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Dreaming in Drupal

How do you know you've been thinking about work too much? When your wife relates a conversation she had with you in the morning, and you don't remember a word, but can definitely see how what you said relates to what you're working on:

Saith my wife: "Jeff, how do you set your alarm?"

My (groggy) reply: "Hit field, the arrow, then default."

Now, this could possibly have something to do with alarm clocks. There are often arrows on them, and you hit buttons... but I know better. I was referring to:

$this->addFieldMapping('field', 'source')->defaultValue(0);

...which I have probably typed about 100 times in the past week, and maybe 20 or so last night during a late-night debugging session with the Migration process of flockNote v2 to v3 (from a proprietary WAMP-based system to a new Drupal 7 LAMP-based system).

Adding Images to Search Results (Drupal Search)

For a while (earlier in my Drupal career), I was avoiding adding imagefield-attached images to nodes that appeared in my search results, because I remember the first time I tried doing so, I was still quite confused by the way drupal handled search results theming.

Well, after another crack at it, I finally have a nice, performant way of displaying images from nodes added via imagefields (or in drupal 7, image fields) inline with search results, and it didn't require much work at all!

Images in Search Results

The image above shows inline images for LOLSaints.com, a site which uses Midwestern Mac's Hosted Apache Solr search service to return results quickly and allows faceting, etc. using the excellent Apache Solr Search Integration module. But the technique I'm using works equally well with built-in (but slower) Drupal core search module's results.

Programmatically adding and removing roles to users in Drupal

[UPDATE: Here is a much simpler method for editing a user's roles.]

I thought there might be some sort of API function that allows me to add a user role to a user object by the role id (rid), but after looking at user_save() and some other information around the Drupal universe (like this thread), it looks like it's not as easy as I'd hoped. Definitely not like node_save(), where you just modify the node object, save it, and you're done!

I wrote this helper function that you could stick in your own custom module (tested with Drupal 7), which lets you add roles as simply as:

Programmatically Adding or Removing a User or Node Reference from a Node (D7 / References)

The References module in Drupal 7 allows for easy creation and removal of user and node references through Drupal's interface. However, programmatically adding and removing these references is a little more difficult.

You basically have to load the node which has the reference in it, edit the reference field (in my example, the reference field can have an unlimited number of references), add or remove the user ID (or node ID if you're chaging a node reference), and save the node.

Let's look at the example of simply adding a user reference to a node:

<?php
 
// Load the node you'd like to edit.
 
$node = node_load($nid);
 
// Add the user ID you'd like to add to this node reference.
 
$node->field_node_user_references[$node->language][] = array('uid' => $uid);
 
// Save the node.
 
node_save($node);
?>

It takes a little more effort to remove a user reference (or node reference) from a node. For this, since I have to do it for a few different fields on a node, I've written a helper function that removes a given $uid from the array of user references on a given node.

Views: Show "Showing X-X of X results" (page and result counter) in Drupal 7

[Update: Views 3.x has a really nifty plugin feature called 'Results summary' that you can simply add to the header or footer of your view, and use your own text with placeholders, to do everything I outline in the post below, without a line of code. Add a results summary instead of using hook_views_pre_render() or a Views PHP field.]

I needed to display a page/item counter on a view on one of my Drupal 7 sites, using Views 7.x-3.x. This counter would display at the bottom of the view, just above the pager, and needed to display the current number of results being displayed, along with the total number of results.

Views provides all this data right inside the $views object, so all I needed to do was add the following PHP snippet (including the <?php ?> delimiters) to a 'Global: PHP' textarea in my view's footer:

Moving Scheduler Module's 'Scheduling Options' Out of the Vertical Tabs in D7

...or, "Always Check Your Module Weights when form_alter'ing"

Scheduling options from Scheduler module

I spent about half an hour today trying to use hook_form_alter() to move the 'Scheduling options' fieldset (provided by the Scheduler module) out of my node form's vertical tabs (down where URL path settings, comment settings, etc. are jumbled together).

I couldn't even see the 'scheduler_settings' form settings when I looked at the form's array, even though I knew it existed (since it was being displayed, and the scheduler.module defined it using its own hook_form_alter().

Declustering Markers in Google Maps with Drupal?

Location MarkerI recently received a question from a friend who's setting up a new site in Drupal 7, and is using the GMap Module, Location, and Views, to set up a map of upcoming events for his website.

My response (posted below) basically gives some pointers for what other people (often creating custom implementations of Google Maps on their sites) are doing to avoid the problem of 'decluttering' or 'declustering' multiple points at the same location (same coordinates). My question is: how do you handle declustering on your Drupal site? Are there any perferred techniques? Luckily for me, this is a problem I have yet to encounter, as I've only had to map locations of stores, parishes, etc., that are already spread out evenly over some area of a map :-)

My response to his question follows:

Scaling the Drupal Community - Notes and Reflections

The sparsely-attended 'Scaling the Drupal Community' session, led by webchick and heyrocker, was one of the few sessions I've attended at DrupalCon Chicago that held my interest throughout. And, since a few people on IRC asked me to post my session notes, I thought I'd do so and put them up on the Planet.

If you, like me, thought there were too many awesome sessions during this timeslot that you decided to go to another one, then this post is for you—I believe that anyone invested in Drupal's future stands to gain something from reflecting on what webchick said at the session.

Now, on to the notes. I will give a summary of a statement by webchick, then my reflection (kind of a Q&A format):

On 'Drupal Answers' vs. a drupal.org solution for Drupal Support

Drupal Answers is a new Stack Exchange site for answering Drupal questions, and it's in public beta right now. The site is hosted off the 'drupal.org' family of sites, and has a few hundred users so far...

Webchick: Webchick basically stated that she's leaning towards what we already have (with slight adjustments). She mentioned that there's no good answer for the question of motivating people to help support drupal newbies without incentives (a karma or reputation system).

Also, she said that moving the support away from drupal.org is potentially very dangerous; this could lead the 'newbie' community away from the 'expert' community (which tends to discuss things in drupal.org issue queues. Right now, 'newbies' typically hang around in drupal.org forums, and 'experts' typically stick to their trackers and issue queues.

Git through an NTLM Proxy (Corporate Firewall) for drupal.org

Borrowing from answers in this Stack Overflow question, here's how you can get through a corporate (Microsoft) NTLM Proxy to clone git repositories from drupal.org:

cd into your drupal contrib directory (or wherever you want to put the repository).

$ export http_proxy="http://username:password@proxy:port/"

$ git clone http://git.drupal.org/project/[projectname]

Basically, you're first setting an environment variable to tell your shell to use an HTTP proxy, with your username/password combo. This variable will be used when making connections to git.drupal.org (and other services, like github). You can also set this in your ~/.profile, .bash_rc, or .bash_profile so it will be saved for future Terminal sessions.

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