Social rendering

HCL Digital Experience Portal page editors can use social rendering to feature social data that is hosted on a remote HCL Connections server in the context of portal pages.

Page editors can create web content items that represent lists of social objects and detail views for individual social objects. A list of social objects shows the results of a specific query for social data from HCL Connections. For example, the list can consist of specific blog posts, files, or discussion topics. A detail view shows detailed information about a specific social object.

Page editors can control the visual appearance of the social data that is displayed on your portal pages. They do so by selecting the formatting component of choice from a predefined, yet extensible set of formatting components. These components are also called appearance components.

Site designers create the appearance components by using the HCL Web Content Manager Authoring portlet. They define them in a style that is consistent with your portal pages. The appearance component concept provides a clear separation between the following two roles:
  • Website designers who define the corporate appearance of your website and deliver the appearance components to your page editors
  • Page editors who build your portal pages by assembling the appropriate set of components and content to a meaningful context for your site visitors.
With this concept, your page editors do not need to know the markup generation and CSS styling details of the appearance components. Even without that knowledge they can still choose from a rich, but consistent set of visual designs for your social data.

To control the social data that is displayed on your portal pages, your page editors use inline editing on the underlying social rendering content items. The social rendering content items are also referred to as view definitions. They combine both the selection logic that defines which social objects are displayed and the appearance component selection that controls the visual representation of the data. For example, they can show the most recent blog entries that are created in the HCL Connections community to which the current page is associated. Page editors can select individual view definitions from a set of predefined view definitions and drop them onto portal pages. When a page editor drops a view definition onto a portal page, the view definition is copied to the page. The page editor can then modify it independently of other view definitions on the same page or other pages.

As a result, with social rendering the social data displayed on your portal pages is fully controlled by Web Content Manager. The appearance components define the visual appearance by which the social data is rendered on the page. The view definition content items define which data is selected and which appearance component is used to visualize the data. This way, you control the social data that is rendered on your portal pages in the same way as other web content. Social rendering includes support for projects, versioning, workflows, and syndication.

Social rendering provides you the following components:
  • The following set of view definitions for social lists:
    • List of Blog Posts
    • List of Communities
    • List of Community Events
    • List of Community Forum Topics
    • List of Community Blog Posts
    • List of Community Content
    • List of Community Files
    • List of Files
    • List of Forum Topics
    • List of People
  • A view definition for forum topic details named Forum Topic Details
  • Two appearance components for visualizing the social lists in two different ways:
    Simple:
    A condensed simple list design
    Comprehensive:
    A comprehensive list design
  • Two appearance components for visualizing the details of an individual forum topic:
    Forum Topic Details:
    An appearance component for visualizing the detailed information about the topic itself
    Replies
    An appearance component for visualizing the nested thread of replies for the forum topic.
  • A set of DDC list-rendering profiles. You can use them to extend social rendering. They are based on the HCL Digital Data Connector (DDC) for HCL Portal.
You can use these view definitions and appearance components as starting points for creating your own solution. Do not modify the view definitions and appearance components that HCL Portal provides, but copy them and modify the copies.

To use social rendering, you need to set up your HCL Portal for integration with HCL Connections.