Popular science blog
The Science Explorer is the third popular science blog built on a common platform we created for LabX Media Group. This common blogging platform enables us to create new sites with the same configuration relatively quickly. The only difference is the design.
This common platform is made up of a series of tools:
- Install profiles are a way of installing Drupal with a specific configuration
- Features create self-contained bundles of related functionality (e.g. blog, SEO configuration,
- Drush make files define a set of packages to download to the server. We have make files for the Install profile and each Feature.
- Git is a version control system that manages the code base
- Aegir is a tool that pulls everything together: it runs the install profiles, accesses the make files to download all required modules and libraries, builds the platform for the site, and migrates sites to a new platform
- Continuous integration is set up to automatically create new platforms and migrate sites when changes are pushed to Git.
The design for The Science Explorer was a collaboration between our designers and the in-house designs at LabX. The client wasn't happy with the original mock-up, so we began layering on changes in the browser. This was a collaborative process, with a lot of input and suggestions from the client. We used our design sense to pull these disparete parts together to create an attractive overall look. The design is fully responsive for mobile devices.
In the two years since we launched The Science Explorer, we have continued to work to support the client by adding many new features and improvements to the site. One of our latest projects was to get the site set up to be accepted to Google News. This involved submitting some changes to the Google News module for Drupal in order to allow editors to block some "non-news" content from Google News.