The Phoenix ExtJS 4 Challenge

Categories: Development Created by Rens Admiraal

Last months we've spoken a lot about ExtJS 4. At first especially about the delays of the actual release. Secondly because of the great impression<link http: blog ext-js-4-developer-preview>Sencha's blog posts made before the release. And now especially about the hard times caused by migrating the Phoenix user interface to ExtJS 4.

So, where are we now? About 2 or 3 weeks ago we started to go through all the JavaScript code, from top to bottom, and module by module. It's quite a lot of work since Phoenix is build on a sophisticated JavaScript architecture, and Sencha changed a lot! Really a lot ... Challenges all over, but currently we are really close to a 100% working Phoenix backend on ExtJS 4! Yeah, we know, in the beginning it won't look as great as it did before, but with some CSS tuning after the JavaScript migration… will the userinterface be as shiny as it was before! Or even better...Minutes after ExtJS 4 became available for download we did some tests.This was just to get a feeling about the migration – and soon we discovered it wouldn't be as simple as we hoped. We really need many of the great new features, like for example the class model, cleaner HTML output and SASS styling for ExtJS 4 components. On ExtJS 3 it didn't make sense to create major new features, and put a lot of effort in the customization of components using CSS and extending parts of ExtJS when we new something better was coming soon, and knowing we would have to do a lot of work again just in a few months of time.

And most importantly, we're ready to add new functionality to the user interface, as soon as the migration is complete. We're really looking forward to that!

Rens on behalf of the TYPO3 5.0 UI Team