25.5. Themes

25.5.1. What is a Theme

A portal theme is a collection of CSS styles, JavaScript files, and images, that all work together to style and enhance the rendered markup of the portal page. The theme works together with the layout and the RenderSet in producing the content and final look and feel of the portal response. Through clean separation of markup and styles a much more flexible and powerful approach to theming portals is possible. While this approach is not enforced, it is strongly encouraged. If you follow the definitions of the Theme Style Guide (see later), it is not necessary to change the layout or the strategy, or the RenderSet to achieve very different look and feels for the portal. All you need to change is the theme. Since the theme has no binary dependencies, it is very simple to swap, or change individual items of it. No compile or redeploy is necessary. Themes can be added or removed while the portal is active. Themes can be deployed in separate web applications furthering even more the flexibility of this approach. Web developers don't have to work with JSP pages. They can stay in their favorite design tool and simple work against the exploded war content that is deployed into the portal. The results can be validated life in the portal.