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pencrafters
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Store Template Setup...?
« on: 08/15/02 at 19:22:56 »
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Hi,

I am faily new to CPShop, and I have been reading the docs, and though it all sounds nice, and easy, I am a bit confused on how to set-up CPShop for my stores!

I want a master product index page with a linked index thumbnail of each product type displayed.

The next level down shows linked thumbails of individual products.

I am not sure how to implement CPShop in this set-up, but my guess is to use templates, and filters.

I am interested to know if anybody has done this using HTML, and if so, how.  I am not looking for a PHP, or ASP solution, just HTML.


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Re: Store Template Setup...?
« Reply #1 on: 08/15/02 at 20:26:37 »
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Let me clarify a few terms before I answer your question.  (Prepare for a lecture...)

Every webpage is HTML.  Whether you make the page yourself through a text editor, generate the page with a program like FrontPage, or have a cgi- or PHP-script do it for you, all webpages are HTML.

The difference between these things is how the HTML is created, and whether the pages are "static" or "dynamic."

Static pages don't change unless the designer makes a change.  There are two main types of static pages:
  • hand-coded: most basic webpages are hand-coded, meaning someone actually sits down and creates the HTML by themselves
  • HTML editor: some sites are generated through HTML editors, typically programs that let you create the layout, and then generate the HTML for you
Dynamic pages change based upon different criteria.  (A good example is a search-results page on a search engine;  the results will be different for each search.)  Many different scripting and programming languages exist to create dynamic pages:
  • Perl-CGI: Perl-scripts are very common, and is arguably the most popular web scripting language.  cpshop is written in Perl.
  • PHP: PHP is the fastest-growing method of making dynamic webpages, probably because of it's ease of use.  Script is embedded in special HTML pages, which gets executed by the server before it's sent to the user.
  • ASP (Active Server Pages): Primarily Windows-based, ASP is similar to PHP, in that special HTML pages are created, with embedded VBScript code.  ASP is somewhat complicated, but still quite learnable.  (CafePress's site is generated through a proprietary form of ASP.)
  • Cold Fusion (CFM): Another embedded language, Cold Fusion is used primarily for its database-access abilities.  Excellent for creating search tools, but weak in some other areas.  Uses a special server-based program called an "application server."
  • DHTML (Dynamic HTML): Not as powerful as the other forms, but still useful, DHTML is a combination of stylesheets and javascript.  Differs from the other methods, because it runs through the browser, not on the server.  Special effects can be created with DHTML, though it's not flexible enough for most large applications.  (Exception: http://www.oddpost.com - the coolest web-based email site anywhere!)
  • ...many other forms of special scripting code exist as well, such as JSP, C#/ASP.NET, Python, Unix Shell, Server-Side Java...
The main thing about the dynamic options -- DHTML excepted -- is that your webhost has to support it.  That's why Perl and PHP are so popular; nearly every webhost accepts both Perl and PHP scripts.

Now...if you just want an HTML-only solution, with no scripting involved, then you've got to create static pages.  And because they're static, you'll have to make a new page for every page of your store, either hand-coding it yourself, or with an HTML editor.  The problem with this is that if you have 10 designs, with 25 products each...that's 260 pages you'll have to create and maintain.  Hours (days?) of work.

On the other hand, if you use cpshop, you'll be able to do exactly what you described in your post, with one template, and no filters, and have it ready in under 30 minutes.

Here's an example cpshop store: http://www.absolutedragons.com/go2/site/view/absolute/131

Notice the setup?  It's pretty easy to do -- just create your stores at CafePress, one design per store ID.  Then add them into cpshop.  That's pretty much it.  You can customize to your heart's content using the web-based administration program, or just keep the default settings.

Anyway, hopefully this answers your question somewhat.
« Last Edit: 08/15/02 at 20:28:48 by Marty » Logged

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pencrafters
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Re: Store Template Setup...?
« Reply #2 on: 08/15/02 at 20:48:28 »
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Hi,

Then let me clarify a bit further then.

I will be using a server that does not support PHP, ASP, or the like, but DOES support PERL.

I am using static HTML pages, but would like to use the script to handle the dynamic page creation for the store itself.

I am basically looking to get away from pure static HTML pages, and moving to something that makes adding new products a bit easier, and faster.

To provide an idea of the navigation, the breadcrumb for a specific t-shirt may look like:

Home > Merchandise > T-Shirt > Soap Bubbles Ash Grey Tank Top

If you were to go to the T-Shirt page, you would have a series of thumbnails showing each t-shirt.

If you were to go to the Merchandise page, you would have a series of thumbnails showing each product type (t-shirt, coffee mug, etc.).

I am not sure if CPShop can create any of these pages for my dynamically.  Though, my understanding of the filters is that it can handle the specific product page.

Any suggestions?
Sample pages (before being parsed by the script)?
Sample configuration files/screens?


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Re: Store Template Setup...?
« Reply #3 on: 08/15/02 at 22:56:02 »
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Yes, your server should support cpshop.  cpshop only uses Perl.

cpshop can easily handle the format you have in mind, using the store ID wildcard feature, and cpfilters.

You can see the admin screen here:
http://cgi.marty.net/cgi/marty/cpshop/cpadmin/default

For this completely uncustomized store demo:
http://cgi.marty.net/cgi/marty/cpshop/default

The breadcrumb feature will easily handle the breadcrumb trail you have in mind.

Simply put, yes, cpshop will do exactly what you have in mind.
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aliengrey
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Re: Store Template Setup...?
« Reply #4 on: 09/17/02 at 05:51:07 »
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Too tired, too late at night, missed something and can't get it right.

Home page: www.alien-technology.com

Store ID: alientechnology

Site setup: Each design has its own page (basically). Main header table is static. Left, right, and bottom tables are SSI. Content right smack in the middle.

What I'd like to have happen:
Keep the site as is, only replacing the center content with CP products from my existing Premium store. I'd also like to keep the individual design headers and copy as a lead in to each page. I attempted to use my .shtml pages with an SSI command for the <[content]> but didn't work. Let me rephrase that; if it's possible, I didn't do it correctly.

Question: Is it possible to do this using SSI?

Brain Dead.
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Marty
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Re: Store Template Setup...?
« Reply #5 on: 09/17/02 at 12:44:56 »
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Are they exec SSIs, or include SSIs?

cpshop uses query strings to maintain variables, and most servers don't support query strings in includes.

However, if you're only using include SSIs, you may consider doing something like what I've described in this message.

If they're exec SSIs, it's probably still possible, though you'd have to work through cpshop, not through the standard .shtml file.

Could you possibly send me the actual include tag, so I can see it?
« Last Edit: 09/17/02 at 12:45:27 by Marty » Logged

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