Forum OpenACS Q&A: Response to Article on ACS x Zope

Posted by Don Baccus on
Jimmie raises some interesting points.  He's the second person to hint  at the complexity of Zope being an issue.  The fact that notions such  as user roles and permissions are built into the core is very good, but the provision of such things shouldn't lead to great complexity.  In fact, this is one of the more frustrating things about the ACS in its current form - rationalization of such things would simplify the ACS, not add to its complexity, at least from the POV of a module author.

My impression is that the Zope framework was designed and implemented before a great deal in the way of modules were hung on it.  That's a great approach if you get the design right.  I have to wonder if perhaps it's not overdesigned, though, given comments about its complexity and also the relative immaturity of a bunch of the modules.  Both of these observations are based on comments by users, I've never used it myself.

Also, the basic AOLserver/Tcl/RDBMS paradigm is a very simple one.  There's virtue in keeping things as simple as possible, isolating complexity to necessary areas, like the API between modules and the core technology.  I think the ACS will grow to the point where there's a core which provides services to modules, a well-defined module interface to that core, and a much higher degree of separation of the generation of the UI/presentation from computation.

Do folks in the Zope world talk at all about simplifying their model?