Website Repository: What is it and why is it important?

Broadly speaking, a repository describes a central file storage location that stores multiple files. It is often utilized in software development to store multiple versions of files, such as incremental updates to a product after its initial release. One of the prime examples of this would be GitHub, one of the world’s leading software development platform on the internet.

However, a repository does not necessarily only describe software development databases such as GitHub’s. One of the challenges that web programmers often face is that the built-in search functionality of many CMS’ often provide underwhelming performances when processing queries for resources on the website. It is often the case that a website’s content library must be meticulously tagged and organized manually in order for these default search functions to be effective, as they lack the ability to search within files.

For example, a PDF file stored on a WordPress website will only be searchable if the user’s query term includes the PDF file’s title and/or tags. It is not possible (with the default WP search function) to search for a specific line of item within said PDF file, which severely limits the practicality of the search function.

File Searching

A number of workarounds exist to solve this limitation of the WordPress CMS. However, I’d like to discuss one particular solution here, namely a custom programmed repository. This is a solution that we developed for our recent collaboration with DIVERSEcity (please feel free to visit the link for more information on this project).

What this describes is essentially a WordPress powered file database that has been custom programmed to include the ability to search within PDFs (i.e. searches both the title and content of the file itself). This allows for much greater flexibility in the search function as a user will be able to find a particular file just by searching for a line that they remember from within that document. Furthermore, the KIMBO repository is responsive for mobile devices and allows users to directly view documents in their browser, eliminating the need for additional applications to be installed (e.g. Microsoft Office). This is coupled with built-in functionality for converting documents between XLS, PPT, Word, and PPT, along with the ability to download the original file format for maximum flexibility.

While the KIMBO repository is custom programmed from scratch, it is compatible with Linux servers that run on PHP just the same as a typical WordPress site. Meaning that the said repository can be integrated into most modern WordPress websites in the market nowadays. The KIMBO repository also has password and leech protection built-in, though it is recommended that a website be hosted on an SSL-certified dedicated server for maximum protection.