Learn Spindrift Site Builder with Lego

After delivering the first full day of Spindrift Site Builder® training on a customer’s site, I often see a contagious yawn spread across the room, heads resting in hands and a slightly vacant look in the eyes of the trainees. Those who are new to ATG may not find it a very intuitive system and too much information in one go is bound to leave anyone feeling mentally drained.

The majority of our Site Builder customers have a limited period of time to get their business users up to speed before a pending release, so training is a necessary evil. However, I may have discovered the secret ingredient to making it easier and more interactive…just add Lego!

‘Learn Spindrift Site Builder with Lego’ enables users to build a page from scratch by allowing them to choose from a list of pre-defined grids, blocks and tiles. A grid defines the basic layout of a page and within each block; users can select their content data and style its appearance using a tile. This method of asset driven architecture lends itself well to being portrayed with the aid of Lego bricks.

I initially went through a high-level overview of Site Builder, explaining the concepts and how it will give users ownership of what is displayed on the storefront. The attendees were then invited to describe the outline of a grid for a product details page and think about the blocks they would assign to each grid space.

The group collectively looked at how each page had been broken up and used blocks of the same colour to signify each function on the page. Using this method of categorising specific functions by colour, it was easy for them to identify where a block could feature. This highlighted and helped them understand that underpinning the design of an ecommerce site with scalability and maintainability will reduce the development effort and technical support required in the future.

At the end of the two-hour session, the group was in high spirits and had a tangible Lego output of what they had learnt. Each of them had planned out the basic components of a product details page for different template pages on the ‘To Be’ site. Where mistakes needed to be rectified, the bricks could be quickly and easily redistributed around the boards to reflect their desired design.

With the first session under my belt, I’m hoping the next module of the course will be as successful with the injection of Lego into the curriculum.

Dave Reynolds,