Hi Brian,


> I'd be very interested to hear any ideas you folks have 
> on ways to help "make simple things simple" for development 
> and to allow people to deal with complexity only as they 
> begin to need it...

One of the features the stands when a newbies starts poking 
around at Zope.org is the wealth of contributed modules. 
Most of these were created as an aid to development, sort 
of a "make the process of creating a complex thing into a 
simpler process" approach. 

However, it's kind of like all the goodies available for 
Linux, or Perl, or Python itself, and any number of other 
Open Source projects that have generated lot's of add-ons. 
The problem is that finding time to try them all to see 
which turn out to be useful is another kind of complexity 
in itself.

It seems like the Zope community should be able to benefit 
by leveraging all the great stuff that's there. On the other 
hand, the sheer volume turns out to be a barrier.

I keep coming back to the notion of building a subset of the 
most useful, solid, and well documented modules into a "core" 
Zope distribution, so that they are available as "add" 
options without lot's unzipping, restarting, etc. 

Beyond that, a painless way to upgrade versions of all things 
Zope would definitely encourage folks to keep up with 
security fixes, and other improvements. Think about Debian's 
and FreeBSD's update tools.

In order to get to the "consulting ware" vision of a more 
productiive Zope, "out of the box", this is the kind of 
thinking that needs to be adopted. We know there are 
wonderful and astounding things that are possible if you 
aren't afraid to get your hands dirty reading source code, 
but most folks expect anything they need to do to be sitting 
there waiting behind a menu option!

This sounds to me like a higher level of object creation, 
Martijn Faassen's Formulator comes to mind, that can be 
selected and integrated into an existing site that has 
graphic standards already defined, which is itself another 
high level object that could help. A Graphic Standards 
"Template" that can be applied in the form of a "wrapper", 
and can be adjusted trough a forms based interface with 
options for colors, type style, background images, etc.

Jerry S.

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