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O'Reilly Open Source Convention
Sheraton San Diego Hotel, San Diego, CA
July 23-27, 2001

News Coverage


Introduction to Mason

Brent Michalski, Senior Developer, MasterCard International
David Rolsky, House Absolute Consulting

Track: mod_perl
Date: Tuesday, July 24
Time: 8:45am - 12:15pm
Location: Harbor Island III

Target audience:
Basic knowledge of Perl is necessary. Familiarity with Apache and mod_perl are helpful, but not required. Experience with other templating systems (Embperl, Template Toolkit, etc.) is also helpful.

Attendees will learn the basic concepts of Mason. This will include knowledge of its syntax, its special features such as 'autohandlers' and 'dhandlers', the basics of its caching system, and how to install it under mod_perl or as a CGI.


  • What is Mason?
  • Mason's features - an overview
  • Important Mason-specific concepts
  • Basic Mason syntax
    • substitution tags
    • Perl lines
    • Perl blocks
    • Component calls
    • Other Mason blocks
    • Escaping a newline
  • Special globals
  • Autohandlers
  • Dhandlers
  • Caching
  • HTTP headers and Mason's output modes
  • Other mod_perl specific issues
  • Style
  • Installing Mason under mod_perl
    • Show httpd.conf changes that need to be made
    • Show an example handler.pl
  • Mason as a CGI - show an example handler.cgi
  • Walk through building a site with Mason
    • Start with a concept of what you want site to look like
      • Design a page to match concept
      • Cut page up and create a template
  • Show building concepts
    • how to use autohandlers and dhandlers
    • how to "modularize", (make small components)
    • how to use a filter to keep track of your menu
    • more as time permits
  • We will show how to build a Mason-driven site. This will be a series of slides to save time, then the finished site will be an actual live site.
  • Where to go to learn more.

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