We lost a few features moving mhvlug.org from Drupal 6 to Drupal 7, as modules just didn’t exist. One of the ones I missed the most was the Planet function provided by UD Planet. This was an extremely simple to use module that let you have an attractive Planet (a collection of user blogs) on your Drupal site. The original authors of the module have long since gone inactive. So this past weekend I decided to just port it to D7 and be done with it. It took about 8 hours, and now we have Easy Planet!
Easy Planet 1.1 is now out. This is a straight port of UD Planet to D7. The only functionality which isn’t there is the disabling of aggregator menu items, which I’m not convinced was a good idea in the first place. It’s live on http://mhvlug.org/planet, for anyone that wants to see what it looks like.
One of the most important things to me was smooth transition from UD Planet installation. Because mhvlug.org was a D6 -> D7 migration, I still had udplanet tables and settings in my database. I wanted the experience of easyplanet to be: turn it on, all your stuff is back. I managed to get it there last night, so I’d be extremely interested in others that are moving from UD Planet -> Easy Planet to make sure it’s as seamless for them.
For more info, and to download the code, check out the project site.
At the September Mid Hudson Drupal Meetup I talked a little about a drupal module idea I’d been kicking around. Most of my drupal websites are about groups that have meetings. So I’ve got content types with cck date fields. Experience has shown that people need reminders, like via email, otherwise they forget to show up. Drupal has a lot of modules that will send notifications to users of the website, but that doesn’t work in my situations, because what I really want is the email going to a mailing list. Seemed like a good idea to me. And when I brought it up with the group, two people immediately said “oh, that would be great.”
That, it turns out, was enough motivation for me to get off my butt and implement it. node_announce 1.0 was released today. I’ve had it live on my sites for about 2 weeks, though the UI was in flux enough that I held off for a full release until now.
You want this module if you’ve got an announcements mailing list, and you are using the Calendar module on a drupal site to display events. I’ve got a list of ways I could make the module better, but for now it does the basics quite nicely. If you want to give feedback, do so via the issue queue, and I’ll do my best to respond.
Last night I finally got time to re-setup eclipse after the Ubuntu upgrade and did a couple of quick fixes for Where is Io.
One includes making my ghetto math for the Diorama slightly less ghetto. It still needs future work, and still won’t work above the arctic circle, but Jupiter will show up at 6pm now, which it often wasn’t before.
The other is making it a fat binary. NDK 4 lets you build optimized libraries, so now I’m building Arm5 and Arm7 libraries for the planetary simulator. This means the application is bigger (it can be moved to SD if you care), and it should run faster on most of the phones that came out since Christmas.
It’s called version 2.1 and is available in the Google Marketplace, Archos’s AppsLib, and on github. I have no idea if things will work right on Archos, because location is important, so if you’ve got experience let me know. Enough local friends had been talking about Archos recently that I decided it was worth adding that to my distribution channels.
As I’ve been working on my weather station at home at nights, I realized the code would be a lot cleaner if I wasn’t constantly keeping track of temperature units. So I created the Temperature module for Ruby which adds methods to numbers to make them implicitly temperatures, as well as a parsing method on strings. To get a flavor of it, here are some examples:
freezing_in_F = 32
freezing_in_C = freezing_in_F.to_C
boiling_in_C = 100
boiling_in_C.units = "C"
boiling_in_F = boiling_in_C.to_F
absolute_zero = "0K".to_degrees
absolute_zero_in_C = absolute_zero.to_C
absolute_zero_in_F = absolute_zero.to_F
The full documentation for the project is on rubyforge. Gems, tar, and zip format have all been published, and it should be propagating out to the main gem servers tonight. It’s not exceptionally complicated, however it is convenient, and it’s even got 236 unit tests to ensure it’s doing things right. The code is released under the MIT license, so you are pretty much able to do anything you want with it.