Like peanut butter and jelly (or gin and tonic if you prefer) some things just go well together.  Consider, for instance, Omeda and Drupal.  Both are best of breed digital tools.  Both are de facto standards in the media and publishing industry.  Both are widely loved by a rather passionate user base.  But they serve different yet complimentary purposes.  And by pairing them together within a cohesive digital ecosystem, publishers can accomplish truly astonishing things.  That’s why we are very excited to announce that integrating Omeda with Drupal is now easier than ever.

What is Drupal?

In case you’re unfamiliar, Drupal is, in simple terms, a content management system (CMS). It’s designed to create websites and web applications for a variety of purposes, and it is especially prominent in the media and publishing space.

Unlike some CMS’s, Drupal is very powerful and extremely extensible.  While it can be overkill for small projects, for large or complex publishing needs it’s hard to beat.  It is excellent at storing, managing and delivering large amounts of content with speed and agility. It facilitates the creation of custom management tools that allow the publishing workflow be precisely tailored to how a particular business runs. Permissions and user experience and data modeling can be fine tuned to create a system with processes that won’t slow down content creators and will save time for editors, curators, and ad managers.

And Drupal provides a very extensible framework, capable of integrating with other software systems.  Which makes it a great fit for dovetailing with Omeda, thanks to Omeda’s deep and well-documented APIs.  Until now, though, there has been no official, publicly available tool set (in Drupal-speak “modules”) to provide such an integration.

Introducing the Drupal-Omeda Integration Module Suite

To address this need, there are now three new modules freely available from Drupal.org. These modules, which were developed by our friends at Ashday Interactive Systems, are intended to help the many folks who want to use both Omeda and Drupal, and who would like them to seamlessly share data.

Omeda Base Module

The Omeda Base Module is basically the starter kit.  It doesn’t do much on it’s own but it lays the groundwork for the other modules and/or other custom things you may want to do. It helps you get the wires connected to establish the basic connection of Drupal contacting the Omeda API.  It also facilitates a testing mode. It’s simple, but it provides the base functionality you need every time you wish to connect with Omeda.

Omeda Subscriptions Module

The first module to leverage the Omeda base module is the Omeda Subscriptions module.  This provides an out-of-the-box solution for the most common Omeda user subscription management needs.  This module adds a My Subscriptions tab to the Drupal user profile (for only the user roles you configure) where users can manage their deployment subscriptions. You can also configure which Omeda deployments you wish to allow your users to manage. The module includes a new Omeda Subscriptions service that adds functions to fetch a logged in user’s opt ins and opt outs as well as allow the user to opt in or opt out of a deployment.

Omeda Customers Module

The Omeda Customers module allows you to map Drupal user fields to your Omeda customer entities and sync them on user updates. You can choose which Drupal roles will sync and which user fields will sync. Since field mapping can get quite hairy, the module provides a solution for simple use cases where you need to simply tell Omeda that “this field = that field”. If it’s a standard base Omeda field like “First Name”, those are called base fields and are meant to be a simple hand off of the Drupal field value to Omeda. If it’s an email, phone number, or address field, you can choose that type and then configure which contact type it represents so that it gets into Omeda properly. The module also provides a basic solution for Omeda Demographic fields, which are more complex and dynamic.

Up Next

As you can see, it is now much easier to connect Omeda services to a Drupal site with the help of these modules.  We thought long and hard in advance to try to determine what would be a great set of starter use cases for many clients, which resulted in the choices for the above modules. Our hope is that this is just the beginning, though, and that with time there will be more and more modules available, to easily create rich and extensive communication between Drupal and all aspects of Omeda’s API.  If you have particular suggestions for expansions to the modules that would be of use to you please let us know!

Meanwhile, if you need more technical information about implementing the modules, please see these resources: