Navigation menu's using unordered lists

Submitted by residualflash - 6 years ago

Generate navigation menu's that look clean using a custom class HTML::nav(); Automatically set active state, use conditions to display links, and optionally pass only one value for both url and link name if you want to type a little less

We will create a navigation menu like this:
{{ HTML::nav(array('login', 'register', 'wiki', 'forum', '/' => 'Home')) }}
Which will output:
    <li><a href="" class="active">Login</a></li>
    <li><a href="">Register</a></li>
    <li><a href="">Wiki</a></li>
    <li><a href="">Forum</a></li>
    <li><a href="">Home</a></li>
Just make sure to load your macro.
// HTMLMacro.php
HTML::macro('nav', function($list, $attributes = null)
    $nav = [];
    // iterate through each element of the array and get url => link pairs
    foreach ($list as $key => $val)
        // Sometimes we want to pass a condition and display link based on the condition
        // (ex: dispaly login vs. logout link based on if user is logged in), 
        // in this case, an array will be passed instead of a string.
        // The first value will be the condition, 2nd and 3rd will be the links
        if (is_array($val))
            $condition = $val[0];
            // set url to the keys of the array
            $link = array_keys($val);
            // sometimes we don't want to display any link if the condition isn't met, 
            // then we need to check if a 2nd link is omitted
            $link[2] = array_key_exists(2, $link) ? $link[2] : null;
             // check to see if condition passes
            $key = $condition ? $link[1] : $link[2];
            // if a second link isn't passed, then stop the current loop at this point
            // and skip to the next loop
            if (is_null($key))
            $val = $val[$key];
        // Check to see if both url and link is passed
        // Many times, both url and link name will be the same, so we can avoid typing it twice
        // and just pass one value
        // In this case, the key will be numeric (when we just pass a value instead of key => value pairs)
        // We will have to set the url to equal the key instead
        $url = is_numeric($key) ? $val : $key;
        // If we are using controller routing (ex: HomeController@getIndex),
        // then we need to use URL::action() instead of URL::to()
        $url = (strpos($url, '@') !== false) ? URL::action($url) : URL::to(strtolower($url));
        // Set the active state automatically
        $class['class'] = (Request::url() === $url) ? 'active' : null;
        // Push the new list into the $nav array
        array_push($nav, HTML::link($url, $val, $class));
     // Generate the unordered list
    $menu = HTML::ul($nav, $attributes);
    // HTML::ul() performs htmlentities on the list by default,
    // so we have to decode it back using HTML::decode()
    $menu = HTML::decode($menu);
    // Return the generated menu
    return $menu;
// Example.php
// Example 1
{{ HTML::nav(['login', 'register', 'wiki', 'forum', '/' => 'Home']) }}
// Example 2
// What if you want to display a link based on a condition like Auth::check()
{{ HTML::nav([[Auth::check(), 'logout', 'login'], 'register', 'wiki', 'forum', '/' => 'Home']) }}
// Now the login link will be displayed if user is not logged in and vice versa