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PMC-Sierra Inc.

Frontier 6.0 with a custom-designed editing suite, delivers an intelligent website and a comprehensive workflow system.

Developer: Bitmovers Communications Inc,

Jurgen Schaub <> describes the project:

PMC-Sierra provides advanced semiconductor solutions for high-speed transmission and networking systems that provide the underlying networking pipelines for the global information infrastructure. They approached Bitmovers asking for a state-of-the-art database-driven website that could be edited by a large group of people within the company. Using Frontier 6.0 with a custom-designed editing suite, we were able to deliver an intelligent website and a comprehensive workflow system.

The Site
Frontier's glossary function is used extensively to provide links around the site. Product numbers are included in the glossary, enabling authors to provide links to product information simply by placing the product number in quotes. Much of the site is generated completely automatically, by pulling data maintained in a separate area of the Frontier database. This frees authors from the tedium of remembering which pages to update when a new resource enters the system. Pages are rendered to an IIS machine, and served statically.

The Editing System
Frontier includes a basic content management system, but it doesn't allow for advanced functions, such as version control, approval, and external resource management. After looking at Frontier's system, it was decided to build our own web-based system, from the ground up. On top of Frontier's template, glossary and macro functions, we layered an entire workflow system - allowing authors to write pages, view them, edit them, and finally submit them to an editor for approval - all within their browser. Only pages that have been approved by an editor make it to the public website. This editing environment, bitEdit, is served through the mainResponder and is therefore completely dynamic and very flexible. In most cases, users need only follow a few simple steps in a "wizard"-like environment to create or edit a resource on the site.

Behind the Scenes
A single copy of Frontier 6.0 is running on a 300MHz NT4 machine, which handles all the bitEdit functions, as well as rendering the website every night. The files are then copied nightly through the firewall to the external web server. The website and bitEdit are kept in separate databases, to allow for simpler updates to either one, and to maintain bitEdit as a separate, re-usable product.

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