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Adding visual effects with JavaScript libraries

From: Drupal Gardens Essential Training

Video: Adding visual effects with JavaScript libraries

Because of how it's set up, Drupal Gardens can't be as flexible as the core Drupal that you download and host yourself. The biggest difference is that you can't add modules or custom code to your Drupal Gardens site-and with very good reason. If you could, then Acquia--which is the company that makes Drupal Gardens--would have to support all those additions that thousands of customers added, which is just an impossible task for such a low-cost platform. But Drupal Gardens does make concessions for the geekiest among us by, for example, making it easy to turn on some often-used JavaScript libraries that deliver cool visual effects.

Adding visual effects with JavaScript libraries

Because of how it's set up, Drupal Gardens can't be as flexible as the core Drupal that you download and host yourself. The biggest difference is that you can't add modules or custom code to your Drupal Gardens site-and with very good reason. If you could, then Acquia--which is the company that makes Drupal Gardens--would have to support all those additions that thousands of customers added, which is just an impossible task for such a low-cost platform. But Drupal Gardens does make concessions for the geekiest among us by, for example, making it easy to turn on some often-used JavaScript libraries that deliver cool visual effects.

Here's how you do it. The first thing you have to do, as usual, is to enable a module. Go up to Modules, then scroll down to JavaScript libraries. It's under the Other group down here. Enable it, scroll to the bottom, and click Save configuration. Then you add the libraries you need by clicking Configuration and JavaScript libraries.

I'll enable jQuery UI:Core and jQuery UI: Tabs. Then I'll click Save. Now, because I'm not a programmer, I'm going to use some example code that Drupal Gardens provides. I'll go up to Help and search for jQuery content. This just happens to be some stuff that I know they have. And there it is, Adding tabs to your content using jQuery. What I'm going to do is I'm going to use JavaScript to show information using a neat effect, which is made possible only because we turned on those libraries.

First, I'll create an HTML page. Then I'll upload a file containing a little JavaScript code. You will find both pieces on this page. I scroll down, and here's my HTML, which I'll simply copy. I'll then go back to my site and create a new node. I don't need this Help open anymore, so I'll close that. Click Add content. I'll make it a Basic page. Title will be JavaScript test, and then I'll paste in the code here.

But there is a little thing you have to watch out for. It needs to be in HTML and Full HTML. Now, watch out, because when you switch to Full HTML, Drupal Gardens switches back to WYSIWYG. So you want to make that switch to Full HTML, then click HTML. Now you can paste. I'll scroll to the bottom, and publish it. Good! There's our page. It doesn't look like much yet, does it? Now we create our JavaScript code as a separate file that we'll upload.

Note that you have to do this in a text editor that saves plain text, not the styled text that a word processor saves. Some free programs that do that are Notepad, which is built into Windows, and TextEdit, which is built into the Mac OS. To get our code, I'll go back to this page, scroll down, and copy it. I'll then go to my text editor. I happen to have one open already called Notepad++. Paste the code. Then I'll Save it to the Desktop as mytabs.js, and save.

I can close out this window, and finally add that file as a custom library. I go back to the site and click Configuration. Go back to JavaScript libraries, and click the Custom tab. This is where you upload any code that you've written. Add JavaScript, and I'm going to add the file that we created. Choose it, go to my Desktop, and there it is. Open. You might wonder whether to put it in the Footer or the Head or leave it Disabled.

Differing programming needs determine what part of the page should contain that custom script. If you put it in the Head, then of course it loads earlier than if you put it elsewhere. But by putting it in the Footer, we're displaying the content first and then adding the effect. That makes a difference if the page loads slowly. I'll leave the Description empty and click Save. The last thing we need to do is sort of clear the site's throat, so to speak. You see, Drupal Gardens aggregates JavaScript files and caches certain information to make sure that your site runs faster.

The downside of that is it sometimes doesn't notice when you add new JavaScript files. We can fix that by going to the Performance page. We click Configuration and Performance. I'm going to go down here and dis-aggregate CSS and JavaScript. Incidentally, these will come on again in a little while when Cron next runs on Drupal Gardens. I'll save that. And then finally, I'll clear the caches. Now we're ready.

When I close this overlay, we see the page with the neat effects in place. That's pretty cool, isn't it? Now, the thing is, I use some code that was tested on Drupal Gardens. There is additional sample code out there, but I personally had some troubles getting it to work. If you're a JavaScript programmer, however, you'll probably have better luck debugging it. I'll show you where that stuff is. Go up to Configuration and JavaScript libraries. And if you Command+Click to open a new window on any one of these, it will take you to a page where there's some sample code and some really neat effects that you can work into your own site--again, if you're good enough with JavaScript to make it work properly.

This gives you a very basic introduction to how to implement JavaScript libraries in Drupal Gardens, but as is usually the case with programming, the devil is in the details. For more information, see this page on Drupal Gardens documentation. It's called Extending your site using third-party JavaScript libraries, at this URL, drupalgardens.com/ documentation/adding-custom-javascript. And of course, there's no better way to learn programming then to watch lynda.com's videos on the subject, for example, JavaScript Essential Training and jQuery Essential Training.

Show transcript

This video is part of

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Drupal Gardens Essential Training

65 video lessons · 11864 viewers

Tom Geller
Author

 
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  1. 29m 56s
    1. Welcome
      1m 39s
    2. Previewing the finished project
      1m 29s
    3. What's new in the late 2011 update?
      5m 28s
    4. What is Drupal?
      5m 8s
    5. What is Drupal Gardens?
      5m 57s
    6. Getting started with Drupal Gardens
      5m 35s
    7. Getting help
      4m 1s
    8. Using the exercise files
      39s
  2. 17m 40s
    1. Using the administrative overlay
      2m 54s
    2. Using the dashboard, toolbar, and shortcut bar
      5m 36s
    3. Touring the newly created site
      3m 55s
    4. Configuring the site
      5m 15s
  3. 59m 47s
    1. Creating and managing content
      11m 11s
    2. Creating and managing content types
      10m 35s
    3. Embedding YouTube videos and other media
      4m 5s
    4. Subscribing to RSS feeds
      4m 49s
    5. Categorizing RSS feeds
      5m 1s
    6. Managing tags and taxonomies
      5m 50s
    7. Creating dynamic pages with simple views
      4m 29s
    8. Creating complex information collections with Views
      8m 59s
    9. Creating image galleries
      4m 48s
  4. 37m 50s
    1. Working with blocks
      10m 26s
    2. Setting up rotating banners
      7m 45s
    3. Understanding menus
      7m 27s
    4. Setting up contact forms
      7m 7s
    5. Adding and removing functionality
      5m 5s
  5. 54m 54s
    1. Managing users
      6m 28s
    2. Adjusting user permissions
      6m 35s
    3. Managing comments
      7m 7s
    4. Slowing spam
      5m 20s
    5. Starting discussion forums
      9m 3s
    6. Creating blogs
      4m 41s
    7. Setting up mailing lists
      4m 50s
    8. Allowing users to rate content
      4m 21s
    9. Using best practices for online clubs
      6m 29s
  6. 44m 35s
    1. Getting feedback with webforms
      6m 14s
    2. Publishing RSS feeds
      6m 40s
    3. Taking advantage of social media
      9m 33s
    4. Emphasizing external links
      2m 44s
    5. Improving search engine optimization (SEO)
      7m 30s
    6. Internationalizing sites
      8m 6s
    7. Tracking site usage with Google Analytics
      3m 48s
  7. 34m 40s
    1. Understanding Drupal themes
      5m 44s
    2. Understanding the Theme Builder
      5m 25s
    3. Switching, saving, and copying themes
      7m 13s
    4. Introducing custom CSS
      6m 51s
    5. Refining selections in the Theme Builder
      5m 48s
    6. Exporting themes
      3m 39s
  8. 48m 31s
    1. Changing the site's color palette
      2m 32s
    2. Changing the site's main logo and favicon
      5m 22s
    3. Changing the column number and arrangement
      5m 7s
    4. Adding background colors and images
      6m 29s
    5. Changing element spacing and borders
      6m 11s
    6. Adjusting typography
      4m 24s
    7. Using fonts from outside sources
      5m 7s
    8. Inserting raw CSS code into themes
      6m 57s
    9. Adding visual effects with JavaScript libraries
      6m 22s
  9. 14m 18s
    1. Finessing theme design
      7m 51s
    2. Eight ideas for modifying themes
      6m 27s
  10. 23m 38s
    1. Monitoring sites
      4m 11s
    2. Duplicating and deleting sites
      4m 23s
    3. Adding custom domains
      3m 48s
    4. Using exported sites outside of Drupal Gardens
      3m 46s
    5. Hosting exported Drupal Gardens sites
      7m 30s
  11. 51s
    1. Goodbye
      51s

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