Autoload your javascript and css in CakePHP

Have you ever wanted to have all your css or javascripts files loaded automatically once they are on place under /webroot/js and webroot/css folders? Well this is the solution.

What is all about

I’ve build a quick helper which will include all files under the js/ and css/ directories. So once the javascripts and css are there, they will be loaded automatically.

How to use it?

Using it is really easy. It’s like a normal helper:
1. add the file autoload.php under your /app/views/helpers
2. add it in the $helpers var in the controller
3. add the following snippet in your layout file. It should be under /app/views/layouts:

<?php echo $autoload->javascript();?>

This will include all files under /webroot/js

<?php echo $autoload->css();?>

This will include all files under /webroot/css

<?php echo $autoload->all();?>

This will include all files under /webroot/js and /webroot/css

Key features:

1. The helper includes all files recursively.
2. The helper includes also files under /root/vendors/js and /root/app/vendors/js too (same apply to css). Vendors are loaded first. (Thanks to suggestion from Juan Basso)
3. The order of the files in one directory is based on the name, so now you can control the order as well. (Thanks to suggestion from Juan Basso)
4. Files starting with . (dot) are not included, files under directories starting with . are not included as well, so you can exclude some files
5. if you want to load some files after other use directories. For example if you want to include plugins after the main lib (jQuery), place them in plugins directory like:
js/plugins/plugin_one.js
js/plugins/plugin_another.js
js/.hidden/plugin_third.js
js/jquery.js
the result will be:

<script type="text/javascript" src="js/jquery.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript" src="js/plugins/plugin_one.js"></script>
<script type="text/javascript" src="js/plugins/plugin_another.js"></script>

(same apply to css as well)

Warning: I’ve noticed that this helper doesn’t work properly with scriptaculous, because the script tries to load the additional plugins and they fail, but for jQuery there is not a problem at all.

Finally here is the code of the helper:
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CakePHP and Layout – secret of data passing through

In my current project I need to deal with the Layout more than adding some header, static menu and footer in it. I need to have dynamic menu loaded from the database plus additional blocks which will contain some data related to the main content. For example YouTube.com /and many other sites/ has some blocks which appear all over the site like related movies block from the right depending from the tags related to the main movie. There are a lot examples.

Well, searching in the CakePHP Manual, CakePHP Google Group or Bakery doesn’t satisfy my understanding how to solve the case. Apart from $anything_for_layout: Making HTML from the View available to the layout article I didnt find anything on this topic. And this one sounds like a hack rather than a complex solution.
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Advanced Datepicker helper for CakePHP

This is a really old post. I’ve wrote a new one which you can find it here


I am using this part of code from long time ago, but it wasn’t in a separate helper. It was part from one not very good written Auth component/helper mash up which I already not using. I fact the default Date input of CakePHP Framework is ugly and not user friendly at all. The drop-downs are good because the format is clear and users cannot mess it, but if you thinking for the user convenience, then you should know that it’s 3 times easier just to type the date in a field or to pick it from a Calendar pop up than selecting from 3 drop-downs.
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Extended Autocomplete Helper

When I started with CakePHP, my first project includes also Autocomplete functionality for some fields. Of course I start using default Ajax Helper provided from the library. The main problem was that in most of the cases I needed the ID of the string which I searched. The best example is the Country list which is very easy to be accessed with Autocomplete, but instead to messing up with strings as usual developer I wanted to have the ID of the specified country. I used some kind of hack by adding callback function onComplete, which checks the selection in the Autocomplete field, and by this selection set hidden ID field, but as you can imagine this is not the best choice, first of all because it’s a hack – you rely on a sting which already sound as a hack /imagine if you are searching in a list there are some duplicated entries – examples are too many/ and second if you rely on callback this mean that you need another second or two for the second responce. Anyway, by giving this examples just wanted to convince you once again that Autocomplete helper with Key and Value related are really necessary in the projects /or at least that’s what I am thinking./

Well so far the default Autocomplete helper doesn’t provide such functionality. That’s why I created this helper which solves this problem partly. Why partly? You will see the answer of this in Strict Autocomplete with Scriptaculous (Part II)
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CakePHP – my new best friend.

From the beginning of the year I decided to move from my home-grown PHP Framework to CakePHP. Here I will explain how I moved and which were the reasons for this. I will mention only the important things which drive me to this decision.

So here are the most critical issues while you using Home-grown or Community Frameworks:
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