This chapter takes a good look at web user controls and their roles inside a DotNetNuke skin. Previous chapters explained their basic principles, such as how HTML skins are converted into web user controls, or how to create skins as
.ascx files directly. Now you'll go just a little deeper and leverage custom web user controls in your skins.
In an effort to give you a well-rounded familiarity with the DotNetNuke skinning technology, this chapter introduces some ASP.Net coding concepts. You might find that you have a particular fondness for ASP.Net code and have some great ideas for new modules or skin objects. If that's the case, I highly recommend Professional DotNetNuke 4 by Shaun Walker et al. (Wiley Publishing, Inc., 2006) for more information on writing custom code that targets the DotNetNuke API.
With that in mind, this chapter takes on the following topics:
How to reduce the amount of redundant code
How to create a more interactive skin
How to develop a specialized skin object
Unless your job is to develop redundant systems in the case of a catastrophic event, it's generally a good idea to consolidate in technology. It doesn't matter if you're dealing with HTML, C# code, or databases. Technology tends to improve when it's placed in a singular location that can be modified, thoroughly tested, and reused as much as possible. Just such an opportunity exists inside the skins files for the Neighborhood Association website.