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My labor of love during this Christmas and New Year

Posted by satyak on January 1, 2004 at 2:08 PM PST

First, take a look at the following URL. And if you are keen about the story behind it you can proceed to read the rest.

Knowledge Folders of Satya Komatineni

Like many other I-will-do-it-myself programmers I have ended up with my own blogging software at about the same time as the OSCON 2003. I had been planning on adding seemingly simple enhancements since then. Never gotten around to it. I have considered to add the following features first:

  1. Feedback/comments
  2. Shortcuts

I have designed them through but realized various compromizes that I had to make and abandoned them after the design. I am planning on writing about those design choices some time in the near future. Meanwhile I have been bitten by a word that was floating around called a "masterpage". Everyone is quite familiar with it when it comes to PowerPoint. This is the page that sits at the back of every page of your presentation.

I have decided to implement the master pages in Aspire. The main reason is the apparent simplicity of the idea. Also I intend to apply the idea first to my content management system called AKC. AKC is a collection of users who manage their knowledge using a set of well classified folders. As the system is a collection of users, it should allow for master pages that are individually separate. And users should be able to set them any time they want. The users can even manage a set of these master pages over time and swap them based on the season and the occasion.

In this web log I will not go into the implementation of the details, but rather show you the output of this 2 week effort and outline the general techniques that I had to deal with. With out much further ado here is the link again to the site

Knowledge Folders of Satya Komatineni

The key points to note are a) As long as the navigation is to the folders and documents of a specific user the back ground stays around. b) As soon as you chose to browse through to a different user, either their background will be chosen or none at all if the background is not there

I had to deal with the following techniques/technologies in completing this implmentaiton

  1. Heavy dose of CSS style sheets. DIVs in particular.
  2. To decide whether to include the master page in the content or the content in the master page.
  3. Caching of the master page and invalidating the cache as the master pages get changed by each user.

I am hoping to put some upcoming web logs to discuss each of the above topics. Mean while feel free to ask any questions if you want to stir the pot early.

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