News Blog: WordPress & Joomla Extensions
Presenting your Brand on Joomla! with Layer Slideshow
There are many ways to present information about your brand or enterprise. Recently we took a look at tables as one medium to present figures and statistical data on Joomla! Tables are not a catch-all solution, however; in some cases, numbers may need to take the backseat in favor of better presentation. JoomUnited’s solution is the newly-revamped Layer Slideshow component for Joomla!
Layer Slideshow is a product that allows you to create slideshows for your blog from the comfort of your backend without worrying about how to import presentations into your Joomla! website. If you have been looking for such a solution, then the latest major release has come just in time, and we are here to give you a tour of its novelties.
Layer Slideshow’s Material Design Facelift
Like many of JoomUnited’s extensions, the latest major release of Layer Slideshow is refreshing its look by adopting the popular material design both in the installer and in the actual component. The intuition behind this new look is a revamped workspace with little clutter and few distractions to improve your workflow and increase your productivity.
Layer Slideshow 2.0’s changes go beyond the cosmetics. More changes await in the layers and slides departments, permitting you to cement your brand’s style across the board. To get started, visit the Layer Slideshow component page to create a slideshow.
The slideshow can be customized right away thanks to the new settings unique to each slideshow. From this window, you can choose to make your slideshow responsive, define its size, and change the navigation buttons’ behavior and their appearance. Naturally, once you are done, just click on the save button to confirm your changes.
Of Slides and Groups
As you can probably guess, slides are at the core of Layer Slideshow. Layers are to slides what slides are to slideshows. More specifically, slides are made up of groups of layers, which in turn represent individual components, such as textual labels and pictures. The sidebar is the central hub in Layer Slideshow, and the place where most of the action starts, allowing you to create layers and groups.
Beyond layers, the sidebar lets you toy with other settings. Chief among them is the self-explanatory slide background, but also transitions. Before diving into how you can edit slides and layers, we will take a look at groups.
The main purpose of groups is to aggregate similar layers. Groups can be created from the sidebar, and Joomla! users can rename or delete them simply by hovering them. Similarly, slides can be created in a jiffy from the add new slide button just above the sidebar.
The existing slides are presented as tabs that can be used to navigate across your slideshow. These tabs can also be used to manage the slides themselves; upon hovering, you can rename or delete the slide with a single click. So far, the slideshow is still barebones, though. How do you fill it up?
Boosting Layers in Layer Slideshow
Layers make the wheels of our Joomla! extension turn. Thus, it should come as no surprise that they are one of the focal points in the latest release of Layer Slideshow. The latest update brings new functionality to create and modify different kinds of layers.
In general, layers abstract different kinds of content, including images and text. Layers can be created from the sidebar, and the resulting settings window allows you to choose a name, a group and the type of layer. Initially, there is no actual information in the layer because its creation is a two-step process.
Once you create a layer, the second step is to choose its content and behavior. The textual layer’s content, for example, can be edited simply by clicking on the text within the slide. In contrast with text, changing the content of other layers, such as images and videos, has a slightly different workflow.
When hovering over layers in the sidebar, you will notice three buttons - the iconic pencil, copy and deletion action buttons. The last two buttons are self-descriptive, allowing you to duplicate and remove a layer respectively. The pencil button represents editing, and it is where all the behavior resides, permitting you to modify layers and their behaviors.
Keener-eyed Joomla! users will likely have noticed a new class of content when creating layers - the video. A new addition to Layer Slideshow, videos allow you to place rich content in your slideshow with minimal effort. What is more, these videos can be embedded from different sources, including Vimeo and YouTube.
Hence, in the case of videos, for instance, you can define the content when editing the layer. Underneath the layer content tab, you can specify a link to a video, and toy around with the transitions.
The transitions themselves have also been overhauled in Layer Slideshow 2.0, allowing you to further customize your presentations. From the layer transition tab, Layer Slideshow presents different configurations that define how a transition will start and stop. And if you cannot make up your mind, a preview of each transition is available when hovering over each option.
Now that you have created a layer, you can move it around by drag-and-dropping in the slide view. Some additional functionality exists for different layers - for example, images can be resized, and text layers can be edited from the slide itself.
Just below the slide, the preview all slides button offers a handy, instant peek at the final slideshow so you never have to wander blindly when designing slideshows. Once finished, save the presentation from the toolbar, and you are ready to insert it into any article or page editor.
It takes more than numbers to describe your brand. Layer Slideshow combines multimedia with flexible design options to let you showcase the best of your brand’s offering. We do not have to convince you of its benefits though - go experiment, and present your brand on Joomla!