciously. The current world health crisis has surfaced many social and economic problems, but also has led us to understand new and, perhaps, some forgotten values.

Joining forces, creating new values or adding to the existing ones are critical to community sustainability in general, similar to the concept of “ubuntu.” 

What is the digital “ubuntu” of WordPress?

For all the tech geeks out there, the free, open-source Linux distribution is not the center of our pledge. The “ubuntu” concept, as said by Nelson Mandela, is the profound sense that we are human only through the humanity of others. If we are to accomplish anything in this world, it will in equal measure be due to the work and achievements of others”.

WordPress and the open-source community in general seem to reflect the “ubuntu” ethics.

The number of WordPress contributors have been increasing over the time, surging in the past couple of weeks, aiming at providing ease for groups or individuals worldwide in the time of crisis. Companies and individuals are joining forces to support each other in crisis time proving the postulate that humanity can only exist if individuals join forces.

How can you contribute?

Choose your own way.

  1. You might want to share knowledge, expertise or perhaps come up with new tech solutions and there are plenty of opportunities out there. Each WordCamp hosts a number of tracks which you could join; Polyglots, WPTV, Marketing, Community, Core, etc. Your contribution might look insignificant to you from the perspective of what should be done in general, but combined efforts do make change. After all, Rome was not built in a day.
  2. You might be creative enough and propose a new business model within a certain industry. Challenging times bring out the leaders with unconventional visions. As Roy. T Bennett said: “Never stop dreaming, never stop believing, never give up, never stop trying, and never stop learning.”
  3. You might want to assist elderly in your neighborhood, or provide online support to vulnerable communities.
  4. You might want to save strained animals, or feed those while searching for new owners.

Everything you do, regardless of your intention has a much larger reach that you can even imagine.

Now is the time to adopt new habits and start understanding the consequence of our behavior and intentions. It’s about achieving “ubuntu”, and not getting the recognition for contribution or efforts made.

We found our “ubuntu” and we were not surprised when we learned that WordPress is all about it.

The post How the WordPress community contributes to human development appeared first on HeroPress.

Unimity Solutions Drupal Blog: Presenting Data through Stories

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 07:37
Presenting Data through Stories udhayakumar Wed, 05/27/2020 - 13:07

In the era of Information overload, data can talk and communicate powerful stories. Here is  what we did while building an Aid Transparency portal for a large Non Profit, communicating using data made the portal “Come Alive” and  present to the users the impact of the work done by the organization.The approaches implemented include:

  1. Use of Data Highlights
  2. Intuitive Search Interface
  3. Data Visualization
  4. Use of Animation in Design

Aid Transparency is about presenting data around donors, funds received, fund utilization/expenses, areas of impact in  a transparent manner. The first step was a study of the customer’s domain and the work carried forward by the customer organization. Understanding the donors, the impact areas, the funds received, funds utilized, regions in which they work. Mapping all the key parameters of the underlying data, their meta information and their inter-relationships.

A sitemap was defined to communicate the different perspectives of the data like: pages on fund utilization, pages that were contribution/donor specific, pages that detailed the resource utilization, etc. The best graphical visualization was identified for these pages. Yet some of this graphical information could be overwhelming for  visitors who do not relate to the representation and numbers.  To further simplify this, a layer of Data Highlights was introduced.  The Data Highlights  represented a one line story around the data that was presented and was much easier for a lay user to understand. These Data highlights were presented on the homepage and across the site.

Above is a sample Data Highlight that leads to a page that allows you to see the utilization of funds, based on the area of impact, region and year.

Intuitive Search Index 

A very important feature on a data-intensive site are the Search Interfaces. To make them intuitive, Narrative based Search Interfaces were implemented.

On the homepage a Natural Language form was used to identify the type of the audience and understand the area of interest of the user to direct the user to the exact section in the site that would meet his needs.

In scenarios where distribution of data needs to be presented across locations or location is one of the key attributes, using Maps to present the data helps the user to drill down to the location of choice. 

Data Visualization

Effective use of Bar-charts, Doughnut charts, Sankey Flow diagrams, Maps were used to present data. The Visualization of data makes it easier for the user to understand the data and each of them represents a particular Data Story.


  • Bar charts are used to compare categorical data. They are oriented vertically instead of horizontally. The main advantage of bar charts is that it is better with many categories, especially on a small screen, as the height can be adjusted to show all categories. 
  • Donut charts are the same as a pie chart, but by only displaying an area along the outer edge of the pie, it becomes easier to compare the elements to each other. These are used to present the data as a percentage of sum total as 100%. In Donut charts, the space in the middle could also be used to communicate additional information.. 
  • A Sankey diagram is a type of flow diagram, in which the width of the link between two nodes is shown proportionally to the flow quantity. Here this is used to depict the flow of Funds from Donors to area utilization or to type of supplies used.
  • Map Charts are used when we need to show distribution across geographies. In this case both impact and fund utilization across geographies is presented using maps.  Additionally Map also serves as a navigation tool to zoom in to identify the destination the user is looking for to get more specific information.

Use of Animation in Design

The home page used a video in the background to tell the story about the organization. Simple Animations on the page helps to bring the page alive. In the Data Visualization some of the popular Animations used were timeline animations, growing bar charts, rotating pie charts. These animations helped amplify the Data Story put forth by the visualizations.


This Site has been built using Drupal Solr and Highcharts.

The Russian Lullaby: Drupal Migrations (III): Migrating from Google Spreadsheet

Main Drupal Feed - Wed, 05/27/2020 - 00:00

The systems and subsystems related to Drupal’s migration API are certainly exciting. In the previous articles in this series, I wanted to draw as complete a map as possible (part one) of the vast amount of resources, possibilities and referenced experts. In the second part I wanted to expose some basic mechanics of the migration processes in Drupal and knowing that this opens the door to thousands of options, possibilities and techniques….I didn’t want to let a third article go by without sharing some experiences migrating data from a common format as a Google Spreadsheet, …

WPTavern: Diving Into Automattic’s Block Experiments

Wordpress Planet - Tue, 05/26/2020 - 20:34

One of the repositories I have been keeping an eye on over the past few months is Block Experiments. It is a monorepo of blocks in various stages of development from Automattic. In total, five of the team’s block experiments are now available for download from the plugin directory. Three others seem to still be under development.

My interest was first piqued when I saw the company’s Starscape Block plugin. The plugin essentially did something that I had needed on a separate project more than a year ago. If it had existed at the time, it would have saved me from a headache or two, attempting to mix custom HTML into a page that was mostly made from blocks. Since then, I have taken a few moments to check in on what the team has been building.

Except for Bauhaus Centenary Block, which is likely only of interest to designers as something fun, most of the block plugins should be useful for many users.

Surprisingly, the team has failed to add the “block” tag to all of its block plugins, so not all of these are listed in the official block directory. It is likely an oversight that will be corrected at some point. For now, it just makes it a little harder for those of us looking for standalone block plugins to find them.

Starscape Block Configuring the Starscape block.

The Starscape Block plugin creates a container with a background of moving stars. End-users can control the density and speed of the stars. The block provides two gradient background options (linear or radial) along with 12 predefined gradient colors to select from. Users can also control the color of the single text input it provides.

The biggest downside of this block at the moment is that it does not behave the same way as the core Cover or Group block. There is no way for users to add anything but a single line of text through a rich text field. If the team would open it up to allow for nested blocks, it would be far more useful.

There is a lot that is possible with this block if the team pushes the envelope a little more. For example, it would also be interesting to have the ability to layer the stars over an image background, such as a cityscape or forest.

Waves Block Adding custom content within the Waves block.

Similar to Starscape Block, the Waves Block plugin creates a container block with a moving background. Instead of stars, the background is made up of — you guessed it — waves. It is not a simple copy of a plugin that does the same thing. The Waves block is a more robust solution. It works almost the same as the core Cover block and allows other blocks nested inside.

End-users can control the complexity, mouse speed, and fluid speed of the waves. They can also set the minimum height of the container and choose the four colors that create the effect of flowing waves.

This block was fun to play around with. Users could create some interesting hero-style page headers with this plugin, especially when WordPress treats the post title/header area as a block container in the future.

Event Block Setting up a custom event with the Event block.

More often than not, on most projects that I have worked on that posted events, it was typically a single event once in a while. Many of the event management plugins were overkill. Several times in the past, I have built a widget or a simple shortcode to output a basic event notice. For end-users who need a basic method of outputting an event notification on their sites, the Event Block plugin may be the best option.

It is a standalone block that allows users to enter an event title, date, location, description, and image. It is a simple, no-fuss solution.

One missing component I would like to see with this block is the ability to add both a start and end date. For multi-day events, users must provide that information in the description box, which would be acceptable for most use cases. However, the full event date would be better served via the “when” field.

Layout Grid Block Creating a book section with the Layout Grid block.

We have previously covered the Layout Grid Block plugin in a post on whether core WordPress should include a grid system. However, it is worth noting this block is a part of Automattic’s experimental block repository. The plugin has also been updated and improved since the Tavern’s last look. It worked well before, but some minor bug fixes have drastically improved its usability.

Layout Grid Block is quickly becoming one of my favorite plugins for creating columns. It is easy to set up between two and four columns of content and change how the content is displayed based on the screen size. Some of the other plugins I have tested are more powerful. However, some of those tend to be more complicated than what the average user may need. This plugin will likely fit the bill for many use cases.

Chromatic: Announce Your Organization’s Statistics In Slack

Main Drupal Feed - Tue, 05/26/2020 - 18:19

As longtime members of the Drupal community, Chromatic strives to contribute whenever we can. Some of those contributions are monetary, such as with the ongoing Drupal Cares campaign, but others involve activity directly on, including creating/testing patches, maintaining projects, and submitting case studies. For organizations that list themselves in the Drupal Marketplace, these statistics are all inputs into a formula whose output is your organization’s rank on the marketplace pages.

WPTavern: WordCamp Europe 2020 Announces Schedule, Plans to Debut Networking Rooms and Virtual Sponsor Booths

Wordpress Planet - Tue, 05/26/2020 - 15:03

The 8th annual WordCamp Europe is only 9 days away and organizers have just announced the schedule. Friday and Saturday sessions are split into two tracks that will run 30-minute talks simultaneously. Each talk is followed by a 10-minute Q&A. The schedule also mixes in a few 10-minute lightning talks, with 15-minute breaks every hour.

The WordCamp will feature a variety of topics of interest to WordPress professionals and enthusiasts, including freelancing, code review, art direction with Gutenberg, website security, growing communities, and the challenges of headless WordPress. The online schedule allows users to save their favorite sessions and then email them, share a link, or print the customized schedule.

In converting the event to be fully online, WCEU PR Team co-organizer Evangelia Pappa said they had to re-work some of their original plans for speakers. Not all previously scheduled speakers were available for an online session. The organizers also had to start from scratch in planning the event, determining the platforms and tools to use, as well as figuring out a new routine for working together from home.

For the first time in WCEU history, both the networking activities and sponsor booths are going virtual using Zoom. Organizers are planning to have two networking rooms, which can also be used for speakers who want to continue Q&A times with attendees following their sessions. Sponsors will have their own schedule of activities and webinars, expanding the event to 3-4 total tracks.

Pappa said the organizing team was inspired by WordCamp Spain, which has so far been the largest online WordPress event. The camp used Zoom to support 5,515 online attendees.

More than 5,650 people have already registered for WCEU 2020. Tickets continue to be released in batches, and organizers say they have an unlimited number available. Tickets for the virtual Contributor Day, which precedes the camp on June 4, are also still available. Attendees can indicate interest by checking the box for Contributor Day during the regular ticket signup process.