Julian I. Kamil wrote:
> Bil, looking at the linked page, it seems quite obvious to me that the
> user interface can be greatly improved by using alternative elements
> such as sliders, radio groups, auto-completing fields, etc.

Yes.

> However, from your question it sounds like you're looking for an
> alternative way to input these information to the system that should
> not rely on the use of so many UI elements.

You think too highly of me; I just took one look at the Javascript
behind that thing and ran for Ruby cover.

> (1) a web page with a text area prepopulated with a YAML template--the
> user simply types in the values that they want to input; and

I don't quiet understand this.  Is this a single text box pre-populated
with yaml text or something else?

> (2) a Ruby script that takes the POST, validates the input, generates
> the output file, and passes that file to the real consumer of the
> information.

A fun job for Camping, or is that overkill due to lack of
database?

> If you want an even simpler UI, you could ask the end user to create
> the YAML file on their own machine with Emacs, Vi, or other text
> editors, and have them upload the file with a web form.  In this case,
> (1) can be replaced with a single file upload form element.

Actually, we already have that in the form of a Fortran namelist,
which is actually quite similar to YAML for this simple data, but
some folks want a web interface that provides some suggested ranges
and has some logic checking behind the scenes.

Thanks,
--
Bil
http://fun3d.larc.nasa.gov