22 New Videos, Acquia Partnership Ending, DrupalCon Retrospective and Drupal 8 Translation
Last week was the US-based DrupalCon, and I hope that those of you who went had a great time. New Orleans is a fascinating city, and one of my favorite places in the world.
I had a lot of really interesting conversations throughout the week, with a couple common refrains. First, was the need for in-depth Drupal 8 training, and a particular desire for the BuildAModule style of learning. Okay, guys, I'm on it. You gave me a good idea of what the most pressing needs are and I am already working on meeting those.
Second was the disappointment from many government, education and large company customers that Acquia was going to stop bundling BuildAModule with their network memberships next month. "What?" many of you will say. "That was a thing?" Indeed it was, and Acquia's willingness to include BuildAModule meant that many institutions with a drawn out, painful purchasing process had direct access to BuildAModule's training with minimal logistics.
I don't know the full strategy behind Acquia's decision to stop including third party video training with their subscription service, but you have to admit that it makes sense. Acquia has had a mature line of services for a while now, and being able to integrate these services with self-delivered training has the potential to be a big win. Seeing as I work hard to remain vendor-neutral, there's not much I could have done to help with that.
Acquia also recently released a free video training program called Acquia Academy. If any single company has the resources to pull off thorough, free Drupal video training, it's Acquia. From a purely marketing perspective, I don't think it would make much sense for them to also include paid video training unless it was an up-sell from the Academy.
For the record, Acquia did a great job of managing the transition of dropping BuildAModule from their offering. They were gracious and thoughtful, and I have no complaints.
However, what this means is that if organizations that previously used BuildAModule through Acquia want to continue to use BuildAModule, they will have to establish a direct relationship with us. That means more logistics, but I would like to do everything I can to make that transition easier.
First of all, as many Acquia subscribers already know, I'm offering 4 months free to institutions making the transition to give some wiggle-room for purchasing cycles and paperwork. To claim this, just visit the move page and follow the instructions there.
For the second part, I need your help. At DrupalCon I learned that one government group was unable to purchase BuildAModule because we aren't on the right vendor lists. I've learned a lot about how universities and governments work over the years, but I still have some gaps. If you have any interest in getting BuildAModule for your team, please help me help you by telling me what you need from BuildAModule to make that happen.
I talked with several people who independently mentioned that there was a lot of positive energy at DrupalCon this year, more than in the last couple years. I had the same experience. DrupalCon is a place where people get to talk about what they actually think about Drupal and how it affects their lives. There's both hype and disillusionment, but there's also honest assessment and re-positioning of the role that Drupal has in the web technology ecosystem. People seem to feel freer to admit that Drupal has become only one tool in their tool belt, albeit an extremely useful one in for solving a a broad set of problems.
Hey, thanks for listening. I hope you have a great week, and I'll do my best to have the same.
PS: New videos down below! This week we're jostling grids of content around in a responsive way and throwing in a couple of Drupal 8 videos on translation (spoiler: it's a lot more fun in Drupal 8 than it was in 7).
Here we get the margins between the text elements in our icon box working, and then adjust the margin on the outside of the box to accommodate the re-positioned circle icon.
In this video we continue to refine the layout of our icon boxes by aligning them to the center of the browser and giving them a little space.
Here we spend a few seconds thinking about how we want our icon boxes to behave as the browser gets smaller.
A mockup is a frozen snapshot, and because of this there are a few things we have to figure out for ourselves, especially if we don't have a mockup of the site at smaller sizes. One is what we do at the edges of the browser window as the browser expands and contracts. Does the padding stay fixed while the content adjusts, or does the padding expand and contract? Here we look at our mockup, review our options, and pick a course of action.
Now that we know what we want to do with our layout, we build up the CSS in the browser until we get something functional.
Options for applying site layout styles to multiple elements New! (This one's FREE!)
There are a few different ways we can apply the same layout styles to multiple elements, like we need to do with our stacked hero sections. Here we discuss how we can use a wrapper element, a class, or a SASS placeholder to get the job done.
Having reviewed our options, we decide that using a SASS placeholder is best for applying our layout styles to whatever broad elements need them. In this video, we build up that placeholder style, add a breakpoint, and then apply it in our "qualities" section to give it a test run.
Here we adjust the margin between our icon-box items so that they fit on larger viewports, and then we work out the details of where the breakpoint should be when we want the 4-across grid to bump down to 2-across.
Now that we know the width of our breakpoint, we just need to figure out where it goes. Here we add the breakpoint to our SASS.
As we've worked through our styling of the "qualities" section, something happened to throw our margins off. No problem, this kind of thing happens all the time when you're working with CSS. In this video we fix the issue and move on.
How the "max-width" CSS property works New! (This one's FREE!)
We've seen the "max-width" and "min-width" properties in our breakpoints, but there's also a CSS property we can use that almost functions as a media query shorthand. Here we demonstrate how we can use the "max-width" CSS property to respond to changes in the viewport without adding any additional breakpoints.
Are you kidding? More margin woes? Again, we adjust the margin for our icon boxes and get it squared away once and for all.
The techniques we just used to lay out multiple elements in a flexible grid can be used for other situations where you need to adjust the number of items displaying horizontally. Here we just take a minute to let you know.
In this video we move on to adjust our carousel slideshow that displays our article snippets so that it functions well in smaller browser windows. We adjust the CSS and demonstrate how we can sometimes get what we need by hiding superfluous content with "display:none."
In the last video we worked through the CSS changes we needed to get our Flexslider carousel to adapt to smaller screens, and here we start to move those styles over to our SASS files.
Here we work on adapting our carousel snippet content to even smaller screens by repositioning the navigation back over the content.
Earlier in this series, we used Chrome to edit our SASS files directly, but that ability broke when we started using Compass to generate our CSS. In this video we configure our Compass project to generate CSS source maps, and reconnect our browser files back to the source so we can edit them directly in the browser.
On the smallest screens our carousel slideshow content is still a little too big. Here we add another breakpoint to hide some of the content that's not absolutely necessary so our slideshow fits.
As we scroll down our site, you may notice that somewhere along the lines we ended up with some strange whitespace hidden to the side. If you do a flick-scroll, like you might on a mobile browser, it results in unnecessary horizontal scrolling. Here we get to the bottom of where this extra space is coming from and get it fixed.
Once we get the horizontal scrolling issue pinned to the adjustments we made to the Flexslider styles and fix it, we now have a small margin around the slideshow. Here we dig in, figure out that it's a white border posing as margin, and we extract it.
How to import a language and translate the interface in Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 New! (This one's FREE!)
In this video we walk through the process of importing a language into Drupal 7, enabling it and switching to using it by adjusting the URL. In Drupal 8 we also enable a language, but because of the improvements to multilingual support in 8, it's a much quicker, easier and less error prone process.
How to translate content in Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 New! (This one's FREE!)
Here we demonstrate the difference in workflows and output when translating content in Drupal 7 and Drupal 8. Spoiler alert: Drupal 8 is way more powerful and intuitive.