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Drupal's built-in data presentation tools offer several ways for web designers to clearly and attractively package their data. In Drupal 6: Online Presentation of Data, Tom Geller explains how Drupal handles data so users can set up intelligent structures and implement them with Drupal's Content Construction Kit. Tom also shows how a data-driven web site can improve its interactivity by using geographic data to connect real-world addresses to maps. Exercise files accompany the course.
Now, let's talk about getting rid of that Title at the of this content type. We'll go back in Administer, Content management, Content types, click on our Person content type and once again as discussed, you can't actually change this Title field label. There is nothing you can do to get rid of it. For that you need a module called Automatic Nodetitles. You can find that module at drupal.org/ project/auto_nodetitle. We've already downloaded and installed that module but we still have to enable it. So, I'm going to go back up to the top of the screen, go to Administer, Site building and Modules, then we can either search for the word nodetitle or scroll down.
You'll find it in the group Other, which in our case is at the bottom. Turn it on and click on Save configuration. Like CCK, Automatic Nodetitles doesn't have an administration page of it's own, but instead changes how you administer content types. So, once again we're going to go back to Administer > Content management > Content types, then go back to our Person content type and edit it. Now, we see something new, here at the top, Automatic title generation, we'll click on that to see our options. We can leave it disabled which leaves Drupal exactly as you expect it, able to enter a title in every node an in fact you have to or you can automatically generate a new title and hide the title field.
Now, I should mention something very important. That doesn't hide the display of the title field. It only hides it when you're entering information into the node. So, if you already have nodes that have titles in them, then you have to do something a little bit tricky which I'll show you in a minute. But for now, I'll just change it to Automatically generate the title and hide the title field. The third option is to generate it only if the title field is left empty. That is sort of hybrid solution. People could still enter a title if they want, but if they don't, it'll be automatically generated. I'll scroll to the bottom. Save content type.
Now, I'm going to go back to the front page and as you see, we still have our title for that node. If I click it and edit that node however, we can no longer edit it, it's frozen in place. Let's go back and edit that content type one more time because there are quite a few more tricks that'll make Automatic nodetitle even more useful. We'll click on Administer, Content management and Content types once again and of course Edit, then go up to Automatic title generation. One area we didn't talk about here was this pattern for the title. You could enter some static text in there, like This is the title, in which case every new node that's created will have that title.
That can actually be rather confusing when you're looking through your list of content because everything will have the same title. You won't know what node actually contains what. There are however two other ways of putting patterns in that title that are useful. The first one is this Evaluate PHP in pattern. The first way you can put in patterns is if you know PHP, you can actually enter a PHP pattern. Here is one example, . Don't worry if you don't understand what I just did. I have just created a PHP command that'll actually remove the title from all of the new nodes that we create. Let's scroll to the bottom and see how that works, Save content type.
Now, if we create a new node of the person content type, you see that we have no ability to enter the title, which is good. That's what we want. This is a test. Scroll down a bit more. Personal name. I'll just call him Testy McTestalot and save it. There you have it. When we go to our front page, you see there is no title there. That's a good way of hiding the title. Once again, if you want to take a look at that PHP code, just go back in this video and you can use that yourself. I'm now going to get rid of that node actually.
There is a trick here however, because you can't click on the title, you also can't edit that node that way, instead you have to go Administer, Content management, Content, then find it and delete it, like so. And of course you have to confirm deletion. There is one other trick as long as we're on this page, when you've already created a node as we've done here, you might remember we gave it the title Title. We want to update that. You have to come to this Content page, then go to Update automatic nodetitles and update. Then we've updated that title to be blank. It shows us it's updated but it's next to a blank spot.
Let's go back to our content types and change it, so that we enter some more useful information into that Automatic nodetitle. Once again we go to Administer, Content management, Content types and then Edit, I'm going to go to Automatic title generation and get rid of that PHP code that I had there and Save. To make Automatic nodetitle truly useful, we need one more module called the Token module. This is one of the most popular modules in the Drupal world and in fact it's essential for many modules as a companion. We've already downloaded it. So, we're going to enable it by going to Administer, Site building and Modules, scroll to the other group and turn it on and save configuration.
Once again, token doesn't have it's own administrative page like CCK or Automatic nodetitles. However, it does extend many things that Drupal does and you'll see that when we edit that content type once again. Go to Administer, Content management and Content types, edit the person, and once again Automatic title generation. Now, we have another additional choice here, Replacement patterns. Instead of having just a blank space there or having some static text, we're going to put in useful information from our Drupal site. First we get rid of PHP because we're not doing that, but we'll put in the patterns. If you look through here, you can replace the node with bits of information from the node itself including that first name and last name that we created earlier.
Scroll down, and you see CCK text token, field_personal_name_raw. That is the personal name that we entered in that field we created. I'm going to copy that, put it up at the top, with that family name. You'll see how this works when we regenerate that title. Scroll to the bottom and save it. Go back to our front page just to see now we still have this node, which has the blank title. We're going to change that once again by going to Administer, Content management and Content, select the node and regenerate it, Update automatic nodetitles.
Now, we have an automatic title with the first name and last name we entered. That's actually quite useful. I'll show you how when we create content now and we create a person. We don't have to enter the name twice and we don't have to think of some random title, we could type in nodes about the person, the person's name and we're done. We automatically get the title that we wanted. I know that was an awful lot of explanation for what seems like a small set of tasks. But that Title field can be especially confusing when someone besides you adds information and doesn't know what to put in there, also there are several places in Drupal's interface where all you see is the title field.
So, being able to automate it to reflect relevance CCK data comes in really handy. So, this changes how the title field looks when you edit it. In the video "Arranging Fields for Better Presentation," you'll see how to further improve the user interface with some of CCK special features.
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