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From David Crossley <cross...@apache.org>
Subject Re: [DISCUSS] starting the CMS migration process
Date Wed, 12 Jan 2011 00:10:03 GMT
Karl Wright wrote:
> 
> The other interesting question has to do with overlap with existing
> Apache projects.  In particular, there seems to be a great deal of
> overlap between Apache Forrest and the Apache CMS.  Can someone
> comment on that please?

Essentially Forrest is not a CMS. It is not for
editing, storing, managing the source content.

I will quote the top of the Forrest web page, then try to
explain a little further and show some possibilities.

(Any detailed follow-up on the Forrest mailing lists please.)

"
Apache Forrestâ„¢ software is a publishing framework that transforms input from various sources
into a unified presentation in one or more output formats. The modular and extensible plug-in
architecture of Apache Forrest is based on Apache Cocoon and the relevant industry standards
that separate presentation from content. Forrest can generate static documents, or be used
as a dynamic server, or be deployed by its automated facility. 
"

We have a stack of input plugins that draw content from
various places in different formats. For example, one that
draws content from the Daisy CMS, another that gets
content from various wikis, another that uses html as
the source format, ..., and the default that uses a solid xml
source structure (IIRC evolved from the Anakia-based xml).

These can all be utilised in concert. Forrest/Cocoon
traverses the set of links, generates the various documents,
utilising the relevant input plugin, transforms into an
internal xml format, and as it goes it gathers more links
for processing.

There are various output plugins: html pdf chart text tei ...

It is easy to build new input or output plugins.

For example, as soon as i heard about the wonderful
new Apache CMS i commenced a Markdown output plugin.
I reckon it is brilliant, as Forrest can be also
used as a tool to assist data loading, i.e. by gathering
content from disparate sources and generating a
consistent set of output documents in *.mdtext for
loading. Not quite right? Then tweak input source data,
enhance the output plugin, re-run.

Also Forrest has tools for deploying the generated
content, e.g. commit to SVN; scp; etc. It could be
enhanced to do other deployment things.

One scenario: Use the default xml or html as the
source document set for the main part of a project
site. Remember that it is not Forrest's concern to
edit/manage those sources. Use the Apache CMS for
another section of your documentation set, e.g.
a collection of concise contributed tips. Then use
Forrest to draw them all together and generate a uniform
website. Deploy to your "site" SVN using Forrestbot.

-David

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