HTML Slider Definition Files

Input to HTML Slider are files called "Definition" files. A Definition file is simply a text file that directs HTML Slider to build and output HTML pages. The file is a clear text file, with ASCII characters. Notepad (a Windows utility program) can be used to create and edit definition files. Doc files and other word processing files won't work.

Definition files contain statements. Normally, a statement consists of one line of text, however there are ways to continue a statement so that it covers many lines. There are three types of statements: comments, token definitions, and directives.

Comment lines

Comments are ignored by HTML Slider. A comment is a line that starts with a semicolon. The semicolon must be the first character in a line to cause the line to be a comment. No mid-line comments are allowed or provided for. Also, comments cannot be found in statements that span more that one line of text.

Token Definitions

In our case, a token is just a name/value pair. You create tokens by using an assignment syntax. The name and the value are created (i.e., invented) by you. The name must be a sequence of characters without spaces. The value can be any text that you wish. For example,

Title=Dal's Wesite

This statement creates a token named "Title" with the value "Dal's Website".

There are no restrictions for the content of the value. It can be null, or it can be hundreds of lines long. The best way to extend the value past one line is to place an open curly brace right after the equals sign, and a closed curly brace at the end of the value. For example:

Content={

This is an example of using curly braces for extending

the value of a token past one line.

}

Note the closed curly brace after the last line of the token's value. It must be placed on a line by itself, and be in the first column. All other curly braces are ignored, and are considered part of the token's value.

A second way to continue a token's definition past one line is to use a colon in the first column. For example:

SubTitle=This is an example of using a colon

:in the first column of a line after a assignment statement

:to extent the value of the token.

Note that the colon must be placed on the first column. The colon is not a part of the value, and continuation stops on the first line that does not have a colon in the first column.

Types of Tokens

There are two types of tokens: local and global. Global tokens remain in existence and retain their value until they are redefined by another Token Definition. Local tokens are deleted from existence after certain directives are encountered. The purpose of this will be clear to you when we discuss directives. For now, just understand that there is a difference, and that global tokens are designated with an exclamation mark. For example:

!PresentationName=A Global Token

PageName=A Local Token

In the above example, the name of the first token is still "PresentationName", even though it starts with an exclamation mark.

At this point you should read about directives.