Problems with Drupal and the way forward.

Lessons learnt from Drupal, taxonomies, hierarchys, modules and a new approch to content management.

Drupal treats taxonomies like any other entity and so you can have as many as you like. You then associate them with module types and when someone creates an instance of a new module (Node) they are given the option to select which term(s) (i.e. category) they want to put the data in. Modules can have more than one taxonomy associated with it. In reality all data is treated the same and the taxonomies make the bumps in the landscape. we had the problem that you couldn’t associate one bit of content with another but someone wrote a handy module to do this. It basically allowed parent child relationships between the data of different module types i.e. so a an ‘Article’ about a course could have ‘Events’ listed with it to book those courses. The interface became unintuitive because the admin had to make then both separately and then separately make the associating between the course description and the booking listings.
Continue reading “Problems with Drupal and the way forward.”

Warp Records website sucks ass

I like most of the artists on the Warp Record website. Loves ’em I do. So it was only natural to go to their website and check it out. They keep a pretty low profile but have a huge cult following:

“People will look at Warp in 20 Years like people look at Blue Note or Motown now.”

So you figure they could have a huge community driven site, really hyping up the fans, who are all pretty hard core really, but sadly this is not the case. In fact they have a site that not only has music in the front page that you can’t stop (and being a music fan I’m always playing my own so I want to get off the front page in a hurry every time). In a panic I hit the ‘Albums’ nav link which, thank god, makes the music stop but you are presented with a piece of genius user interface design.

warprecords albums navigation screen shot

A grid of squares with one corner lopped off with a seemingly random colour coding. There are 146 of these squares, each representing an album. The only way you can find an album is to drag your mouse over each one which brings up the artist, album and catalogue reference serial. The ordering of the albums and the colour coding seems to be random.

Its assumed that there was some sort of ‘idea’ behind this interface. The little maimed cubes pop up when you mouse over them like sifting though a second hand record collection in an obscure shop somewhere. The trouble is if your looking for something specific it seems to maximise the time it will take for you to find it. At least a record shop has its albums sorted by artist. There is no searching or way to chose sorting, nothing.

Considering its there interface to their online shop you might think they would make it easy for you to find what your after.

Apart form that, there is no community driven stuff on the site, which a label with such a cult following would benefit enormously from.

I’m into labels

Gmail has introduced a subtile change to the way we manage email and I think this is a revolution in information management on the internet. Its the dawn of the era.

I got a Gmail account. If you don’t know what that is, Google have decided to step into the webmail market, which is bigger than the search engine market apparently. Each account gets a 1 gigabyte of storage space and some other changes to the standard webmail interface.
Continue reading “I’m into labels”