Gates Foundation: Case Study in Responsive Design


In January, our team worked in partnership with ProMotion Arts to launch a conference website for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The Gates Foundation is currently very active in examining the U.S. school system looking for effective ways to leverage its strengths. Our team had the opportunity to participate in building online tools to help stakeholders connect at the annual Teaching is Learning 2013 conference (they call it their "convening"). 

As a front-end developer, this project was interesting because we were building a fully responsive website in a short time frame. This meant we needed clear mobile-first designs with clear layout guidelines. 

Testing Drupal distributions using Behat, Mink, Drupal Extension, and Travis CI

The problem

Imagine never having to click around your website after a site update, worrying that something may have broken. Imagine never getting a call from a client after a site update, telling you that something in fact has broken.

What if instead you could script all the actions that you would normally do by clicking and have those automatically run each time you push new code to your code repository?

All this is possible using Behat, Mink, Drupal Extension, and Travis CI.

This past week I've spent some time creating a proof of concept test suite for a Drupal distribution. I began with the Drupal 7 standard install profile. This will be a walkthrough of the additions I made to add testing to the distribution.

The code

Follow along with the code in my [Classic] GitHub repository.

The tools


Behat is a PHP framework for [Behaviour Driven Development] (BDD).

We are heading to PNW Drupal Summit Seattle 2012

Eight of us from the Affinity Bridge team are going to be in Seattle for the PNW Drupal Summit this weekend. We are all really excited to be sponsoring the summit once again this year and are looking forward to seeing all our drupal friends, old and new.

There will be two official sessions that our team members will be presenting that you might want to check out if you're coming to the conference:

Mapping and GIS on the Server Side of Drupal 

10:00am - Sunday, October 21, 2012

Mack Hardy will be giving discussing some of the tools Affinity has been working with to provide performant, data rich maps in Drupal.  Topics will range from discussions of the tools, Leaflet, Tilestache, Mapnik, Mapbox, Tilemill and PostGIS to some examples of how to deliver information to the weblayer that has traditionally been in the domain of GIS tools.  See more details on the session page.

The Affinity Team is also hoping to participate in a BoF on Geo tools in general, theres so much to discuss!

Responsive design for your website

Have you recently checked out your website on a cellphone, or a tablet, or another mobile device? You may have found yourself scrolling and zooming in and out in order to be able to read its content. All this headache can be avoided by adding a responsive design to your site, but what exactly is a responsive design?

What exactly is a responsive design?

Wikipedia defines responsive design as approach to web design in which a site is crafted to provide an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones).

A nice technical definition, but what exactly does this mean? Well, imagine that we have the following set of devices: a nice big monitor with big resolution, a tablet, and a cellphone.

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