Technical Thoughts, Tutorials, and Musings

DrupalCon Paris: Drupal grows up

DrupalCon Paris 2009 is now in th' past. As usual thar were bein' last minute chaos, lots o' scallywags runnin' aroun' behind th' scenes goin' insane, scallywags hugging friends they see once every six months, presentations rangin' from super-technical t' light an' fluffy, general geekery, an' o' course copious amounts of beer. (This time we di'nae drink out any o' th' bars, but then it is Paris.)

But thar were bein' somethin' else, too, that I saw as an undercurrent o' much o' th' conference: Maturity. Not th' "actin' like borin', responsible adults instead o' havin' fun in Paris" kind o' maturity (may that no nay ne'er happen), but th' "thinkin' about more than just bein' code ninjas" kind o' maturity. Drupal, as a whole, is growin' up.

DrupalCon: Design Patterns are back

Just when ye thought it were bein' safe t' go t' DrupalCon, here comes.., All Hands Hoay! schedule change!

It turns out thar were bein' a late cancellation, so th' DrupalCon Paris team has asked me t' fill in with Drupal Design Patterns on Wednesday afternoon.

If ye write modules fer Drupal, ye want t' be thar. Although we'll be approachin' th' subject from a slightly theoretical slant, th' main thrust will be how t' write code that other developers will understan' quickly, that they'll be able t' extend, an' how t' not reinvent th' wheel by leveragin' existin' solutions an' approaches.

Databases, D7CX, and DrupalCon

Do ye have a Drupal module ye want t' upgrade t' Drupal 7?

Do ye want t' know how t' leverage th' Drupal 7 database layer t' make yer module better?

Will ye be at DrupalCon?

There should be about 500 o' ye that meet that criteria, by me estimate. More than enough fer a BoF. :-)

Views in Paris: 1-2 punch

Are ye all set fer DrupalCon Paris?

Through th' mysteries o' schedulin', Paris ended up with not one, but two sessions on Views, Ya lily livered swabbie! Ahoy! The first, from Frédéric Maran', is a 4 hour workshop on Views 2 for coders on day 1. The second is yours truly in a 50 minute session on Views for Developers on day 2.

Sounds very similar, doesn't it? Aye, we thought so too. Not t' worry, though, as we've worked out how t' keep both sessions distinct an' interestin'.

Here's how it will break down, so ye can decide which session ye want t' go t' (an' ye'll want t' be at least in one o' them; this is Views, after all):

ORMs vs. Query Builders: Database portability

There has been some discussion in recent days regardin' Object-Relational Mappers (ORMs), Drupal, an' why th' latter doesn't use th' former, I'll warrant ye. There be, actually, many reasons fer that, an' fer why Drupal doesn't do more with the Active Record pattern.

Rather than tuck such discussion away in an issue queue, I figured it better t' document a bit more widely.

Has it been that long?

According to, it has now been four years and five days since I first joined the Drupal community. My how time flies, and how much has changed since then.

Am I done yet?


I like givin' presentations. I really do. But this has been quite a conference season this year; certainly me busiest e'er. Four conferences in four different states, an' nine presentations. And th' year isn't even half o'er yet...

Here's what I've been up t':

Help build a better PHP IDE!

There's been a fair bit o' talk about PHP IDE's o' late. That's not surprisin' given how useful they can be. (Really, folks, vi can only take ye so far.) Most o' th' attention has been focused on th' big laddies: Eclipse an' its derivatives (both free an' commercial), Komodo, an' NetBeans. Eclipse an' NetBeans be both Java based, an' Komodo is based on Mozilla's XUL platform (which also runs Firefox an' company). The sharks will eat well tonight! I've been bouncin' betwixt them fer a while, an' ha'nae really been satisfied with any o' them. I usually refer t' Eclipse as th' one I hate least. :-)

There's a new contender t' keep an eye on, though, that is worthy o' notice: KDevelop.

Important DrupalCon session change!

Just t' give everyone a heads up, I have made some changes t' one o' me sessions, with a chest full of booty. Based on th' feedback I received afore, me session on Object-Oriented Drupal has been updated. It seems no one wanted t' hear about th' basics, as they already knew them. Fire the cannons! :-) I will instead be focusin' on bounty patterns, OO bounty philosophy, an' how it applies (or should apply) t' Drupal, me Jolly Roger It's too late t' get changes into th' printed program, but I have updated th' session page on th' DC DC web site t' reflect th' new focus.

So if ye were hopin' fer a session on basic PHP OOP syntax an' concepts, um, sorry. If ye're lookin' fer an intermediate t' advanced session on how t' use OOP well, then this session is fer ye.

I'll see ye in DC!

A hostile working environment?

So first I thought it were bein' odd that Palantir's private IRC bot has a factoid fer me that reads "Great on challah!" Then I noticed this:

I wonder if I should be worried...

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