lMaker 1.11 review

by rbytes.net on

lMaker is a php class designed for web masters and programmers who want a simple way to generate complex, dynamic web sites from easi

License: GPL (GNU General Public License)
File size: 6K
Developer: Michael Thompson
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lMaker is a php class designed for web masters and programmers who want a simple way to generate complex, dynamic web sites from easily maintainable text files.

lMaker project is designed to help automate some of the most repetitive features of website design thus leaving the web site maintainer free to focus on the unique elements of the content.

Using lMaker to generate web pages on the fly from text files typically reduces the amount of data in files the web master has to maintain by at least a factor of 4.

lMaker was originally conceived as a way to handle the repetitive elements of HTML markup for the long lists of links often found within portals, site indexes or site maps.

Providing a consistent appearance and persistent navigation area in web pages can result in a lot of repetition within the HTML source. With lMaker, only the unique information is required for each link; the url, the text or image, and optionally a description.

All the repetitive elements that may accompany each link, such as markup for HTML tables, lists or any other decorative features associated with each link need only be defined once.

lMaker makes it easy to implement the popular “tab” style controls by generating multiple views using only one php script together with one or more text files.

The ability to generate an entire website such that each page has a uniform appearance and persistent navigation area without resorting to the use of frames is another key feature.

Website usability studies have shown that frames “break the fundamental user model of the web page,” interfere with bookmarking and can make the website problematic for search engines.

There are many other methods that may be used to achieve the same results as the ones shown in the following examples but lMaker's systematic approach can greatly reduce the amount of staffing required to maintain many complex websites.

Fundamental Concepts:

lMaker generates web pages by processing plain tab-delimited text files. Each text file should consist of lines in the pattern of keyword [tab] value. The complete documentation for each of the defined keywords is available at the project website.

lMaker processes text files from top to bottom and the order in which the case sensitive keywords are encountered is important. When some keywords are processed the value associated with it is held for later use.

Other keywords are designed to generate output as soon as they are encountered. It depends on the way the keyword is designed to function.

In the lMaker processing model, a valid input file is expected to contain one or more views. Within a view we may specify one or more output modes and typically a list of links.

When links are encountered they are output as HTML markup in a format dictated by the current mode.

The expected keyword sequence is: view then mode then link.

The keyword view is used to identify which sets of lines within a file will be processed when the given view is selected.

For example, the line view[tab]view1 specifies that the lines following it are to be processed only when value of the view argument passed the lMaker processMap function equals “view1”.

The lines after view[tab]view2 would be normally be associated only with the selection “view2” and so on. A view continues until the next view statement is encountered or the file ends. Listing 1 illustrates this concept.

What's New in This Release:
This release adds an '

lMaker 1.11 keywords