Drupal 6/7: Responsible Drupal Development

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A primer on how to build intelligently in Drupal without getting lost in one of Drupals' many pitfalls.

Text of Drupal 6/7: Responsible Drupal Development

  • 1. UNDERSTANDING WEBSITE DEVELOPMENT (EVEN WHEN IT IS NOT YOUR RESPONSIBILITY) Eric Sembrat Advanced Computing Services (ACS) Kennesaw State University March 2012 Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 2. GOALS FOR TODAY (AND A SHORT INTRODUCTION) Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 3. OUR GOAL What will should everyone get out of this presentation? Understanding what makes a good website. Detailing what a content-management- system is good for (and bad for). Explaining how you can get the most out of your Drupal site. Answering your questions! Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 4. WHO AM I? Eric Sembrat Drupal Lead Developer at Kennesaw State University Point-of-contact for BCoE Site Redesign (2011) BS in Computer Science - Georgia Tech (2009) MS in Information Systems - Kennesaw State University (2011) Who is presenting all this information to you, anyways? Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 5. WHAT MAKES A GOOD WEBSITE? Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 6. WEB DESIGN 101 Its more than just content. Web design is composed of three main pillars: Accessibility (can your users access content?) Content (can your users use, read, and absorb content?) Style (can your users appropriately navigate through and to content?) Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 7. WEB DESIGN 101 Its more than just content. Style takes a few forms across a website: The actual theme itself (colors, background images, logos). The font selected for headings, text, captions, etc. The usage of images within specific pages. The look and feel of dynamic elements (such as image galleries, etc.). Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 8. WEB DESIGN 101 Its more than just content. Accessibility answers the question: Can users actually find content on my website? Making text readable and selecting appropriate images. Constructing logical menu hierarchy and ensuring the menus are consistent. Making sure the theme and your content do not clash. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 9. WEB DESIGN 101 Its more than just content. Content concerns itself with the actual meat-and-gravy of your website. Pages of content, attachments. Downloadable documents. Its what someone comes to a website to get, which is information. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 10. A BAD EXAMPLE An example of how to give your users a headache. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 11. WEB DESIGN 101 Bright colors hurt eyes. What do you think makes a bad website? Bad content? Bad layout? Mix-matched fonts? Background colors? Animated icons? Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 12. A GOOD EXAMPLE An example of how to give your users a pleasant experience. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 13. WEB DESIGN 101 What makes classy content? What do you think makes a good website? Lots of images? Stylish fonts? Good navigation? Flashy content? Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 14. WEB DESIGN 101 Bridge into CMS. Well go more in detail into each of these categories in a few minutes. But for now, well go over what makes a content-management-system (CMS) such as Drupal so helpful when designing websites. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 15. WHATS A CMS GOOD FOR, ANYWAYS? Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 16. ALL CONTENT, ALL DAY. CMS - Taking theming out of your hands! A CMS allows you to worry exclusively about content and not about presentation. When editing pages, you should be concerned solely with what the page says and what information you want to link to. Almost all of the styling (minus bold/ italics/underline) is handled by the CMS. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 17. WEB DESIGN 101 How look and feel is handled by Drupal. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 18. ALL CONTENT, ALL DAY. CMS - Taking theming out of your hands! A CMS takes Theming (and parts of Accessibility) out of your hands. Your goal then should be to ensure that the content on the site is as user- friendly as possible. Your secondary goal should be to ensure that the accessibility of the content (menus, navigating between pages, links) are relevant, straight- forward, and helpful. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 19. MAXIMIZING WHAT DRUPAL CAN DO FOR YOU. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 20. ALL CONTENT, ALL DAY. Content Editing like a pro. Good practices for content editing: Use the built-in text-editing functionality. Bold, italics, underline, headings 1-6, bullet points. Dont concern yourself with font colors, sizes, specific spacing. Dont try to reinvent the wheel. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 21. COPYING FROM WORD Troubles with Word to Drupal? Youre not alone. From previous experience, copying from Microsoft Word causes more problems than it fixes. Microsoft Words formatting does not mesh well with Drupal. Words formatting is often inconsistent across paragraphs. This is doubly so when pasting items from Microsoft Excel to Drupal. Solution? Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 22. COPYING FROM WORD A solution to keep you sane. Solution - copy the text only. Within the editor, there is a button for copying text only. Use this to copy text only into your page, then apply formatting from Drupal to get the intended look and feel. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 23. USE HEADERS Why go against a uniform look? Drupal has a feature to use Headers for segmenting and separating content. Use these headers in place of custom fonts or font-sizes, since they are uniform across all pages on your site. Kennesaw State University - Advanced Computing Services Thursday, April 26, 12
  • 24. DESIGNING MENUS Creating helpful menus. Your menu items should provide an appropriate outline of all pages on yo