Archive of UserLand's first discussion group, started October 5, 1998.

How Frontier Changed My Life

Author:Chris Grayson
Posted:1/6/1999; 6:30:58 AM
Topic:How Frontier Changed My Life
Msg #:1853
Prev/Next:1852 / 1854

Dear Userland,

Yesterday, while I was shaving, I realized that Frontier has changed my life.

When we first started really using an intranet within my workgroup, I started playing with HTML. It was fun - I liked it! As I got deeper into a web-based work lifestyle, using the web more and seeing it more and more as a useful team-collaboration tool, I quickly realized some basic principles of good web design. Primary among these was consistency of appearance and navigation among pages within a site. The problem that quickly also became apparent was that although making the look of a site consistent was pretty easy, any changes to that look necessitated a sudden abundance of tedious work; e.g., edit every HTML file and change the BGCOLOR attribute from "#999999" to "#666666". (Something trivial like that could be done quickly on small sites with "Find/Replace", but not all changes were trivial and not all sites were small.)

I had considered changing my career direction, from systems programming toward web-publishing, but the kind of tedium just described loomed too large. The design would be fun, but I feared that the maintenance and upkeep would become drudgery.

I'm not sure how I first came across Scripting News. I think it must have been during the Steve-Jobs-returns-to-Apple soap opera. After that, I continued to be a regular reader, and inevitably I downloaded Frontier to try it out.

And I found #template.

Hey... now the layout of a page is factored out into *one* *place*! Changes can be made in that *one* *place* instead of in all the HTML files! What happened then, although I didn't realize it until yesterday morning's shave, was that web work became fun again.

Of course there's much more to Frontier: the scripting, the ODB, the server stuff, the suites, the user community, etc. etc. etc. And almost most importantly of all is the paradigm that I'm in charge and can use Frontier to do what *I* want (as opposed to, say, MS FrontPage, in which any theme you can imagine is available, as long as you can only imagine the ones provided).

So, today, I *am* looking at a new career direction, and it is toward web-publishing and web applications. And it's due, in no small part, to Frontier.

Thank you.

Chris Grayson

(a very satisfied customer)

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