Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-12 Thread Curtis Maloney

On Sat, 11 Nov 2000, Andy McKay wrote:
  It might be that fixing one or both of the above would reduce the DTML
  pain factor quite a bit. Certainly, it's time to do whatever it takes
  to banish these "-"-named variables, IMHO.

 I agree, changing the "-" to "_" would remove a whole ton of posts on this
 list and mean I could chop a whole bunch of dtml-let item=sequence-item.
 I really only see negative reasons for a "-".


I've tried starting this call some time ago, but it never managed to pick up 
steam.  Last time, however, someone pointed to an existing patch to do just 
that:  change *-* variable names to *_* .

If only I could remember where it was...

Have a better one,
Curtis Maloney

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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-11 Thread Rik Hoekstra


- Original Message -
From: Simon Michael [EMAIL PROTECTED]
To: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Sent: Saturday, November 11, 2000 12:59 AM
Subject: Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing


 Charlie Wilkinson [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
  ...or "the python world with some Zope limitations placed on it."
 ...
  There's a third world of course, HTML.  Most of us probably have that

 True, true. Actually this sounds like a good structure for a overview
 doc:

 "Welcome to Zope.. in which we shall encounter

 1. the plain of Text
 2. the fields of HTML
 3. the DTML domain
 4. the ZClass lands
 5. the Scripting realms; in which dwell Expressions, Methods and
 Python/Perl/XSLT"
 6. the unbound Scripting realms; here be External Methods
 7. the halls of the Serpent; where dwell it's Products

 Descend now into.. DC's Seven Circles Of Hell."
 (affectionately misnamed :-)

Hm, nice overview. What would be missing is a general Web/HTTP section.
That's another part we always take for granted, but it is not. At least,
that's my experience from two recent introductions of Zope. So, to continue
in your vein: before we land in Zope land we should go through

1. The World of the Web and why it needs a Server of Applications
2. Where we draw up Requests and Encode them
3. Learn about the Protocols that are Spoken
4. Understand the mysteries of Common Gateways
5. Pass the Secret Ways of Authorisation and Authentication

Rik


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[Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Irene Barg

Hello All,

I do read HOW-TO's, User-Guides, etc., but I think DTML
must be made simpler, or better documentation, or more examples.
As an example, within an dtml-in loop:

1.  You can print the values of sequence-items with:

(index=dtml-var sequence-index,
 number=dtml-var sequence-number,
 item=dtml-var sequence-item)

2.  To test for equality, this does not:

dtml-if "sequence-index == 0"
   (dtml-var count-adassnum Records found)
/dtml-if

3.  While this does work:
dtml-if "_['sequence-index'] == 0"
   (dtml-var count-adassnum Records found)
/dtml-if

I say this is confusing.  Don't tell me to read the Namespace
How-to, or the Zope User Guides, I did, and it's still confusing! 
Unless you find an example, that does exactly what you want, trying to
figure it out with the documentation available can be difficult.  I
found my answer to this in the 
"How-To: (How-to) access the field names and fields of any arbitrary
ZSQL query", but it took a lot of searching the 
Zope site for references to 'dtml-in'. I get so frustrated with DTML, I
want to scream.  Please don't tell me to buy the Zope book, DTML should
be more intuitive.  DTML maybe the heart
of Zope, but it's also it's achilles heel.

-- irene

--
Irene Barg  Email:  [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Steward Observatory Phone:  520-621-2602
933 N. Cherry Ave.
University of Arizona   FAX:520-621-1891
Tucson, AZ  85721   http://nickel.as.arizona.edu/~barg
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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread peter bengtson

It's a give-and-take I think.
I had the same confusion as you have right now, but after a while you learn
this syntax pretty well.
This is the same as with all syntax, and as soon as you have learned the
basics the rest is easy and from then on a matter of learning how to use
extensive functions and methods.

I found DTML confusing as well in the begining, but I know feel that DTML is
not bad at all.
The DTML syntax is sometimes even more convenient than - otherwise known to
be simple - PHP syntax.
If you read the Zope Book by Michael and Amos you'll be told to use Python
Methods for almost all functionality and leave DTML as a very basic tool for
your content visualization.

Don't give up Irene! This is just part of the steep (almost exponential)
Zope learning curve.

Greetings, peter

 I say this is confusing.  Don't tell me to read the Namespace
 How-to, or the Zope User Guides, I did, and it's still confusing!
 Unless you find an example, that does exactly what you want, trying to
 figure it out with the documentation available can be difficult.  I
 found my answer to this in the
 "How-To: (How-to) access the field names and fields of any arbitrary
 ZSQL query", but it took a lot of searching the
 Zope site for references to 'dtml-in'. I get so frustrated with DTML, I
 want to scream.  Please don't tell me to buy the Zope book, DTML should
 be more intuitive.  DTML maybe the heart
 of Zope, but it's also it's achilles heel.



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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Simon Michael

Irene Barg [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 1.  You can print the values of sequence-items with:
 
 (index=dtml-var sequence-index,
  number=dtml-var sequence-number,
  item=dtml-var sequence-item)
 
 2.  To test for equality, this does not:
 
 dtml-if "sequence-index == 0"
(dtml-var count-adassnum Records found)
 /dtml-if
 
 3.  While this does work:
 dtml-if "_['sequence-index'] == 0"
(dtml-var count-adassnum Records found)
 /dtml-if
 
 I say this is confusing.  Don't tell me to read the Namespace
 How-to, or the Zope User Guides, I did, and it's still confusing! 
 Unless you find an example, that does exactly what you want, trying to
 figure it out with the documentation available can be difficult.  I
 found my answer to this in the 
 "How-To: (How-to) access the field names and fields of any arbitrary
 ZSQL query", but it took a lot of searching the 
 Zope site for references to 'dtml-in'. I get so frustrated with DTML, I
 want to scream.  Please don't tell me to buy the Zope book, DTML should
 be more intuitive.  DTML maybe the heart
 of Zope, but it's also it's achilles heel.
 
 -- irene
 
 --
 Irene BargEmail:  [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 Steward Observatory   Phone:  520-621-2602
 933 N. Cherry Ave.
 University of Arizona FAX:520-621-1891
 Tucson, AZ  85721 http://nickel.as.arizona.edu/~barg
 --
 
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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread The Doctor What

* peter bengtson ([EMAIL PROTECTED]) [001110 10:40]:
 It's a give-and-take I think.
 I had the same confusion as you have right now, but after a while you learn
 this syntax pretty well.
 This is the same as with all syntax, and as soon as you have learned the
 basics the rest is easy and from then on a matter of learning how to use
 extensive functions and methods.

Considering that DTML is supossed to be for web/html writers, *not*
for programmers, I think that's not a good attitude to take.

I don't want web-writers having to figure out that to access a
variable, *that was being use a second ago with no extra syntax*
suddenly needs _[''] wrapped around it.  It doesn't make any sense
UNLESS you know what's going on underneith.

And since the whole attitude for Zope is, "do it right".  I'd say
this needs to be addressed at some point.

Ciao!

-- 
Although the moon is smaller than the earth, it is farther away.

The Doctor What: A really hip dude   http://docwhat.gerf.org/
[EMAIL PROTECTED]   KF6VNC

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RE: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Steve Drees

 It might be that fixing one or both of the above would reduce the DTML
 pain factor quite a bit. Certainly, it's time to do whatever it takes
 to banish these "-"-named variables, IMHO.

Agreed. But DC always raises objections when this is brought up.

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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Andy McKay


 It might be that fixing one or both of the above would reduce the DTML
 pain factor quite a bit. Certainly, it's time to do whatever it takes
 to banish these "-"-named variables, IMHO.


I agree, changing the "-" to "_" would remove a whole ton of posts on this
list and mean I could chop a whole bunch of dtml-let item=sequence-item. I
really only see negative reasons for a "-".

--
  Andy McKay, Developer.
  ActiveState.


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RE: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Max M

From: Andy McKay

 It might be that fixing one or both of the above would reduce the DTML
 pain factor quite a bit. Certainly, it's time to do whatever it takes
 to banish these "-"-named variables, IMHO.

I agree, changing the "-" to "_" would remove a whole ton of posts on this
list and mean I could chop a whole bunch of dtml-let item=sequence-item.
I
really only see negative reasons for a "-".

For once I will send a "me too" to the list. "sequence-item" is a simple and
plain design error. Decapricate it and and let us use "sequence_item" etc.
together with the other for a while and then drop the old form.

It is the single most annoying thing in dtml, and as far as I can see in the
source it should be trivial to give all those sequence-* a sequence_* name
also.

Regards Max M

Max M. W. Rasmussen,Denmark.   New Media Director
private: [EMAIL PROTECTED] work: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
-
Specialization is for insects.  -  Robert A. Heinlein


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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Morten W. Petersen

[Max M.]

| For once I will send a "me too" to the list. "sequence-item" is a simple and
| plain design error. Decapricate it and and let us use "sequence_item" etc.
| together with the other for a while and then drop the old form.

I'd like to join this mob.  ;)

It's painful and ugly to use "_['sequence-item']", "_['sequence-index']" etc...

-Morten

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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Charlie Wilkinson

First Simon, thanks for your message.  Yours is one of the most articulate
explanations I've seen on this topic.

Simon Michael [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 Irene Barg [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:

[examples of DMTL confusion...]
 
 It is confusing. There are two systems of syntax in use here - DTML's
 and python's. Once you start using "" expressions, you have left DTML
 and you are in the python world. 

...or "the python world with some Zope limitations placed on it."

There's a third world of course, HTML.  Most of us probably have that
down solid, so we tend not to think of it in the context of "skills
needed to master Zope."  But whether it's wrapping data in an HTML
table, or how to create dynamic CGI forms, mastering the integration of
HTML and DTML is a critical skill that some apparently find difficult.
(I've seen HOWTO's for it...)

 - unfortunate reality #1: you have to use "" expressions to do any
 kind of comparison, so you are pretty much forced into dealing with
 these two worlds right from the beginning.

That's fine, but in the interests of good will and sanity, Zope should
probably have a big fat warning label saying "DO NOT VENTURE HERE IF
YOU DO NOT ALREADY KNOW, OR PLAN TO LEARN PYTHON."

I did know Zope was written in Python.  I did not expect that I would have
to learn it.  Maybe that was stupid on my part, but that's what I thought.

 Still, entering the python world would normally be a good thing, since
 syntax there is simple and consistent. But,
 
 - unfortunate reality #2: certain legacy zope variables contain "-" in
 their name. In the python world, this is illegal (or rather it means
 something different) and so you are forced to remember constructs like
 _['sequence-index'] all the time.
 
 It might be that fixing one or both of the above would reduce the DTML
 pain factor quite a bit. Certainly, it's time to do whatever it takes
 to banish these "-"-named variables, IMHO.

Yes, it would help a lot.  _[] is about as non-intuitive as you can get,
especially after mixing in all the single and double quotes.  Sure, if
you understand python and how DTML wraps around it, it all makes sense,
but that's a pretty narrow market and DMTL simply doesn't need to be
that obfuscated.  If the intended market is simply "people who grok
Python", then there's really no point in something as Point n' Click n'
GUI as Zope is.

I certainly don't have all the answers, but it seems a simple matter to
allow both sequence-index *and* sequence_index - i.e., create underscore
equivalents alongside all the legacy "hyphen" variables.  If I recall,
I've even seen some user-contributed patches on this list to do just that.

That's just one example of something in Zope that's "too difficult"
screaming for change.  But one of the practical advantages of making
that kind of change is that the people who contribute their valuable
time to help the newbies (and not-so-newbies) on this list won't spend
quite so much time saying

Try this:

dtml-in "AUTHENTICATED_USER.getRoles()"
  dtml-if "_['sequence-item'] == 'Admin'"
dtml-call "REQUEST.set('edit_ok','y')"
  /dtml-if
/dtml-in

That's an awful lot of weird syntax glue just to walk a list and set a
value based on values in the list.  If someone asked how to do that on a
Perl mailing list, they'd be RTFM'ed and run out of town.  Maybe that's
not an entirely fair comparison, but still, how much of that syntax
nightmare might be avoidable?  I really don't know enough to say.
Obviously *everything* has to be wrapped in something that at least
distinguishes DTML from HTML.  How quickly or deeply (or just *how*)
one should get into python after that is another matter.

Zope reminds me of NT in some ways (except that I *like* Zope).
Zope, like NT, presents this illusion of friendly, easy learning curve,
straight-forward "get the job done and move on" philosophy.  At least that
was my first impression.  Then reality struck and I'm still recovering!
What keeps me working with Zope is not so much what Zope is, but the
promise of what it can be.  (And the hope that when I'm finally a Python
ace and understand the Zope source code from nose to tail, I'll be ready
to work in DTML ;-)

-cw-

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[Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Spicklemire, Jerry

Irene says:

 I get so frustrated with DTML, I want to scream.  
 Please don't tell me to buy the Zope book, 
 DTML should be more intuitive.  
 DTML maybe the heart of Zope, 
 but it's also it's achilles heel.

You're right about the confusion, frustration, nor are you alone. 
Still, DTML isn't the heart of Zope, it's more like the fascia. 
DTML was intended to make the task of delivering dynamic content 
wrapped up in HTML-ish Templates easier. It evolved, and took on 
a broader scope that made it enticing for lot's of "other stuff". 

Like most evolution, there are obvious benefits, and some 
unfavorable outcomes. The most glaring problems show up when 
you start trying to do things that seem to be just a step or 
two more sophisticated than simple examples that "just work". 

There's good news. Python Methods, or whatever we end up calling 
them, make actually implementing such things as easy as Py(thon). 
For some folks, it may look like the bad news is, "Now I have to 
learn Python". In perspective, learning Python is way better than 
wading through the Zope API via DTML. Way way better. 

So, the moral is, keep the DTML as simple as it can be. For 
anything else, reach for another tool. Zope has bunches of them.

BTW, the dtml-if "_['sequence-item'}" stuff is the tip of the 
DTML Complexity Iceberg. The sooner you get comfortable with 
Python Methods, ZClasses, etc., the happier you'll be.

One last point. Python Methods (a.k.a. Restricted, Internal, or 
some other as yet unheard of alternative, which we are all 
anxiously awaiting) is an add-on at this point. Target date 
for inclusion as part of the standard "Core Zope" is Zope v.2.3.

For now, see: http://www.zope.org/Members/4am/PythonMethod
 
Later,
Jerry S.
 

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Re: [Zope] why DTML confusing

2000-11-10 Thread Simon Michael

Charlie Wilkinson [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes:
 ...or "the python world with some Zope limitations placed on it."
...
 There's a third world of course, HTML.  Most of us probably have that

True, true. Actually this sounds like a good structure for a overview
doc:

"Welcome to Zope.. in which we shall encounter

1. the plain of Text
2. the fields of HTML
3. the DTML domain
4. the ZClass lands
5. the Scripting realms; in which dwell Expressions, Methods and
Python/Perl/XSLT"
6. the unbound Scripting realms; here be External Methods
7. the halls of the Serpent; where dwell it's Products

Descend now into.. DC's Seven Circles Of Hell." 
(affectionately misnamed :-) 

-Simon

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