[Catalyst] Catalyst Documentation

Paul Wallingford paul at cybergestalt.net
Wed May 31 19:09:37 CEST 2006

Perrin Harkins wrote:
> On Wed, 2006-05-31 at 07:47 +1000, Kieren Diment wrote:
>> Mason is a templating system with a few application-development type
>> features included. Catalyst is a full blown application development
>> environment.  Mason makes a serviceable Catalyst View, although I
>> perfer Template Toolkit for a couple of reasons.
> I think you're exaggerating the differences here.  Although they go
> about it in totally different ways, Mason and Catalyst offer very
> similar functionality.  For example:
> - Flexible ways to map URIs to code.
> - Uniform API for access to request data and passing parameters.
> - Abstraction of runtime environment so that mod_perl, CGI, and FastCGI
> all work the same.
> - Error handling with helpful debug screens.
> - Plugins for sessions and other extras.
> You could say that Mason has MORE ground to cover in the docs, since it
> actually includes a templating system and a cache, while Catalyst just
> provides glue code.  (The cache is provided by Cache::Cache, but is
> covered nicely in the Mason docs.)
> My point is not to belittle Catalyst, but rather to say that Mason is a
> good example of a complex Perl project with very readable docs, and it's
> worth looking at.  The quality of documentation was one of the things
> that set Mason apart from the very beginning, and I think it was a key
> reason for Mason's success.  It came with guides for developers and
> administrators and had a more professional feel to it than most of the
> other tools at that time.

Thanks for the reply Perrin.  I am very familiar with Mason and have 
built a lot of stuff that does what Catalyst does.  However, I am 
looking for something to speed development - and a framework like 
Catalyst just might do the trick.  Building custom systems each time 
takes too long and I don't have time to build my own framework. 
Catalyst *seems* to fit the bill and I want to evaluate it, but the 
documentation seems lacking.  Maybe I am just spoiled with Mason.

That said, obviously I feel that Catalyst has a lot to offer, otherwise 
I would not even consider wasting valuable time evaluating it (and there 
are a lot of other frameworks that I have discounted right off the bat). 
  This says a lot about my opinion of Catalyst.  Plus a lot of people 
use Catalyst and Mason together, which is encouraging.

I was a bit turned off by the arrogant reply by Kieren, however.  I just 
wanted a little guidance, not some overblown sales pitch.

Thanks again.

Paul Wallingford

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