#1 2005-12-02 12:07:32

From: Paris
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2

Wiclear presentation


I'd like to make a small presentation of Wiclear, I guess it can complements the one found in its description page.

Wiclear was designed to replace a small custom wiki engine I wrote for my first site on another project.
This site was multilang, all pages were available both in french and in english. There were no relationships between a page in one lang and the same page translated in another lang : all titles had to be carefully crafted, prefixing the title by "FR_" and "EN_" in order to keep some kind of order. But this wasn't enough because if you were on a page FR_X and you wanted to see page EN_X, there was no direct link between the two.

Another thing that annoyed me is there was no easy way to auto generate a site plan, leading to information being difficult to find. This is because a wiki is usually a list of flat links, so there is no way to have a real navigation scheme. And a friend of mine showed me a custom site he made (with flat static html pages) where all pages were organized in a tree : generating a site plan was easy.

So the two main goals I had when designing Wiclear was :
- a real multi lang support for the content where all translation of the same page would be linked together
- a hierarchical structure so that it is easy to know where you are, you can easily generate a site plan, and you can even perform automatic operations on the whole site (you can apply an operation on a page, or on all children of this page)

I started to code by looking at Dotclear code which is a blog software. I thought it was well designed, so I tried to adopt the same design at the beginning (it's not really true now), and I now have the same theme capabilities as it. This means you can create several themes, switch between them when you want and include what you want in your design.

At one moment I said stop, I wanted the wiki engine to stay small so that it stays easy to maintain.
Basic native functionalities were here (multi lang support, hierarchical content, as well as basic wiki features : edition, history, diffs, comments, ACLs, ...) so I started to try making integration of new features easy, and basically what it takes, is to create a new directory in the "tools" directory, to create a .desc file that gives metadata about your plugin, and to complete some global structure. With that in place, you can intercept most pages, change the title in the browser, react to user form submission : it is quite easy to make a plugin.

At the moment, it exists several plugins : UTF8 to transforms your wiki into an UTF8 compatible wiki, SitePlan to generate a SitePlan page, Attachments, to attach and upload files to your server, Trackbacks to make trackbacks and WikiBlog to transform your wiki into a blog while retaining all wiki features.

Aside of that, Wiclear is fully multiuser with user/moderator/admin capabilities, it can set global rights (open registration, open contents, open comments) or tighten rights on wanted pages with ACLs. It supports email notification, full text search, syndication, security features (anti robot checks during registration, security checks when login), conflict handling when multiple users try to edit the same page...
Wiclear also has an admin panel and an install program.

I hope I have given enough clue of the pros/cons of Wiclear : Wiclear is not good if you want advanced editing capabilities, but it can be good for you if you want a real multilang support and/or a different way to organize information than traditional wikis.

Last edited by david (2006-01-27 14:22:24)



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