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From Ross Gardler <>
Subject When is a skin not a skin? (was Re: [PATCH] Customized stylesheets and grammars)
Date Mon, 15 Dec 2003 19:47:38 GMT
Marshall Roch wrote:
> As I've already mentioned, current CVS has problems with stylesheets for 
> custom content types saved in src/documentation/resources/stylesheets/, 
> and custom grammars in src/documentation/resources/grammars/.

This is a problem I have been running into too (and with skins with 
custom xmaps). The real problem is that if you use a skin to do anything 
more than change the layout you end up with parts of your skins all over 
the place.

The question is therefore, what is a skin intended for. If it is just 
look and feel (which is what a skin normally deals with) then I believe 
the current skinning system works fine since xmaps, 
resources/stylesheets and resources/grammers would not be a part of the 

So the question then becomes how do I (and Marshall) customise Forrest 
in the way that we have been doing (i.e. grammars, xmaps and stylesheets 
from custom grammers to xdoc). Should there be another concept similar 
to skins that package all this stuff together as well?

Here's a use case:

I have customised Forrest to provide online course materials. I have a 
number of custom grammers such as:

- worksheets
- exams
- classlist
- marks
- ...

together with a number of stylesheets to convert from these grammers to 
xdocs of various forms, for example:

- worksheet2marksheet_xdoc.xsl
- worksheet2student_xdoc.xsl
- worksheet2modelAnswer_xdoc.xsl

(originally I stored these in src/resources/stylesheets but I recently 
moved them to my skin becasue of the above problem).

I also have a number of custom xmaps to allow processing of these files:

- worksheet.xmap
- marks.xmap
- ...

So, should can all this fall under the banner of "skin" or do we need 
some other packaging device?


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