Kentico Xperience 13 Refresh 11: Bye bye jQuery, hello .NET 8


Kentico Xperience 13 is packed with modern technology to deliver great website experiences - namely ASP.NET Core - enabling customers to use the latest that .NET has to offer. But, it also includes some older technology, like jQuery, that has been required to use all of the platform's features. In this Refresh, we're making jQuery optional so you can part ways with it if you have your own JavaScript solutions for the live site.

Bye bye jQuery 👋

jQuery has been around for over 17 years. That's like a billion years on the web 👴! In that time, browsers have become far easier to work with, JavaScript has matured significantly, and many of the innovations that jQuery introduced have become native in the web platform.

We know many of you are very familiar and productive with jQuery because it's been around so long, but requiring it to be used on every Kentico Xperience 13 live site feels a little heavy handed in 2023. Some development teams want to use cutting-edge libraries or frameworks instead, while others want to optimize page loading speed and just use what the browser offers - fast and lean 🏃🏽‍♀️.

In this Refresh we are making jQuery optional on the live site. If you want to keep using jQuery, nothing changes for you after applying Refresh 11, but if you would like to part ways, you can add a settings configuration key CMSBuilderScriptsIncludeJQuery to the value false and poof 🧙🏼‍♂️... jQuery is gone from your Kentico Xperience 13 live site.

If you choose to remove jQuery, all of Xperience's functionality will continue to work as expected, but you'll need to adapt any of your dependencies on jQuery in your code to either use the browser APIs or another JavaScript library.

Just so you know, we're also planning to implement this improvement for Xperience by Kentico - so watch for future blog post Refresh announcements or the Xperience by Kentico Changelog.

Happy holidays and farewell jQuery...

Hello .NET 8 👏

Just like with Xperience by Kentico, we've introduced support for .NET 8 in Kentico Xperience 13 with this Refresh. Deploying an ASP.NET Core project targeting .NET 8 brings immediate performance improvements for free, and it lets developers use the latest framework and C# language features.

Targeting .NET 8 for your live site applications also ensures you are using the latest long-term support version of .NET, staying ahead of the curve.

Page Builder widget filtering

While making jQuery optional and adding .NET 8 support are developer-focused improvements, we have another update that is marketer-focused and sure to bring smiles this holiday season ❄.

Teams that leverage the Page Builder extensively could find themselves with a large number of Page Builder widgets. These widgets are displayed in a dialog when interacting with a section's widget zone in the Page Builder UI, but the dialog wasn't very user-friendly for a large number of widgets. In this Refresh, we've introduced 3 UX improvements to this dialog to help manage a larger number of widgets.

First, we've increased the size of the dialog to span the full width of the Page Builder interface, since this was not customizable by developers.

Below is how the dialog looks before applying the Refresh...


And, here is how it appears after applying the Refresh...


It's much larger! 😎

You might also have noticed that there's a search box visible, which can be used to filter down the list of widgets in the dialog, matching by name.


Finally, you can see there is a list of "Recently used widgets" under the search box. This is an auto-updating list of the last 4 widgets selected from the dialog, with the most recent on the left.

Marketing teams that love the power of the Page Builder when crafting digital experiences and have a large toolbox of widgets available to build their pages will really appreciate these UX updates 👏🏽.

That's it for this Kentico Xperience 13 Refresh. The full release notes are accessible in the Kentico Xperience 13 documentation. Make sure you check back here for all the details of the next Refresh when it's released.

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Sean G. Wright

Lead Product Evangelist