April's been unexpectedly generous with us. It has spoiled us with plenty of high-quality content on Drupal. From “enlightening” tutorials to articles raising awareness of certain limitations, to useful tips and actionable advice, to blog posts announcing life-saving module releases... reading our way through the pile of Drupal blog posts this month has been a true dare.

Then, trimming down our bulky list to just 5 posts has been an even bigger challenge...

Nevertheless, we did manage to make our selection. Here's what we kept:
 

1. WishDesk's Using Drupal 8 Views Contextual Filters

The WishDesk team shares their experience with leveraging the Drupal 8 Views contextual filters via a well-structured, easy to follow tutorial. That we're highly grateful for...

Why has it drawn our attention? 
 

  • because we had already been excited about the unmatched flexibility that the contextual filters in Drupal 8 offer
  • it clearly outlines the main differences between regular and contextual filters
  • it presents a specific use of these filters: setting up a task tracker in Drupal 8 using Views 
     

With Views already providing us with a UI for putting together data collections based on certain criteria, now having contextual filters, as well, to fine-tune the results comes as an... unexpected “present”.

Their key benefit and advantage over the “standard” filters? They accept dynamic values...


2. Brian K Osborne's Using Responsive Image Styles with Drupal's Layout Builder              

Another one of our top favorite Drupal blog posts this month has been this piece of content raising awareness of the Layout Builder's limitation:

The code generating the image element markup doesn't “store” information about the specific sizes of the column that the image will be placed in.

In other words: there's no way for Drupal site builders to enter an accurate value for the “sizes” attribute when using the Layout Builder...

And the author, Brian K Osborne, draws attention on this issue after first highlighting the main “dilemma” of using responsive image styles:

Providing just one high resolution, high-quality, oversized image vs providing a suitably sized image for every screen resolution...
 

3. Dries Buytaert's How to Prepare for Drupal 9  

We couldn't leave out Dries' blog post on the due preparations for upgrading to Drupal 9, could we?

The reassuring aspect that he reveals is that all these preparations revolve around one common best practice: detecting and removing the deprecated code from our Drupal 8 websites.

He goes on giving straight answers to all those legitimate questions that we might ask ourselves in relation to these preparations for Drupal 9:
 

  • What is deprecated code?
  • How do we identify it on our websites?
  • How challenging and time-consuming is it to remove it/update it?
     

4. undpaul's Doping for Editors: Put the Fun in Paragraphs  

This has been, by far, one of the best rated Drupal blog posts in April here, at OPTASY.

We can no longer imagine our (work) lives without the Paragraphs module in our toolbox. So, upon hearing about the Paragraphs Editor Enhancements module we dropped everything and looked for this blog post.

Which comes as an inventory of both:
 

  • users' (content editors) main improvement suggestions for the Paragraphs module
  • undpaul team's solutions to editors' complaints/suggestions, turned into enhancements for this module
     

From the:
 

  • well-known “dread” of having to drag the content elements to their right positions after you've added them
  • to the need to be enabled to add those content elements preferentially (since most editors add pretty much the same elements, over and over again)
  • to the overwhelmingly high number of buttons and the overcrowded dialogs
     

… the Paragraphs Editor Enhancements ships with a solution to each one of these drawbacks.

We can't but predict that it will hugely influence the editorial experience in Drupal...


5. OSTraining's How to Add Drupal Webforms to Content Types  

We could never thank enough the OSTraining team for their clear, concise and most useful tutorials. 

One of their April's Drupal blog posts has been this step-by-step guide on how to add web forms to content types. And the scenarios where you might find this kind of knowledge “life saving” vary from:
 

  • having to add a contact form to a “business” content type on your Drupal website
  • to having to add a contact form to your “Events” content type
     

Easy to follow, clearly explained, uncluttered, filled with relevant screenshots, their tutorial has been truly “enlightening” for us.

Especially since adding various types of forms is one of those recurring tasks in our Drupal projects...


The END

These have been our favorite Drupal blog posts this month. How does your own top 5 look like?


Photo by Bernard Hermant on Unsplash 

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