International Directory of Forest Information Services

by Administrator Sunday, October 16, 2005 11:42 AM
The International Directory of Forest Information Services: Libraries, Documentation Centers and Subject Specialists is available online at http://iufro.andornot.com/

The Directory was formally launched at the IUFRO European Regional Conference in Copenhagen in August 2002, however it was manually updated until late 2003. Andornot was approached to host the database and develop a web interface that would allow participants to both register and update their records online.

The site uses the Andornot templating system and WebPublisher PRO to provide an easy to maintain site that permits both web searching and data entry. Some simple measures were also taken to provide protection against misuse as this is a publicly available website.

Design specifics:

To avoid the possibility of pranksters entering records into a live database, an access control field was added to the database that allows the silent password (i.e. the default web access) to see only records with "Active" in this field.

When new entries are submitted through the Registration page they are tagged with a status of "New" and cannot be seen until validated and changed to "Active" by the IUFRO administrator. The registration page was exported from DB/TextWorks as a web edit form and then modified to include code for this hidden field, i.e.




Registrants in the directory can update their own records using their email address and a password. We used a Random Password Generating program which creates passwords that contain just alphanumeric characters to avoid inserting characters that have meaning to WebPublisher. We then populated the database with these passwords and created a DB/TextWorks form that included the persons name, email and new password. The text also gave instructions on how to update their record and change their password to one memorable to them. We then used the "mail each record to a different address" feature within DB/TextWorks to notify everyone of their passwords using this form.

Registrants can update their own records through the login page. (http://iufro.andornot.com/login.aspx) This was created in DB/TextWorks as a query screen and then exported to HTML. A couple of validation scripts were added to this page to ensure that searches find only the one record that exactly matches the username and password. The first script turns all entries into terms, i.e. ="term" to prevent anyone entering >h* to find any entry starting with h or telus to find records with a Telus email account. It also disallows a * as a search term. Another script ensures that there is an entry in both boxes.

The registration form has popup validation lists. If new registrants enter a term not in the validation lists it will not be added. However when an Administrator edits the record to change the status to Active, on saving, these new values will be added to the validation lists. This is set in the DB/TextWorks forms. The Registration form has the value and the Admin one .

An unlinked page has been set up where the Administrator can search the Status field for newly added records. The admin password must be entered to edit these new records or delete records. Another script ensures that a password is entered to prevent edit access by anyone inadvertently finding this page. Additional display forms were created matching the public search forms but with Edit and Delete options.

The IUFRO site highlights the possibilities available with WebPublisher PRO and some minimal scripting. For sites where more stringent security or roles based access is needed, Andornot offers complete application design services.

Contact Andornot for more information
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