How fast is this!
katir at hindu.org
Tue Feb 19 08:37:00 EST 2008
Chipp Walters wrote:
> Spent some time chatting with Andre Garzia this evening and he showed me this:
> Andre and Sivakatirswami wrote it.
> When you click on a letter, a 3000+ card stack is launched as a cgi,
> it is sorted and returns the lexicon list for that letter and then
> closes. It does all this in less than a second. The Lexicon stack is
> over 1MB in size and contains the lexicon editor. The stack has zero
> cgi or business logic pertaining to the cgi in it. The cgi does the
> work, opening the stack and sorting the cards and compiling the data
> and returning it to the webpage. Wow. Pretty darn fast...I'd say.
> According to Andre, there tons of Rev cgi's at himalayanacademy.com,
> sometimes multiple cgi's per page. They all run in a standard cgi way
> on a standard Apache server. They've used them for years. Seems like a
> pretty good use case.
I think it was way back in 1996 or some long by gone era when I put my
first CGI on our web site, just a year or two after the internet
started. We had the previous year moved Hinduism Today from the
CompuServe bulletins to this new thing called "the internet" The first
CGI was Matthew's Famously Vulnerable form.pl. Of course I did not know
Perl but had been hacking away Hypercard and then beloved Supercard when
Richard Gaskin turned me on to Metacard. Well that darn form.pl thingy
kept getting hacked and being used as spam blaster, even they kept even
breaking the recommended patches and I also wanted to customize a few
things, but didn't know Perl.
The day the stats showed 250,000 hits on the form I had to shut it down
and I was pretty despondent about every moving the web site forward
because I really didn't think I wanted to learn another language... and
we certainly could not afford to hire anyone at that time... I can't
remember his name... fellow from NY was programming web backend all in
xTalk... shared a script with me... and that, plus the transparency of
Scott Raney's little "Echo.cgi" gave me courage.
It was a Eureka moment when I realized that my years of hacking xtalk
were suddenly convertible for use on the back end of the web site.. and
it was so easy! My experience was mostly wrapped around text string
manipulations for in house publication production tools.. and the day I
wrote a CGI to build daily master course lesson from raw text files and
put that on a cron to run at midnite I was smiling like a canary for a week
In 1998 we began our daily blog before the word "blog' was invented:
I was choking on the idea of building html/web content daily and so I
automated all the daily creation in Supercard... my goal was: get daily
photos and input and build the daily web page in 30 Minutes... well,
supertalk was great but, not quite robust enough...i needed FTP tools
and other internet stuff not available in SC... I was already dabbling
in MC... a little daunted by the lack of a "real" IDE... so when I heard
that Revolution was on the horizon I signed up for the first version
even before Kevin had released it.
I never looked back... in house if any one asked me "can we do this on
the web server" I said "sure no problem" and today our cgi bins has
100's of xtalk cgi's running... I also have PMwiki running (love it!)
so I got some exposure to PhP... very painful relative to my xTalk
experience. I think I made a nuisance of myself on the PMwiki forum by
saying "in xTalk it might look like this:" and offer an algorithm in
transcript in 10 lines of code that would take 100 lines in PhP to do
the same thing...so, while PhP is robust and obviously mature and
forward moving web tool, it is still, well, painful and molasses...
We're moving Hinduism Today into XOOPS so PhP will start to eclipse
xTalk on the server...we really need to get into a proper CMS
environment and our magazine is a perfect "fit"... so it remains to be
seen how far Revolution can stay relevant in this world... It will
always be an important tool.. but just how far... that's another
discussion... ala Dan Schafer's earlier observations, all of which are
somewhat prophetically coming true... but... AJAX with Rev on the back
end is very powerful......Next on my agenda: take raw content (photos
and text-caption files) and build Highslide JS web objects for inclusion
in web pages via SSI's -- love doing <!include exec="someCoolRev.cgi"
--> and then let revolution do the work of building into that space on
the page-- that is after all, what PHP is doing, but at 1/10th the speed
of Revolution on the same box/CPU...
So, when you face innovative ambitions like this, there is only one tool
of choice and we have it
Don't miss Andre's presentation at the conference!
Best wishes from Kauai (where it is finally drying out after 90 days of
rain with only 8 days of sunshine in that period...)
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