[Deep dive] A Simple ActiveView example
As I haven’t written a blog for a while, I thought I would do something a bit different with this one. I’m going to create a useful example of an ActiveView override that any customer can deploy in their own system (classic view only). Using the ActiveView product, I’m going to create a simple but useful customization for any Content Server “classic” user interface that can be done with a single ActiveView.
As of CS 16, every customer has ActiveView on their system. For customers who are still actively using Content Server classic UI, the ActiveView module can provide many useful enhancements or changes to the classic UI. This blog will share one particular facet of the ActiveView functionality. To get more general information about ActiveView, our earlier ActiveView beginners guide blog provides some basics. Additionally, we at Ravenblack would be happy to provide additional consultancy or training for ActiveView, or WebReports, whether on the classic UI or SmartView.
Case study: Creating a Favorites Menu
One useful way to easily access commonly used items on Content Server is to use the favorites feature. Any object can become a favorite simply by selecting “Add To Favorites”. The list of favorites is then accessible by selecting Favorites from the Personal menu. Unfortunately, this option is usually buried in a huge list of items on the personal menu, and selecting it takes you to another screen where you can then choose a Favorite.
This customization creates a separate Favorites Menu that appears on the Top Menu to the right of the Personal menu. Any option selected from this Favorites menu is immediately executed without going to an intermediate screen. Here is an example:
We renamed favorites to “My Favorites”. Any title could have been used, for example Quick Links etc.
We’ve also removed the Personal Menu as an example of the flexibility of ActiveView; however, a more useful refinement might be to leave the Personal menu but remove options that are not useful. This can actually be done on a per-group basis or based on privileges, folder location, attributes, etc. etc.
All of the user’s favorites appear at the top (dynamically created) in this example, but we also added a section with fixed links that might be appropriate to a particular department. This could also be contextually managed so different users had different static menu options.
At the very bottom of the menu options, we added a link to allow the user to go to the original favorites page.
How did we build it?
Believe it or not, this fairly useful customization did not require any OScript customization or any development on the browser client. There are basically two steps to creating a customization like this:
Create an ActiveView using the “Top Menu” sample template from the list of defaults. Configure this template to meet your requirements in terms of the contents and positioning of the menu and options. Note, you can also embed some logic if you want to vary these options according to user context.
Create an Override. This could be via a folder/ActiveView tab or via an ActiveView admin page (via admin.index). The scope of this useful feature can be surgically controlled or globally available. Even if it is globally available, you can define a multitude of rules (conditions) to govern when it appears.
There is no number 3 – as soon as you save the override, the new feature is working!
The various scoping flexibilities of ActiveView overrides are explained in some depth in our previous blog here.
The code for this ActiveView is shown below but for a more detailed explanation of this customization you view the video ActiveView Case Study - deep dive.
I hope you enjoyed this example and we’d welcome your suggestions on other quick examples we could do in future blogs.