Interview with Paul Hinz

The ‘Design with Liferay’ Program will Rally the Liferay Community

Jessica Thornsby

JAXenter spoke with Paul Hinz on Liferay’s new AlloyUI framework, and the company’s plan to help users of Sun web platform products, migrate to Liferay.

Liferay made several announcements this week. Not only did the
company launch the
AlloyUI framework
, but it also announced a new ‘Design
with Lifera
y’ program and a portfolio of onsite developer
workshops. All of these announcements were made over Liferay Live,
itself a new addition to planet Liferay. In light of these
announcements, JAXenter caught up with Paul Hinz, to get more
information on Liferay-related goings-on……

JAXenter: You’ve just announced a new
framework, AlloyUI. What unique features does this framework have
to offer?

Paul Hinz: AlloyUI provides a unique and robust
way to develop applications ranging from small scale interactivity
to large scale enterprise grade applications. It does this by
providing the ability for developers to implement components and
widgets using plain HTML5, CSS3 and Javascript, or using
server-side helpers to generate the code for users who prefer not
to have that level of control. Also, being able to run Alloy as
well as almost 200 other components helps, completely from the
cloud, with simply the pasting of a word or two into their app.

It is important to note that Alloy UI components can be used in
stand alone web apps/pages or in portals.

See more at the AlloyUI website.

JAXenter: AlloyUI was developed in
collaboration with Yahoo’s YUI project. How did this influence the
development of AlloyUI?

Paul Hinz: The YUI team was incredibly
influential as they have been developing for very similar concerns
as we have in Liferay, and have been true pioneers in front end
development over the past decade. With their latest version of
YUI3, they wanted to combine simplicity with robustness, and we
wanted to follow in that spirit. Their focus on performance and
stability also greatly influenced the project as well as the desire
to continue to pursue elegant solutions to common problems.

JAXenter: You’ve also recently announced
‘Design With Liferay.’ Can you explain this program to us?

Paul Hinz: Liferay recognizes with massive
consolidation in the Portal, Content, Collaboration market, there
are thousands of customers faced with their current platform facing
End of Feature Life (i.e. they can get future support, but their
current platform may have few or no future feature releases) which
is causing customers to look for migration strategies. ‘Design with
Liferay’ is not just a migration program, recognizing that
customers with existing deployments may want to progressively build
new features and deployments on a new strategic platform, limiting
the existing platform to the existing functionality only. The
‘Design with Liferay’ program will rally the Liferay community,
partners and customers to work collaboratively to provide
strategies, recommendations, utilities, and financial incentives
for smart transition strategies. Today, Liferay has begun with a
First Year Free incentive to help customers with the startup costs
required for adding a new platform to their enterprise. Liferay has
also created a Migration forum on, and Liferay has made
available a new onsite workshop that helps customers build a formal
plan. Liferay will continually expand the resources in this
program. Keep up to date and learn more at the ‘Design with
Liferay’ webpage

JAXenter: ‘Design with Liferay’ targets users
of Sun web platform products. Customers can still work with Oracle
for long term support for their Sun Portal and Sun Web Space Server
implementations — what could they gain from switching to

Paul Hinz: ‘The Design with Liferay’ program
will support customers from multiple platforms. However, the
initial financial incentive and workshop are targeted to support
customers currently using Sun Web Space Server and Sun Portal. Sun
Web Space customers will benefit from Liferay support as the source
for the current implementations – and will gain access to Liferay’s
extensive eco-system and partner community. This migration will
also open these customers to the simple upgrade to Liferay 6 EE
(soon to be GA) which has a broad range of new features and
capabilities, as well as open these customers up to the Liferay
eco-system built on Liferay 6. Sun Portal customers will also
benefit from the transition to Liferay as many of these customers
were positioned for the last few years that their future strategy
would be a transition to Liferay (albeit the Sun version of
Liferay.) Many customers implemented plans to transition.

Given the end of feature life for Sun Web SpaceServer, it would
be best for these customers to instead switch to Liferay. One of
the main reasons Sun decided to EOL Sun Portal and partner with
Liferay, was because Liferay has, out of the box, many of the
features that the Sun customers were demanding. Liferay Portal 6 EE
with such a broad range of new capabilities will be an excellent
choice for their ageing portals, opening them up to being able to
expand the use cases solved by their portal team.

JAXenter: You broadcast both of these
announcements across the Liferay Live channel. What is the purpose
of Liferay Live?

Paul Hinz: Liferay Live demonstrates a
capability many customers were looking for with their Liferay
deployments, which was the ability to do live collaborative or
video broadcasting through a ‘gated’ or ‘role based’ page. Liferay
proves this model with the simple implementation of Liferay Live.
Liferay will leverage this channel to provide regular sessions with
Liferay engineers and business leaders, with Liferay Partners, and
with Liferay community members. Each broadcast will be either
technical or business focused – always free – always concise and
always valuable. We believe these sessions will help deepen the
skill sets for individuals as well as expand the impact and
availability of the Liferay Platform.

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