Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Discussion of Common Lisp

Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby hrapof » Tue May 26, 2009 5:31 am

I'm not saying Weblocks/UCW is a plague, just that they are ridden by a common plague, that is, lack of documentation.
I tried to use UCW several times, each time having great difficulties to make its examples work. And then they started major overhaul...
Weblocks example is nice, but again, no documentation.

(in-package :simple-blog)

(defview user-table-view (:type table :inherit-from '(:scaffold user)))
(defview user-data-view (:type data :inherit-from '(:scaffold user)))
(defview user-form-view (:type form :inherit-from '(:scaffold user)))

(defview post-table-view (:type table :inherit-from '(:scaffold post)))

(defview post-data-view (:type data :inherit-from '(:scaffold post))
(author :reader #'post-author-name)
(time :reader #'post-formatted-time))

(defview post-form-view (:type form :inherit-from '(:scaffold post))
(time :hidep t)
;; POST-AUTHOR-ID and ALL-USERS will be defined below
(author :reader #'post-author-id
:present-as (dropdown :choices #'all-users
:label-key #'user-name)
:parse-as (object-id :class-name 'user)
:requiredp t)
(short-text :present-as textarea
:requiredp t)
(text :present-as (textarea :cols 30)
:requiredp t))

(defview post-short-view (:type data :inherit-from 'post-data-view)
(text :hidep t))

(defview post-full-view (:type data :inherit-from 'post-data-view)
(short-text :hidep t))

It was easier for me to throw together some hunchentoot handlers and cl-who and home-brewed macros than to dig source for all those keyword parameters...
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Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby slobodan.blazeski » Fri May 29, 2009 12:46 am

hrapof wrote:As I'm doing essentially the same, I can say it would be very great to have such a beast ready off-the-shelf!
Just please beware of UCW/Weblocks plague: if you release something, make its examples work straight out of .tar.gz, and make them easy to adapt.


I wrote about hackbraries (*) and there was similar topic at Dan Weinrieb blog (**) but pointing at author and maintainer won't do any good. There is no sugar daddy to finance the polish nor horde of programmers to them themselves. So if you wan't to help spending some time to actually fixing them would do much better.
BTW Weblocks works out of the shelf on linux through clbuild. On windows you need some tinkering mostly with moving the folders

cheers
Bobi

(*) http://tourdelisp.blogspot.com/2008/01/common-lisp-libraries-victims-of-drive.html
(**) http://danweinreb.org/blog/adventures-trying-to-use-open-source-libraries
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Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby skypher » Mon Jun 01, 2009 9:19 am

In fact Weblocks is one of the better-maintained projects with helpful community support, a comprehensive test suite and an upcoming manual: http://viridian-project.de/~sky/user-guide.stx.html
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Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby JamesF » Mon Jun 01, 2009 5:55 pm

hrapof wrote:As I'm doing essentially the same, I can say it would be very great to have such a beast ready off-the-shelf!
Just please beware of UCW/Weblocks plague: if you release something, make its examples work straight out of .tar.gz, and make them easy to adapt.


Sorry, apparently I'm missing some of the notifications from this board.
Yes, the example will definitely work straight from the distribution, at least as far as I can manage it. I hadn't thought so far about making them easy to adapt, though you make a good point there; my intention is primarily to show how each element can be used. I'll think about that when I next work on the demo, and see if I can string it together with a coherent narrative.

It's slowly coming along, and the effort of documenting it has been quite valuable in the way it's prompted me to revisit some interesting design decisions. I'm hoping to release at least the basic substrate library soon, though my limited development time is generally soaked up with work on the actual websites at the moment.

One of the things about CL that I've come to appreciate all over again is its multiparadigm nature: not only can I mix OO, functional and imperative code at will, but I can migrate functional code to OO style in piecemeal fashion. There's no need to re-architect the whole thing all over again, which saves me from the Netscape trap. The spirit of Babbage lives on, however, and I need to convince myself to release the bag of warts at some stage.
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Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby findinglisp » Tue Jun 02, 2009 9:12 am

JamesF wrote:Sorry, apparently I'm missing some of the notifications from this board.


It might not be your fault. Somebody else reported intermittent email connectivity. Something might be hinky at my hoster. Not sure what it is.
Cheers, Dave
Slowly but surely the world is finding Lisp. http://www.findinglisp.com/blog/
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Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby kalifg » Fri May 18, 2012 7:38 am

How is this project coming? I am very interested in trying it out, even as just a jumping off point for my own work.

Thanks!
Mike
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Re: Interest in a Lisp CMS?

Postby JamesF » Fri May 18, 2012 8:26 am

kalifg wrote:How is this project coming? I am very interested in trying it out, even as just a jumping off point for my own work.


Unfortunately, it got slightly derailed by a few factors. I had to drastically cut the scope of the online stores a while ago, because other commitments limited the amount of time I could commit to that work. I also got a little sidetracked in building a wiki; unimpressed with my employer's announcement that wikimarkup would be removed from the product we sell, I asked "how hard is it to build one of these things, anyway?"
Turns out the wiki part is relatively easy. The hard part is writing a parser that'll handle wikimarkup and be arbitrarily extensible via user-definable markup tags and processors; well, that and convincing said employer to let me open-source it. The part of the argument that I won was to release the markup parser/renderer (which I've done) but I had to agree to only operating the wiki for the benefit of friends/family/colleagues without releasing the source itself. I did learn a lot about modular architecture in the process, though, which paid off when I needed to yank said module out of the main project (I may have had more than one point to prove).

So the current situation is that the wiki is coming along nicely, and changing form quite drastically (and pleasingly smoothly) as I reframe the problems I want it to solve - workflow will probably hit the top of the queue in about a month, which will turn it into a combined wiki and issue-tracker. From there, the chances are good that I'll port a lot of that functionality across to the webstore, and then generalise the bits of the webstore that are currently site-specific.

The upshot is that the usable stuff that I've released to this point is mark-and-render; as keen as I am to share the rest, I'd bet on it taking another three months. The good news is that m-a-r is very usable right now, even if it's still some way from being complete; I'd love to get feedback from somebody else using it in anger.

FWIW, I forsee four major nuts to crack in building a CMS, now that I have a parser/renderer:
- permissions (easy to hack in, but hard work to get right)
- workflows - finding the right balance between configurable and usable
- really understanding what a CMS needs to do with the content being created, in the sense of "OK, so you've authored this thing, edited it to perfection and had it approved by your manager; what URL should it be answering to?" This is trickier than it looks on the face of it, at least for me, because UI design just isn't my strong point.
- security is really hard
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