[LON-CAPA-dev] Help text

Scott Harrison lon-capa-dev@mail.lon-capa.org
Thu, 09 May 2002 15:45:43 -0400

Dear Matthew:

> Well, I doubt there will be so many help pages at first that we cannot
> easily add in any tags needed for indexing.  I think it is more valuable
> at this time to actually have help pages.  What metadata do these pages
> need to have in order to be indexed automagically?

The only "metadata" would be title and hierarchy.
The target directory location would be the hierarchy... (maybe we don't
want a hierarchy, but anyways...) for instance:
+ Instructor Tools
  + Spreadsheet
  + Plotting equations
  + RAT
  + Class lists
+ General information
  + Remote control
  + Roles
  + Answering Problems

(And of course, this should be in sync ... and draw from ... 

And then, students may not want to be bothered with instructor

> >(Ideally, the interface help pages would streamline nicely
> >down the vertical partition toward the actual documented
> >code base.  But...priorities...priorities..)
> I have no idea what that means :)

Pressman, Rumbaugh, etc; a lot of standard books on
software engineering talk about horizontal layers
and vertical partions.

Horizontal layers "make sense of the system".
That is to say, they are the levels of computer services
that exist.

For example,

---------- LON-CAPA web interface ------------------------
------------- Apache::* libraries ------------------------
---------------- mod_perl --------------------------------
----------------- apache ---------------------------------
-- shared libraries (including CPAN libraries) -----------
----------------- kernel ---------------------------------

Contrastingly, vertical partitions are how the software
design proceeds across the horizontal layers to provide
user services.

So, restated, ideally, there would be a clear path from each
LON-CAPA interface to the source code documentation
that was involved in presenting and processing information
from that interface.  

Testing might ask, horizontally:
* are all the kernel and shared libraries present that
  need to be present
* is the web server running in the right configuration?
* mod_perl, is it working?
* are all the CPAN libraries present?

Vertical partitions might ask, testing-wise,
is the metadata database interface working
and what is all the source code involved with it?

The testing strategy that I have been trying to find
time to implement is:

Horizontal layer testing in:

Vertical partition testing in:


    we are all part of the matrix. :)

The blue pill or the red pill?