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Escenic Content Engine: An Open Platform

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    started a topic Escenic Content Engine: An Open Platform

    Escenic Content Engine: An Open Platform

    Escenic Content Engine is designed to be as open, flexible and extensible as possible. Although not open source, it is designed to be an excellent development platform. Below is an overview of Escenic Content Engine as an open platform.

    REST web services

    Escenic Content Engine has an extensive set of REST web services, allowing all customers access to the content, using any REST-capable programming language, with the same features that users of Escenic Content Studio have access to.

    Vizrt uses REST for communication between the different Vizrt solutions, such as Viz Media Engine, and uses a common data format for data exchange. The format is called Viz Data Format (VDF), and is based on Atom.

    The REST web services are based on the Java API, and provide similar functionality.

    The REST web services for Escenic Content Engine are documented in the Integration Guide:

    Java API

    Escenic Content Engine has had an open Java API since 1999, when the slogan was "A platform for innovation". There is extensive documentation available, including full Javadoc.

    The Java API may be used to integrate with other systems, to create custom components, make changes to the standard functionality, etc. Some of the most commonly used features are EventListeners (to perform actions based on events), and TransactionFilters (to add actions based on the editing of content).

    Developers using IDEs such as Jetbrains IntelliJ and Eclipse can set up their development environment to get auto-completion, debug breakpoints, etc and have a very efficient development environment. This is valid for JSP developers as well.

    Java API Javadoc:

    Content API

    Some media companies provides access to the content directly, using APIs. Well-known examples are The New York Times' Open and The Guardian's Open Platform. Similar functionality is built into Escenic Content Engine 5, and is available for all customers.

    All functionality for search, data access, content management, etc in Escenic Content Studio is using the same REST web services that are available to developers and external users.

    This includes permissions and rights management using the same users, groups and roles. It is, for instance, possible to give a group of users access to some content for "crowdsourcing", but prevent the same users from accessing any other content. External user accounts (and groups and roles) may be enabled/disabled when needed.

    See the Integration Guide for details:

    Javascript extension framework for Escenic Content Studio

    Escenic Content Studio has a built-in framework for writing extensions and plug-ins using Javascript. This makes it easy to extend the standard functionality with additional features, or for customization and automation based on customer requirements.

    Example Javascript extensions:
    • Show an overview of all stories (or other content types) that are currently being worked on
    • Custom alerts/alarms based on events
    • Integrations with third-party systems such as statistics.

    There are more examples/ideas for extensions on the Vizrt Forum:

    Demo video: Using the Javascript API:

    Documentation for Javascript extensions:

    Java API for extensions to Escenic Content Studio

    For more advanced extensions of Escenic Content Studio, a Java API is available. One example of such extension is integration with the German spell-check solution Duden:

    For more details, see the Content Studio Plug-in Guide:

    Widget Framework: Open source

    Widget Framework consists of around 70 widgets (or modules, or building blocks), for quickly creating innovative websites. There are widgets for video players, Twitter integration, menus, ads, etc. The widgets provide most, and sometimes all, functionality required to build a website.

    Widget framework is separated into a framework and a presentation layer. The framework is part of Escenic Content Engine, written in Java, and the presentation layer is open source*, and written in JSP, HTML and CSS.

    All widget code is available to customers, who are encouraged to extend and customize the widget framework according to their requirements. By building on the Widget Framework, customers get a lot of ready-to-use functionality, and can focus on adding value in stead of building the basics.

    Widget Framework is distributed as a Maven project, and Vizrt Online maintains a code repository that allows customers to easily combine custom code with officially released code.

    Some recent examples of websites built using Widget Framework:
    The Globe and Mail (Canada):
    O Globo (Brazil):
    Die Welt (Germany):
    TVN Chile (Chile):
    SIC (Portugal):
    SIC Noticias (Portugal):
    SIC Mulher (Portugal):
    Extra (Brazil):

    Widget Framework is included in the license for Escenic Content Engine 5, and all new releases are included in the support & maintenance contract for Escenic Content Engine and may be downloaded from Escenic Technet any time.

    *: Vizrt has decided to make Widget Framework open source, and we are currently working towards this. For now, all customers get all the Widget Framework code (as before) and have access to the official Maven repository for Widget Framework, but it is not yet possible to contribute code. We are planning to make Widget Framework open source this fall. Please contact us for updated information.


    Escenic Content Engine excellent good support for syndication, and can import and export practically any format. XML data can be imported/exported using built-in XSLT, and non-XML formats may be imported/exported by crating a custom Java filter for converting to/from the external formats.

    See the Syndication Reference for more details:

    (For simple use of external external feeds, such as RSS and Twitter, there are widgets available, requiring no programming)

    Professional Services and Training

    In addition to the documentation available on, we provide training for different levels of developers:

    Vizrt also offers professional services for all our online products, as high-level professional support for template development, customized configuration, on-site technical assistance and Internet publishing strategy. More details:

    There are also several tutorial videos available:

    Questions and/or comments?

    Please use the comment form below.
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    Last edited by chrlov; 06-11-2012, 10:45 AM.