Partner Connect: Mobiecom – a React based storefront for WebSphere Commerce!

Our friends over at Zobrist Consulting launched a new product called Mobiecom! This new single page web application is based on the React framework. Check out my Partner Connect video and see this new storefront in action:


Be sure to download their Whitepaper and get the details on this cool product and you can check out the Mobiecom site for more information.


Easily Creating Widgets In WebSphere Commerce Composer

WebSphere Commerce Composer is a very powerful addition to the tool set. It allows marketing and HTML developers to pretty much design a web site to their heart’s content.

In this video I show how you can use jQuery and the REST services in WebSphere Commerce to display a product list. One thing you will notice in the JavaScript I use a substitution variable [storeId]. These things come in very handy and allow you to create reusable code snippets across pages and store fronts; to learn more about them check out the info center. If you are really adventurous you can even create your own substitution variables, check out this info center page to learn how to do that.


Why the eSpot REST service in WebSphere Commerce is so cool!

ABTestRestRuleWebSphere Commerce comes with a pretty comprehensive set of REST services that are used as integration points with other systems. While this may sound geeky and boring on the surface, imagine cross-channel content that is driven by a precision marketing engine. Watch this video as I show how cool this particular REST service really is.


FourSquare check-ins versus native applications

I have been playing with FourSquare for about four weeks now as many of my friends have probably seen the check-ins on Facebook and Twitter. I have even gone to the extent to checking out the API behind the scenes and it looks very clean and easy. The basis of the API is REST (REpresentational State Transfer). So integrating other commerce based products, tools, and sites should be a snap.

Not many people in my area are using FourSquare but on a positive note there seem to be more and more people using it even in the past month. I am already a mayor in two places; not sure what that buys me but it felt good.

I used FourSquare to check into a store called Justified; my wife and I were shopping for a birthday present. There were signs all over the store for 40% off. When I checked into FourSquare I received a coupon code “500” and received an additional 40% off! I was thinking, there is no way its 40% off then another 40% off, but that is exactly how it rang up at the register after presenting the coupon from my iPhone. We saved tons of money that day. So much in fact, we got the girl double the amount of gifts because we felt bad it was so inexpensive – she really made out…

Now, on to my point. I really like the concept of check-ins using an application like this. It allows me to use the application to find many kinds of places and see what those places have for specials. For instance, I might be at a Best Buy with a Staples next door, I see on FourSquare that Staples has a coupon or a special by seeing the special indicator in the “Stores nearby”. This immediately lets me know what stores in my physical area have specials and which stores do not. In my mind, this is a huge benefit over stores with specific applications on my iPhone. Stores with their own applications make me go into their application, check-in, and look for specials – once again, very different than seeing a list of stores with specials. So it makes me ask, why go through the trouble of having a native iPhone(mobile) application when services like “check-in” and “coupons” are available on products like GoWalla, FourSquare, Facebook, etc? With HTML 5 you could get a lot accomplished on these devices without having a special native application for your store. Leave check-ins to applications that offer a community, badges, rewards, and a social aspect to the check-in action.


REST services are a snap with Dojo

As I sit here late at night thinking about what to write about I figured I would share some insight into a night time project I have been playing around with.  The project uses a basic Java servlet on Tomcat that serves up JSON to clients.  I have constructed the servlet to handle many different kinds of requests based on what parameters are passed into it.  The reason I wanted to blog about this was because my first client is being implemented in JavaScript, Dojo and HTML 5.  I am using Eclipse, WTP, and Aptana as the development environment – which I must say is amazingly simple to code, launch, and debug.  The great thing is I can write the Servlet code (in Java), the client wrapper (HTML), and the client-server interaction (JavaScript) all from the same IDE and debugger.  I do however find myself launching in FireFox to use Firebug for some debugging but outside of that its pretty self contained.

I chose the REST service to emit JSON because it makes it very easy to process on the client.  Check out the Dojo code below that creates a session with the “Base” servlet and then processes the response as a regular JS object, in this case “session = dojo.fromJson(response);“:

var session = null;

function createSession(){
     url : "Base?c=cs",

     handleAs : "json",

     load : function(responseObj, ioArgs){
         console.log("successful session creation", responseObj ,ioArgs);
         session = responseObj;
         dojo.byId("session-info").innerHTML = "<b>Id = </b>" + + "<br>";
         return responseObj;
     error : function(responseObj, ioArgs){
         console.log("failed session creation", responseObj ,ioArgs);
         dojo.byId("session-info").innerHTML = responseObj;
         return responseObj;