/[webpac]/openisis/current/doc/OpenIsis.txt
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Contents of /openisis/current/doc/OpenIsis.txt

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Mon Mar 8 17:43:12 2004 UTC (16 years, 7 months ago) by dpavlin
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initial import of openisis 0.9.0 vendor drop

1 By now, OpenIsis is mainly used for web publishing of Isis databases.
2 Web developers use the Java, Perl or PHP binding for this.
3
4
5 There also is a command line version which serves as a demonstration
6 and test of the various features and can be used as a utility for
7 data import/export and similar tasks.
8
9
10 A graphical, standalone user interface similar to UNESCO's WinIsis
11 will be developed during 2003, after the Tcl/Tk binding is finished.
12 See
13 > Status current status
14
15 * developing OpenIsis
16
17 In general, there are no plans to reimplement every piece of code ever
18 written for isis. To be of practical value, OpenIsis has to maintain
19 compatibility in the format of the database files anyway. So, one may
20 use winisis or whatever existing import scripts to create and maintain
21 the database, yet deploy OpenIsis' perl interface to run powerful
22 reports and the Java Native Interface to allow queries from a Servlet
23 based web application.
24
25
26 OpenIsis will focus on providing tools rather than applications. For example,
27 there will be no attempt to mirror the full functionality of winisis.
28 To achieve this, OpenIsis provides access from the most important
29 programming languages: Java and PHP for the web, Perl for the scripts
30 and Tcl/Tk for platform independent GUIs (partly DONE).
31 All others can, of course, link the lib.
32
33 * Roadmap for the development of OpenIsis -- as of September 2002
34
35 After more than a year of OpenIsis development,
36 experimenting with various options and environments
37 and some feedback, we learned something about what
38 is important to the community and what is not.
39
40
41 * findings and goals
42
43 - A fairly portable C library that can be plugged into Java, Perl, PHP
44 or Tcl proved to be valuable and estimated by several developers.
45 There was not much demand for a pure Java version.
46 - There is high demand for a GUI version similar to WinISIS
47 (cross-plattform, of course) with a safe multi-user capability.
48 - This in turn requires a simple but fast and robust server.
49 Multithreading can greatly improve the throughput.
50 - Users are used to incompatible file formats, formatting and so on.
51 There is little of a standard to follow.
52 So building a next generation system clearly is more
53 important than sticking to the (which?) legacy too much.
54 - The power buried in the similarity between ISIS records
55 and other structures like, for example, E-Mails is not leveraged.
56 - The existing versions of the formatting language are the result
57 of a process of growth, adding feature after feature.
58 The logic is mixed with the presentation (e.g. HTML literals).
59
60 * conclusions
61
62 - The multiformat support will be dropped in favour of an efficient
63 support of the "DOS/WinISIS" (packed little endian) structures.
64 - The database kernel has to support basic thread-safety
65 for use in Java and other server environments.
66 - Tcl will be the scripting language of choice: Tcl/Tk for portable GUIs
67 and a limited set of Tcl commands for server side scripting.
68
69 * flavours
70
71 - The core library will not contain any particular external technology,
72 so it is as lightweight as possible and can be linked into Java,
73 Perl, PHP, Tcl and the like.
74 - There are binaries in plain, with Tcl and with Tcl/Tk.
75 Any of these can act standalone, as client, as server, or both.
76
77
78 volunteers are welcome !
79
80 ... ToDo

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