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Layout Components were created to make developing and managing site layouts easy. Namely, they should solve these goals (from a 2005 CFDJ article):
* Make edits to the layout in one place
* Easily switch layouts (per page, section, etc.)
* Switch to non-HTML formats (PDF, Word, etc.)
* Use any ColdFusion tags (like cfflush)
* Do without mappings and relative paths
* Add HTML to the <head>
* See all of the layout in one file
* Avoid passing all page calls through one file (like index.cfm)
The following goals should also have been included:
* Use the same layout on multiple pages or have some pages use different layouts.
* Do without a layout on some pages.
Layout Components have been enhanced slightly in the years since that article, but remain fundamentally the same today (this is being written in early 2010).
Here is a sample page using Layout Components (with the optional cf_layout tag):
<cf_layout title="Page Title">
(some content here)
The rest of the documentation should make clear how Layout Components meet all of the goals above.
Recent Blog Entries:
2/24/10 (Re-) Introducing Layout Components
12/13/06 CodeCop and Layout Components
12/6/06 Managing the UI
10/10/06 Header and Footers
5/25/06 In Defense of CFCs for Output
ColdFusion MX 6.1 or better
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