Web Oriented Object Framework

User Guide (Version 0.5b4)

User Guide (Version 0.5b4)

Using static resources

Any Web application uses static resources such as stylesheets or images that are linked from the application's Web pages. For performance reasons, it is best that these are directly served by the hosting web server without going through Woof!. By convention (actually default configuration), such resources are expected to reside in the public subdirectory under the Woof! root. As described in the Installation chapter, the web server is configured so that files under this directory can be directly served to the client.

Although Woof! plays no part in serving static resources, it still needs to be able to correctly generate links to these resources. A page could hard code the link to the resource but if the resource is a local file, a better way is to use the Woof! controller methods such as include_stylesheet which can locate a static resource based on the controller. The advantage is not just that the resource can be moved without having to change all the hardcoded links but also that sharing and specialization of resources becomes easier.

As an example, suppose you have a website displaying company information and you have structured the different areas of the website into different modules such as product information, customer support, investor relations and so on. The layout is identical in all cases (header, footer, main content etc.) except that the image in the header depends on the section of the web site.

In this scenario, if you hard code the links to the images, you would need to create separate headers for each area (module) of the web site, increasing maintenance work whenever changes are needed. Instead, you could have a single header with the line

[my include_image section_logo.png alt "section logo"]

Woof! will then generate a link pointing to the appropriate image for that area of the web site. How this is accomplished is described in the next section.