14. September 2015|Technologie

New Features:

In this version of the Dev-News we will give you a short introduction to our new features.

1. XML Importer

Previously the only way to export item data from the store to FINDOLOGIC was a CSV export. This format was prone to formatting and encoding errors. The new preferred export format is based on XML with a well-defined schema.

The main advantages are:
  • Most CSV errors are impossible with XML: no more accidentally using commas instead of tabs to separate the columns, no more messing up the encoding of the attributes column. The XML is either valid or not, and there are lots of online XML validators to make sure your export is OK.
  • Writing an export is a lot easier: mostly due to the validation, but every programming language in the world has great support for writing XML; no more worrying about encoding or empty CSV columns, your XML library will do the right thing
  • Every value can be set per customer: most of all FINDOLOGIC finally supports different prices for different customers, but you can overwrite any value; for example use different SKUs and EANs depending on the country, link to a localized product page or display a censored pic for minors

2. Responsive Template: an optimized user experience on any device

Another new foundation we built. In this case the foundation is actually called Foundation, a great CSS framework for responsive websites.

The highlights are:
  • Grid layout: foundation divides the screen into rows and columns, so every element on the page is automatically aligned to this invisible grid. This ensures a smooth and consistent layout.
  • Fully responsive: with Foundation, it’s easy to hide or show elements depending on the screen size, for example display all filter values on desktop, but hide them on mobile. The grid is also responsive so you can display 2 items per row on mobile and 4 on desktop.
  • Totally customizable: the CSS is compiled (it’s actually called SCSS) and uses variables, almost like a real programming language. This allows the person integrating FINDOLOGIC to change the main color of the template to match the main color of the store by changing just one line, every template element that uses this color will then use the new color. With traditional CSS you would have to change the color in lots of places. Similarly, you can also make the grid display more items per row, make the filter columns wider or put the filter in the right sidebar instead of the left, by just changing a few variables.
Adler-Desktop

example: desktop view

 

Adler-Smartphone

example: smartphone view

 

3. CDN: to reach better performance and availability

As Direct Integration is a JavaScript solution, FINDOLOGIC is entirely dependent on the JavaScript files being highly available. In order to ensure the required availability and speed the files are now being served from a CDN. The CDN caches the files, so they are still served even if the FINDOLOGIC infrastructure is unavailable. Additionally, the CDN has many servers around the world (image: CDN server network) so the files are always served from the server being geographically closest to the user. This is especially important for stores and users outside of Europe which can greatly benefit from these advantages. The second image illustrated how the load times decreased from around 1s to 0.2s.

CDN-map

CDN server network

 

Monitoring-CDN

load time: monitoring (load time/day)