Ask Nik: Speerio site features

May 27, 2005


Ask Nik: Speerio site features

Laverne Douglas asks:

I would like to ask some questions about your site and how you implemented some of the features. But to be fair to all your viewers; it would be best answered in your blog. Specifically I would like to now about your store and downloads pages.

The download appears to be your navigator showing hidden pages on your site with roles assigned to allow downloads of items.

The store is unique from my perspective. Is it of your own design?

Nik’s answer:

The Downloads page of the site is indeed the Navigator module being dog-fooded prior to release. Basically, Navigator allows you to create a hierarchy of nodes organized into folders. Each folder can either be public or private. If it’s public, it is visible on all instances of Navigator on a portal. Each folder also has role-based access.

Each node can be one of the following:

URL: Which can be a GET or a POST. The POST can be used to authenticate to other apps for example. It can also be an RSS feed and can open on the right or in a new window.

HTML Content: This can be any content. Optionally, you can have a downloadable file, and optionally you can have a custom license that is presented before download. This is what you see on the Speerio Downloads page. Finally, you can choose to have Page Ratings for the node and also attach the node to multiple, independent RSS feeds through the NewsWire module. Access to the node is role-based and you can choose if the security is for the node AND file attachment, or only for the file attachment.

ASP.Net Control: This can be any ASP.Net control that is capable of being initialized without code-behind. You can specify property values for the control and the control will be initialized with those values. You can also pass any User or Portal property value to the user control. This allows you to easily integrate non-DNN content into DNN.

It has some other bells and whistles such as DNN Help integration, drag and drop node ordering, etc.

The Navigator module will be available as a free Community Edition and also as a Pro Edition. The Community Edition will have basic URL and HTML hierarchical content display. The pro version will have everything described above. The DNN 2.x version is being dog-fooded on my site, and the DNN 3.x version is doing that on

The store is the standard SnowCovered Portal Store offering. I modified it (not much actually…mostly CSS and graphics) to be more consistent with the Speerio brand. The only significant enhancement I made is to add a more robust PayPal payment processor that has SMS notification. When an order comes through, I get a text message on my mobile and then when the customer downloads the file, I get another text message. If more than 15 mins. elapse between the two, I know there is a problem and can pro-actively contact the customer and resolve the problem.



Founder NftyDreams; founder Decentology; co-founder DNN Software; educator; Open Source proponent; Microsoft MVP; tech geek; creative thinker; husband; dad. Personal blog: Twitter: @techbubble
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