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From Murray Altheim <>
Subject Re: What happened to TitleBlock.jsp?
Date Thu, 31 Jan 2008 21:30:36 GMT
Dirk Frederickx wrote:
> Murray,
> What are the things you can do with the TitleBlock.jsp and can't do
> with a wiki page ?

Well, there's at least two things:

   1. You can do anything a JSP can do that a wiki page can't do, which
      as you know is quite a lot. This is about a lot more than simply
      formatting. Via use of markup and JSP-based code it's certainly
      possible to design more complicated text and graphics for a site
      header, which is by far the most common design component of a
      corporate (e.g., government, commercial, education) web site. Most
      corporate entities want to be able to distinctly brand their sites,
      and this is by far the best means to guarantee site branding.

   2. You can set a title block with complex formatting and information
      that you DON'T want edited by anyone and is likely designed by an
      outside design contractor, since it is part of corporate identity.
      For example, for one of my projects I'll be handing over the
      complete design of the title block to a design firm. We don't
      want either site admins or wiki users to be able to edit the JSP
      after the design is complete. So this is also about having control
      over the title block.

> When you need to go and change your jsp's , just to be able to have a
> new newsmessage on your site, is not very practical.

Once a site is up I *never* need to change the title block JSP. That's
the entire point of having it. If I want a news message to occur in
the title block I can include a news page or code to incorporate a
news feed (ala The Guardian's scrolling text) via JSP, something I
can't do via wiki text. I'd generally want that news information to
be processed and/or formatted especially for a very specific part of
the header, not simply be wiki text that is mixed in with the brand

> There has never been a TitleBlock.jsp in cvs.  I opted to go for a
> wiki-page from the start. Sorry that this was not clear to you.

In the discussions from last year that did not seem to be the case. I
was under the impression (confirmed by reading the emails again) that
there was agreement that the title block was a good idea, and that it
was only due to my failure that it's not currently in CVS. Is this to
your mind a closed issue? I thought that this was a team effort and
that we all had input.

Given that when the title block is by default hidden this has literally
no impact in the existing design, could we please add it to the design?
It's the addition of one very simple JSP to the package, one line in
Header.jsp to include it, and a single CSS statement to hide it. The
wiki page approach does not work for any site that requires strong
branding or requires JSP features, i.e., beyond what a wiki page and
CSS alone can provide (which is for all of my clients minimal).


Murray Altheim <murray07 at>                           ===  = =                                     = =  ===
SGML Grease Monkey, Banjo Player, Wantanabe Zen Monk               = =  = =

       Boundless wind and moon - the eye within eyes,
       Inexhaustible heaven and earth - the light beyond light,
       The willow dark, the flower bright - ten thousand houses,
       Knock at any door - there's one who will respond.
                                       -- The Blue Cliff Record

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