Applications and directory structure

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Applications and directory structure

Web-O-Matic is the tool; WOM is the programming language. When writing in WOM, one thinks in terms of applications, namely collections of Web pages belonging (in the IFS' case) to a particular economic model. Some pages may be static, but in general, pages will be dynamic, responding to requests from the client by changing the contents of fields, adding rows to tables, replotting graphs, or changing their state in some other way. Applications will usually have quite a complex life: a typical example would be:

  1. A login form is displayed, inviting the user to type a name and password;
  2. The server checks this, sending back a page for the main parameters (for a tax system, say) if the authorisation is valid;
  3. The user enters some parameters, and opts to request an optional sub-form to give extra details for one of them (such as specifying that VAT, though 17% for most alcoholic drinks, is to be 25% for vodka);
  4. The user presses the Start button, and the model runs; the server then sends back a summary table of its results;
  5. The user clicks on one cell of this table and requests a graph to be plotted;
  6. And so on ...

In our current implementation, there is a root directory for all applications. Each application must have a subdirectory under this, in which all its page definitions live. These are written into text files which have the *.wom extension. The simplest pages - static ones - contain only HTML. Most pages, however, will be dynamic, containing WOM commands as well.

Jocelyn Ireson-Paine
Sat Oct 12 23:35:52 BST 1996