Views is a powerhouse feature of OSU Drupal that provides permitted users to ability to construct a wide range of data queries and then display them in a variety of different ways.
The Views User Interface (UI) contains several different tools that will help a user build a sophisticated data query - even if the user has no experience with database administration:
Using the Filter tool, just the Story content can be filtered out from all other content.
Using the Basic Settings tool, the view can be told to display just one item at a time.
Using the Sort tool, a random sort can be applied.
Using the Add Display tool, a block display can be created from within Views, that can be configured and laid out via the Blocks control panel.
Here are some simple examples of how your can use the views; the creation of very clean data tables, grid based displays (such as for catalogs), and the automatic display of data based on a set of filter criteria.
More complex applications of Views include the dynamic display of information based upon arguments passed via the URL, or based on upon conditions such as "if this value is on this piece of content, also show this view in this block." The attractive Views carousel plug-in is also available, which allows the creation of a block that contains scrollable content.
Views works very closely with a couple of other modules: CCK and Taxonomy. With these three modules working together, your website can become a highly automated hub of information.
Views can also be imported and exported. Just keep in mind that if you are importing or exporting a view with information in it that is derived from a custom field, or using a taxonomy, these items will also have to be imported for the view to work properly.
The Views feature is quite complex. It is recommended for the more experienced intermediate to advanced user.
If you're interested in learning more about Views visit our Training page to view workshop information or download training materials for self-study. To view and/or register for upcoming CWS training workshops, visit Professional Development.