ArsDigita Archives

News Module Requirements

by Audrey McLoghlin

I. Introduction

The following is a requirements document for the News Module. The News module facilitates the creation and viewing of a News Room page.

II. Vision Statement

News items are a way to keep the public informed about what is going on in any type of organization. Submissions to the News Room page made by users within the organization will allow the user to inform the public, as well as other areas within the organization, about the latest happenings and progress being made. These submissions should require approval by a site-wide administrator to avoid repetitive or inappropriate postings. Any user should also be able to leave comments on the news item.

Although greatly resembling a Bulletin Board type application, the News Room differs because of it emphasis on the date of the postings. News items should be arranged by date whereas Bulletin items are generally posted by subject. Postings should also have a 'shelf life' which is set be either the user who posted the item or the site-wide administrator.

III. System Overview

The News module consists of three simple interfaces:
  • an site-wide administrator interface for creating and maintaining all news items
  • a registered user group interface for creating and maintaining news items contained in that group
  • a user interface for viewing a news items and leaving commnets

IV. Use-cases and User-scenarios

Creating a News Item

Mike Bigshot is a senior executive at a prestigious Hollywood production company, Bigshot's Big Shots. He has currently signed Chad Hitt in the much awaited sequel Legends of the Summer II. He wants to let the general public, the movie investors, and other jealous production firms know the exciting news. He goes onto (created with the ACS) and uses the news module to post a news item set to expire seven months after the movie's release date.

Reading a News Item

Jen Aniton, Chad Hitt's newly wed bride surfs the web while waiting for Chad to return from Los Angeles. Curious to see how the deal went she logs onto the News Room at and learns Chad signed the deal...for $48,000,000. When Chad comes home, she immediately hits him up for the new $4,200,000 house in Nob Hill she has wanted since her seventh grade trip to San Fransisco. Fred Morton, also a web addict, learns of the news when surfing on his notebook during his African Safari. He immediately leaves a 'Congratulations' comment for Chadd (he leaves the comment because it is very important everyone sees how good of friends he is with Chad).

Maintaining a News Item

Kim Imindevelopment, Mike Bigshot's trusty D-Girl, catches word from the director that production will run 1 year over-schedule...and $80,000,000 over-budget. She logs on to the web site and changes the expiration date of the news item to 1 year later.

V. Related Links

VI.A. Requirements: The Data Model

10 The Data Model

10.1 News' must have a unique identifier

10.2 News' must have a scope describing what is contained in the item

10.3 News' must belong to one of the three user_groups (registered_users, all_users, public)

10.4 News' must have a title

10.5 News' must have a body

10.6 News' must have a approval_state which defaults to 'unexamined' but changeable for approval

10.7 News' can have an approval_user

10.8 News' can have an approval_date

10.9 News' can have an approval_ip_address

10.10 News' must have a release_date

10.11 News' must have a expiration_date

10.12 News' must have a creation_date

10.13 News' must have a creation_user

10.14 News' must have a creation_ip_address

VI.B. Requirements: Administrator Interface

20 Administrator Interface

20.1 All News items may be maintained by the the site-wide Administrator

20.2 A News Item may be created for the public or for a user group, but not both

VI.C. Requirements: User Group Interface

30.1 A User Group News items may be maintained by a member of the user group or the site-wide Administrator

30.2 A News Item may be created for the public or for a user group, but not both

VI.D. Requirements: User Interface

40 User Interface

40.1 All users may read a public News Item or a News Item from his User Group

40.2 All users may leave comments about the New Item

VII. Revision History

Document Revision # Action Taken, Notes When? By Whom?
0.1 Creation 10/15/2000 Audrey McLoghlin