[squeak-dev] Demo of squeak.org on Aida/Scribo ready

Janko Mivšek janko.mivsek at eranova.si
Thu Mar 20 10:04:06 UTC 2008

Lukas Renggli wrote:

> Being the author of Pier (and SmallWiki), I am obviously biased. I do
> not intend to start a fight or to try to cancel a decision of the
> board, but to me this looks more like a huge step backwards.

Well, time will tell (and is already telling) where is this step directed.

>> As promised I prepared a demo of current Squeak website migrated to
>> Aida/Scribo CMS. I migrated both design and first level of content to
>> show, how flexible is Scribo in dealing with both different design and
>> things like Url format in case of SmallWiki. You can see demo here:
>>       http://squeaksite.aidaweb.si:9000
> This looks rather unprofessional. The pages are full of HTML
> validation errors. The layout changes and is partly corrupted in edit
> mode. The search functionality is broken.   Editing does not work in
> some browser.

First, this is demo, migrated in one day and improving for a week. All 
you mentioned will be ready soon.

And if you just talk about professionalism: look at the source of HTML 
of existing and demo site, then look at the CSS, which was broken 
immediately when I started to format HTML to look nice (with newlines 
and indenting) and that immediately broke CSS on IE. Same HTML but 
nicely formated content broke it. Professional done sites don't. Not to 
mention radical overuse of CSS. Is this professionalism?

>>  > Looks good. The editing looks familiar with the common widgets from
>>  > editors  and powerful enough for the needs of the Squeak web site.
>> Yes, we are using TinyMCE for editor and it is really nice.
> TinyMCE takes at least 15 seconds to load on my super fast internet
> connection. Are links updated when you move/rename a page? Can content
> be easily exported in other formats?

Static file serving (which brings up TinyMCE) is currently slow because 
of not yet optimized SpFilename in Sport. We will address that (and 
cache most of TinyMCE) soon.

Urls are not automatically changed if you rename a page, with a reason 
that you'll break links on websites which point to that page. There are 
special cases (like you immediately rename after creating a page) which 
we will address with providing a manual action.

Scribo stores (that is, will soon) all content on the file, together 
with attachments and XML metadata. That way content is completely 
independent of the server above. Explicit exporting/importing is 
therefore simple to add.

>>  > How is content in the side boxes edited ?
>> Currently as pure HTML, but that needs to be yet improved. Currently
>>  only admin has edit rights for that.
> Pier supports multiple in-place editing areas. Editing is done using
> the well-known SWiki/SmallWiki syntax. Pages and components can be
> embedded into each other and reused. The overal layout of the site is
> specified using the same wiki syntax and a composition of pluggable
> components.

We can also provide in-place editing and Scribo fully supports wiki 
format when needed, but because of the goal to extend editing to broader 
public I think simplifying editor UI interface is important and here the 
wiki syntax is a problem. To ease editing we are therefore using TinyMCE 
editor and wiki syntax inside it only for opening new pages.

About components, Scribo besides usual Aida components (we are calling 
them simply web elements) provides also so called scriblets, that is 
components you embed in your text. For instance, image gallery can be 
embedded simply by putting {GALLERY} in your text. That way you can also 
put any existing component by embedding its generating method: 
{:methodNAme} in text.

>>  > Is the interface translated ?
>>  Yes, just I need to detect language better. In an hour or so ...
> Pier is in English and MIT licensed. It has fallback for all
> JavaScript functions, so it works in all current browser (if
> necessary, even in a text browser).

Aida and Scribo have strong international support included deep in 
almost everything, including having content in many languages but still 
on the same Url. That there is some text still in Slovenian rather shows 
international support that lack of it :)

>>  >> That's it, I think you can now see how easy is to maintain Scribo
>>  >> based website and therefore I think it will also be easy to delegate
>>  >> some maintenance duties to broader public. Of course there are still
>>  >> other things to finish like RSS reader etc etc, soon, a day or two...
> Pier has a blog plugin. It can aggregate external feeds and display
> them as news. It can display commit logs of Monticello repositories.
> And there are dozens of other ready-made and well tested plugins
> available. And it is totally RESTful and search engine friendly (see
> the scores of my web-site).

RSS reader scriblet (aka Blog plugin) is already done by Nicolas Petton, 
I just need to add them on the demo.

Also other plugins, that's a matter of hour or so to be done. Currently 
I'm working on better editable Downloads box, so that Release team will 
maintain it by themselves.

Best regards

> I offered to Danie Roux to migrate the existing site from SmallWiki to
> Pier. This is rather simple, as the document representation is
> essentially the same. To do this I need the existing image though.
> For details on Pier please have a look at:
>     http://www.iam.unibe.ch/~scg/Archive/Reports/Reng07c.pdf
> Cheers,
> Lukas

Janko Mivšek
Smalltalk Web Application Server

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