Posts Tagged:architecture

rfp-robotRFP ROBOT: Website Request for Proposal Generator

The time has come for a new website (or website redesign), which means you need to write a website request for proposal or web RFP. A Google search produces a few examples, but they vary wildly and don’t seem to speak really to your goals for developing or redesigning a new website. You need to write a website RFP that will clearly articulate your needs and generate responses from the best website designers and developers out there. But how?

Have no fear, RFP Robot is here. He will walk you through a step-by-step process to help you work through the details of your project and create a PDF formatted website design RFP that will provide the information vendors need to write an accurate bid. RFP Robot will tell you what info you should include, point out pitfalls, and give examples.


Welcome to Cog: A New Drupal 8 Base Theme

Cog is a Drupal 8 base theme created and maintained by the Acquia Professional Service Front-end team. Many great Drupal base themes already exist, so what does Cog bring to the table? Cog is not intended to be a framework, or even much to look at out of the box. This is because it focuses on the developer experience. It is a minimal, stripped-down starter kit that is primarily based on the Core ‘classy’ theme. The reason for this direction: our projects typically have very custom design requirements, so imposing a framework would require considerable overriding and abstracting code. And most developers prefer starting with a blank canvas. What Cog does have is a built-in front-end build toolset based on node modules, primarily gulp. Because we have control over these tools, we can orient our development of them to complement other Acquia tools we’ve standardized on internally, such as BLT…

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Poll Results: Local WordPress Development

We kicked a poll off three months ago asking y’all what kind of local development environment you set up for running WordPress locally. At the time of this writing, we got 2,623 votes, so a decent amount of significance here. Especially because the question was phrased: If you’re running WordPress locally (i.e running PHP, MySQL, and a web server), how are you doing it? Presupposes that you are running a local environment. (Please do that.) Here’s an image of the results: (If you can’t see that, don’t worry, we’re about to go through the results.) The winner, at 61%, was using some kind of software-with-a-UI to manage it. WAMP / MAMP / AMPPS were mentioned, but it also said “Similar software with UI”, which I think is relevant as we’ll see in a second. This option was more than 3 times more popular than any other choice. Vagrant was in…

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Beyond Websites – Using Drupal for Digital Signage

Using Drupal 8 to power real-time signage systems. Acquians Adam Weingarten and Mike Madison shared their knowledge and experience in a session at DrupalCon Baltimore called “Beyond Websites: Using Drupal for Digital Signs”. Drupal gets better when companies, organizations, and individuals build or fix something they need and then share it with the rest of us. Our community becomes better, stronger, and smarter when others take it upon themselves to make a positive difference contributing their knowledge, time, and energy to Drupal. Acquia is proud to play a part, alongside thousands of others, in making tomorrow’s Drupal better than today’s. “People are looking for ways to present information outside a conventional web page. Drupal has a lot of established patterns for web pages but not many for some of these new experiences. This session helps fill those gaps and give people a roadmap for how to build their own next-generation…

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How We Defined the UX-Product Management Relationship

Earlier this year, Viget embarked on a huge effort to design and build a drag & drop email editor for iContact in just three months. Although time was short, we had a large team, and our coordination was a critical part of our success. The size and complexity of this project called for the inclusion of a Product Manager. In this article, I’ll share how effective collaboration between User Experience (UX) and Product Management made me a better UX Designer and helped our team to produce high quality work on time and on budget. Definitions First, I’ll clarify what I mean when I say UX and Product Management. At Viget, we’re not overly rigid about titles and roles, but this is how the responsibilities broke down for this project: UX Responsibilities Comparative research to understand competing productsEarly concept modeling, in collaboration with Product Manager and DevelopmentUser Interface (UI) Design and Information Architecture (IA)Prototyping…

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7 Topics that Should be Covered During a Digital Discovery Workshop (including 70+ Specific Questions You Should Ask)

Discovery Workshops play an important role in the success of any development project. If a Discovery Workshop is not conducted the right manner, its value can be lost. At the beginning of a project, Discovery Workshops are the part of the “Discovery Phase,” which can be considered as the courtship period, during which a strategic partner usually collaborates with his client to understand the project’s requirements and functional specifications, and to discuss content modelling, solution architecture and so on. The aim is to define the project’s business goals by fitting the pieces together. This is the foundation of any project. However, a successful Discovery Workshop is only achieved when the right set of questions are asked. Here is my list of questions that I consider are important to ask while you are onsite with client, discussing the details of his or her project. For me, the right set of questions…

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Drupal Global Training Days: Introduction to Website Building

Start:  2017-09-08 11:00 – 16:00 America/Los_Angeles Organizers:  rainbreaw cstauffer jsherman Event type:  Training (free or commercial) https://www.eventbrite.com/e/drupal-global-training-days-introduction-to… Drupal Global Training Days 2017! Join Rain and the team at Stauffer in an introductory training course on the basics of building a CMS (content management system) based website using Drupal 8 — a completely customizable, flexible, and scalable open-source framework. When: September 8th, 2017, 11AM-4PM Where: Santa Monica Public Library Community Meeting Room 601 Santa Monica Blvd. Santa Monica, CA 90401 Requirements: Participants must bring their own laptop computers (basic computer skills are needed). Topics: This session will cover a range of topics including: Site architecture OOTB and custom content types Site menu system Improving the editing experience Basic views Basic content display strategies Managing users and permissions Installing and customizing a contributed theme Setting up a local development environment Necessary architecture for hosting Drupal There will be time for questions and…

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Managing State in CSS with Reusable JavaScript Functions

Determining the most efficient way of managing state can be a challenging issue in CSS, but thankfully there are many OOCSS-based methodologies out there which provide some good solutions. My preferred comes from SMACSS (Scalable and modular architecture for CSS) and involves stateful classes. To quote SMACSS’s own documentation, stateful classes are: A state is something that augments and overrides all other styles. For example, an accordion section may be in a collapsed or expanded state. A message may be in a success or error state. States are generally applied to the same element as a layout rule or applied to the same element as a base module class. One of my most-used stateful classes is is-active. Taking the accordion example from the prior quote, is-active in this instance would apply all the required CSS styles to represent an expanded state. As seen in the example below: See the Pen…

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The Advantage of Comparative Research

No matter how new a problem may be to us, we are never the first person to tackle it. There are always examples to learn from. That said, the way we learn from others’ examples can make the difference between uncritical emulation and a solution that fits the unique problem and context we’re facing. Here I’ll describe what comparative research is, why it’s worth your time, and give an example of how it helped us on a recent project. Some Fundamentals of Comparative Research Comparative research is a way to broaden our thinking about product functionality. It answers questions like, “How have others dealt with this kind of content complexity? What is a good way to conduct this kind of interaction? How are different use cases accounted for?” This type of research is particularly useful when trying to identify best practices that haven’t yet solidified into conventions–ones that aren’t likely…

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Which Projects Need React? All Of Them!

When does a project need React? That’s the question Chris Coyier addressed in a recent blog post. I’m a big fan of Chris’ writing, so I was curious to see what he had to say. In a nutshell, Chris puts forward a series of good and bad reasons why one might want to use React (or other similar modern JavaScript libraries) on a project. Yet while I don’t disagree with his arguments, I still find myself coming to a different conclusion. So today, I’m here to argue that the answer to “When does a project need React?” is not “it depends”. It’s “every time”. React vs Vue vs Angular vs… First, let’s get something out of the way: in his article, Chris picked React as a stand-in for “front-end libraries” in general, and I’ll do the same here. Plus, React is what I’m most familiar with from my ongoing work…

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Drupal is API-first, not API-only

More and more developers are choosing content-as-a-service solutions known as headless CMSes — content repositories which offer no-frills editorial interfaces and expose content APIs for consumption by an expanding array of applications. Headless CMSes share a few common traits: they lack end-user front ends, provide few to no editorial tools for display and layout, and as such leave presentational concerns almost entirely up to the front-end developer. Headless CMSes have gained popularity because: A desire to separate concerns of structure and presentation so that front-end teams and back-end teams can work independently from each other. Editors and marketers are looking for solutions that can serve content to a growing list of channels, including websites, back-end systems, single-page applications, native applications, and even emerging devices such as wearables, conversational interfaces, and IoT devices. Due to this trend among developers, many are rightfully asking whether headless CMSes are challenging the market for…

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Let’s Define Exactly What Atomic CSS is

As Atomic CSS (also known as Functional CSS) has been gaining in popularity, some confusion has occurred about similar related terms. The goal of this article is to clarify this terminology. There are other projects that use the term Atomic, including Atomic Web Design by Brad Frost. Atomic CSS is a completely separate concept from these. Let’s start by defining Atomic CSS: Atomic CSS is the approach to CSS architecture that favors small, single-purpose classes with names based on visual function. There are different ways to write Atomic CSS (see variations below). One example would be this: .bgr-blue { background-color: #357edd; } The term “Atomic CSS” was coined by Thierry Koblenz in his foundational article “Challenging CSS Best Practices” in October 2013. Some people started referring to this approach as “Functional CSS” some time later. Though there have been cases in the past where Functional CSS has been used to…

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3 Viral UX Trends To Define 2017

We are living in an age when digital technology has taken over daily human life. Gone are the days when we feel like new technology came from aliens – these days, tech breakthroughs are things that we have come to embrace as they make our lives easier. Part of this evolving industry is the emergence of user experience (UX) and the rise of UX trends. If you are old enough to remember a popular animated TV show back in the day called “The Jetsons”, then take a moment to realize how technology has developed. For instance, talking appliances that were considered fiction back then are now becoming more real, thanks to the Internet of things. In fact, the race is on for whoever gets the brightest ideas in coming up with things that make life easier. Aside from developing outstanding gadgets and tech-upgraded things, user experience always comes up as…

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LAMP System Administrator – Noblis – Reston, VA

The ideal candidate will understand the Drupal architecture as well as supplemental modules that aid administrators in Drupal deployments….From Noblis – Mon, 03 Apr 2017 15:54:32 GMT – View all Reston jobs Source: http://rss.indeed.com/rss?q=Drupal+Developer

10 Ways to Build Quality into Agile Drupal Development

Many newcomers to agile software development methods are impressed, if not terrified, at the frequency of changes made to an emerging product’s requirements and codebase. Digital leaders understand that agile processes can improve adaptability and time-to-market. But, with so many changes happening so fast, how can a team possibly maintain high quality? In this blog post, I’ll describe 10 practices used in the Acquia Professional Services Delivery Methodology to overcome this challenge. 1) Clarify business goals and metrics up front. Yes, agile does require planning. Before design or development begins, the client and Acquia team must identify the business drivers and goals for the project. The team should also agree upon metrics that will be used to evaluate these business goals. All further quality assurance and control efforts should directly relate back to these goals and metrics. Without this foundation, “quality” is meaningless jargon. 2) Draft the Drupal content model…

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Sr Software Engineer / Developer / Consultant / Specialist – Drupal – Vulcan Technology Services – Herndon, VA

Decoupled CMS architecture ( Headless Drupal ) / Drupal at backend. Other non Drupal skills expected =. Drupal development / modules / custom solutions /… $120,000 a yearFrom Indeed – Sun, 26 Mar 2017 08:54:13 GMT – View all Herndon jobs Source: http://rss.indeed.com/rss?q=Drupal+Developer

Introduction to The Elm Architecture and How to Build our First Application

Creating our first Elm application might seem like a hard task. The new syntax and the new paradigm can be intimidating if you haven’t used other functional programming languages before. But once you create your first application, you will understand why Elm has been gaining so much attention lately. Article Series: Why Elm? (And How To Get Started With It) Introduction to The Elm Architecture and How to Build our First Application (You are here!) In this article, we are going to build a simple application that will introduce us to the language fundamentals: the Elm architecture and how to start making things. It is going to be pretty simple, but it will introduce us to one of the most common tasks in any application: reacting to user actions and doing something with them inside the application. A stylized version of the Elm application for this tutorial It is going…

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The Future | Inspired by Nature

Inspired Magazine Inspired Magazine – creativity & inspiration daily Nature* feeds us, purifies the air we breathe and the water we drink. Unbeatable booster, it cures stress, sadness, reenergizes humans. It’s all around us but most of us fail to appreciate it or even notice it, which is a bit like turning the back on our own selves. No, we’re not going into a philosophical discussion about nature, and how our own beings are (part of) nature. We’re just trying to remind you of the importance of looking at nature – an incredible source of endless inspiration on top of everything else. Look again, or maybe for the first time, with the curiosity of a child. Sure, the occasional romantic strolls help too, but don’t forget to study, explore, examine, through a magnifying glass if needed. Be amazed by the universe at our fingertips. “Glance at the sun. See the…

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Shame the Confirmshamers

When you deactivate your Facebook account, you aren’t politely bid adieu. Instead, you’re shown pictures of yourself with all of the people who will “miss” you now that you’re no longer sharing your life with them on Facebook. Putting aside the plain presumption of this tactic (BethAnne, shown in the fourth image, then my girlfriend and now my wife, most certainly saw more of me after I deactivated my account), what fascinates me about this screen is the same thing that prompted me to leave Facebook in the first place: the system understands “friendship” only in terms of the digital information provided to it. If I am no longer an entity in the system, my “friends” in the system will no longer be connected to me. I’ll no longer be able “send BethAnne a message.” This is a screenshot of Facebook’s account deactivation screen in 2011 (a friend who recently…

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Build a Custom Serverless CMS: Part 2

In our previous proof-of-concept demo, we built a bare bones admin for generating a web page with the ability to edit some text on the page and set the site title and description. For this next demo, we build on our example and add rich text editing and image upload capabilities. Article Series: Build a Custom CMS for a Serverless Static Site Generator + Repo Build a Custom Serverless CMS: Part 2 (you are here!) + Repo Rich Text Editing TinyMCE is the most widely used web-based Rich Text Editor around, so let’s use it. We can add it to our admin form pretty easily. There are many configuration options available for TinyMCE. For this demo, we only need a few. tinymce.init({ selector: ‘#calloutText’, menubar: false, statusbar: false, toolbar: ‘undo redo | styleselect | bold italic | link’, plugins: ‘autolink link’ }); The rich text editor will encode its content…

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