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From "Derek Hohls" <DHo...@csir.co.za>
Subject Re: Re: Cocoon 2.2 - Webapp without blocks
Date Fri, 19 Oct 2007 08:58:04 GMT
The other challenge I have faced is that I am usually in the
position of deploying multiple apps into a single Cocoon 
installation.  From comments made by various of the more
advanced developers/contributors, it seems the more usual
use case is deploying single apps into multiple installations.
I am worried that the new block-based modularity has a bias 
towards this latter approach - hence my reluctance to engage
with 2.2 (never mind the expected steep learning curve).
 
So, yes, any example that show "how things are done" - no 
matter how simple or trivial they seem to you - would be 
welcome I am sure.
 
("Demonstrating... the subtlety of its priesthood" => :-0 )

>>> "Hugh Sparks" <hugh@csparks.com> 2007/10/19 09:37 AM >>>
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Derek Hohls" <DHohls@csir.co.za>
To: <users@cocoon.apache.org>
Sent: Friday, October 19, 2007 3:23 PM
Subject: Re: Re: Cocoon 2.2 - Webapp without blocks


> Derek Hohls writes:
> Hugh:
> OTOH, it also sounds quite depressing that lots of what we have
> learnt in the past now has to be thrown away. I suppose it is 
> All For Our Own Good... but, nonetheless, it all means more work
> ito upgrading and supporting legacy apps and in learning new ways
> to create new apps.

Recently I've had some pain, but things are going
pretty well for my applications. The great progress
with Cocoon 2.2 is the modularity using blocks and the
ease of creating small configurations with just the
necessary dependencies. This is really worthwhile and
a big step forward IMHO.

If the sitemaps and examples were created with the
same philosophy, Cocoon would be nearly self
documenting.

> Cocoon unfortunately does not have a great track record when it comes
> to documentation (which has possibly hindered its uptake in the
> past).  I am wondering if this will change now or whether what you
> are going through is a repeat of the symptom.
> Derek

The big issue I've always had with the documentation
is that the writers are very anxious to show how
wonderful cocoon is, so every example exploits the
maximum number of features. Each sitemap is written
to support many separate examples using the greatest
possible abstraction. Beginners have a very difficult
time figuring out what they need to utilize one
feature at a time.

Part of this comes from the understanable desire to
make the documentation attractive: The sitemaps all share
stylesheets, css files and a maximum number of resources
to get a consistent look and feel. This is a great idea
when you build a website for a client, but it creates
a brick wall of complexity when trying to illustrate how
things work.

I don't know if I'll every get around to publishing my
work, but I have written a series of examples that
demonstrate exactly one major cocoon component at a
time, excluding all (possible) others. I developed them over the
past seven years out of necessity as a personal reference.
Now they all need to be converted to run with Cocoon 2.2.

I'd like to see this concept applied to the cocoon core features
and to each separate block. When you put in a dependency
for xxxx-sample in the pom, you'd get a sitemap and a minimal
collection of independent files that demonsrated exactly
that feature. Aesthetics are unimportant and actually interfere
with the instructional value. Demonstrating the wonders
of cocoon and the sublety of its priesthood should be
done elsewhere.

Thanks,

-Hugh Sparks









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