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Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 10:38 am
by delirii

Could you please give some information about the project status ? What are you working on ? What's in the pipe ?


Re: Status

Posted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:15 am
by jefffischer
We are definitely in active development on the platform. We're currently working towards our 1.5 release. One of the main, great new features will be an entirely re-worked administrative platform.

1) We're basing the administrative platform on GWT/SmartGWT. This is a rich client experience through ordinary web browsers that provides a host of really great widgets for e-commerce related admin activities. One of the really nice things about this library is that the interface scales seamlessly to really large catalogs with its built-in dispensation for data paging (the components will intelligently grab new records from the database as the user scrolls through a list, for example). This alleviates a lot of the worry of bogging down these browser-based user interfaces with product lists, and the like. GWT is also a great approach for development shops that already have a Java competency, since dealing with GWT does not require the developer to mess with Javascript and HTML.

2) We're designing the admin platform with the same extensibility themes that we already have baked into the Broadleaf Commerce platform at large. This means that Broadleaf users will be able to extend the admin platform using the same object oriented techniques for extension/override that they already enjoy with the core platform. The approach plays out like this:
a) Extending the Broadleaf domain with simple properties requires absolutely no change to the admin interface. The admin platform will automagically recognize the entity extensions and add the new properties to the administrative fields in the UI. In fact, using our annotations, you can define custom grouping and ordering in your entities that effect the presentation in the UI.
b) To administer more complex structures in your extended entities (List and Map structures), the admin platform provides pre-built datasources that you can configure to point at your complex structures and bind to any number of SmartGWT widgets. Simply extend one of our presentation layer classes and add in your defined widget. It's actually quite simple.
c) And since the whole admin platform is entirely modular, if you want to go completely off the range and add in your own entirely new admin pages, you can do that too. Just register a view and presenter class. Of course the pre-built Broadleaf datasources are available to you, but you can also register your own persistence mechanisms at the server side using the full power of Spring and Hibernate.

3) We also understand that business users have the need to make catalog adjustments, enter promotions, etc... in a non-destructive way so that they can preview those changes without impacting the users of the site. For this reason, we are also adding in support for change sets. With change sets, admin users will be able to make changes that only they can see (both in the admin UI and in a special site "preview" mode). Only at the configured time, will these changes be made visible to the public.

Everything that I mention above will continue to be part of our open source offering (Apache 2 license).

You can take a high-level look at our roadmap at the following location: ... dmap-panel

Re: Status

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:29 am
by delirii
Thank you for this update.

(Smart)GWT seems to be a good choice for the administrative platform. That's good news !
Regarding some deeper modifications, do you consider Apache Solr as the main index solution in a (near) future ?

Re: Status

Posted: Mon Jan 17, 2011 1:16 pm
by jefffischer
Solr is definitely on our roadmap, but it will likely drop in later this year. We are completely focused at the moment on implementing the new admin functionality and then completing our web service approach.