report from the Neanderthal Grok sprint (day 1-3)

  • By Martijn Faassen
  •  • 
  • 2007-10-04
  •  • 
  • Tags: 
  • grok
  • sprint

Hello from the fourth Grok sprint! I wanted to write this report tuesday but didn't get around to it. The Neanderthal Grok sprint is now more than halfway over: monday and tuesday were full sprint days. Wednesday was our day off visiting Neanderthal itself, but we did do some more sprinting in the evening at the hotel.

So what have we worked on so far?

  • The website. We've have a team working on reimplementing this website on top of Plone 3, so we lose the current maintenance bottlenecks in getting new Grok tutorials published and modified. We've put the contents in a Plone 3 website, using PloneHelpCenter, and we've also been working on integrating a layout for into a Plone skin. Hopefully our experiences with will also be helpful in the efforts to update the wider website, which we're keeping track of. Having a good web presence is really important for Grok so I'm thrilled with the progress we've made.
  • megrok.kss is KSS integration for Grok. KSS makes it really easy to make your web pages dynamic without writing javascript. megrok.kss makes it really easy to use KSS with Grok. There is more work to do (it needs to be released, for instance), but using KSS can now be accomplished with very little code.
  • We've made a lot of progress on the reference documentation for Grok. Both the content itself as well as the method to maintain and publish it were improved. JW, also here at the sprint, already discussed this extensively in his blog entry about the sprint.
  • JW also mentions a smaller task: Grok now doesn't grok modules that are called 'ftests' and 'tests' by default. Generally one doesn't want the test setup to be grokked when running a live application, after all.
  • Work is being done to extend and improve the Grok admin UI, in particular to show information about which views are available for a content object. Also one of our conclusions of these discussions is that "admin UI" is not a very good name. It's really a UI dedicated to serving developers while they develop a Grok-based application. We haven't figured out a good new name for this yet.
  • Genshi integration. Grok uses Zope Page Templates (ZPT) as its main template language. Genshi is a templating language quite a bit like ZPT, but with a lot of improvements and new ideas. We think it could be a good fit for Grok, so we're working on ways to it easy to use Genshi with Grok. This involves making Grok's templating system more pluggable and investigating how to make our templating use cases (include images, reuse templates, etc) work with Genshi.
  • Some work was done to investigate making grokkers produce Zope 3 configuration actions. This needs to be done to make it possible to use Grok-based code with pure Zope 3 projects (of course we can alreasy use all of Zope 3 with Grok, but we need to be a good Zope 3 citizen).
  • Finally, the most critically important task of the sprint: pinning down the versions of the packages that Grok depends on, so that when we release the next version of Grok, grokproject and buildouts will work and continue working no matter what new releases of our dependencies appear. We really need to make the process of installing Grok reliable.

As I mentioned, yesterday was our day off. We went to the nice Neanderthal museum in Neanderthal. We had a great time. Our patient tour guide probably got an unusual amount of observations and comments from us bunch of geeks (me...) on human evolution. :)

We have a day and a half of sprint left at this time, which is good, as there's lots to work on still!