[Grok-dev] Re: Skinning/themeing

Martijn Faassen faassen at startifact.com
Sat May 19 16:27:26 EDT 2007

Martin Aspeli wrote:
>> Such a separation is indeed attractive. I'm worried about the 
>> conceptual overhead it entails for the simple case. For many smaller 
>> applications doing this separation isn't worth. Grok in other areas 
>> tries to bring things closer together (without losing flexibility, 
>> hopefully), and introducing a strong separation between theme and 
>> template pulls in the other direction. Note I'm just expressing 
>> worries - I think these potential problems might be overcome, we just 
>> should be aware of them.
> I think it's almost a problem that overcomes itself. If you are able to 
> "compose" UI pages in one way and then apply a branding to it in another 
> step of the pipeline, then you can always (well, always if we design it 
> right) choose to ignore the "theme" part of the pipeline and just stick 
> your app-look-and-feel-and-branding markup straight into the "compose" 
> templates.

That's a good point.

I'll go here to just remark on some risks with a pipelining to a 
separate system (deliverance) approach. That's not to say we shouldn't 
go there, I'm just analyzing tradeoffs:

If a pipelining system is there and documented, people might feel 
obliged to use it, even though they don't need it (yet). A pretty weak 
risk perhaps, but something to be aware of.

And, again, a separate system to use for theming does increase the 
conceptual burden for the developer. Evolution of an application from 
everything-in-one-place to pipelines may not be entirely smooth either.

An in-system approach (where you work with concepts related to existing 
Grok concepts, like views, and existing templates) might allow people to 
learn and evolve more smoothly.



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