[mod_python] Faulty Impressions

Michael Guerrero m at mguerrero.net
Sat Mar 4 17:18:10 EST 2006

On Sat, 2006-03-04 at 16:59 -0500, Lee Brown wrote:
> Greetings!
> I guess a good place to start is to note that mod python is not, in
> itself, a web content framework nor a web application framework - it
> is an interface between the Apache HTTP server and the Python
> programming language.  The true beauty of mod python is, in my
> opinion, is that you can use it for, well, any kind of HTTP-based
> service you need.  Anything written in Python, or anything that will
> "speak nicely" to Python, can be implemented over HTTP with mod
> python.
> As an example, I use mod python for an extremely simple and
> straight-forward content management system.  My content is XML data
> that is transformed via XSLT into web pages.  When a request arrives
> at the server, a very simple mod python handler maps the request URL
> to a pair of XML and HTML files. if the file timestamp on the HTML
> file is newer than the XML file then the HTML file is served as-is.
> If the XML file is newer than the HTML file, an external XSLT
> processor is called (LIBXSLT, in my case) to refresh the HTML file and
> serve it.
> I wrote this little content management system because I did not like
> any of the "out-of-the box" CMS systems out there because they seemed
> much more complicated than my needs.  But if you truly want a
> full-bore content management and delivery system, like CherryPy for
> example, you can do that, too.
> So I guess one answer to your question is that mod python allows you
> to use almost any means you can imagine (or at least write a program
> for) for doing doing whatever it is you need your web application to
> do.
> Best Regards,
> Lee E. Brown
> (administrator at leebrown.org)
> ______________________________________________________________________
> From: mod_python-bounces at modpython.org
> [mailto:mod_python-bounces at modpython.org] On Behalf Of Michael
> Guerrero
> Sent: Saturday, March 04, 2006 7:47 AM
> To: mod_python at modpython.org
> Subject: [mod_python] Faulty Impressions
> Hello,
> I'm new to mod_python and am planning a simple LAMPy application
> (brace yourselves, newbness ensues).
> Based on what I've found on the web (though certainly not an
> exhaustive search), it appears mod_python is used for two kinds of web
> apps:
> 1. CGI -- making it much faster by embedding the interpreter.
> 2. PSP -- giving an easy, PHP-like use to Python for web development.
> I haven't quite figured out how the different handlers fit into all
> this, but am still perusing the documentation--having no knowledge of
> Apache or how it works doesn't help ;^).
> My question is, is there another means for creating dynamic web
> content using mod_python (not talking about frameworks like
> Zope/Django).
> Also, somewhat unrelated, how is the performance of using things like
> pickled() objects and shelves versus relational databases when serving
> content?
> If anyone has any good tutorials a link would be most appreciated.
> - Mike Guerrero 

Thanks for the responses, and thanks for the links Graham.

I'm actually hoping to do the content creation coding myself--not
looking for a framework.  I didn't want to use CGI because everything I
read says mod_python is much faster than CGI due to it's embedded
nature.  I'm also not looking to write this app in the ASP/PHP/JSP/PSP
fashion.  Never did like it much.  I've been playing around with the
publisher handler a bit, but I still don't have my head completely
around it.

Thanks again for the help.  


Michael C. Guerrero
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