[Zope-Annce] FYI: Zope Weekly News

Mike Pelletier mike@digicool.com
Wed, 17 Nov 1999 18:21:36 -0500


    Zope Weekly News is a digest of some of the useful and interesting
    events which have occurred on the various Zope mailing lists and the
    Zope.org site.  It is published each Wednesday evening.

New Products and Announcements

  * Paul Everitt announces Sybase support in a joint press release.


  * "Zen" released ZRadius, a product which allows you to authenticate
    web users via the Radius authentication protocol.


  * Anthony Pfrunder announces VisualZope 0.1a.  From his web page:

      Basically, the "goal" of VZ is to provide a SIMPLE visual
      editing system for graphic designers which works cross-browser
      and takes advantage of the acquisition and role systems within
      Zope. What follows is a brief description of the components
      which make up the final VZ system (probably more accurate than
      previous posts).

  * Jeff Sheldon has started a weblog of his experiences with Zope.
    Jeff Sheldon is new to Zope, and is not a professional programmer.
    His weblog is a valuable resource to those also starting out with



  * Zope 2.1.0 beta 2 has been released.  This release includes fixes
    for issues found in beta 1, an updated load_site.py script and
    Martijn Pieters' patches to implement try/except/else and
    try/finally in DTML. Unless something major comes up, this will be
    the final beta before 2.1.0 final.


  * "4am" has submitted an update to his PythonMethod product.  It
    allows methods, written in Python, to be created via the Zope web
    management interface.


  * "Drew" contributed an update to his Photo product.  It generates
    thumbnail views of images at the user's preferred size.  Requires


  * Itamar Shtull-Trauring announced ZCache v0.2.  ZCache is a Python
    Product which allows you to cache expensive methods, taking strain
    off your server.  It also generates 'Last-Modified' headers,
    aiding browser and proxy caches.


Zope.org items

  * "Zen" submitted a tip he picked up from Michel Pelletier.  He
    explains how volatile attributes work, and how to populate them
    when your object is loaded from the database.  Volatile attributes
    are attributes which do not get written to the database, and are
    good for data which changes frequently.


  * "AlexR" submitted a How-To detailing the use of the DTML entity
    syntax.  "DTML entities" are chunks of DTML which look like this:


Notable Discussions

  * DTML is a HUGE topic this week.  Discussions spill across several 
    lists.  A very good job is done of identifying DTML's weak points.

    Many hold that the difficulty in using DTML comes from it's roots
    as a reporting language-- it isn't supposed to be used for logic.
    The problem is, there isn't yet an easy replacement for DTML as a
    programming language.  Python Methods are cited as an excellent
    start on providing a means of moving logic out of DTML.
    Christopher Petrilli mentions that DC is looking at grooming
    Python Methods for inclusion in Zope.

    Others feel that reporting vs. programming is a forced
    distinction, and that it is awkward to have to use two different
    solutions.  The claim that generating HTML is actually a rather
    complex task, and the powerful but ugly features of DTML are a
    necessary evil.

    DTML is compared to Perl!  <gasp!>  Otherwise, lots of very useful
    tips for using DTML are revealed.  An excellent read for DTML
    beginners and wizards alike.


  * Darcy Clark alerts the list of Jon Udell's latest article
    mentioning Zope.  Jon's article discusses the ease of using Zope
    with Windows databases, the pain of using it with Unix databases,
    cheers ODBC, and jeers lack of a similar magic bullet for Unix.
    The thread then continues to discuss the relative merits of
    various free databases and using them with Zope.


    Also, Karl Fast does an excellent job of summarising the thread,
    generating more sage comments.


  * Francois-Regis CHALAOUX posed a question about using Zope with
    virtual hosting.  Several useful responses were generated.


  * Ben Galbraith submitted a comparison of Zope and Cold Fusion and
    solicited comments.  Some of the usual suspects offer theirs.


  * Otto Hammersmith started a thread about Zope and security.  In it,
    he speaks of some of the security pitfalls that unsuspecting Zope
    users could experience.  Brian Lloyd submits some solutions.


  * Paul Everitt wrote in to remind us that there is a
    zope-dev@zope.org list for technical discussions.  A brisk
    discussion developed to debate what constituted a technical


  * Theodore Patrick launched a lengthy thread with questions about
    the effect of threading in Zope.  A number of folks from Digital
    Creations provide answers.  The discussion moves on with high
    volume and content to the topics of benchmarking and performance
    tuning Zope.


  * Farzad Farid revives the uncacheable image thread.  Because
    Acquisition can lead to different URLs being generated for images
    when viewed from different locations, it makes caching difficult
    and can generate excessive traffic.  Others offer advice to solve
    this problem.


  * David Harrison asks zope-dev how to return an image generated
    on-the-fly by an External Method.  Answers found.


Mike Pelletier