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Wagn 1.12 - skins and more

Wagn helps savvy web users do things previously only developers could do.  With its new skinning system and key improvements to handling of inclusions, Wagn 1.12 takes this pattern even further.  But it also empowers developers in vital new ways with its new events API and RESTful Web API.


All of these are bringing us much closer to Decko 1.0, which is focused on two key goals:

  1. discoverability and usability for readers, editors, and Wagneers
  2. extensibility for developers

The roadmap to 2.0 now includes just one more minor release (Wagn 1.14) and a final round of polish.  Part of that polish will include adding new skins.  (We're hoping you'll help with that part!)  The new skinning system brings many improvements:

  1. dropdowns: new wagneers will simply be able to edit their *style rules and choose from a list of skins. (though, of course, we have to create those new skins first!)
  2. site areas: Different cards can have different style rules.  So, for example, you can use different skinning for different cardtypes.
  3. stylesheet cards: Skin developers have a much improved interface that includes syntax highlighting, SCSS support, and stylesheets organized into cards for easy reuse.
  4. control: You also have complete control over the CSS on your site (whereas much of it was previously hard-coded).  Some stylesheet cards do pull their CSS from code, but you can choose not to use those cards.
  5. readable HTML: by moving menus to javascript, adding slot comments, moving inclusion data to JSON, and cleaning up the head tag, we've made wagn's HTML tighter, w3 compliant, and far easier to read.  This drastically simplifies skin building!
  6. speed:  all style rules are automatically compiled, concatenated, compressed, and cached automatically upon update.  When combined with the more efficient HTML, this should make page and editor rendering considerably faster.

That last improvement ("cached immediately upon update") is just one example of the "events" that are possible now with our new events API. Almost all of Wagn's core behaviors have now been refactored into events and make use of this new API.  There is some early documentation of the API at present, but there is much more to be done there.  In the meantime, those interested may find it most useful to explore the events defined in built-in modules.


Events are central to the MoVE architecture, which we've been working to articulate more clearly.  The recent Blog post outlines the architecture in more detail, but the short of it is that we're exploring the space of handling data atoms in increasingly fractal ways.  Cards can be built out of cards, views built out of views, and, now, events out of events. 


The current release also makes inclusion handling more fractal.  Old inclusion syntax let you configure display details for the included card.  The new syntax lets you specify those details for the included card as well as cards included by the included card, cards included by cards included by the included card, etc. We've wandered into wonky land, clearly, but know that this simple improvement adds very little syntax yet adds great power for making pretty lists :)


If upgrading to Wagn 1.12, make sure you refer to the upgrade notes.  We've done a lot of work to make this a smooth upgrade experience (including migrating the old "*css" card into a new custom skin for you), but the upgrade may take a tweak or two if you've done a lot of styling work on your Wagn.



Thank you, so much, for all the work you have done on this. Have any more organizations adopted Wagn?

--Anonymous (Not signed in).....2013-09-24 08:07:31 +0000

It would be great if cldstr offered a directory somewhere of all of the Wagns (that are okay being known).

--John Abbe.....2013-09-24 16:46:10 +0000

We don't have great stats on this, since github doesn't track clones / downloads. I would guess there are somewhere around 200 active wagn installations now.


We will attempt to bring Wagn to a much wider audience with the 2.0 release, which will bring significant discoverability improvements and a ready-for-primetime api.

--Ethan McCutchen.....2013-09-24 19:15:11 +0000