Announcing Entity Reference Display

16 November 2016

The Entity Reference Display module allows editors of Drupal sites to select which view mode they would like to display a list of entities as.

The Paragraphs module has changed a lot of things in Drupal. The same can be said for Bean in Drupal 7 and Custom Blocks in Drupal 8. All of these entities open up a lot of freedom for editors as they allow for the embedding of components in a page. At Morpht we have pioneered these techniques and have written and presented on them extensively. The Paragraphs Demo website still stands as an example of what can be done with Paragraphs.

One of the key concepts we use for site building these days is that of the Node List, Media List and Item Block List. Each of these components is very simple, holding an unlimited entity reference allowing editors to add and sort entities as they wish. This approach is great for landing pages as items can be called out and placed as desired. You could think of it as a componentized version of Nodequeue and later Entityqueue.

But how are these items to be displayed? What view mode shall we use? How can editors select a teaser or a tile? That’s where Entity Reference Display comes in.

This module provides a select list interface to the Editor, allowing them to select the view mode they would like to display the list as. This is a very simple interface and makes content creation a breeze for editors. We have found this to be a more pleasurable way to build than say, adding items with IPE or embedding in the WYSIWYG, although that does have its place.

A final part of the recipe is to use the Entity Class Formatter module to also allow the editor to select the layout they would like to apply to the list. Gives these two modules a try and see how you go with building better editor experiences for your users.