a mantra

Attach One, Publish Many

Over and over I repeat this to myself. Attach one, publish many. What does it mean?

Attach One

Every Berylium object can have exactly one data file associated with it, whether it be an HTML file, PDF, JPEG image, or WAV audio.

This seems like it might be a limitation, but it's really not. We could create an application using Berylium that allowed an author to attach a Word document, PDF, and Flash version of the same document to that document's object record.

But not just yet. In my ideal world, an author attaches a single content-rich file -- the raw materials, shall we say, that all other versions can be made from.

Then, using a combination of Berylium contexts (and/or the e99o media server, coming soon!) other versions are generated from the master file.

This works better for some things (images, audio) than others (Word to HTML conversion is nasty), so I may have to burst my bubble and allow multiple attachments someday. But, um, let's try not to.

Publish Many

This is the flip side of the single-master-attachment strategy. Because conversion from one format to another is often time-consuming, my goal is to convert the master data to oft-needed formats right up front, and publish static caches of that converted data in known locations.

For example, when you upload an image file, a thumbnail is generated and published alongside the static cache of the full-size image.

Berylium will automatically keep track of as many different versions of an object as you feel it necessary to publish.

Attach one, publish many. Let's see if it works.

By Chris Snyder on June 6, 2003 at 12:42am

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