Two people working

Over the years, Zivtech has worked on many different types of existing Drupal websites and web applications.

Work space

As a Drupal expert, many of the projects I’ve done over the years have been marketing websites.


A well-designed and easy to use website is key for any business.

Person using computer
Clutch highlighted Zivtech based on client reviews and ratings.
Group working

As a nonprofit or foundation, your grant management system is vital to your organization’s workflow efficiency.

Woman using laptop

An intuitive content management system makes it significantly easier to streamline the way you manage your digital presence.

Swim lanes
You can get valuable insight from visualizing each feature request's path to deployment as an assembly line that can be optimized.
Your site’s user experience plays such a significant role in its overall success. Personalize your site's navigation to create a better experience.

As a sales and marketing leader for an open source technology agency, comparing the strengths and weaknesses of the many open source content manage

Marco De Paulis
Marco De Paulis
Web development

You don't need to go fully 'headless' to use React for parts of your Drupal site.

You’re about to begin a huge overhaul of your higher education website and one of the first steps is choosing a content management system. Here are some factors to consider when choosing between Drupal and WordPress.
Woman with laptop
A custom solution can be tailored to your needs with powerful features that make your workflow seamless and more efficient.
Content Editor
Drupal 8 is a great CMS for feature-rich sites, but how does it stack up for content editors?
Without a well thought out and detailed strategy, achieving your goals might feel impossible. Here are 7 signs that your project needs a proper discovery phase before investing in any type of design and development project.
Marco De Paulis
Marco De Paulis
Companies were selected based on their ability to deliver excellent work.
Like going to the dentist, writing documentation for software is important. And much like going to the dentist, no one wants to do it unless they have to.
Twenty members of our team went to the conference to attend sessions and represent Zivtech.
If your site sucks, you’re closing doors for content editors.
Entity Views Attachment, or EVA, is a Drupal module that allows you to attach view displays to entities of your choosing. We used it recently on a project and loved it.
Glass building
With roughly 1.2 million websites using Drupal across the world, including marquee sites such as NBC Universal and pharmaceutical giant Novartis, it’s clear that it’s a powerful content management system capable of supporting large organizations.
People taking notes
A full architecture review is paramount before you start to develop a new site.
Long exposure car lights
You've gone through all the checklist compliance work, but haven't seen any change in your site's speed. What's going on here?

If you’re considering staff augmentation to get extra h


Should you choose existing software and make some compromises, or opt for a custom solution that may take longer to build and implement?


These three companies have incorporated the “borrow instead of build” philosophy found in open source development, and this method of expanding a website or software has allowed them to boom without crashing.

Clothing rack

Drupal has a powerful suite of tools and features for just about any type of website, and eCommerce websites are no exception.


This post is the second in a series covering Zivtech's usage of Gulp for front-end development in Drupal 8.


Gulp is a mainstay of front-end development nowadays.


Pro tip for the C-suite: Agile practice is changing business culture.

Climbing hooks and carabiners
Writing code for a Drupal site can be an overwhelming experience because, even though it’s written in PHP, there’s a dense API behind it. One of the biggest parts of that API is the hook system.
PHP can be challenging to learn, especially if you’re learning Drupal at the same time.
Cable car
If I could go back in time, after I had graduated from my three month web development bootcamp, I would tell myself, “You don’t know git!”
Dumpster and wooden pallets
One of the best things I’ve learned is how to compress my database and copy it across servers. These two commands are drush sql-dump and scp.

Short for Drupal Shell, Drush is a tool that allows developers to work on the command line, an interface that has both benefits and disadvantages to the Drupal UI (user interface).

Sue Spolan
Sue Spolan
Your website’s goal is not to show off cool stuff. It’s to get and keep visitors’ attention to your product or service, and to convert customers. That’s why it’s so important to understand how attention comes into play when designing your website.
Samantha Rogers
Samantha Rogers
We used Ember to build a web front-end for an educational startup. We hope our experience will help you on similar projects.
Looking ahead

At Zivtech, we're pondering what things might look like down the road as development for Drupal 9 begins.

Hardware parts

Drupal 6’s End Of Life (EOL) is now upon us. Should you upgrade to Drupal 7 or Drupal 8?

Mural on bricks

Drupal modules are a great way to extend Drupal’s core functionality. Read on to learn some module basics.

Sue Spolan
Sue Spolan
What happens when you’ve invested a lot of money into a project, only to discover that you’re deep into a money pit?
Olivia Coplan
Olivia Coplan
Facebook just announced that it will use artificial intelligence to describe images to people who cannot see pictures. While you may think that this development is meant for a limited audience, it actually has wide ranging benefits for everyone.
Sue Spolan
Sue Spolan
Help text on form fields is an intrinsic component for web applications that contain forms for content creation, user accounts, or data entry.

One of the best parts of Node.js is non-blocking asynchronous i/o event handling; but what does that really mean?

Allie Jones
Allie Jones
Computer and coffee

Junior developer Lauren Lewis shares her insights as a newcomer to the Drupal community.

Flowering branches

Probo is not just another shiny continuous integration tool. One of the most frequently asked questions we get is how Probo differs from other CI tools already available to developers. There’s a short answer.

Howard Tyson
Howard Tyson
Layers of mountains

As a site auditor, you need to pass through each layer of the site, going potentially as far ‘down’ as the server’s operating system and perhaps as far ‘up’ as the tone of the site’s messaging.

User with keyboard, mouse, and coffee mug

You have 15 seconds to make an impact when people visit your site. If your website is not user friendly, you will lose more than 20 sales in the time it takes you to read this post. Is that a gamble you’re willing to take?

Sue Spolan
Sue Spolan
Old computer station

We asked our team of experts at Zivtech to look into the near future and consider what's possible for 2016. Here are their predictions, and a few other random thoughts.

Zivtech Staff
Concrete wall
Drupal 8 makes testing more manageable (especially for unit tests) but does not fundamentally change the equation to ensure that the site the end user sees behaves and appears correctly.
Howard Tyson
Howard Tyson
swirling building staircase

As a project manager, you want to share a link with a client for quick feedback, and too often it‘s not as easy as it should be.

Zivtech Staff
In this installment, I'll step through how to set up oEmbed rich content in a WYSIWYG in Drupal 7.
Empty seats
What if you could build in quality assurance?
Howard Tyson
Howard Tyson
Child playing Jenga
Your system probably doesn't help you with quality assurance outside of what a computer can look at.
Howard Tyson
Howard Tyson
Man staring pensively
Quality assurance is a hugely important step in the website development process, but it’s a process that can be fraught with confusion and frustration, or even worse, overlooked completely.
Maintainable Code
This is part 4 of a series based on Jody Hamilton's talk at Dreamit Ventures to a group of entrepreneurs.
Red wall
If you’re using Chrome, and in all likelihood you are, given that nearly half of global users are on Google’s browser, you may have noticed a security warning. Should you be worried?
Boats at a port

Let’s port an existing theme (and subtheme) to Drupal 8.

Drupal 8 comes with a lot of improvements to the content editing experience, but it still doesn't have an easy way to embed 3rd party video and other content.
With git’s ability to create multiple branches and merge multiple developer's code into one repository, it is easy to get things mixed up; but don’t panic! There are tools out there to help.
Allie Jones
Allie Jones
User permissions
Let's talk about users, permissions, and roles, and how you can use them to keep your Drupal installation merrily un-borked.

Recently at Zivtech we started migrating our base theme for Drupal called Bearskin over to a gulp-based CSS compiling system. Up until now we had been using the original Sass, written in Ruby, but lately it's been feeling a bit slow.

CSS Color Options

CSS3 introduced a lot of functionality that was previously only achievable with Flash or JavaScript. Transitions, transforms, and key framed animations are the big ones here. They can provide some eye candy to your site and only require a regular ol' front end developer.


With Drupal 8 in the final stage of development, support for Drupal 6 will soon be coming to a close. If you are currently running a Drupal 6 site, now is the time to start thinking about upgrading, and choosing which version of Drupal is right for you.

There are tons of themed lorem ipsum generators out there. There are many that are comical and some are very innovative in their approach. Let’s take a look at 11 Lorem Ipsum Generators that will be sure to make testing content creation on your next Drupal project fun.
Open source software

Open source software (OSS) is crowd-sourced.

Zivtech Staff

Have you ever worked with a Drupal developer who seemed to always be able to fix bugs by finding patches to apply seemingly instantaneously?

Web Design
Our front-end development team make it their mission to always be on top of the latest news in the Design world, so that we can provide cutting-edge design work for our clients. It isn't surprising, then, that we also want to share exciting info with you!

AngularJS is a popular javascript framework backed by Google.

Custom Page Layout

Using blocks to lay out content on your Drupal site can be a tedious and inflexible process.

Here at Zivtech, we are obsessed with creating immersive experiences for mobile and the web using cutting-edge design and Open Source Software like Drupal and Angular.js. One of the web design techniques that we've had on our radar is Parallax Scrolling, which gives depth to a page by scrolling two dimensions of the site at different rates.
Drupal Development
We at Zivtech have been working with Drupal for a long time, some of us for over 10 years, and in that time we’ve gotten to use (and sometimes build) a lot of really cool modules to develop stellar sites for our clients.
Zivtech-built sites are in the running for four awards!
It’s not surprising that the web design and development communities struggle with nomenclature. We are creating new ways of working, new systems, and new things, all of which need names. We rely on what we know, borrowing and altering what we can with varied success.
User Friendly

We have a joke at Zivtech that PHP typecasting bites someone at least once a week. Though to be fair, that someone is usually me.

Drupal Upgrade
Recently, I was challenged with upgrading a Drupal site from 4.6 to 7. If you're not too familiar with Drupal, you might not realize that Drupal must be upgraded one major release at a time.
I was recently given an interesting assignment. One of our clients had found a bug in Print module. If you're not familiar with it, Print module is a simple tool that gives you links on your content to create a printer friendly page from otherwise color and complex content. It also allows you to email content to a friend and create PDFs of the content.
When a client asks for a way to pull content onto a site through RSS, the obvious choice is to use Drupal's Feeds module. I've never been really in love with this module but it does the job well. We recently had an interesting case that required extending the normal functionality of feeds to interact with custom content types.
Zivtech Drupal Development

Finally scratched an itch and created a Node.js Integration module last night.

I first came across the FullCalendar jQuery plugin while searching for a better way to mimic the features and style of Google Calendar. I was immediately impressed; it combined features like drag-and-drop and dynamic resizing with the limitless flexiblity of an open-source project.
Zivtech Development
I've been helping out with the Great Git Migration effort lately, particularly the queue infrastructure. As a result of this work, I created the Waiting Queue module.
Zivtech Development
Back at Drupal Camp NYC Jen Simmons pulled a number us Drupal folks together to come up with some solutions for incorporating HTML5 into Drupal.
Web Development

We’re looking for a web designer to help build our interactive design division at Zivtech.

Comparing strings is one of those programming tasks I tend to dread. There's so much room for error and variation that I never feel like I have a clean solution that covers all the possible problems that can arise.
Custom Plugins
Context is one of the most useful architectural modules for Drupal. Context works by setting conditions such as a path or a node type and, if that condition is present, reactions such as adding blocks to regions or setting an active menu.

Public Forum
Here's a small Drupal module (D6) and instructions to allow you to have both public and private forums on a site.
Web development
We're working on a project with too much non-uniform legacy HTML to migrate it all into Drupal. Some of it we're handling by migrating certain data into nodes and dumping the entire HTML content into the node body so it can be easily indexed by Solr for search and the titles can be included in other views listings.
Drupal Camp Philadelphia
This Friday, May 14th, 2010, the next Drupal Camp for Philadelphia, A.K.A. Drupaldelphia, will take place at Temple University's Alter Hall.
Ever wanted to know what changed in the {variable} table? Who changed it? What the old value was? Well, this is the module for you.
Drupal Development
We are very excited to announce the launch of the DCTV and Beyond Bullets websites. DCTV is a very cool media arts center based in New York. DCTV's firehouse was home to Democracy Now and currently trains 2,000 students a year. The relatively small organization can boast to winning 15 Emmy awards!
Planning Session
Ryan Szarama, Lyle Mantooth, Mike O'Connor, Amye Scavarda, Damien Tournoud, and I recently met for two days in the San Fran af83 PariSoma office to begin planning an Ubercore initiative (think Ubercart and Small Core) for restructuring Ubercart on Drupal 7.
Drupal Framework
As the community at large wrestles with Drupal's future as both a framework and a CMS, and its usefulness or focus on the various needs of developers, themers, designers, end-users, and others, Zivtech, as an 11-person Drupal team, deals with the same questions and debates internally.
We've been sprinting to get stream wrappers into Drupal 7 here at the Zivtech Philly office for the past two days.
Flat World Knowledge, an open source online college textbook publishing company, released version 2.0 this week.
Aquia Installer
Our June Trainings are over and we are thrilled how things went. The Cira Center was an awesome venue and the participants were great as well. We are always looking to improve so the feedback we got was really helpful and we thank those attendees who took the time.
Unfuddle Feedback Module
This is what happens when you are surrounded by brilliant people.
Zivtech is excited to announce two days of Drupal trainings, happening in two short weeks here in Philadelphia!
We had to setup a static file server for a client site - its growing too big for a single box running php, mysql and serving static content.
The James Zabiela Flash/Drupal site won the 2009 SXSW Interactive Web Award in the category "Music."
Widget Roadmap

The Embed Widgets module is undergoing several changes.

User Permissions
Jody and I will be working on getting some hacking done on Drupal's permission system at Drupalcon.
Maybe not the most simple, but pretty close.
Zivtech Staff
Code on laptop
Yesterday I had to do some major filter debugging, causing me to learn a lot about Drupal's filter system. Here are some basic and less basic observations on Drupal's format and filter system.
Person using laptop
If you want to change that default My Account page, here are some ideas for both coders and non-coders.

I recently wrote a views plugin for the weight module which allows the setup of views which are a drag-and-drop form for ordering nodes.

Video camera
Jody just created a small patch for FeedAPI that added a filter to Views for "Filter by Parent Term," which allowed me to create a new way to sort through the massive amount of videos that have been coming in via the various Drupal themed video feeds that I've been able to find.
Drupal Modules
There are lots of great Drupal productivity/development modules (e.g. drush, devel, coder) which, due to their nature as modules, need to be installed on each site you work on. If you work on a dizzying number of different Drupal sites, productivity improvements which are not site-specific are the most useful.
The following is a HOWTO I just submitted to the Handbook.
John Forsythe recently posted that Contemplate is one of the most favorited modules on his site, attributable to the learning curve of creating template files. With no offense to Jeff Robbins who created this very clever module, I've never been a big fan of Contemplate.
As of last week, Jody Hamilton and I officially became business partners.