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From Nicola Ken Barozzi <>
Subject Re: New ASF site was Re: New Apache XML Site! :-)
Date Sat, 26 Oct 2002 22:52:29 GMT
I'm ccing this also to Forresters.

Justin Erenkrantz wrote:
> [ Moving this to site-dev@ which is the appropriate list. ]
>> Also, I have also made a Forrest version of the main Apache site,
>> what do you think, can it be done?
> I would say 'no' until certain things are resolved.
> Graphically, I much prefer the uni-color white background.  There is 
> also something about repeating the links at the top of the content pane 
> that strikes me as funny.  (I think we might be able to fix these issues.)

Sure. The current version is the best we got now, but it will get better 
and better with more feedback. :-)

> I've brought up the build system issues on general@commons.  If Forrest 
> requires a separate step for building it (apart from what we already do 
> with anakia), I'm going to be against it. 

Errr, as a "separate step", you mean having to install-build Forrest it 

 From the commandline it basically works as Anakia...

> We really can't introduce 
> another requirement.  We already have enough people who refuse to update 
> the (or sites because they refuse to 
> work with any Java-based document systems.


> So, I don't expect that we 
> can require the people who modify our site to go download Forrest 
> snapshots, tweak environment variables, run special Java scripts, etc.  
> It's bad enough as it is.  So, if we do this, we have to be able to run 
> it with ./ alone.

It's not a problem, it's just a matter of defining on how to do it, and 
then we will make it avaliable.

How about a script in each site CVS that does this:

  1 - checks if forrest is installed globally
  2 - if not checks if it's installed in the dir of the site to build
  2 - if not it asks if it's ok to download it
  3 - downloads the Forrest jar with wget
  4 - unpacks it
  5 - runs Forrest

This way we don't strain CVS, don't have to checkin Forrest and users 
that already have forrest installed use it normally.

But of course Java has to be installed...


There is another possibility though.

With Forrest we have created for this purpose a "bot" that simply checks 
out a series of sites from CVS, runs the build, and uploads them to the 

It's been working for Forrest by publishing the forrest site 
automatically on Sourceforge and since months now, with 
no problem.

This could be an option.

> Yet, my biggest concern is how it looks in a text-only browser. 
> looks awful in links, while is browsable 
> with links (rather clean).  So, before we go on a crusade to change even 
> more of the ASF sites to Forrest, I would like to ensure that we keep 
> text-only browsers fully supported.  -- justin

Ok, I'll tell this to our skin writers.

We tried using CSS without tables but it simply crashed Netscape 4.7.

Actually, the real goal of Forrest is not to generate the site 
statically, that's just a temporary _hack_, a showcase to get people see it.

The real goal is to use Forrest *live*, thus serving the *best* content 
to each browser, by doing separate transformation based on the request, 
a thing that a single graphics cannot give.

It will make it possible also to make registered users add comments on 
the pages, and add documentation *without* having to build documentation 
(*ugh*) or see xml (*double ugh*), since we are near to do in-place 
editing in Mozilla and Netscape.

Nicola Ken Barozzi         
             - verba volant, scripta manent -
    (discussions get forgotten, just code remains)

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