Creating a Navigation Menu With the liferay-ui:icon-list Tag

The navigation for your site can have a huge impact on how people interact with it. Poorly designed navigation can ruin even the best of content, causing people to run screaming from your site to warn the other villagers of the monster you created. This is an exaggeration of course, but the point is that your site’s navigation should be taken seriously.

One important aspect of design is how your navigation is organized. The placement and layout of your site’s navigation can play a big part in how your site is perceived. Liferay UI provides a easy to use tag that allows you to create a list-style navigation with ease: liferay-ui:icon-list. In fact, Liferay’s Sign In portlet makes use of this tag for its navigation:

icon-list-02.png

Figure 1: Liferay’s Sign In portlet uses a Liferay UI icon list.

As its name suggests, the liferay-ui:icon-list tag allows you to create a navigation menu from a list of icons. Liferay UI also provides the liferay-ui:icon-menu tag for a pop-up menu navigation. You can read more about this tag here.

This tutorial covers how to use the liferay-ui:icon-list tag to create a list-style navigation menu. By the end of this tutorial you should be able to keep the torch carrying mob at bay, at least when it comes to the navigation of your apps.

Setting Up the liferay-ui:icon-list Tag

The example in this tutorial shows how to add and use the liferay-ui:icon-list tag in the view.jsp of a portlet by using the following steps:

  • Step 1: Reference the liferay-ui Taglib.
  • Step 2: Add the liferay-ui:icon-list Tags in the View JSP.
  • Step 3: Insert and Configure the liferay-ui:icon Tags inside of the liferay-ui:icon-list Tags.

Go through each of these steps to get your navigation going!

Step 1: Reference the liferay-ui Taglib

  1. Open the view.jsp of your portlet. Create one if it doesn’t already exist.

  2. Add this directive to reference the liferay-ui taglib:

    <%@ taglib uri="http://liferay.com/tld/ui" prefix="liferay-ui" %>
    

You can now use Liferay UI tags in your portlet! Next, you’ll add the liferay-ui:icon-list tag to your portlet. It sounds like the unruly mob is already starting to head back to the village!

Step 2: Add the liferay-ui:icon-list Tags in the View JSP

Next, add the liferay-ui:icon-list tags to the bottom of your portlet’s view.jsp. The example here shows these tags:

    <liferay-ui:icon-list>

    </liferay-ui:icon-list>

In the next step, you’ll place all the icons in your list inside the tags you just added.

Step 3: Insert and Configure the liferay-ui:icon Tags inside of the liferay-ui:icon-list Tags

Still inside the view.jsp, nest the liferay-ui:icon tags inside the liferay-ui:icon-list tags. There are a few attributes for the liferay-ui:icon tag that you should note. One such attribute is image. The image attribute tells Liferay what image to use for the icon. For example, if the value of image is "status_online", then Liferay uses its default icon for a user that is online. The message attribute defines the text to use alongside the icon. For example, if you set the value of message to "Sign In", that text appears next to the icon. Finally, the url attribute defines the URL to go to when the icon is clicked. Here’s an example of an icon list with three icons that use these attributes:

    <liferay-ui:icon-list>
        <liferay-ui:icon image="status_online" message="Sign In" url="www.liferay.com"/>
        <liferay-ui:icon image="edit" message="edit" url="www.liferay.com"/>
        <liferay-ui:icon image="add_article" message="Add Article" url="www.liferay.com"/>
    </liferay-ui:icon-list>

Of course, you can add as many icons as you need to your list. The figure here shows the icon list created by the above code:

icon-list-01.png

Figure 2: An icon list with three icons.

There you have it! You can rest easy now, knowing that the villagers will enjoy your site’s navigation.

Related Topics

User Interfaces with AlloyUI

Themes and Layout Templates

Application Display Templates

Customizing Liferay Portal with Hooks

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