For almost 10 years I am struggling with the portal theme editor. My expertise is building a userfriendly portal for endusers, integrating information with transactions and corporate styleguides. Developing custom frameworks and adjusting portal themes with the portal theme editor is a daily business and in my opinion a must have for every mid-large scale organisation. It was always hard to find the correct elements in the theme editor. Recent project I did a 7.3 implementation and new elements in the theme editor didn't work properly. Unzipping the theme, replacing images, changing properties files (this is NOT supported!) and searching for ur.designpart and ls.designpart for the correct classes is quite hard and a risky business. As an example:
Homepage with KM content and shortcuts to tasks (Facility domain)
Landing page with easy navigation.
A webdynpro ABAP application in the same style.
To accomplish this, F12 is my best friend (Debugger in browser).
At SAP Teched Madrid last year I have been asked by Thomas Hensel to join a feedback session for the upcoming theme editor. Since I joined the Portal 7.3 beta program also, I said without any doubts I'd love to help.
Two day workshop - New UI theme designer in SAP Netweaver scenarios
So last week I joined the workshop. Thanks to Bertram Ganz and many, many die hard specialists from Walldorf we had a superb workshop of the new stand-alone theme editor for all technologies.
We had handson sessions for theming in NWBC, ABAP/FPM, SAPUI5, Portal and cross theming. Also maintenance was presented.
A lot of feedback has been given and priorities have been given from the participants. Maybe information will be posted in a later stage.
Findings in general:
+ You can add your own html applications and preview them in the preview pane. On the righthand side you can change the properties in Quick (really easy), Expert (css classes - power users) and CSS mode (hardcore branding);
+ Theming is across different technologies in one tool;
+ LESS support;
+ Fast compilation and results - instead of waiting a couple of minutes in the current theme editor;
For more information: http://help.sap.com/nw-uiaddon > UI-Addon 1.0 SP04 - release notes - section 3
Everything is ofcourse subject to change, the tool is not released yet so keep an eye on it. If you use theming, this will be your next step into easier theming / branding.
Noel Hendrikx - SAP Portal consultant @ Peppie Portals.
Specialized in Corporate branding SAP Portal / Adobe Interactive Forms.