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From Ralph Goers <Ralph.Go...@dslextreme.com>
Subject Re: Introduction
Date Mon, 08 Nov 2004 07:07:35 GMT
Reinhard Poetz wrote:

> Thank you, very interesting reading!
>
> BTW, could you tell about how you use the Cocoon Portal? ("... in ways 
> that were probably never thought of by its authors ..." makes me 
> curious ;-)
>
Sure. It turns out that the portal (if you ignore the JSR-168 support) 
is really a standard way of performing the site navigation.  It fairly 
efficiently allows you to aggregate several pipelines into a single view 
(which is why it is a portal). Even if you don't want the look and feel 
of a portal you can still use the Portal as your site navigation framework.

Now we have an application that can have varying numbers of tabs based 
upon what MBeans are available with data to report and the user's 
authority to view the data.  Since the portal definition and layout 
files are all retrieved via a pipeline it is easy to dynamically 
generate the XML configuration specifically for the user when they log 
in. This site doesn't look at all like a portal. It has navigation 
across the top and most of the pages contain two portlets. The left one 
contains a list of items that, when an item is selected, cause the data 
associated with that item to appear in the portlet on the right side of 
the screen.

In addition we have another product that was implemented with a 
commercial vendor's Portal product. Unfortunately, most Portals are not 
designed to work in an ASP environment (i.e. one webapp with potentially 
hundreds of site layouts).  Again, because the configuration uses a 
pipeline we can use a a different configuration for each customer.  The 
beauty is, many of these customers don't really want a portal. But the 
Cocoon Portal doesn't have to look or behave like one.If everyone 
anonymously logs in it can just look like a regular website. But because 
it also supports JSR 168 Portlets, you get the best of both worlds.

Also, with the addition of the Page Label support I added the site 
behaves more or less like a "regular" web site.  You can be in the 
middle of a flow and switch to another tab. When you come back you can 
resume the flow right where you left off.

Basically, I'm considering using the Portal for all our products.  It 
will make integrating them fairly easy.


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