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From David Crossley <>
Subject Re: Forrest available-skins only lists test* skins
Date Fri, 13 Aug 2004 00:34:01 GMT
Charles Palmer wrote:
> Is there any guidance or advice on producing skins?

The first bit of guidance is to ask why do you need to?

Our plan is to make the default Forrest skins to be
highly configurable, so that with minimal skills
people can change the layout and appearance.

> The comment in site2xhtml.xsl says this:
> site2xhtml.xsl is the final stage in HTML page production.  It merges HTML
> from
> document2html.xsl, tab2menu.xsl and book2menu.xsl, and adds the site header,
> footer, searchbar, css etc.  As input, it takes XML of the form:
> <site>
>   <div class="menu">
>     ...
>   </div>
>   <div class="tab">
>     ...
>   </div>
>   <div class="content">
>     ...
>   </div>
> </site>
> It looks to me that the .xsl file then proceeds to grab content and generate
> HTML - but it looks like other .xsl files also generate HTML and so are
> therefore involved in the look and feel.

Various XML aggregations and XSL transformations are pipelined
together. The site2xhtml.xsl is usually the final stage.

> Is there any automated or documented way of creating the .xsl files from an
> existing HTML website, or is it all hand-crafted? That is, can arbitrary
> HTML design tools be used to produce good-looking site templates, which can
> then transformed into .xsl files? Or do you have to be both an HTML guru and
> XSL guru to make a new skin?

Making a new skin is not a trivial exercise. Yes one would
need specialised skills. That is why we need the default
skins to be highly configurable.

David Crossley

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