[development] Fixing themes and regions

Tadej Baša tadej.basa at gmail.com
Sat Aug 19 21:56:13 UTC 2006

Neil Drumm pravi:
> Nedjo Rogers wrote:
>> I know that there's work ongoing to improve theme handling of regions. 
>> But I'm behind on the status of this work. Is any of it for 4.8/5.0?
> I see two big challenges in block administration:
> 1. The number of regions is getting larger
> Block regions are defined by the needs of page templates. Multiple 
> themes can be enabled and have at least one page template each. More 
> page templates can be defined by path [1]. There continue to be a lot of 
> blocks.
> This trend is already straining the existing user interface. Placing a 
> block in multiple regions will probably be wanted in the future.
> The UI is currently block-driven, you see every block and decide where 
> it needs to go. I think this needs to be reversed to be region-driven. 
> You see every region and decide what needs to go in it.
> The first step might be getting rid of the disabled block listing and 
> instead putting an add block function in every region along with 
> database and architecture changes to allow a block to appear twice. The 
> rest would be finding good ways to arrange the regions in a way that works.
> 2. It is (still) hard to tell when a block will show
> Whether a block will show or not is a combination of
> - The theme is being used
> - The page template being used
> - The overall block configuration (including throttle)
> - Logic in the module generating the block
> - Various settings on the block's configuration page
> - Users' settings
> The various types of rules I could identify from module logic and user 
> settings include
> - Permissions (module) and roles (setting)
> - Does any content exist (module)
> - Node type (module and/or setting)
> - Page path (module and/or setting)
> - Users' setting (setting)
> - PHP code (setting)
> One improvement could be improving the visibility of the module logic by 
> listing the rules next to the user-created rules. Since many of the rule 
> types can be user-generated and/or module-generated, integrating these 
> in API (instead of simply putting another thing on the block API to put 
> out a string describing when the module intends to show a block) would 
> be a good gain.
> [1] While defining page templates by path is great for custom themeing, 
> it limits the ability to redistribute themes since paths will change 
> from site to site. It would be nice to have a UI to pick which page 
> template is on which page.

I found this so interesting that I took the right to play a bit and 
produced a patch which tries to implement suggestion #1.
The rest is here: http://drupal.org/node/79571


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