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Announcing Custom Widgets Support

From the very start, we’ve always wanted Yodeck to be simple and easy to use.

Combined with the Raspberry Pi (that’s our main hardware platform), Yodeck really brings digital signage technology to everyone all over the world.

On the other hand, we have some big customers on board. Some with hundreds, others with thousands, of screens. And they need customization for their projects. That’s why we provide everyone with the option to build their own Custom Widgets.

What’s supported

Right now, we only support HTML5-based Custom Widgets. These are extremely easy to create. To help out developers, we have released most of our existing Widgets, so that you can build on top of them. You can find the complete documentation here , along with a tutorial and Widget samples.

In a nutshell

Widgets are ZIP files that contain HTML. You can dial in any HTML-related asset, like JS, CSS or image files. The ZIP package is delivered to your Players, extracted, and the main HTML file of the Widget is loaded. So, why call them “Widgets” instead of “HTML Uploads” or something similar?

Custom Widgets have some special “abilities”

One is that they run free of cross-origin restrictions.

That is, their code can make AJAX requests to any website or web service, on any server. That is something you can’t get from a webpage. So, you can create a Custom Widget that shows currency exchange rates, using your desired design, but pulls up actual rates from any website online.

The second special “ability” is playback integration.

Widgets are notified by our playback engine for the different stages of their execution. So, they get to use hooks for being shown, hidden or stopped. This enables developer to create Widgets that start their operation exactly when needed and not earlier, to make sure their content is displayed correctly.

The final “ability” is that Widget have arguments

That is, configuration parameters that allow an end-user to modify their style or behavior right within the Yodeck Portal itself.
It is in our long-term plans to provide some sort of publishing mechanism, so that users can publish their Widgets and make them available for anyone to use.
We can’t wait to see what you will be doing with Custom Widgets!

Need more help? Check our development guide.

Happy coding!

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Announcing Custom Widgets Support was last modified: October 8th, 2020 by Vangelis Mihalopoulos

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