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

Some critical articles to understanding implementing a CCK module in Drupal

I recently wrote a module implementing a CCK field. There is a lot of undocumented information required to be known to do so. Fortunately some people have written tutorials ...

Functions needed to define a new CCK field; Field placement module thoughts

Poplar ProductivityWare Articles: Creating a Compound Field Module for CCK in Drupal 6.x by Jennifer Hodgdon

A simple way to create a 'related posts' block using Views 2 in Drupal 6

Looking at the traffic data google Analytics collects on my web sites I see a high "bounce" rate which means many visitors leave right away. It means they come to the site, then look only at the one page, presumably to go elsewhere. I've been pondering what might be a good way to entice them to stay and look around. After all, my websites exist to instruct people, so the more pages they look at on my sites the more instruction I'm able to impart. Oh, and there's a higher chance they'll click on an ad or something.

Improving navigability of Drupal taxonomy hierarchies

Drupal's taxonomy system is wonderful in many regards, but it has major FAIL issues. One of those is the navigation of vocabulary term pages where the vocabulary has a hierarchy. By default the taxonomy system uses pages at "example.com/taxonomy/term/%tid" to display teasers for nodes having the given term. Ideally these pages would enable browsing around in the hierarchy of terms in the given vocabulary, but that's not the case. Fortunately the fix is pretty simple though rather obscure.

The ideal in my mind is for the vocabulary term page to display these items:

    How to use Mercurial to hack Drupal Core without killing kittens

    In the Drupal community there's a paradigm that every time you hack core you kill a kitten. And who would want to kill a kittens? The point is that any time you hack core (modify the Drupal core files) it becomes a nightmare to forward-migrate your changes as Drupal core is updated. The Drupal team does routinely update Drupal (about every 2 months) and it's best to keep your Drupal installation up-to-date especially as many of the fixes are for security bugs.

    Reducing bandwidth use, decreasing page load times, for better Drupal user experience

    One of my sites has a high traffic load (2000 visits per day, over 6000 page views per day) and has been using up the bandwidth allotment on the shared hosting account where it's hosted. Concerns are that a large download per page would turn off visitors due to a long page load time, and also the environmental impact of excessive bandwidth usage. Initially the only measurement tool I had was the realtime bandwidth statistics provided by the hosting provider (see the screenshots below) and it was only later when Firebug became functional on firefox 3.5 and YSlow was then usable.

    Cure for FAIL when using RedirectMatch with clean URL's on Drupal

    I've had a problem with use of RedirectMatch on some of my sites which causes a FAIL in combination with Drupal's reliance on mod_rewrite to provide clean URL's. Over the years I've used different technologies to build sites and on occasion have converted a site built with static web pages into one driven with Drupal. This has meant a web of .htaccess files listing redirects for the old URL into a new URL. The goal is to help your readers continue to access the pages you wrote even when the location (URL) of the page changes.

    Using views to publish both full and partial feeds in Drupal

    There's a long standing debate over the content of RSS feeds. For the greatest convenience of your readers the full RSS feed is great, because they can read your articles in their feed aggregator. However as a publisher who needs to earn a living from my writing I only want to publish a teaser so that the reader will feel incentivized to visit my site. For me the feed is a lure to bring people to my site, and I cannot do justice to others' viewpiont.

    Using Views 2 in Drupal 6 to replace the Tracker module

    The core Tracker module is a convenient way to look at recent traffic on a Drupal site. It shows a list of recently posted (or modified) nodes along with useful data items for each node. However with Views 2 there is a more flexible way to implement the same functionality, without enabling another module.

    The task is really pretty simple. Just download and enable the Views module, then in the Views configuration interface enable the Tracker view. Yup, coming bundled with the Views module is a predefined view which does every task the Tracker module does.

    Using CCK's nodereference field for a kind of footnote

    In two prior blog posts (see the references section below) I've discussed using a website content type to create resources lists. In this post I want to discuss another use, for a kind of footnoting system. You can see it in action below.

    Creating a resources page in Drupal using a CCK content type

    An earlier blog post (see references below) discussed a website node type that I frequently use. One purpose for the website node type is to build "resources" web pages. The "resources" page is an old practice on the Web where a site might host a resources page listing useful sites. These resources pages can be a gold mine of information for users, but I suppose it can be a pain to maintain if the page is a static page you have to remember to edit to add a new resource link.

    Pages

    Short URL

    Subscribe to Front page feed