Will Drupal 7 help Semantic Web actually and finally come to live?

If you’ve been working with Drupal 6 (D6) and have taken a little time viewing

  • A. Dries’ talk (mp4 video file) at Drupalcon Boston this year — especially the bit about focusing on data, exports and imports, deliver in different formats, reusing data — quoting him: “so that no single party owns the data”
  • B. strolling through D6 modules already in development using RDF in some way or another, especially exhibit demos

then you really come to think of the next step of the web. Taking into account the goals set for the upcoming release (especially usability, WYSIWYG and media handling) on the one hand and through heaps of modules Drupals already extreamly flexible and extensable I really can believe it will be a “killer” as mentioned by Dries. And thereby premiering to take semantic web ceriously on a large scale.

So I propose on a more abstract level that web 3.0 (or whatever the buzzword might become) will depend on departing from the perspective “data in tables” and move towards “data in graphs”.

The really critical about this, though, could fast become that people will even more difficultly keep track of the truth or the sources of information in that matter. Only think about our media world as it is already where journalists/bloggers (name them as you wish) in large parts more or less do the copy-paste rather than actually investigating. One just hast to become even more aware I guess, which is not all that bad!

On a side note: I’m only disappointed that there was no mentioning of a couple of small but really effectiv and effectfull modules: Teleport, WYMeditor, Live or LiveSearch. But I guess they are just to specific; even though WYMeditor working properly and broadly would really give Drupal an extra push-up wow-effect that is not only shiny blink-blink.

Update: I just finished watching the video (l wrote this articel about half way through) and what do I see? Berners-Lee beeing cited saying: “From the Wourld Wide Web (WWW) to the Giant Global Graph (GGG)”. And what did I say? 😉

Drupal: An easy way to set up multiple sites on localhost

This works for a couple of subdomains/sites only. If you need to have a load of sites or other settings this is not for you. On the other hand this method needs no web server configuration.

  1. In your systems hosts file (Windows: In your favourite text editor open %SYSTEMROOT%\system32\drivers\etc\hosts and on Linux it’s /etc/hosts.
  2. Find the line defining 127.0.0.1, i.e. your local horst, erm localhost 🙂 and append sitename1.localhost to the end of the line. do so for every site name you need.
  3. Go to your apaches/webservers documents folder holding your drupal installation. Say it’s htdocs/drupal than you need folder sites. There should be at least two folders called all and default. Copy default and name it sitename1.localhost, i.e. excactly the string you added to your hosts file (again you need to replace sitename1 by your site’s name but do include the dot!).
  4. In your web browser type sitename1.localhost/drupal to test if drupal shows up at all (meaning your OS resolves your “domain name” correctly) and if it shows your old content (meaning it works).

Now you have two options to actually set up your “new site”: Either edit the settings.php that should be in the new folder to use a diferent data base (that should be well-stocked with drupal data) or just install a fresh drupal site. You achieve the later by doing:

  1. Delete settings.php. That should leave you with a file named default.settings.php.
  2. Point your browser to sitename1.localhost/drupal/install.php and do everything like you did with the first install but use a diferent database (or the same but different database prefix).
  3. Done.

Resources

  • settings.php

Furthur reading

Drupal 6: Redirect Users to your Frontpage/Startpage/node after they logged in

In Drupal 6 this can be done with core modules like this:

  1. enable Trigger module
  2. add an action
  3. add advanced action at the bottom and choose “Redirect to URL”
  4. use description regardless of how you will use it but rather describing what this action does; e.g. “redirect to start node”
  5. as URL apply “node” (without the quotation marks). Instead of node you can redirect to any url you like. See my screenshot for how it could look.
  6. set-up the appropriate trigger
  7. from the drop-down list at “Trigger: After a user has logged in” select your new action from just now
  8. log out and back in again to test it

Note: In the links provided you need to change “your-domain-path-to-drupal” with your actual domain name to become something like http://example.com/admin. Or navigate as usual if you now where to find the settings pages in Drupal 6. If you happen to have clean urls disabled you might know already that you need to prefix the admin path (as every other path) by “?q=” so it all together looks like this: http://example.com/?q=admin. This, however, doesn’t concern the node parameter where you redirect to. That’s always an internal relative path without the leading slash; or some full url of corse.

Update 05/2009: If you want a simple module to do that for you useLogin Destination. To redirect user/1 to /admin and site users “back” to the page they logged in from the following PHP snippet should work for Drupal 6 (not tested, feedback welcome!):

global $user;
  if ($user->uid == 1) {
    // Redirect the Administrator
    return 'admin';
  } else {
    return ($_REQUEST['q']);
  }

Resources