David Herron is a blogger, software engineer, electric vehicle enthusiast, and energy healer.

Review: Doctor Who - A Christmas Carol

Typically you'd think a Doctor Who episode named "A Christmas Carol" would involve traveling to 1800's England, meeting THE Charles Dickens, and having an adventure with him that somehow inspired him to write A Christmas Carol. There are plenty of Doctor Who stories where they do this, visit some actual historical place or event, meet historical people, etc. This episode doesn't involve any such thing, while still being heavily influenced by the Dickens story.

Save your server! Detect taxonomy term loops in Drupal 6!

I dunno exactly how I did this, but the taxonomy hierarchy on one of my sites had a taxonomy loop. That server has been having periodic load overload that kills performance and eventually I realized an issue is this taxonomy loop. In taxonomy.module the function taxonomy_get_parents_all can get tripped up if your taxonomy hierarchy has a loop. I'd found one looped term by hand, and just wrote a little script to detect others.

Review: Drupal 7 First Look

Drupal 7 is in the RC phase, so it's time to begin thinking about your upgrade from 6 to 7. (My condolences if you're having to think about a 5 to 7 upgrade) I wish to present to you my thoughts on a new book which will prove rather helpful in upgrading your thinking to the new hotness of Drupal 7.

Drupal 7 is as different from Drupal 6 as that one was from Drupal 5. Making the upgrade seems to involve not just the technical stuff of the upgrade process, but also understanding what's new and how things are different. This book will give you a very good grounding in that newness.

Measuring home heat loss through windows or pipes with a hand-held IR thermometer

Earlier I wondered - Do window insulation films reduce heat loss in winter? That post links to a bunch of videos talking about using plastic films or other layers of plastic to sorta mimic multi-pane windows. The best insulated windows are apparently ones with multiple layers (multi-pane), but if you're like me and have a landlord it's not possible to swap out your single-pane windows for better ones. Maybe adding a sheet of plastic will add a good enough air layer to create some insulation effect. Maybe.

Do window insulation films reduce heat loss in winter?

It's winter time and the noninsulated older house I live in is again cold. There's not a lot one can do with this old house, because the walls themselves seem to not be insulated (they're cold to the touch). But the windows are single pane and obviously a lot of heat is lost through them. Glass simply does not do much for insulation, though modern double or triple paned windows are much better. In my case this is a rented house, and it's simply not possible to install better windows. But something I can do without seeking landlord permission is to install window insulating film.

Is "lots" of followers a good idea? Or is the idea to have valuable conversations?

We’re looking to create social good via social media networking websites. There are plenty of competing ideas on the best way to operate a social media networking account to create the most impact.

Green Transportation Examiner - my main social media for social good project

For a year and a half I’ve been privileged with the role of Journalist, covering the greening of our transportation system. My main gig is on examiner.com with the title Green Transportation Examiner. Examiner.com operates a “citizen journalist” organization with 10’s of thousands of people writing on whatever special topic floats their own boat, and I am one of them. I’m currently learning how to utilize social media networks in promoting the journalist work I’m doing with examiner.com.

Using "drush make" to maintain the source tree for a Drupal site, and avoid killing kittens

To avoid killing kittens through hacking Drupal core I've been maintaining a source tree using Mercurial (see: How to use Mercurial to hack Drupal Core without killing kittens). But, I had an inspired idea recently to see how well "drush make" could take care of the job and maybe stop using a private source tree. One of the key required features would be to maintain a set of local patches. I'm pleased to report some positive success and it looks like a useful method for a D6 to D7 upgrade.

Blocking an undesired item while using the Amazon Store module for Drupal

The other day I was contacted by a lawyer about an improper use of their trademark. Unfortunately the improper use stemmed from a product listing controlled by the "Amazon Store" module, and is in data retrieved from amazon.com using their affiliate product web services API. The "Amazon Store" module implements something like the "aStore" feature supported by amazon.com, but hosted on a Drupal site. Because all the data comes direct from amazon.com there is little control over how it is displayed.

Maybe the Domain Access module causes more trouble than it's worth?

I've been trying out the Domain Access module and made a couple blog posts describing the learning (see: Configuring Drupal blocks when using the Domain Access module and Looking at (and a debugging tip) the Domain module for Drupal). In a comment, David Hansen Lange made an observation that's been in the back of my mind.


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