SIG's Blog

Technology, internet, rants, raves.

Eric Swanzey
Eric Swanzey
Eric Swanzey's Blog

Review of Mandeeps Modules

If you're not familiar with Mandeeps, they are a veteran DotNetNuke developer and DotNetNuke Marketplace module vendor who is consistently in the Top 10 listings. Mandeeps offers modules such as LiveTabs, LiveAccordian, LiveWrapper, LiveGallery, LiveImages, and LiveRotator that enhance the presentation and display of content. They also offers LiveArticles, LiveBlog and LiveContent that fall more into the content authoring or content publishing category. We've been using Mandeeps modules for years, and have found them to be an essential part of any site. Here's why they should be a must have for your next DotNetNuke project.

DNN Essentials

Deceptively simple, technically sophisticated, and extremely well designed.

It's not long after using any of Mandeeps modules that you begin to notice the attention to detail - it is evident everywhere you look. Settings are intuitively arranged and easy to understand. Multiple instances of the module run conflict free on a page; The simple requirement of adding tags to a blog entry is performed in a very elegant way; Performing edit tasks like creating or reordering tabs is ultra responsive in the browser.

Quality can be seen in the often overlooked tooltips. Many developers consider these an afterthought, and it's not uncommon to see grammattical errors and redundant content. To the end users - clients? peers? - who then notice this, their impression is probably one of unprofessionalism and a lack of attention to detail that can lead to questioning the quality of the underlying code. But in Mandeeps modules, even the tooltips have been given careful attention.

The module documentation is excellent - available online, and typically updated concurrently with each release. But Mandeeps doesn't stop there - the online documentation is supplemented with narrated screencast videos at every turn.

A suite approach.

If you are familiar with the mechanics and options for one of Mandeeps modules such as LiveTabs, you're well on your way to understanding others such as LiveAccordian. But that is only the beginning. Module theme and template structures share similarities among the suite members, so altering what actually returns to the browser becomes quick and painless no matter which module you are working with. And there's much to be said for having a consistent experience for the content and site administrators. Module tags and module tokens really open up the possibilities, providing the ability to wrap module content and functionality within other modules, not just Mandeeps modules!

Well integrated to DotNetNuke.

The modules are search engine friendly, and can also be included within native DNN search results. But Mandeeps doesn't stop there - when a LiveTab's tab is indexed, for example, the search results will include a link that opens the correct tab on the correct page and will scroll the tab into view on the browser. 

The display tokens open up the ability to do some artful module recombinations. As an example, a LiveTab instance can be embedded into a LiveBlog template, resulting in a Summary / Detail / Author tabbed view for each blog post. Or an instance of LiveAccordian can be embedded into the flow of content coming from an HTML module. The possibilities are endless.

Into the Future.

With the latest releases of LiveTabs and LiveAccordian, the newest breed of the "v4" series of modules, you can begin to see some exciting features that echo the longer term strategy - establishing the DNN Essentials collection as a premiere suite of modules that perform at a very high level and deserve to be on anyone's short list of required modules for a successful web site initiative.

And with the new display token feature, along with the advanced tagging, the modules come tantalizingly close to fulfilling many of the unique requirements for building out a dedicated mobile site alongside your DotNetNuke full site. Since many of the modules in the suite support the ability to embed content and functionality from other modules located elsewhere on the site, or from other portals within the same installation, it becomes trivial to build out companion content that can easily be controlled from a central resource point.

Hats off to a set of modules that just keep getting better and better.

DNN Essentials

Comment (0)

Comments are closed.