posted on 1:10 PM, July 30, 2007
The ZineMachine plug-in recently received numerous updates. The core functions (data handling, form processing, indexing, and article display) were moved into a framework, and the plug-in was reduced to a simple command and control layer. The expectation is that the framework can now differentiate into different modules to handle subsets of the Zine feature set, such as indexes, forms, etc., which can be utilized selectively by plug-ins. Also, the catch-all Zine plug-in can now differentiate into different plug-ins for specific applications, such as blogs, forums, news systems, etc., and provide more specialized interfaces for each.
ZineMachine output now has a more versatile CSS structure that should allow for quite flexible styling and templating. One particular objective was to allow for table cell-like formatting of comments, to emulate the appearance of some popular bulletin-board systems. This format is in fact being used in our own forums and comments.
Much of the default presentation logic has been moved out of the code and into the configuration file (cgi/conf/Zine.conf). This should make it easier to customize display behaviours, but the system no longer works acceptably without a configuration file.
Other features added to the ZineMachine in the course of this upgrade:
best practices (5)
content management (12)
data handling (7)
graphic design (21)
html formatting (7)
plug-in modules (28)
visual tutorial (29)
web protocols (9)