Social Stream Stack

RAPID IDEAS

Social Media is often discussed as being an important part of Marketing and SEO. As such, I’ve been asked by customers on multiple occasions, if it’s possible to include Facebook, Twitter and g+ feeds on a RapidWeaver page.

One of Rapid Ideas’ new stacks is Social Stream and it provides a perfect solution for cross linking to social websites. Best of all, unlike other solutions, you don’t have to choose which service you want to stream, you get options for Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram.

I was impressed by the clean presentation of Social Stream‘s feeds. I dropped the stack onto a page, checked the boxes for each of the services and went straight to preview where I was immediately presented with  RapidWeaver news from around the world. Each news item in a black box and each item with the image that had been published with it.

Switching back to edit revealed that I can alter the standard presentation by setting not only the Background Colour, but the colours of the Title, Border, Text content, Links, More… and the publishing time ‘Time Ago’. I tweaked the settings a little and the results looked brilliant.

Social Stream has checkboxes which allow you to activate the single streams. Below the checkboxes, you will then find settings for each service. You will need to remove Christoph’s #rapidweaver or @rapidweaver and replace it with your own stream. A Client ID or User Key has already been entered and I found that, with the exception of g+, they all worked in combination with my own stream. I had to acquire an Access Token from Google’s developer site to get my g+ stream flowing. A URL for each service is displayed in the HUD and the g+ setup was fast and painless.

The number of posts that Social Stream displays has a standard setting of 5. If you’d like to display older posts, just set a higher number.

The General Options let you choose to Display Media within the posts and to Auto Update. The standard refresh setting is 30000 so that your page won’t rebuild itself every couple of seconds. If you are re-tweeting an Apple Event, you might like to reduce this time, otherwise I find the setting okay. The remaining settings are for Text Length, Grid Item Min Width and Grid Item Padding.

Only one Social Stream stack can be used per stacks page, so if you feel the need to present each feed in its own area, you’ll need to import them via Global Content or PlusKit. Social Stream can, however, be placed on the same page as Rapid Ideas’ other streaming stack News Grid, so if you’d like to display news surrounding a specific subject, you now have the option of multiple sources.

I mentioned last month that Rapid Ideas has re-entered the RapidWeaver Scene with a number of new products. Watch This Space for more.

Marten Claridge

Founder of RapidWeaver Central, Developer of WeaverThings, Author of Books, Marten's highly unique skillset has established him as a leading RapidWeaver, Web Design and Wordpress consultant with a worldwide client-list and highly dysfunctional sense of modesty.

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