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From "Andrzej Jan Taramina" <>
Subject Re: Serializing to a request attribute & Database Actions questions....
Date Sat, 18 Oct 2003 14:29:07 GMT

> > What confuses me a bit still is how the modes actually work. It seems 
> that
> > you can specify multiple modes and then select them, which will in turn
> > cause the input/output data to be read/written to different places.
> Yes. Only input, though. Output is configured from sitemap.

I finally figured it out with a lot of experimentation, turning on debug 
tracing and reading the code.

I guess the real issue in my mind is that the documentation for Modular DB 
Actions is not very clear and could use some more clarification and examples.

For example, in a <mode> tag it was not clear what the difference between the 
name and the type attributes were.....took some work to figure out that the 
@name is the actual input module name you want to use, like request-attr, and 
the @type is just an internal label categorizing the mode inside the database 
metadata definition.  The examples use the same value for both fields which 
makes things very confusing.  <mode name="request-attr" type="mytype"/> would 
have been clearer.

If/when I get the time/inclination I might consider redoing some of the 
documentation to be a bit clearer.

Mind you, this is probably the biggest beef I have with Cocoon itself, not 
just the DB Modules.  It's a phenomenally powerful tool.  But with power 
comes complexity (or at least many choices) and the documentation SUCKS.
It's fragmented, incomplete and many times forces you to do code-level 

I believe that this one issue alone is blocking Cocoon from wider adoption.

Andrzej Jan Taramina
Chaeron Corporation: Enterprise System Solutions

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