freebsd website questions
murray at stokely.org
Sun Jun 22 04:22:01 UTC 2008
On Thu, Jun 19, 2008 at 12:21 PM, Ken Dreyer <ktdreyer at ktdreyer.com> wrote:
> I am a college student assisting the OpenAFS project with redesigning
> their website. One of the OpenAFS elders mentioned that he liked the
> layout and functionality of FreeBSD's site. I was hoping you could
> give me a few pointers :)
> If you could start from scratch and do things over again, would you
> prefer to use xml/xslt/Makefiles? Most website software has some sort
> of web-based content editor, but I suppose this means no more editing
> with vim/emacs. On the other hand, the current setup seems to limit
> dynamic interaction, as Murray observed in his blog. How much of an
> effect does this have on the community?
I think the goal is to have the best of both worlds. If you are
translating the content into multiple languages, then having XML files
checked into a revision control system is really helpful. It can also
be really easy to use templates, define variables for the name of the
current release and have that be updated all over the site, etc..
Sure, any decent content management system can do that, but we have
full control over it with XML and XSLT.
For the main static content of an open source website, I think
xml/xslt/makefiles are still a great choice. I would just be careful
not to let that limit you. Some sections that need more regular
updates could be hosted on a content management or blogging system and
exported/reformated by the build system, perhaps.
XSLT will let you pull in data from all kinds of sources, reformat it,
and serve it up on your web site. Commit messages to OpenAFS, bug
reports, and other content can easily be incorporated into an xslt
based site. I'd like to see more top10 lists on our site. 10 most
viewed/important bugs, 10 most recent changes, 10 most recently closed
> Murray had mentioned that the XML syntax can be raise the barrier to
> entry for those who aren't web designers. What are some ways around
For news stories and things like that where you want broad
participation, I would look at a blog system or something to make it
easy for others to post updates/stories/etc.. Your XML/makefile
system can then reformat the posts in line with the rest of your site,
without requiring people to author posts in XML.
> Lastly, I see that your community uses your wiki a lot. What are your
> thoughts about MoinMoin from an infrastructure admin's point of view?
> I noticed that the Fedora project moved from MoinMoin to Mediawiki
> recently, and I wondered: if you were able to start from scratch, what
> wiki software would you use?
They probably had a good reason for that, but I have no insight into
this Simon is the only person who really deals with the
administration of MoinMoin for us, as far as I know. There is of
course a certain amount of inertia with these things, as we can't
spend too much time switching systems once we've set one up unless
there is a really compelling reason to do so. I haven't heard many
complaints about the wiki, so I think it is serving our needs just
fine for now. If we were starting from scratch I'd review them both
of course and go with the better fit.
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