Kids in Data - SenseTheme

Hands-on with SenseTheme Premium for Qlik Sense

Since the launch of Kids in Data, I have had very little time left for my blog and feel that I am not sharing the exciting things that are taking place in the Qlik ecosystem. I want to change that today and share a must have tool for all Qlik developers – SenseTheme.

What is SenseTheme?

SenseTheme
SenseTheme

Qlik Sense Enterprise for Windows supported themes since February 2018 release. Themes provides a way to customise the look and feel of your Qlik Sense application by applying corporate branding and colour schemes. Themes are installed just like any other extensions.

Qlik Sense themes contains following elements:

  • A main JSON file
  • A definition (QEXT) file
  • Other assets such as CSS, image files etc

Building a custom theme can be a cumbersome task and requires some knowledge of working with JSON files and CSS. But fear not, our friends at Bitmetric came out with a way to simplify the process. They gave the Qlik community SenseTheme – a visual theme builder for Qlik Sense. SenseTheme takes care of all the required elements, we only need to use the builder to create our colour palette and styling to match the custom branding we want to apply to our Qlik Sense application.

Meet the big brother!

Team at Bitmetric didn’t just stop there, they wanted to add more features. Meet SenseTheme Premium. This variant comes with few enhancements, for a price. We can now create our theme and save it, allowing us to come back to it later (no need to keep a browser session alive for days!). This means we can build and maintain multiple themes. Wait, there’s more, we can now also add our additional CSS in the editor, allowing further customisation and taking away the hustle of adding/editing the CSS file out side of the SenseTheme builder.

Test drive!

I was the lucky winner (first time for everything!) of the raffle at this years virtual Qlik World for SenseTheme Premium. Seeing I use the original version quite often (twitter theme!), I was excited to get my hands on the premium edition and save my themes in one place. This will allow me to quickly duplicate and create different variants of my existing themes in few minutes.

I needed a new theme for my Kids in Data dashboard. So I decided to put my winnings to work! Once I logged in – the only difference I noticed was a new “My Themes” button. I guessed this is where my saved themes would end up eventually. I decided to start a fresh theme. Upon going to the theme editor, I noticed the “Save Theme” button is now available. I went about creating my colour palette and customising the theme with KiD branding colours. I exported the theme and tried it on my QSD, the result was as expected. I then wanted to modify the CSS to set background colour, border and hover over effects to the Qlik Sense objects. I already had the CSS in one of my old themes, I modified it slightly and added that to the Theme editor. Then it was simply the matter of exporting and installing the theme on the server and you can see the final outcome below!

Kids in Data Qlik Sense dashboard before and after

Final verdict!

I found the ability to save the themes and coming back to them later to make small changes was very useful. I know it’s in its early days, there are more features to come in the future. There are few things I would like to see in the future release of this:

  • Ability to import existing themes.
  • Ability to set themes’ thumbprint images in “My Themes” section.
  • Perhaps a more advanced CSS editor with predefined Qlik Sense Client’s CSS class selectors – allowing us to target the various elements to add more custom styling to them.
  • Better save notification!

I can safely say that its looking promising and some of the features I have been told that are being worked at for future release, will definitely make the premium edition a great tool for any Qlik team, perhaps at a slightly lower price point though.

2 thoughts on “Hands-on with SenseTheme Premium for Qlik Sense

  1. Hi Kabir,

    Good to hear that you’re finding SenseTheme useful. You’re right that it’s still early days for the Premium version, the main benefit for now being that you can store, duplicate and update your themes (a very worthwhile feature IMHO, especially for those of us in consulting).

    Thanks for the improvements you’ve suggested, let me provide some insight into what our ideas are around those features:

    – Importing existing themes. If you’ve created and downloaded a custom theme from SenseTheme before, we’ll gladly import it into your premium account. This can be done by contacting support. Themes that were created outside of SenseTheme cannot yet be imported, it’s on the backlog but unlikely to be delivered in the near future.

    – Ability to set themes thumbprint. This will be available in the next few months (goal: september).

    – More advanced CSS editor, perhaps with predefined class selectors. Some of the things that were previously only possible in CSS, for example font-family, can now be directly set in the theme. For the next update we’re going to move those things into the main editor. At the same time, we want to improve the CSS editor. The first step here will be to provide ‘snippets’ for common customizations, for example the menu bars and popups.

    – Better save notification. This currently only shows an alert, but will be changed to ‘toaster’ pop-ups, along with adding additional notifications when actions have been performed (for example, after you’ve duplicated or deleted a theme).

    To also give an idea of some of the other features we’d like to implement in the near future:

    – A theme wizard, which will generate a theme based on one or two colors that you provide. Meant as a quick start, from which you can further tweak and fine-tune.

    – Color scheme generators for dimension/measure colors, to easily create coherent color series.

    – Pyramidal color series.

    – Copy and pasting colors and color series.

    – Testing themes on appropriateness for color blindness.

    – Object level styling.

    – Automatic generation of a complete style guide / documentation based on your theme (this one is probably mainly of interest to consultants)

    Enough to keep us entertained for a while 😉

    Thanks again for your review and feedback, much appreciated!

    Kind regards,

    Barry Harmsen
    Bitmetric / SenseTheme

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.