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From Ferdinand Soethe <>
Subject [Proposal] Bypass PlugIns
Date Sat, 12 Nov 2005 09:12:06 GMT

I'd like to create a new class of plugins termed 'bypass plugins' for
functionalities where the SSP ideas of Forrest are either not needed,
not provided at the moment or not useful alltogether.

By definition a bypass-plugin will simply provide a way of
transforming one non-Forrest format into another non-Forrest format
including all the needed resources.

My Reasons:

1. There is a lot of transformation functionalities that would be nice to
   have in Forrest but would require a lot of work to adjust to our
   input- and output-plugins system.

   The bypass plugin would be a quick (and accepted) way to integrate the
   functionality into Forrest.

   And once that plugin is up and running, Forresters who feel the itch
   would have a much easier time of adding input or output plugins if
   they feel the itch.

2. Some applications are so specialized that it doesn't really
   make a lot of sense to write input and output plugins for them.

   For example:

   While technically possible to write an output-plugin
   for SmartSlides (that is convert documentVxx to 'smart' slidy
   presentations) this is not really what SmartSlides was all about.

   * If you have problems to follow me here, see the definition for
     Slidy and SmartSlides below!

   Because transforming a standard docVxx to Slidy you'd miss most of
   the SmartSlides functionality like chapters and learning modules,
   speaker markup etc, didactic footnotes.

   And while you could add some of them by adding class-attributes to
   the docVxx document, in doing so you make the document once again a very
   special input source for smartslides so that you'd be better off to
   use the smartslides grammar in the first place.

   And if you didn't, that is transform the simple docVxx, what you
   really create is a plugin that we should call 'Slidy' rather than

   On the other hand: It does make good sense to provide a SmartSlides
   input plugin as it is quite possible to translate the SmartSlides
   information into documentVxx.

Ferdinand Soethe


   Slidy:        Is a slide show presentation application created by Dave
                 Ragget that creates SlideShows with PowerPoint like
                 functionalities in HTML, CSS and JavaScript from
                 simple HTML-documents.
                 (Similar to S5 but licence compatible to Forrest)

   SmartSlides:  Is an XML applications that provides a specialized
                 grammar for creating learning materials in xml and
                 output these in a variety of different ways.

                 See the top of the grammar file for a list of
                 intended formats.
                 Rather than creating a simple presentation
                 SmartSlides allows you to

                 - define chapters to structure your presentation,
                 - mark learning modules to simplify reuse
                 - assign parts of the presentation to different
                 - add didactic info and helper elements that assist
                   presenters to become
                   familiar with presentation they haven't written
                 - include non presentational elements such as
                   = instructions for things to demo in an application
                   = exercises and solutions (yet to be added)
                   = todos and open questions
                   = other stuff
                 - flexibly handle the inclusion of additional
                   information for the printed version,
                   not just within the conventional
                   slide/notes scenario, but also within any part of
                   the slides.

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