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Network Traffic Culling - by Mike Hergaarden Blogs - 16 July 2014 - 4:05am
January this year our FPS game Verdun was suffering from a lot of network traffic. By implementing simple network culling we were able to reduce traffic by 50%. This post details how we implemented this in Photon Unity Networking (90% client-side).
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Legal News – Imprisoned ex-dictator Manuel Noriega sues Activision - by Zachary Strebeck Blogs - 16 July 2014 - 3:53am
California game lawyer Zachary Strebeck looks at the facts and the law behind a lawsuit filed by former Panamanian dictator against game publisher Activision Entertainment.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Search API Title #2

New Drupal Modules - 16 July 2014 - 3:17am

Provide a duplicate field for title to allow Search API Sorts to use it.

Usually, title field is indexed with the "Full text" type. Which disable "Search API Sorts" to use it.
This module will duplicate content of title under a new field. So you'll be able to index this new one with "String" type which is supported by "Search API Sorts".

Once enable and correctly setup, you'll need to reindex all documents.

Categories: Drupal

IXIS: Nippy EdgeCast Purging

Planet Drupal - 16 July 2014 - 2:27am

Since we integrated the EdgeCast CDN for one of our clients, and released a related EdgeCast Drupal module we have been encouraging more and more clients to consider a CDN layer to accelerate performance to multiple geographic locations and maintain an excellent uptime even during site maintenance periods.

A recent international client who is running many domains with federated content using the Domain module needed to make use of the content delivery network to improve performance and resiliance for their sites.

read more

Categories: Drupal

GDC Europe debuts VR, #1ReasonToBe talks; last day for early reg!

Social/Online Games - Gamasutra - 16 July 2014 - 2:05am

As the deadline for GDC Europe early reg. looms, organizers highlight some of its most interesting talks on topics like Sony's Project Morpheus, #1ReasonToBe, the history of Ninja Theory and a postmortem on Broken Sword. ...

Categories: Game Theory & Design

Making your way in HTML5 - by Andriy Vinchkovskiy Blogs - 16 July 2014 - 1:31am
Bringing games to the largest possible number of people is the most important factors for all developers. HTML5 provides a truly unique opportunity; fast one-off development for a multitude of platforms. This is our story.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

The Slot Machine Effect of Good Loot Design - by Josh Bycer Blogs - 16 July 2014 - 12:15am
Discussions on loot design come in many forms and today's post examines the actual act: What goes in it to keep players coming back for more.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

On Mods - by Sande Chen Blogs - 15 July 2014 - 11:17pm
In this article, game designer Sande Chen examines how modding board games and sports can inspire creativity.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

We ask indies: Dom2D, game designer, 2d artist and Tumblr addict from Canada! - by Nico Saraintaris Blogs - 15 July 2014 - 10:50pm
In this Q&A Dom2D talks about game design, art influences, favourite devs, game jams and tumblr addiction!
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Behaviour (Behavior) Trees for AI Dudes – Part 1 - by Chris Simpson Blogs - 15 July 2014 - 10:36pm
An introduction to AI Behaviour Trees (Behavior for Americans / SEO!)
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Gamification is to games as jingles are to music - by Mario Herger Blogs - 15 July 2014 - 10:23pm
Where games and work are similar, and how gamification can build a bridge between them.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Mage 20th Anniversary Edition Quickstart

New RPG Product Reviews - 15 July 2014 - 1:16pm
Publisher: Onyx Path Publishing
Rating: 3
Originally posted at:

It’s always weird and interesting to see Onyx Path Publishing (and before that White Wolf) taking part in Free RPG Day. The day is meant to foster relations between gamers and their local brick and mortar stores. Unfortunately, World of Darkness products, both Classic and New are very rarely found in retail stores. Except for a few special cases, their products are sold online via Print on Demand, DriveThruRPG, or via Kickstarters. Now, OPP does try to extend an olive branch to publishers, but I’ve yet to see a gaming store actually take part. If you take a look at the WoD Kickstarters you can see how small a percentage this is (.1% for The Book of the Wyrm, .2% for Anarchs Unbound and Mage 20. So on and so forth). What’s more, even over at the Free RPG Day Facebook page there were some very polarizing emotions about OPP taking part. Some people were excited. While others…not so much. There’s definitely a rift between the B and M community and the creators of World of Darkness products and the Free RPG Day releases just seem to rub salt in those wounds. I didn’t attend a single B and M store that was happy about OPP getting to take part, which is a shame because back in the 90s, I purchased so many classic WoD products from local stores. There’s definitely a rift that needs to be mended, but when the last page of your offering for a retail store is an ad for upcoming M20 releases and you only mention DriveThruRPG as the place to get them…well, as big a fan as I am of OPP, I can definitely see why the retail side of the hobby is irked with them.

Last year we got Reap The Whirlwind which highlighted the all new (and improved) version of Vampire: The Requiem. It was a great piece that was newcomer friendly (although everyone was technically a newcomer to that version of the game) but the adventure sucked and the eventual release of Blood and Smoke didn’t happen until six months later, leaving newcomers that picked it up with no way to get further V:TR releases from retailers and what was available online was outdated as they were for a previous edition. Good intentions, but bad follow through. This year’s release is a little bit weirder. Not only do we have the same problems with the “adventure” and a long delay between the Free RPG release and the eventual publication of Mage: The Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition, but there was a potential new wrinkle. Mage is by far the most esoteric game out there, it’s one of the harder games to explain to newcomers, and it definitely would not be my first choice to give to someone as their first ever tabletop experience. I think OPP would have been better off with a release for Werewolf: The Apocalypse. It’s been out for a while, there are several supplements, sourcebooks and adventures published for the 20AE version and it’s certainly more accessible to newcomers. How on earth would they going to make M:TA a game to quickly jump into and play like the other Free RPG Day releases for this year? I was VERY morbidly curious.

It’s also very easy to write an intro adventure for Werewolf, unlike say Mage where the very Quick Start Rules comes out and says, “Mage doesn’t lend itself well to ‘modules.’ Linear adventures that lead from Scene One to Scene Two to Scene Three and eventually to a one-size-fits-all climax are alien to this game.” Well, not only is that a decidedly false statement (anything can be turned into a dungeon crawl. ANYTHING.), but it’s also one that comes off very arrogant and off-putting. It also means that this is going to push away newcomers instead of bring them in. I mean, if you’re a GM and you agree to run something for Free RPG Day only to find the game you chose doesn’t actually have an adventure but a cursory look at the rules while saying, “Oh, we don’t believe in traditional adventures, per say,” well, you’re going to get a very flustered individual who now has to come up with something off the fly that will most likely not be very good, leaving everyone involved with an unfavorable opinion of the product. God forbid everyone involved using this QSR is new to the WoD or gaming in general as you will get a complete and total mess occurring. It really feels that OPP put out these QSRs more as a teaser to older gamers who have been playing Mage for the past two decades rather than with any intent to bring newcomers in. Because there is honestly nothing here that is going to pop for someone inexperienced with the setting, while delighting long time mainstays of the product with nostalgic memories…and who certainly don’t need a QSR set to play the game. So I’m not sure exactly who the guys at OPP were writing this QSR for.

So the half-hearted attempt at an adventure is unfortunate in a lot of ways, but that doesn’t mean the entire product is poorly done. Far from it. The mechanics and explanations for them surpassed my expectations. I went into this piece thinking, “How on earth are you going to explain the spheres and how to use them mechanically in a few pages?” Well, OPP got around that by creating a much larger QSR than usual. Most companies’ QSR offerings are about twenty pages. Mage 20AE has 47 pages of content – much of which is devoted to the rules. Sure this means this isn’t a QSR you can just sit down and play on the fly, but man is this thing robust and really well written. Maybe part of it is me being skewed by having played Mage since the day it came out and already knowing the rules inside and out, but I felt the QSR did a masterful job of breaking down the rules in a fraction of the pages that my old dog eared physical copy used. Of course the sheer volume of rules will no doubt overwhelm newer, younger, or more casual gamers, which again makes me wonder who the intended demographic for this Quick Start Rules set is. Still, I WOULD give this to a newcomer if they were joining a Mage game with people who are already familiar with the mechanics and setting. That way they have a crib sheet of sorts and the blanks can be filled in by the more experienced gamers.

You get a nice little writeup of all the important points. All the universal WoD elements are detailed along with information specific to Mage like Spheres, Arete, Quintessence, Paradox, and of course how Magick (Yes, with a k at the end) works. This is a pretty comprehensive guide to the core truncated rules of Mage: The Ascension and while it is well done, it also does show that this is more complicated than the hack and slash dungeon crawl type of game. Again, this means you’re going to need to read this QSR a few times over in order to really get a feel for the game. Otherwise, you’re going to be checking the rules every few minutes to see what your character can or cannot do. Anyway, as much as I hated that the QSR did with the adventure side of things, I absolutely loved what it does to explain and show off the unique mechanics of Mage.

It’s also worth noting that the book only gives a fleeting description for each of the Nine Traditions and the five conventions of the Technocracy. You get two pages to cover all of the sects in these big two groups along with brief write-ups of the Nephandi and Marauders. Long time gamers might see this and go, “But there is so much more information to be had? Why is this so short?” Well the answer is that: a) there wasn’t enough room b) by being brief but informative, you pique curiosity and c) it keeps from overwhelming newcomers. You will also see some changes here. The Askantic Brotherhood is now the Akashayana and the Sons of Ether are now the Society of Ether. This may seem like an inconsequential change to some of you, but it’s very much keeping in line with OPP’s attempt to be all-inclusive and gender neutral. This is a company that bends over backwards to be inviting to women and LGBT gamers and even in small changes like this, you can definitely see Onyx Path and its writers practice what they preach. Good show! Of course, no one is going to freak out and call you a misogynist if you refer to these traditions by their old names out of habit.

Speaking of all inclusive, you should take a look at the five pre-generated characters in this game. You have only a single male character, along with three female (one black, two white) and a FTM transgender character. I really like that they did this. Sure, it definitely feels like the men outnumber the women in the tabletop gaming scene, especially if you’re an older gamer, but that doesn’t mean it’s true. There are a lot of great female writers out there putting out products for the WoD, Castles and Crusades, Pathfinder, and Shadowrun. There are also a lot of female gamers out there. I was very impressed to see that a third to a half of the gamers at the store where I picked up this QSR at were women. I can also tell you from experience that my time with WoD games, that the women players often outnumber the men. Especially with V:TM. So sure, your group of gamers might be four dudes and none of you really want to play a female or transgender character. That’s okay. Just remember you can always change the gender of a pre-gen. Women will be happy to see they have more than a single female pre-gen to choose from (as is usually the case) and transgender gamers will just be happy to see someone thought of them! Again, as uninviting as this QSR is to the adventure side of things, World of Darkness games really do try to be as welcoming as possible to all races, creeds, sexual preferences and so on. That’s really a lovely thing to see.

So while there isn’t an actual adventure to use with the QSR (which is a shame), you do get a few things to help an experienced Storyteller craft their own. While again, that does mean this QSR isn’t something you can just play with on a moment’s notice, it does mean that a veteran of Mage CAN use it to teach newer or younger gamers about the system in a very nice manner. You have seven and a half pages of sample NPCs, enemies and allies and ten story hooks, each a paragraph long. This is nice, but a hand holding adventure would have been a much better choice if this was actually meant to be for people new to Mage rather than longtime fans like myself who backed the 20AE Kickstarter project.

So as we come to the end of this review, I have very mixed feelings about this QSR. As a fan of Mage: The Ascension, I really liked what I saw and it has made me all the more excited for the eventual release of the weighty tome (or in my case, PDF) that will be the final product. I thought the piece did a good job of explaining the esoteric nature of Mage in a short amount of space, even if it will take much longer for a gamer to understand and play this than the other QSRs released this year. I really wish there had been an adventure geared to showing newcomers how to play and/or run Mage, but the pre-generated characters are wonderfully done, lavished with detail and diversity alike. I still feel this is best viewed as a teaser for longtime Mage fans that something that will really help people brand new to the game be able to grasp the concepts and themes of the game. However, with the help of an experienced WoD gamer, this can be used to teach the core mechanics and how to play the game. Hopefully enough so that they want to buy the 5-600 page AE version when it comes out at the tail end of this year or (more likely), the beginning of 2015.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Blog: $12.5 billion in 12 months - What's driving game acquisitions?

Social/Online Games - Gamasutra - 15 July 2014 - 11:23am

"The last 12 months have seen a record $12.5B games acquisitions across mobile games ($4.6B), MMO games ($4B), games tech ($2.8B) and console games ($1B). There are 5 drivers of this consolidation crush." ...

Categories: Game Theory & Design

50 Questions an Indie Start Up should ask themselves... - by Simon Bennett Blogs - 15 July 2014 - 9:56am
A recent survey of Indie developers showed that on average 45% of their time was taken up with Business Administration Tasks. What questions should Indie start ups ask themselves at each of the 5 stages of the Business cycle?
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Acquia: Deliver digital faster with Drupal – Part 2

Planet Drupal - 15 July 2014 - 6:45am

In Deliver digital faster with Drupal Part 1, I showed you some of the many examples of successful sites built rapidly thanks to Drupal’s modularity. To stay ahead of your competition, you need to be nimble and agile; Drupal helps you do this with reusable, transferable digital experiences that can be customised to suit various niches even within a single business enterprise. All, of course, without paying additional license fees or mandated limits on developers, environments, or copies.

Categories: Drupal

Liran Tal's Enginx: Migrate Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9 – The Conclusion

Planet Drupal - 15 July 2014 - 6:35am
This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Drupal 7 to Wordpress 3.9 Migration

Migrate Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9  - To recap, in a previous post on this series, I’ve set the background for my action to migrate  from Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9. In this post, we will explore the process of making this migration happen.

If you’ve been on this search before to migrate from Drupal to WordPress, then you’ve realized that there aren’t a lot of resources, and that you may have some preferences in regards to the migration process. Some solutions that popped required to have both instances of Drupal and WordPress up and running for some reason, but that didn’t fit my requirements as I wanted to use the same domain and not needing to setup another one just for the migration process. Other solutions are of course professional support services which will perform the migration for you, but you’d have to say goodbye to a few hundred dollars to begin with (prices range from $750 to $3500 for a website migration)

Finding Drupal2Worpdress provided me a good start to get things rolling. As with most things on Github for me, I usually begin by forking a repository and Drupal2Wordpress was no exception. Quickly after I reviewed the code in the original repository I found out that the script is very small and focused, without requiring any special dependencies or extra configuration which was my primary goal – finding the most simple solution as possible. Now I’m ready to take a stub at it.


My Video Course - Step by Step Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9 Migration

I created a Video course on to teach you the skills of migrating Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9.

I’d appreciate if you leave a review after taking the quick course

Step-by-Step Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9 Migration Learn how to migrate your content, users, and more from a Drupal 7 website to WordPress 3.9.




Getting to Business with Drupal2Wordpress

Drupal2Wordpress is essentially very simple. It only requires to edit the PHP code at the beginning, and set the connection information correctly for both WordPress and Drupal database. That already implies on the characteristics of this migration tool – it expects that both instances of Drupal and WordPress are available through a database connection and since this tool has to be accessible and run on the hosting account service  and be triggered from the web or from a cron job (because hosting accounts do not open their database servers to the public).

Some of my fixes to this tool began with importing any content type from Drupal, yet making sure they are imported into WordPress as eligble posts content type (as opposed to pages for example, which aren’t blog related). URL aliasing has also been fixed so that imported posts in the new WordPress install are just working good, as well as another fix to migrate only approved comments. New additions to the tool included the support for migrating users, and adding a default ‘Blog’ category on WordPress and relating all posts to it (as otherwise they are not displayed).

The tool has been tested and it only requires to get a fresh installation of WordPress 3.9 to migrate any Drupal 7 site to it. You’re welcome to fork out the repository or test it and comment so we can further improve upon it.

Drupal2Wordpress – the Github repository.


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The post Migrate Drupal 7 to WordPress 3.9 – The Conclusion appeared first on Liran Tal's Enginx.

Categories: Drupal


New Drupal Modules - 15 July 2014 - 6:18am

This module provides integration of Drupal and Lotame.

Lotame helps publishers, marketers and agencies drive Maximum Audience Impact — maximizing the way they collect, unify, protect and activate audience data. Leveraging the industry’s most robust DMP as a central audience management engine.

This module has been sponsored by Dennis Publishing.

Categories: Drupal

Drupalize.Me: Drupal 8 Plugins Explained

Planet Drupal - 15 July 2014 - 6:00am

As you start down the road of learning Drupal 8 module development, one of the first new Drupalisms that you're likely to encounter are plugins. After writing a blog post about creating blocks, which uses the new plugin architecture, I thought it might be interesting to take a step back and talk a little bit more about plugins at a higher level. This blog post contains an introduction to the what and why of plugins to help Drupal 7 developers make the transition to Drupal 8.

Categories: Drupal

Nuvole: Packaging and reusing configuration in Drupal 8

Planet Drupal - 15 July 2014 - 6:00am
Bringing "reusable features" to Drupal 8.

This is a preview of Nuvole's training at DrupalCon Amsterdam: An Effective Development Workflow in Drupal 8.

Configuration Management in Drupal 8 elegantly solves staging configuration between different environments addressing an issue that is still haunting even the most experienced Drupal 7 developer. In earlier posts we covered the new Configuration Management in Drupal 8, seeing how it compares to Drupal 7 and Features, and even investigated how to manually simulate Features in Drupal 8 last year. Recent developments and contrib modules can take us several steps closer.

Configuration Management can get quite streamlined when using Git and Drush 7 as explained below.

Step 1: Move staging configuration directory into a versionable location

By default Drupal 8 will place the staging directory under sites/default/files and it is considered a good practice to not version that location, but an alternative location can easily be specified in our settings.php:

$config_directories['staging'] = 'config/staging';

Done that, we must rebuild the Drupal cache:

$ drush cache-rebuild

Step 2: Export active configuration into staging directory via Drush

The Configuration Management system exposes a set of very handy Drush commands: in order to “dump” all active configuration into our newly set staging directory we can just run:

$ drush config-export
The current contents of your export directory (config/staging) will be deleted. (y/n): y
Configuration successfully exported to config/staging.                                                    

Step 3: Push configuration changes and import it on the staging environment

Since the staging directory is under version control we can simply git-add all its content and push it to the remote repository. After having set-up the staging environment as an exact replica of our development environment (this is actually required for the configuration staging to work) we can start profiting from the new Drupal 8 CM system. Imagine we have changed the site name on dev, after having exported, committed and pushed that change, on the staging site we will simply run:

$ git pull

$ drush config-import

Config               Operation                update
Import the listed configuration changes? (y/n): y
The configuration was imported successfully.

For a more comprehensive overview of the Configuration Management system please refer to our previous blog post Configuration Management: Drupal 7 to Drupal 8.

Packaging configuration

For those developers familiar with code-driven development practices the three steps above might resemble what the Features module does in Drupal 7 with its features-update and features-revert Drush commands.

While Drupal 8 configuration staging capabilities are far more advanced than what Features could possibly provide, what the new Configuration Management system really lacks is the ability to package configuration.

Enter the Configuration development module

The Configuration development module, currently maintained by chx, serves two main purposes:

  • It automates the import of specified configuration files into the active storage.
  • It automates the export of specified configuration objects into files.

The module offers a simple, global UI interface where a Drupal developer can set which configuration is automatically exported and imported any time they hit the “Save” button on a configuration setting page.

In order to achieve a more modular configuration packaging it would be enough to set a specific module’s config/install directory as the actual export destination.

Nuvole contributed a patch to make that possible: instead of firing an auto-export every time a “Save” button is clicked the developer can, instead, specify in the module’s info file which configuration needs to be written back to that module’s install directory and run a simple Drush command to do that.

Reusable “features” in Drupal 8

One of the main advantages of having a standardized way of dealing with configuration means that modules can now stage configuration at installation time. In a way that’s something very close to what Features allowed us to do in Drupal 7.

Say we have our news section up and running on the site we are currently working on and we would like to package it into a custom module, together with some other custom code, and ship it over a new project. The patched Config development module will help us to do just that! Here it is how:

Step 1: Download, patch and enable Configuration development module

We need to download and enable the Configuration development module version 8.x-1.x-dev and apply the patch attached to this issue.

After rebuilding the cache, we will have the config-writeback Drush command available. Let's have a closer look at what it is meant to do:

$ drush help config-writeback

Write back configuration to a module's config/install directory. State which configuration settings you want to export in the module's info file by listing them under 'config_devel', as shown below:

  - entity.view_display.node.article.default
  - entity.view_display.node.article.teaser
  - field.instance.node.article.body

drush config-writeback MODULE_NAME        Write back configuration to the specified module, based on .info file.

module                                    Module machine name.

Aliases: cwb

Step 2: Find what configuration needs to be packaged

We now look for all configuration related to our site’s news section. In Drupal 8 most of the site configuration is namespaced with related components so, if we keep on using consistent naming conventions, we can easily list all news-related configuration by simply running:

$ drush config-list | grep news

Step 3: Package configuration

To package all the settings above we will create a module called custom_news and, in its info file, we will specify all the settings we want to export, listing them under the config_devel: directive, as follows:

$ cat modules/custom_news/

name: Custom News
type: module
description: 'Custom news module.'
package: Custom
core: 8.x

After enabling the module we will run:

$ drush config-writeback custom_news

And we will have all our settings exported into the module’s install directory:

$ tree -L 3 modules/custom_news/

├── config
│   └── install
│       ├──
│       ├──
│       ├──
│       ├──
│       ├──
│       └──

The Drush command above takes care of clearing all sensitive UUID values making sure that the module will stage the exported configuration cleanly, once enabled on a new Drupal 8 site.

To get the news section on another site we will just copy the module to the new site's ./modules/ directory and enable it:

$ drush en custom_news

The following extensions will be enabled: custom_news
Do you really want to continue? (y/n): y
custom_news was enabled successfully.      Final evaluation: Drupal 7 versus Drupal 8

One of the main differences between working in Drupal 7 and in Drupal 8 is represented by the new Configuration Management system.

While Features was proposing a one-stop solution for both configuration staging and packaging, Drupal 8 CM does a better job in keeping them separate, allowing developers in taking a greater control over these two different and, at the same time, complementary aspect of a solid Drupal development workflow.

By using the method described above we can upgrade our comparison table between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 introduced in one of our previous posts as follows:

Functionality D7 Core D7 Core + Features D8 Core (current) D8 Core (current) + Patched Config Devel Export full site config (no content) NO NO YES YES Export selected config items NO YES YES YES Track config changes (full site) NO NO YES YES Track config changes (selected items) NO YES YES YES Stage configuration NO YES YES YES Package configuration NO YES NO YES Reuse configuration in other projects NO YES NO YES Collaborate on the same project NO YES NO NO

The last "NO" deserves a brief explanation: Configuration Management allows two developers to work simultaneously on different parts of the same project if they are very careful: but "merging" the work would have to be done by version control (GIT or similar), that doesn't know about YAML or Drupal.

Some open issues

Contributed modules seem to be the best way to enhance the core Configuration Management system, much like what happened with Drupal 7 and Features. There are still several issues that should be considered for an optimal workflow, to match and improve what we already have in Drupal 7:

  • Piping: the ability to relate configuration components based on both hard and logic dependencies, for example: I export a content type and, automatically, I get also its fields. If piping might have been too rigid, at times, it would be still useful to have in some configurable form.
  • Enhanced configuration diff: it might be useful to have the possibility to review what configuration is going to be installed before enabling a module, like it is now when importing staged configuration to the active storage.
  • Granularity: it is still impossible to export part of a configuration file, so we still depend on the core conventions for grouping configuration into files, and we can't export a single permission for example.
  • Ownership: we can't know if another module (or "feature") is tracking a component we wish to track; this could be useful in the perspective of maintaining several "modular" features.
  • Updates: we can reuse configuration by simply enabling a module, but this holds only for the initial installation; after a module is enabled, we don't have a clean way to import changes (say, to "upgrade" to a newer version of the feature) outside the standard workflow foreseen in Configuration Management.
Tags: Drupal 8, Drupal Planet, DrupalCon, Drush, Code Driven DevelopmentImage: 
Categories: Drupal
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