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Chapter 11. Customizing Contribute > Understanding Contribute Extensibility

Understanding Contribute Extensibility

Like the Dreamweaver MX interface, the Contribute user interface is written in a combination of HTML, JavaScript, and XML. In fact, virtually everything you see and work with in Contribute is an extension written in one of these languages and stored in the Contribute Configuration folder (more about that folder later). Advanced Contribute users and site administrators can customize Contribute using Dreamweaver MX or a simple text editor, such as Notepad (though you’ll probably want a more robust tool). If you’re familiar with the extensibility of other Macromedia products, such as Flash MX, Fireworks MX, or especially Dreamweaver MX, you’ll find Contribute’s extensibility to be familiar but maybe also a bit frustrating. That’s because Contribute uses conventions and procedures for extensibility similar to those in Dreamweaver, but Contribute is somewhat more limited in scope and, for the end user, is not as convenient as Dreamweaver in this regard.

The standard mechanism for extending other programs in the MX product line is to use the Macromedia Extension Manager, a program that installs prepackaged extensions you download from the Macromedia Exchange site, an online clearinghouse for extensions, or other Web sites. (You can reach the Macromedia Exchange site by choosing Help > Dreamweaver Exchange while in Dreamweaver.) The Extension Manager is necessary because installing the different parts of an extension in the correct places to work with the Macromedia programs can be tricky.


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