Making Sections editable

Version: 1.0.0

Summary

  1. Introduction to Sections (dev)
  2. First modification and environment selection
  3. Step-by-step: Modifying and testing a section

Introduction to Sections (dev)

A Section represents a configurable UI element for a deco Site. Now, it is necessary to understand what this represents for a developer.

A Section is a tsx code inside the sections folder. Also, a Section:

  • is a Preact component
  • has serializable properties
  • exports its properties type

A Preact component is a function exported by default (export default) that receives properties, returns JSX, and is invoked on each rendering of the defined element. As an example, open the sections/Hero.tsx file from the ecommerce template in VSCode. This file is also accessible on the deco GitHub.

The code of this element is written in HTML with JS, as shown in the example below.

import type { ImageWidget } from "apps/admin/widgets.ts";

/** @title {{{title}}} - {{{href}}} */
export interface Link {
  title: string;
  href: string;
}

export interface Props {
  logo?: ImageWidget;
  title?: string;
  /** @format textarea */
  headline?: string;
  links?: Array<Link>;
}

export default function Hero({
  title = "deco.cx",
  logo = "/logo.svg",
  headline =
    "The digital experience platform that combines performance and personalization for the ultimate sales results.",
  links = [
    { title: "Official website", "href": "https://deco.cx/" },
    { title: "Linkedin", "href": "https://www.linkedin.com/company/deco-cx/" },
    { title: "Discord", "href": "https://deco.cx/discord" },
  ],
}: Props) {
  return (
    <header class="lg:container mx-8 md:mx-16 lg:mx-auto mt-8 md:mt-12 mb-28 text-xl md:text-base">
      <div class="mb-10 md:mb-20">
        <img
          class="object-cover w-20"
          src={logo}
          alt={title}
        />
      </div>
      <div class="font-bold text-3xl lg:text-6xl leading-tight lg:leading-none xl:w-5/6">
        {headline}
      </div>
      {!!links?.length && (
        <ul class="mt-8 flex flex-col md:flex-row gap-2 md:gap-4">
          {links.map(({ href, title }) => (
            <li>
              <a target="_blank" href={href} aria-label={title} class="link">
                {title}
              </a>
            </li>
          ))}
        </ul>
      )}
    </header>
  );
}

Observe the exported types in this file. These same types are accessible in the Admin when creating an Hero block. In the Admin, select the Sections, the Hero block, and choose the option to create a block to view the same properties in an editing form.

Create Block

Block properties are identical to those found in the Admin form.

/** @title {{{title}}} - {{{href}}} */
export interface Link {
  title: string;
  href: string;
}

export interface Props {
  logo?: ImageWidget;
  title?: string;
  /** @format textarea */
  headline?: string;
  links?: Array<Link>;
}

Section and its properties types

Editing properties of the Hero Section

A deco project uses the type of a component's properties to automatically generate the block editing form in the Admin. In the following figure, you can see how the Admin knows the information to be placed in the form. To do this, the Admin contacts the live Site to retrieve the property data of the Sections in that project. On the other hand, the code on a Site comes from GitHub, the same one the developer uses.

Structure of Site data access

First modification and environment selection

Run the project locally (deno task start) and modify the code of the Hero to receive a new optional property, the highlight of a link. To do this, modify the Link type and the JSX code of the component, remembering to save the file after the modification.

import type { ImageWidget } from "apps/admin/widgets.ts";

/** @title {{{title}}} - {{{href}}} */
export interface Link {
  title: string;
  href: string;
  highlight?: boolean;
}

export interface Props {
  logo?: ImageWidget;
  title?: string;
  /** @format textarea */
  headline?: string;
  links?: Array<Link>;
}

export default function Hero({
  title = "deco.cx",
  logo = "/logo.svg",
  headline =
    "The digital experience platform that combines performance and personalization for the ultimate sales results.",
  links = [
    { title: "Official website", "href": "https://deco.cx/" },
    { title: "Linkedin", "href": "https://www.linkedin.com/company/deco-cx/" },
    { title: "Discord", "href": "https://deco.cx/discord" },
  ],
}: Props) {
  return (
    <header class="lg:container mx-8 md:mx-16 lg:mx-auto mt-8 md:mt-12 mb-28 text-xl md:text-base">
      <div class="mb-10 md:mb-20">
        <img
          class="object-cover w-20"
          src={logo}
          alt={title}
        />
      </div>
      <div class="font-bold text-2xl lg:text-6xl leading-tight lg:leading-none xl:w-5/6">
        {headline}
      </div>
      {!!links?.length && (
        <ul class="mt-8 flex flex-col md:flex-row gap-2 md:gap-4">
          {links.map(({ href, title, highlight }) => (
            <a href={href} aria-label={title}>
              <li class={`${highlight ? "font-black" : ""}`}>{title}</li>
            </a>
          ))}
        </ul>
      )}
    </header>
  );
}

Altering the Link type and JSX with the new highlight property

When making this modification locally, it does not affect or impact the live Site. However, with the project running locally (deno task start), it is possible to see this modification in the Admin itself. For this, it is important to go to the environment selector and choose localhost:8000 as the reference.

Changing the environment

By pointing to localhost, the admin now queries the locally running version to detect the available properties and sections.

To allow others to see the modification, it is necessary to commit and push the changes. The main branch contains the code that is displayed on the default domain of the Site, but it is possible to view other branches of the repository by selecting the desired branch in the environment selector.

Step-by-step: Modifying and testing a section

In summary, to test modifications on the Section Hero.tsx:

  1. Run deno task start in the Terminal. (You don't need to run it again if it's already running)

  2. Make local modifications to the file sections/Hero.tsx.

  3. Access the Admin of deco.cx, select your Site, and go to the Sections.

  4. Make sure that localhost:8000 is selected in the Environment Selector in the upper-right corner of the page.

  5. Look for Hero among the blocks.

  6. Ready to go! Now you can configure props for that Section and see how it is being rendered. The preview will automatically update if you modify the code of the Section locally.

Remember to save your file. If there are any typing or transformation errors, they will be signaled in the command line or in VSCode. When you are comfortable with the modifications, submit the modified file to the GitHub repository.

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