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WebSphere Portal 8: New Modular Theme Framework
Mark Polly    

IBM has been reworking WebSphere Portal themes for a long time now.  The feedback I get on themes in Portal 7 is they are too complicated, too slow, and not well documented.  With WebSphere Portal 8, IBM is addressing these concerns with a new theme architecture.  IBM is touting the new theme as very modular, which should lead to a flexible framework that improves download times and minimizes the number of requests going from the browser to the server.

In my last post about Managed Pages, I said that I had received some errors when creating a page.  I had built a blog page and wanted to include a tag cloud on that page.  When I dragged the Tag Cloud portlet to the page and saved my changes, I received the following messages:

Profile Errors

Apparently, I was missing some Dojo files that were needed for the tag cloud.  After looking into this, I figured out the default  theme must not have been quite right.  I looked at the page properties and noticed a theme profile select box.  When I clicked on that entry, I found that I had a choice of several profiles:

Theme Profile    Theme profile

I changed the profile to Full and saved the page again.  This time, I was able to save my page with the Tag Cloud portlet.  So why would the profile matter?

A theme profile is one mechanism IBM implemented to improve load time.  A profile loads modules that the theme designer designates from the list of available modules.  Modules are part of the new module theme framework.  So a theme profile can load all modules (i.e. Full), or the profile can load selected modules based on the needs of the page.

If you don’t need the entire Dojo library, for example, you can create a theme profile that loads only those modules you do need.  The Portal documentation contains a list of modules supplied by IBM and you can create your own modules. By choosing only the modules your page absolutely needs, you can skinny down the overall theme, improving load times.

You can learn more about the module framework here.  While its too early to tell if IBM finally has a workable, modern theme, this new module framework certainly looks very promising.



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May 17, 2012
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Recent Blog Posts
58


Dreamforce: Community Cloud for Healthcare
Tue, Oct 14th 2014 10:15p   Mark Polly
All this week I’m at Dreamforce, the annual Salesforce conference.  Salesforce has come a long way with their platform and they’ve recently introduced Community Cloud.  Community Cloud is an evolution of their portal product and includes many features that we see in other enterprise-class, horizontal portals. We are seeing a lot of interest in portals from our healthcare clients.  At Dreamforce, I attended a session on using Salesforce Community Cloud in healthcare.  I blogged [read] Keywords: community enterprise
65


Salesforce Community Cloud Roadmap for 2015
Tue, Oct 14th 2014 2:15p   Mark Polly
Salesforce Community Cloud can be used for a variety of applications, including sales communities, customer self-service, marketing campaign management, or anywhere you need portal, content and social combined into one experience. At Dreamforce 2014, Salesforce has been having a lot of sessions related to communities and I’ve seen a lot of communities focused on partners.  That is if you are company that has sales partners, dealers, etc. a partner community would be relevant to you.   Th [read] Keywords: application applications community facebook linkedin mobile networking profile twitter
61


Successful Partner Communities with Salesforce
Tue, Oct 14th 2014 12:18p   Mark Polly
Zero Motorcycles needed a way to consolidate multiple partner facing systems into a simplified user interface, track sales and monitor participation programs and automate workflows. As we’ve seen from other customers, partners had to login to multiple systems.  Using Community Cloud, Zero was able to provide one interface for the partners to login into and get information and process leads and improve sales. Zero’s original model was B2C, thinking that consumers would order electri [read] Keywords: collaboration community exchange exchange interface mobile
69


Creating Customer Happiness with Salesforce Communities
Mon, Oct 13th 2014 3:12p   Mark Polly
Community Cloud is Salesforce’s newest and fastest growing cloud (until tomorrow).  IDC has seen a huge jump in using social media to communicate with customers and respond to customer inquiries.  The top 3 technologies that are planned to be used include discussion forums, public social networks, and online communities, which is where Community Cloud comes in. Constant Contact Constant Contact, an all-in-one marketing platform, has over 600,000 small business customers. Constant Contact us [read] Keywords: administration collaboration community
70


Content Marketing is Inherently Flawed?
Fri, Oct 10th 2014 11:12a   Michael Porter
In the past week I’ve either read or listened to two heads of global marketing for two well known brands.  Both had a similar story with different sides of the same coin.  Both had a message that dealt with Marketers having to forget about telling their brand story and go with what customers want to hear.  The first was a session about leveraging social data with Michelle Lapierre who is the Sr. Director of Customer Experience at Marriott Rewards. The second is an article at cmo.com dis [read] Keywords: facebook linkedin oracle twitter
118


Why Do Contextual Ads Fail
Tue, Oct 7th 2014 3:12p   Michael Porter
I’ve blogged about the personalization failure before.  Now it looks like others are catching on to the ultimate failure on their part………… even as they harvest huge amounts of private information about us.  This article in ComputerWorld outlines the issues.  The author Mike Elgan hits the topic of privacy quickly and never lets it go: Companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon violate our privacy in order to show us relevant ads. So why do their ads miss the mar [read] Keywords: facebook google
148


Gartner Magic Quadrant for Horizontal Portals 2014: Seeing Shifts
Mon, Oct 6th 2014 8:13a   Mark Polly
Gartner has released its Magic Quadrant for Horizontal Portals 2014 and it contains some interesting surprises.  For the first time in several years, Gartner has moved IBM and Liferay ahead of the other vendors in both vision and execution ability. Gartner Magic Quadrant Horizontal Portals 2014 The leaders for 2014 are still the same leaders as in 2013 and 2012.  For the past few years IBM, Microsoft and Oracle have been clustered near each other in the Leader’s quadrant, with Liferay an [read] Keywords: ibm application enterprise microsoft oracle sap server sharepoint
90


A Day in the Life of a Social Media Manager
Mon, Sep 29th 2014 11:11a   Mark Polly
In the BufferSocial blog, Kevan Lee posted an article for Social Media Managers.  The post takes a look a “typical” social media manager’s day and breaks down that day into many different activities, represented in the info graphic here.    Mr. Lee also provides several different views on how other people spend their days managing social media.  One person, Finola Howard, manages to compress all her daily activities into just one hour per day. Her tasks include: Use Socia [read] Keywords: connections ibm networking twitter




158


How to Implement Lighter Weight Portals, Part 3: Knockout Portlet
Thu, Sep 18th 2014 5:15p   Mark Polly
In this series, I’m showing how Portals don’t have to be heavyweight.  In Part 1, I wrote about how to make the infrastructure lighter by using cloud or IBM’s Pure System.  In Part 2, I introduced the concept of using IBM’s Web Content Manager system to build very simple portlets. Now in this final installment, I am going to extend the concepts introduced in Part 2 to show how we can build more complex portlets, but still keep everything lightweight.  To review quickly [read] Keywords: ibm application css dojo interface java javascript network portlet widget
119


How to Implement Lighter Weight Portals, Part 2: Portlets
Tue, Sep 16th 2014 12:11p   Mark Polly
In part 1 of this series, How to Implement Lighter Weight Portals, I talked wrote about the infrastructure and installation aspects of Portals. To make the tasks of managing and installing portals, I recommended cloud solutions and for IBM, their PureApplication system both in the cloud and on-premise. In Part 2, I turn my attention to applications and how to make task of developing portal applications more lightweight. The goal of a portal is to combine applications and content at the glass fo [read] Keywords: admin ibm application applications interface java javascript portlet websphere websphere portal xml




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