Monday, August 31, 2015
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ReCaptcha alternative: Integrate PlayThru in JComments 3.0 for Joomla 3.2

Applies to: What?
This article is a follow on from my article JComments 2.3 with PlayThru (Joomla 2.5.x) but this is for a later version of the components using the alternative called PlayThru by AreYouAHuman.Com.

The kCaptcha used by the jComments extension is easily automated and no longer blocks spam comments. Google's ReCaptcha is overrun by click farms and is unable to authenticate engaging visitors.

So I have come up with what I consider a pretty stable solution. I adapted it from various legacy solutions when using Google's ReCaptcha.

Three boxes, two roll over, one falls out

So this is an article to note an oddity when I was working with a Yootheme template called "yoo_sync". Some clever scripts (both mootools and jquery) using the equalize method to make div layers the same height, and in this case, the same width. It isn't so much a miscalculation of 100% divided by 3 that leaves 1 pixel left over, more the fact that the scripts use that 1 pixel (ceiling rather than floor?).

We have a row on a website of three boxes made of div layers. When viewed normally on a 15" Laptop, all was good using Chrome and tolerable using MS Internet Explorer. If we maximized the Google Chrome browser, the row would split and there would be 2 boxes on the top row and the third would pop under these. As for MSIE, that was ok when maximized.

You could do loads of code hacks which is what I tested but all for nothing because you always end up needing to specify a third of the width.

Warning call_user_func: First argument is expected to be a valid callback

If you get something like the following error:

Warning: call_user_func() []: First argument is expected to be a valid callback in /home/.../templates/rt_affinity/rt_sectionrows.php on line 311


  1. Copy & backup the file /public_html/.../templates/rt_affinity/rt_sectionrows.php
  2. Find the following piece of code around line 311:

    1.  foreach($this->horizontalCookie[$row] as $block) { 
    2.       $block = str_replace('-', '', $block); 
    3.       $this->module_row1 .= call_user_func($block$this$mClasses); 
    4.  } 
  3. And change it to:

    1.  foreach($this->horizontalCookie[$row] as $block) { 
    2.       if(!empty($block)) { 
    3.            $block = str_replace('-', '', $block); 
    4.            $this->module_row1 .= call_user_func($block$this$mClasses); 
    5.       } 
    6.  } 

Adding a selectable background to a Yootheme template

Applies to:
  • Joomla 2.5.8
  • Yootheme Template 2012

For any web-developer who can program in PHP/HTML, this would be easy to hard-code and override. However, the article below demonstrates how to make this an option that your client can switch off/on using the Joomla Admin Panel.


RokDownloads Manager does not list files

Well this isn't a problem for those that don't use RokDownloads. The other day, I logged in to upload some new files and manage some of my downloadable files... Only to find that the Rokdownloads manager would not list any of my files!?!

I am in the middle of writing a component that will hopefully comprise bug-tracking and download management all in one.

Until then, I thought I'd STFW (google) this issue and post a solution considering that even RocketTheme don't want to share this solution unless we continue to pay for the subscription. Understandable to some extent, greedy in another.

So far the solution has been to open this with Internet Explorer with a cleared-cache. A little annoying in view how much I hate Internet Explorer and it's various versions which only work with particular systems... Do not uninstall/install other modules/components as I believe this is some issue with overloading or with the actual code and you can get to this file manager to work without changing your Joomla! setup.

Watch this space for when I find a definitive answer!

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