[ZDP] The FAQ and the donkey

Martijn Faassen M.Faassen@vet.uu.nl
Thu, 11 Mar 1999 20:23:30 +0100

Pavlos Christoforou wrote:
> [warning: long]
> On Thu, 11 Mar 1999, Martijn Faassen wrote:
> > Perhaps with your second design you could try to open the development
> > process somewhat and focus on making it fairly easy to install for
> > people and extend it? I for one would like to
> > try to contribute.
> Ok how about I give access to everyone interested to the administration
> pages of the FAQ. You can use sessions to make changes, or actually you
> can do anything you fancy. It is a work in progress. Lets see what a bunch
> of people meddling together can create. Then we can say that the
> collaborative FAQ has been collaboratively developed using Zope ;-)

Sounds like an interesting experiment, though I suggest you keep
backups; I might destroy things inadvertently. :)


> I do not think that the FAQ should
> be a Zope product. It should be a bunch of DTML's plus a couple of
> external methods. The *base* of the FAQ will be a hierarchy of folders
> that correspond to sections,questions etc. That is why we need to decide
> on a proper structure from the begining. Once we have that then the
> presentation options and additional features are a matter of adding the
> appropriate DTMLs

Okay, sounds good!

> The aim is to
> create a decent Zope FAQ application and **not** a
> general XML FAQ application.

You do mean a Zope FAQ application applicable to all kinds of FAQs,
maintained in Zope, as opposed to a web application specifically
tailored to the ZDP's Zope FAQ, right? This gets ambigeous. :) I agree
we shouldn't go the general XML route. If someone wants to do all kinds
of nifty XML stuff with our FAQ, they can always do that with the XML
source of the FAQ anyway.

> Nevertheless a structured
> approach is neccessary from the beginning as eventually
> (hopefully) the FAQ will migrate to the DocBook format.

Or have DocBook output, while keeping our own internal format? Or do you
mean this?
[snip lots of good stuff]

>    <maintainer>Martijn Faassen</maintainer>
>    <email>martijn@martijn.org</email>
>     <maintainer>Martijn Pieters</maintainer>
>     <email>theothermartijn@martijn.org</email>

This made me laugh out loud. Thank you. Martijn Pieters and I should get
together, if martijn.org isn't already taken. :)


A general comment; is it possible to have multiple maintainers and
multiple contributors to the FAQ with this system? (I can't read DTDs
very well yet). For instance, if someone contributes one half of an
answer, and someone else makes a comment and contributes the other half,
and then the editor merged the comment and previous answer together in
one big answer, the editor would like to list multiple contributors.
> The <question_comment> and <answer_comment> look ugly
> but I believe they will rarely be used as shown
> above. The usual way to enter a comment or an answer is
> through the web interface, so contributors will not
> have to deal with all this verbosity.

Agreed, this is good.

> The numbering of the FAQ entries will be determined by
> the order of the sections and their entries in the XML
> document. This is not a 'proper' procedure, but
> including indexes as attributes of entries will limit
> the dynamic nature of the FAQ tool. (Unless someone can
> suggest an alternative).

There should be a way to organize entries, though. Get the most basic
FAQs higher up in the section, and more specific ones lower in the
section. I suppose that's up to the web interface; if you move entries
around the XML that is outputted changes accordingly, right?

[snip more good stuff]

> On the side margin I would like to have filtering
> options. For instance when someone selects the 'last
> week' option then subsequent actions should limit their
> scope only on entries that have been submitted during
> the past week. 

Or edited last week (as opposed to contributed), or all entries
contributed by My Cat, even. :)

[snip DTD]

Thanks for the great work, Pavlos.