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> RefDB allows a limited amount of customization in that it uses
> header/footer templates for the CGI output. You can customize those
> without fiddling with the RefDB code itself. I'm afraid this is not
> sufficient for your purposes, but I'd like to point this out anyway.
I am aware of this. My observation was that if refdbc selected HTML or CGI (I don't think this is
advertised as a type) as the type of data to be returned for a request, the HTML returned was a
complete page, header, title, and all. This is fine for simple cases, but if the client wants
something other than simple HTML, say XHTML or the latest and greatest HTML variant, or in my case
simply the requested data formatted in HTML (without header, footer, etc.), this isn't currently
> You should also keep in mind that refdbd uses a fairly simple internal
> API to implement custom backends. If parsing the RIS output should be
> cumbersome, it would be fairly easy to clone the RIS backend and have
> it send back the data in whatever format you prefer.
This was one of my ideas actually. I thought about adding a backend for "segmented" HTML, so that
the client received the data formatted in HTML, but didn't get the header, footer, etc. My other
idea was that maybe refdbd should only send/receive XML, and leave the formatting to the client.
After all, it is the client that is deciding the final output, so why should the server (refdbd)
need to know anything about what the client intends to do with the data. This, obviously, would
require drastic changes in the design of Refdb, and I'm not willing to suggest that. For now, I
think simply parsing the RIS should be sufficient. If it isn't, you'll be the first to hear about
> I'd be happy to see your results. Anything GUI will be greatly
Give me a few more days, and I should have something a little more presentable. But, I'll gladly
share what I have.