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Textformatter: Thinspace Plus

Michael van Laar

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Because I wanted to be able to strip all line breaks from a textarea field and then apply the Thinspace textformatter, I forked Netcarver’s module, added the required line and simply called it “Thinspace Plus” (which is not very creative, I know):


I use this Textformatter mostly for textarea fields that contain meta descriptions and similar content. The reason I use textarea fields here – instead of simple Text fields – is that I want to be able to use the great Textarea Counter module with these fields. But since these fields are intended to be simple strings without any line break or paragraph formatting, I want to “flatten” them – just in case an editor enters a line break. OK, the line breaks probably won’t do any harm in meta descriptions, OpenGraph descriptions, etc. But I just want to see them in my rendered source code ;-)

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Do you replace double spaces afterwards to? Because a lot of people tend to make a space and than press enter (or Word does this and they just copy and paste it) :)

An maybe you could add a "maxlength" option and do a "nice break" so the last word won't be cut (as explained here: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/79960/how-to-truncate-a-string-in-php-to-the-word-closest-to-a-certain-number-of-chara).

This would make sense because meta tags have a length restriction I think.

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I just added the “replace new line with a space character” before the two other rules of the original Thinspace module do their work:

    public function format(&$str)
        $str = preg_replace('/\n/u', ' ', $str);
        $str = preg_replace('/(?:\x{20}|\x{a0}){2,}/u', ' ', $str);
        $str = preg_replace("/\n{2,}/u", "\n", $str);

E. g. the combination “space + line break + space + line break” will be converted into “space + space + space + space” in a first step and then into a single “space” in a second step.
To have optimal content for meta elements which have a length limit, I create separate fields on a separate tab and use the Textarea Counter module.


Of course i always include fallbacks in my templates. So if a description field is not filled with text, there are multiple fallback steps – ending with a “nice break” extract from the page’s main body text.

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