Harry Slaughter's blog

Gotcha when editing nodes programatically


Now this one is pretty annoying to.

I'm writing a module that imports data into nodes. Sometimes this data has already been imported, and I only want to update existing rows with changes, if any.

After pulling in a row of data from the import file, I see if it already exists as a node in my database. If it does, I grab the node ID and load the existing node:

$node = node_load($existing_nid);

I then do some magical stuff and save the node using the standard:

Is community participation bad?


Here are some interesting opinions. I've always understood the appreciation for the web as new and powerful means of enabling otherwise impossible communication. But this Andrew Keen character seems to believe that if everyone is allowed to participate, we all lose. He's also wonderfully arrogant.


Get Jing


I just found this very cool screencast creation tool that is free. It's called Jing. Installation is quick and pretty easy (though it does require the .NET 3.0 libraries for the Windows version).

Here's a sample screencast, a quick demo of cscope as a development tool.



How the web got screwed up


This article by Joel Spolsky is as good an great explanation of why the web (among other things) is such a mess to work with for designers and developers.I've always had this idea that the web would eventually work itself out and become a tidy place where everything worked reasonably well. But according to Joel's logic, this is unlikely to ever happen.

It's time for module ratings


The number of available Drupal modules is continuing to grow dramatically. Like a lot of other Drupal users, I spend a good deal of time downloading new modules and trying them out to see what they do. Unfortunately, not all contrib modules work as advertised. I may spend several hours working with a new module before realizing there's some small issue with it that prevents it from solving my problem.

Similarly, there are often modules out there that solve problems I didn't even know I had, but I'm simply not aware they exist.

What I want is a resource that leverages the experience of thousands of Drupal administrators. I want to know that I shouldn't even bother with a module because it's too buggy. I want to know what modules other users find useful in specific areas (such as multimedia, file handling, cache issues, etc.).

Other large OSS communities often solve this need for a shared knowledge base by providing user reviews. Mozilla, Thunderbird, Joomla and other modular systems provide user reviews and ratings. It is time that the Drupal community have one too.

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