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From Robert Koberg <>
Subject Re: file naming convention
Date Fri, 03 May 2002 11:56:53 GMT
Hi Diana,

I am for subject/topics rather than dates. Dates are good for something 
that will produced once and never edited again (like news articles). I 
think the nature of cocoon-docs would require a good percentage of the 
documents to be edited and released several times in their life. If 
content needs to be edited after a release and then re-released, what 
date do you use? The latest date? This screws up search engines and 
peoples bookmarks. Proper naming of the folders and pages (using 
captialization where appripriate and/or underscores) would be much more 
attractive and understandable, though more work needs to go into the 
naming process.


Diana Shannon wrote:

> Given the goal of a clean URI space, I'm seeking your input on a file 
> naming convention for Cocoon's soon-to-be-contributed How-Tos, 
> Tutorials, Examples, etc. documents. My assumption is that getting 
> this right on the first go-around will help to eliminate a number of 
> potential problems related to internal site linking.
> I started investigating this issue by reading Tim Berner-Lee's article 
> on the subject (See Tim 
> makes some interesting recommendations for "good" and "bad" HTTP URIs. 
> Here's a summary of what I find relevant to Cocoon:
> BAD: subject/topic (e.g. install, markup, action)
> REASON: too subj¡º‘—to varying interpretations, likely to change in 
> meaning over time, need to reuse in the future
> BAD: extension (e.g. .html, .xml, .pl)
> REASON: delivery mechanisms will change
> BAD: author's name
> REASON: authorship may change over time, multiple authors
> GOOD: dates (e.g. 020430)
> REASON: The date when the URI is issued will not change. Helps to 
> separate requests which use a new system from those which use an old 
> system.
> Following these guidelines, we might use some variant of:
> Questions
> 1. Is this overkill for the needs of projects like Cocoon, given the 
> short life of documents tied to software release cycle? Is it simply a 
> matter of usability vs. longevity concerns? Tim states that it is "the 
> duty of a Webmaster to allocate URIs which [he/she]  will be able to 
> stand by in 2 years, in 20 years, in 200 years." Do you agree with 
> that? Jakob Nielson's article on a similar subject 
> ( projects the remaining 
> useful lifetime of any domain to be a mere ten years. Do we really 
> need to be concerned beyond the lifetime of a particular software 
> release, particularly with time-sensitive docs like FAQs, How-Tos, etc.?
> 2. I assume we need to continue the use of extensions for static site 
> versions deployed in environments which lack clever Apache- or 
> Cocoon-based mapping mechanisms.
> 3. Numbers in URIs remain cryptic and uninviting to me. Perhaps I'm 
> hopelessly corrupt from years of bad habits, but I *like* topics in 
> filenames, for example:
> However, this approach won't work so well with docs having similar 
> topics. And my dream is that we will have *100s* of docs to manage.
> So my current thinking is to assume that a request like:
> will map to a file named
>   02050312.xml
> with a file naming convention based on
>   <two-digit year><two-digit month><two-digit day><two-digit hour>.xml
> stored in
>   src/documentation/xdocs/howtos
> The above assumes these contributions will be included in 
> documentation that appears on Cocoon's web site. Do you agree?
> Comments?
> Diana
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