In this brief tutorial we will cover the basics of what Gravatars are and how they are used. As well as how to integrate them in a sire you are developing.
A Gravatar is an image that once loaded up to a central site will follow you from site to site and every time you post a comment on someone’s blog or other site this image will appear beside your name. The central site that holds all these images is usually gravatar.com.
Whenever you post a comment on a blog or on a forum or elsewhere on a site that requires you to have an email address to do so they are able to automatically check with Gravatar.com to see if you have an account. If you have an account the website can then link directly to your avatar picture attached to your Gravatar account. Other people viewing the website then see this picture beside your post.
You can get an account by registering with gravatar.com at this location or alternatively if you already have a wordpress.com account you can sign in to their website using this account.
Gravatars in Content Management Systems
A Gravatar image can be up to 512 by 512 pixels in size however the default size is 80 by 80 pixels. They are always squared off and can be resized by the site displaying them to suit their website design.
All Gravatar images are rated in the same way that the Motion Picture Association of America would rate their movies. So it is even possible to have an R-rated Gravatar. As this rating is attached to the image it is possible for webmasters to censor out content that is too mature for their site.
WordPress and Redmine
If you are developer looking to integrate Gravatars into a WordPress or Redmine based site there is good news for you. There is very little for you to do. WordPress versions 2.5 and above and Redmine 0.8 and above all support Gravatars automatically. If they are not working on the site you are working on then you need to ensure that your users are required to be either logged in or enter and email address to leave a comment.
Remember the Gravatar system works by checking the email against the emails of account holders on gravatar.com. If your site doesn’t have an email address to query the Gravatar database with it won’t be able to obtain the Gravatar for that user.
So there is no need to add a WordPress or redmine plugin.
Joomla does not come with built in support for Gravatars. This is mainly because the majority of Joomla sites don’t lean heavily on people posting content to them. However there are Joomla plugins available to fix this problem. Not a lot of plugins for this but there are a few none the less.
Gavatar is one such plugin. It is free with no registration required. To download it visit http://geminorum.ir/joomla/gavatar/download
Although the documentation that comes with it isn’t very in depth the plugin is very solid and comes highly recommended.
While Drupal does not come with built in support for Gravatars this is covered by a module available from the Drupal. http://drupal.org/project/gravatar
Support for this module is very good and updated regularly often within days of a new version of Drupal being released.
Hope you found this helpful and see you again next time.