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From "Mark R. Diggory" <>
Subject Re: [commons-build] Thoughts on Navigation (client side includes).
Date Fri, 20 Feb 2004 18:14:27 GMT

Dennis Lundberg wrote:

> Mark R. Diggory wrote:
>> I've been looking a the usage of javascript in the browser as a 
>> mechanism of "Client Side Includes". I've been considering the idea 
>> that this can be used a a powerful mechanism to pull global navigation 
>> content into the site navigation without having to regenerate all the 
>> separate project pages everytime something changes on the global 
>> navigation for the Commons.
> Why not server-side includes? Or is that not available?

I'm open to alternatives if they are available. I haven't however, seen 
their usage before on any jakarta sites... I'm not sure how to approach 
it exactly.

>> For instance
>> <SCRIPT LANGUAGE="JavaScript" type="text/javascript" 
>> src="navigation.js"></SCRIPT>
>> could be added to the commons-site.jsl such that it would be used to 
>> include the contents of "navigation.js" into the navigation bar on the 
>> client side.
> <snip/>
>> This way, any time a change was made to navigation.js, it would show 
>> up instantly on all the commons projects navigation. as teh 
>> navigation.js is pull independently and rendered in the browser.
>> thoughts?
>> -Mark
> I think that relying on JavaScript for such a crucial thing like 
> navigation is a bad idea. The idea of having a single place for the 
> navigation-meny is, of course, a good one. But there should be a better 
> way to do it.
> -- 
> Dennis Lundberg

Point well taken.

Important to note though, this is only for the "List of Commons 
Projects" on the navigation menu, something which should be available as 
well with one click using the "Jakarta Commons" Logo link which would 
take you to the top level of the Commons site.

To include a little "self-critique", I suspect as well, the list of 
projects isn't going to change dramatically over time, it may be wise to 
not use javascript given how often it may get altered.


Mark Diggory
Software Developer
Harvard MIT Data Center

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