Extension Updates

Supporting 3.0 Part 2 - Frontend Experience

We can spend all day working to improve the admin interface and create a better user experience for our administrators.  But, most folks who visit our sites won't be doing so to work in the admin area.  They are every day visitors downloading extensions, reading blog posts, and casually surfing the net.  So it is just as important to create a good user interface for your site's front end as well as the backend.  The line for comments about this site starts just around the corner...

Improved Frontend Experience

Introducing Bootstrap into the core I think has improved the frontend experience vastly.  We can gloat about all the responsive features and improved markup all day long, but I think it just looks better, and for someone like me who isn't very design gifted, it makes it easier to design extensions to fit into a site much better.

Podcast Manager & Tweet Display Back's Frontend

Podcast Manager is primarily for use with iTunes and integrating individual podcasts into articles.  But that's not all.  At the request of a few folks, I added a front-end view similar to one of the category views that lists all of the podcasts in a feed and can optionally display the media player with them as well (the screenshot doesn't show this, there's a JavaScript issue I need to troubleshoot in 3.0 right now).  Since this view uses elements found in the core components, I think it is an accurate display of what you'll find in the front end, and for the most part, is a simple layout and is Bootstrap friendly (I did mention this same markup is used for 2.5 as well, right?  ;-) ).

Tweet Display Back, on the other hand, has had a brand new template written just for Bootstrap, aptly named Bootstrap.  Instead of doing most of the style work myself, I hand it over to the Bootstrap framework.  So, this template will quickly plug into your site using its existing styles, but still retains all of the class names used across the other templates to quickly customize the style even further if you so desire.

{artsexylightbox path="images/frontend" thumbnailPath="images/frontend/thumbs"}{/artsexylightbox}

Coming Soon - The Code

At some point in this series, I'll start sharing code tips for being compatible between 2.5 and 3.0.  The avenue of approach I'm taking probably won't work for all developers, but I think the way I'm moving forward gives me the simplest support solutions while still allowing me to support both versions of Joomla! for a good amount of time.