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From Terry Ellison <Te...@ellisons.org.uk>
Subject Re: [www] html instead of markdown (mdtext)?
Date Fri, 12 Aug 2011 16:19:35 GMT
Rob,

I support your general point.  Using static HTML files to achieve might 
have been a sound argument in the 1990s, but it isn't really credible 
with today platform technologies.  What are the transactional rates for 
the Apache site?  How many requests per second even just roughly?

Taking your example of the MediaWiki engine, this is scaled to meet the 
transactional and data volume demand of wikipedia.org, one of the 
busiest websites on the planet. (There are typically ~100 updates per 
second and goodness know how many pageviews.)  See 
http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Cache and the few dozen subsidiary pages.  
There are many high performance caching products that address this issue 
-- Apache even does one: http://trafficserver.apache.org/ -- and the 
mediaWiki engine already integrates with a couple of the leaders: Squid 
and Varnish.

Apache's "heartland" is its "number one HTTP server on the Internet".  
Are we rally saying that the best way to manage content is through 
static HTML files?  This is just daft IHMO.  Has anyone ever heard of 
current CMS technology.

How many content editors and contributors can read HTML these days?

One other point: yes SVN or any equivalent versioning repository can 
store most types of content, but versioning should take place at the 
highest level of abstraction and language that the content providers 
work in.  Take an extreme example to emphasise this point.  svn can 
store object modules, but does this mean that we should use these are 
the master control and disassemble back to assembly code to update 
programs.  Of course not.  But to many editors, HTML is little more that 
binary machine code.

Non-functional (infrastructure) requirements help drive the design and 
implementation cycles but they shouldn't unnecessarily limit the true 
functional requirements of the system.  To do so is madness.  Is is 
really an approach Apache wants to advocate?

Regards
Terry
> On Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 10:10 AM, Shane Curcuru<asf@shanecurcuru.org>  wrote:
>> (To provide a little context while Gav may be asleep)
>>
>> On 8/12/2011 9:26 AM, Rob Weir wrote:
>>> On Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 3:41 AM, Gavin McDonald<gavin@16degrees.com.au>
>>>   wrote:
>>>>> On Thu, Aug 11, 2011 at 12:12 PM, Kay Schenk<kay.schenk@gmail.com>
>> ...snip snip snip...
>>
>>>>> Just a thought:  Could you do the entire website in MediaWiki, with only
>>>>> exception cases (download page, etc.) done in HTML?
>>>> Just to put a blocker on this right away, we will not be using the wiki
>>>> as the
>>>> main website or the main entrance into the OOo world.
>>>>
>>> Since it is not self-evident to me why a wiki would be a problem for
>>> the main website, could you explain this a little further?  Is there a
>>> technical problem?  Remember, the wiki already comprises several
>>> thousand pages of website content, so in a very real sense the "main"
>>> website is already the wiki.
>> Performance.  As I understand it, the bulk of all apache.org content is
>> served statically as html files.  Putting a major project's homepage website
>> like the future office.a.o (or whatever name) up as a wiki would add a
>> significant amount of load to our servers, even for a highly efficient wiki
>> engine.
>>
> Thanks, that gives some context.  So "main" in this case is not
> necessarily only the top level page, i.e., an eventually
> openoffice.apache.org or the current www.openoffice.org.    Certainly
> those pages would be some of the most highly-trafficked pages.  But we
> probably have some others that are also, FAQ's,  Release notes,
> download page, etc.
>
> But that still leaves the long tail of the thousands of other pages
> that are individually accessed rarely, but may add up to significant
> load.
>
> I'm surprised there is no caching mechanism for MediaWiki to simply
> write out up static versions of pages and then invalidate the cache
> for a particular page when it is changed.  In theory you could have
> the rarely-changed pages be just as efficient as static HTML.  Plugins
> exist that do this for WordPress, for example.
>
>
>> The beauty of the CMS is that while it's easy to work on the pages (either
>> via SVN or browser), the final result is simply checked into SVN and then
>> the resulting .html file is just stuck on the production webserver site.
>>   Some projects use a wiki to manage their homepages (i.e. project.a.o,
>> separate from any community wiki they may have), but the physical homepage
>> that end-users see is typically static html that's been exported from their
>> wiki site.
>>
>> Gav or infra folk can provide more details, but you should plan on adhering
>> to whatever performance restrictions the infra team requires for the main
>> website.
>>
>> - Shane
>>


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