Alexei Rayu's blog

Drupalcamp Berlin

Drupalcamp Berlin is over! It has run in Berlin, on 15-16 November, 2014. Lots of things to be happy about:

  • Glad to have met the team of the Drupal agency arocom, with which I work remotely. Enjoyed the time, and the opportunity to know the people better. A good team, fun to be a part of on a human level!
  • Was proud to see so many Ukrainian devs at the conference, with solid knowledge of the subject. Mostly, they were a part of the Propeople group, a multinational company. But still very proud to see Drupal being a right choice for a good amount of my compatriots.
  • Have flown 4 airplanes in total, which helped me combat my fear of heights. Ate lots of cookies, drank lots of free soda, ate lots of free pears, listened to tons of good suggestions and practices. Had some good time, in the other words.

I am thankful to Arocom for having a big portion of my expenses in this DrupalCamp covered!

Drupal Zopim Integration - Pros and Cons

Recently I conducted some research on Drupal integration with Zopim, to integrate this functionality with arocom.de. Zopim is an online chat with an admin service-side backend. Here are some strong and weak sides to Zopim, some pros and cons to using Zopim as your customer support chat.

Overall, Zopim is a great tool for client chat support. It’s pros outweigh it’s cons, especially with a free plan in mind. If you are having a mono-lingual site, you are especially lucky. If you are multi-lingual, you will need to write your own translation JavaScript and implement it via Zopim’s JavaScript API.

My New Work Place - Arocom

Congratulate me with a new work place! After some correspondence, live meetings, and common projects, I am joining to work with arocom GmbH remotely, as a senior developer. I have had experience working with the Drupal agency arocom, and the company's CEO, Axel Roth, and have been impressed by their depth and practicality in handling Drupal, as well as intuitiveness and cleverness of solutions that they are building for their clients. Work with arocom has shown to be interesting, challenging, and fulfilling. I am looking forward to working with the arocom team, contributing, and building awesome stuff together!

Drupal 8 and AngularJS

Drupal 8 and AngularJS are two cutting edge technologies that can work effectively together to allow creation of web applications and effective dynamic data views. AngularJS can be used with Drupal in a variety of ways. In web shops and web carts, where setting product options can calculate price in real-time. In all kinds of listings, like news listings, person databases, ticket systems. It can be used for live filtering of data. For all kinds of live update widgets, live weather widgets and various real-time tracking. And, of course, a sweet role with the smart forms, that evaluate values and adapt in real-time without having to reload the page. With the Drupal 8’s built-in services support, AngularJS comes a very handy and helpful, and a promising companion.

Drupal 8 switched to PSR-4

Drupal 8 has switched from PSR-0 to PSR-4. PSR is an autoloading standard, that ensures, that all classes files get loaded properly, without having to load the class files manually. PSR-4 is the latest version of the PSR standard, that allows to have a shorter class file folder hierarchy, correcting the unpleasant issue of many layers of folders in the early PSR versions.

The declaration in the routing file remains the same, like:
_content: '\Drupal\angulars\Controller\AngularsController::content'

However, the folder path of the class file has now changed. Taking example of my Angular JS Sample module.

APCu Support Lands in Drupal Core

After many months of work and debate, Drupal 8 lands APCu (APC user cache) support in core for PHP 5.5 and up! The original issue can be found at the Drupal.org website - Built-in APCu support in core (PHP 5.5 only).

APC is a caching mechanism widely used with PHP, and APCu is a part of the APC caching mechanism, that caches data - such as variables. This will lighten load on database layer for PHP 5.5 and up. The reason why PHP 5.5 and up will be serviced is because starting with version 5.5, APC is included in the core of PHP. This will increase speed with which data is retrieved and served by Drupal.

Why I Hate the Overlay in Drupal 7

Take this rant with a grain of salt, as I am speaking it with tongue in cheek. To an extent. Generally speaking, I like Drupal 7. It's a very mature and flexible CMS. It also has lots of wise choices implemented. Overlay is not one of them. Overlay in Drupal 7 is a module, that loads admin pages in a modal overlay (hence the name) on top of your current content. The idea sounds sweet initially. You can make changes to your web site and you needn't leave the content page to make the changes.

Kint for Drupal

Thanks to Alexander Danilenko, there is now a new debug tool coming with the Devel module. This new debug tool's name is Kint. They wanted to name it after Kant, but misspelled. (No, they didn't.) Kint's functionality is very much like Krumo's, except that it not only lists objects variables, but also their methods and constants. So far, Kint is only available in Drupal 8's devel package.

DevDays Szeged 2014 Thoughts and Comments

DevDays Szeged 2014 was a fun and well organized Drupal event. I enjoyed being there, meeting co-developers and learning a few interesting things about Drupal 8. In this blog post, I will share some thought and observations, shortly listed below. But first, some overall impressions.

Drupal DevDays Szeged 2014 was well organized, well planned, and well carried out. And the fish soup was tasty. The first part consisted of code sprints, and the second - of sessions (and more code sprints for those who wanted to work on their evil genius master-plans (like search API) instead). I chose the sessions. What especially interested me, was to learn of the latest Drupal 8 changes from the first hands. And I was was quite happy with how it worked out.

Should I upgrade my web site to Drupal 8... at all?

There has been heated discussion in the Drupal community about the future of Drupal 8. In this article, my Friends and Clients, I would like to explain my take in simple, non-technical terms.

As a small business, should you upgrade to Drupal 8 at all?

This article is mostly for small businesses and personal websites, as well as small Drupal shops and freelancers.

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