Avalon Website: Plan for Redesign
The current Avalon web site (http://jakarta.apache.org/avalon/) contains alot of duplicate information, and no real design from a users perspective. The site would benefit greatly from a redesign. By redesign, I am not referring to the style of the pages but its content.
Because Avalon has become a top level project, and we have a fresh web space available to us, we need to look at making the site useable. For instance, hitting the user with all the sub projects isn't really a good idea. It's like going to a high class restaurant and they slap a huge piece of beef on your plate--no appetizers, salad, or anything else to cleanse the palate.
We have several types of information to keep track of on the site. First and formost should be news and current events. Its a nice way to get users acclamated and maybe even excited about what is going on. We should also have a section that describes the PMC and the Avalon Charter / By-Laws for those who are interested. We need a quick summary of what Avalon is, and what it is not. We might want to devote a couple pages to that topic. Lastly, we should look at putting up the actual project documentation. The guides are good, but they should be associated with a topic.
We need to follow a few general rules of thumb. All important information should be within the first three pages of navigation (with the exception of the API docs). Our URI space should make sense, and be consistent throughout the site. For example, if the user knows that http://avalon.apache.org/phoenix/api/ gives him the JavaDocs, then the same should apply for http://avalon.apache.org/framework/api/. The sub-sub-sub project thing is confusing at best. We need to find a better way to associate our technologies. Lastly, we need a developer's corner to address CVS access, coding standards, and other relevant information about actively contributing.
News and Announcements
Every website I go to that provides products and projects and I find useful greets you with the current happenings of the project. Things that are exciting, and indirectly impact the project should go here. Examples are releases, news about other projects using Avalon, and of course outside news that has an impact on our community.
PMC and Administrativa
Any way you slice it, we need to put our charter and bylaws on the site. We should also put up some docs that describe the <strong>intent</strong> of the words in the more legalese docs.
Our guides are detailed instructions about different aspects of Avalon. We might want to look at merging them into one super guide, something that can be a reference for the shelf.
Another alternative is to break up the documentation into the following sub sections: How-To, Why (background theory), FAQ, TODO, and Changes.
We should only have one project in the future.
An even simpler Fortress example
I have tried the FortressStandaloneExample, it is a good starting point, but yet too complicated. I need a custom container that does just what FortressStandaloneExample does, but I don't want default roles to be defined like in http://cvs.apache.org/viewcvs.cgi/avalon-excalibur/fortress/container-impl/src/java/org/apache/avalon/fortress/impl/role/FortressRoleManager.java?rev=1.11&hideattic=0&view=auto, and I just can't figure out how to achieve that purpose. Actually, the example from page 41 of "Developing with Avalon" did just what I want, but it uses classes that are depracated. So, I think it would be great to have a tutorial that explains how to achieve the same purpose as in "Developing with Avalon" but with the new classes. CedricVidal