TWIG: the new Drupal 8 template engine?

There is lot of activity around building a better theming experience for Drupal 8 at the moment. In fact, there will be a sprint on this topic tomorrow (friday) at Frontendunited in Amsterdam together with people in the United States. One option would be to provide a better, modern template engine. Something like TWIG perhaps. There is an issue on d.o for evaluating Twig using a module. Another reason why Twig might be a good choice: Fabien Potencier is behind it (lead Symfony developer).

Drupal Apps: the new way of building Drupal websites

Drupal apps icon

"First there were modules, then there were Features, and now there are Apps". That's the first sentence of the project description of the Drupal Apps module, and it's the new hotness in the Drupal ecosystem. Some new distributions - like the newly released panopoly- are already using it. But instead of me explaining what it is, just watch this 4 minute video by LevelTenInteractive which will give you a pretty good picture!

HTML5 Caching: AppCache and LocalStorage

html5 localstorage appcache

So we've these brand new toys in HTML5 like appcache (offline caching) and Local (or session) storage to build fast mobile web apps. You would say appcache would be used to improve load speeds on mobile devices. But many big companies are actually using localstorage instead for caching purposes. Making me wonder if this is the new mobile browser cache? Indeed it seems many developers are using localstorage because of certain issues (page that includes manifest is always cached) with appcache, making some people wonder if it could be used effectively at all in a dynamic environment like Drupal.

Tools for mobile development: Adobe Shadow

One of the challenges when developing for different mobile platforms like iPad's, tablets and smartphones is debugging and inspecting frontend code. On our laptop or workstation we are used using tools like firebug or chrome's inspector but mobile devices lack these functions. There are tools which enable you to inspect the DOM on certain platforms (like iwebinspector for iOS) but not for every single device. Adobe Shadow (watch the vid) seems to solve this problem by enabling remote inspection using paired Android and iOS devices. The downside: you will physically need to have all devices on your desk. The upside: you aren't simulating anything but testing on real devices, without having to touch them.

Embedding youtube / vimeo in Drupal 7

So what if you only, simply, just want to be able to embed youtube videos in Drupal 7? This was pretty simple in D6 using emfield and media_youtube. However, for D7 you will need the media module to handle this. Depending on the usecase, you might be hesitant to do this because media module is wildly in development. In that case, you might use a custom youtube field or extend ckeditor with vimeo / youtube buttons.

DrupalCon Denver Day 2

Todays highlight so far (day isn't over yet)  was Fabien's presentation "Drupal meets symfony". In a very clear presentation @fabpot explained what parts of symfony will be adopted in Drupal 8 and why. The most important ones being the classloader, httpfoundation, routing and httpkernel components. This will allow Drupal developers to focus on the CMS and let symfony take care of the low-level work. Symfony follows the HTTP 1.1 standards and allows for some amazing stuff out-of the box, like ESI support and Varnish. Using smyfony, you even have a reverse proxy caching mechanism based on php (if you can't afford Varnish). 

DrupalCon Denver Day 1

DrupalCon Denver

The day started out with a warming up session by Robert Douglas (including live debugging on stage) followed up by the traditionel keynote by Dries. Rest of the day, I spent most of the time in core conversation tracks about Drupal 8. It's pretty exciting and somewhat scary to see how much of Drupal will be "replaced" by Symphony and the big architectural changes this will bring. But it looks like the right decision if Drupal doesn't want to fall behind its competition. Tomorrow afternoon, Fabien Potencier (Sympony lead developer) will talk about how Drupal meets Symphony in a session.


Drupalcon t-shirt

Registered and picked up our DrupalCon badge yesterday, plus our swag bag and yellow t-shirt (there was also a blue version available). A lot of contest in the bag this year. You can win anything from a radio controlled Drupal car (mini cooper) to a MacBook Air. Sessions start tomorrow with Dries' keynote at 9:00 Denver time. That is 16:00 Dutch time.

Pictures from the Tech Talk

Uploaded the pictures from the Drupal Tech Talk in Tilburg last thursday. There were three talks. Two of them about the search API by Peter Grond and Baris Wanschers. And after the pizza's, Jur de Vries showcased remote entities. Thanks everybody for coming!


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