CMS Overview: MojoMotor

MojoMotor: “The Publishing Engine That Does Less!”

Get it at:

http://mojomotor.com/

Features:

  • Built with PHP
  • Uses the CodeIgniter framework (http://codeigniter.com/), like ExpressionEngine
  • Commercial: $49
  • A simple framework that uses no control panel – you edit pages directly in the page
  • You can migrate your content to ExpressionEngine if you outgrow its functionality

Need it simple, fast, cheap and good-looking? This is a great little platform.

Getting Started:

http://mojomotor.com/user_guide/

Overview:

http://mojomotor.com/user_guide/overview.html

CMS Overview: phpBB

phpBB: Free and Open Source Forum Software

Get it at:

http://www.phpbb.com/

Why you’d choose it:

  • Dedicated to the concept of user forums.
  • Divide up boards by topic and by permissions
  • Detailed user and group management

What it doesn’t do:

Anything but bulletin boards! (This may be a plus, depending on your point of view.)

Installation:

https://www.phpbb.com/support/documentation/3.0/?from=submenu

Examples:

http://flysandia.org/phpBB3/index.php?sid=3ff47c833f31c3b206e8803f2cc9723c

https://www.phpbb.com/demo/

 

 

 

CMS Overview: Moodle

Moodle: a Course Management System (CMS),
also known as a Learning Management System (LMS)
or a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)

Features:

Moodle is an online course management system.

  • Set up class home pages
  • Manage assignments and reports
  • Detect plagiarism
  • Share files with live multi-author editing
  • Give quizzes and tests
  • Manage grading

Sponsored by:

http://moodle.com

Get it at:

https://moodle.org/

Installation Guide:

http://docs.moodle.org/23/en/Installing_Moodle

Plugins:

https://moodle.org/plugins/

 Considerations:

This beast takes a lot of management. It’s suitable for larger-scale operations, such as a community college, but is likely to be overkill for a single teacher.

Public schools should be giving Moodle serious consideration as a free alternative to Blackboard.

CMS Overview: WordPress.org

WordPress.org: a Blog Tool and Publishing Platform

Get it at:

http://wordpress.org/

Installing it:

The Five Minute Installation: http://codex.wordpress.org/Installing_WordPress#Famous_5-Minute_Install

Features:

  • Extremely flexible: lots of plugins, themes, etc.
  • Built with PHP
  • A downloadable package, which you’ll set up on your own hosted space
  • You can find helpful VARs to host and set it up for you
  • Expand beyond blogging to true content management

With a simple user interface, voluminous support forums and extensive documentation, most reasonably skilled web users can set it up themselves. Particularly note the search engine optimization (SEO) tools.

Themes:

http://theme.wordpress.com/

Plugins:

http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/

Examples:

http://ingridwentzel.com

http://compassrosecareers.com/

A local example on my laptop: (these links won’t work on the Internet, of course)

http://localhost/wordpress/wordpress/

http://localhost/wordpress/wordpress/wp-admin/

 

CMS Overview: ExpressionEngine

ExpressionEngine: Power and Flexibility

Get it at:

http://expressionengine.com/

  • Built with PHP
  • Commercial: $99, $149, $299

Features:

Choose it because:

  • Uses the CodeIgniter framework (http://codeigniter.com/), which means if you do PHP, but not hugely complex PHP, you can extend ExpressionEngine easily.
  • Good community forums
  • Designer-friendly

Examples:

http://expressionengine.com/showcase/interview_list

 

 

CMS Overview: WordPress.com

WordPress.com: Built for Blogging

Get it at:

http://wordpress.com/

Features:

  • A hosted, managed service
  • No ads
  • Space limits
  • No plugins
  • One of many blog services online

You get a simple interface and an abundance of themes, but you can’t customize your own theme. This is a good place to start a small blog, learn the ropes and see what it’s like to deal with an input interface.

Unlike services like Blogger.com, WordPress lets you create both blog pages and regular “static” pages. This means you can create an entire web site, rather than a blog alone.

Choose WordPress.com because:

  • You want a simple hosted solution
  • Your primary interest is blogging

Examples:

http://en.wordpress.com/notable-users/

http://mattbriggs.wordpress.com/

http://terrytao.wordpress.com/

CMS Overview: Syllabus

An Overview of Current Content Management Systems

We will discuss:

WordPress.com: Built for Blogging

http://wordpress.com/

  • A hosted, managed service
  • No ads
  • Space limits
  • No plugins
  • One of many blog services online

You get a simple interface and an abundance of themes, but you can’t customize your own theme. This is a good place to start a small blog, learn the ropes and see what it’s like to deal with an input interface.

Choose WordPress.com because:

  • You want a simple hosted solution
  • Your primary interest is blogging

WordPress.org: a “Blog Tool and Publishing Platform”

http://wordpress.org/

  • Extremely flexible: plugins, themes, etc.
  • Built with PHP
  • A downloadable package, which you’ll set up on your own hosted space
  • You can find helpful VARs to host and set it up for you
  • Expand beyond blogging to true content management

With a simple user interface, voluminous support forums and extensive documentation, most reasonably skilled web users can set it up themselves. Particularly note the search engine optimization (SEO) tools.

ExpressionEngine: “Power and Flexibility”

http://expressionengine.com/

  • Built with PHP
  • Uses the CodeIgniter framework (http://codeigniter.com/), which means if you do PHP, but not hugely complex PHP, you can extend ExpressionEngine easily.
  • Commercial: $99, $149, $299
  • Good community forums
  • Designer-friendly

Features:

  • Basic eCommerce
  • Membership management
  • Search function
  • RSS
  • Mailing lists
  • Forums
  • Photo galleries
  • Slick control panel
  • Templates: fully customizable
  • Free and paid plug-ins

Plone: the Transformer

http://plone.org/

Features:

  • Content management and publishing
  • Forums
  • Wikis
  • User and group authentication and management
  • Search function
  • Version control
  • Workflow management
  • Nice in-site editing for content creators
  • Themes: roll your own, download a free one, or buy one
  • Lots of plug-ins
  • A large and active developer community
  • Good support and documentation
  • Very good web standards support
  • Accessibility compliant

Plone is huge. Python is a religious choice. Zope is a commitment. But if you want the maximum features, and are a deep coder ready to deal with a complex platform, Plone is likely the platform for you.

Drupal: Evolve Any Direction

http://drupal.org/

Here’s the page that says it all: “Is Drupal the right tool for the job”
http://drupal.org/node/346217

Notice that link: it says “geek.”

Joomla!: Lots and Lots of Goodies

http://www.joomla.org/

Like Drupal, Joomla! is developer-friendly, but it’s also designer-friendly as well.

  • Many, many modules are available
  • The developer community is active and friendly
  • Many, many templates are available, both free and for-pay – this is one of the nicest things about Joomla!

Features:

  • Blogging
  • Subject/Category/Article organization
  • Polls
  • User and group login and management
  • RSS
  • Integrated help system
  • Sophisticated eCommerce

Joomla! provides a nice balance of design and coding customizability. There’s such a large developer community that finding a VAR or custom coder or designer is easy.

MojoMotor: “The Publishing Engine That Does Less!”

http://mojomotor.com/

  • Built with PHP
  • Uses the CodeIgniter framework (http://codeigniter.com/), like ExpressionEngine
  • Commercial: $49
  • A simple framework that uses no control panel – you edit pages directly in the page
  • You can migrate your content to ExpressionEngine if you outgrow its functionality

Need it simple, fast, cheap and good-looking? This is a great little platform.

phpBB: “Free and Open Source Forum Software”

http://www.phpbb.com/

Specifically dedicated to the concept of user forums.

MediaWiki: the Dedicated Wiki

http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/MediaWiki

Used Wikipedia? Then you already know what it is.

 

 

 

CMS Overview: Plone

Plone: the Transformer

http://plone.org/

Installation:

http://docs.plone.org/manage/installing/installation.html

Features:

  • Content management and publishing
  • Forums
  • Wikis
  • User and group authentication and management
  • Search function
  • Version control
  • Workflow management
  • Nice in-site editing for content creators
  • Themes: roll your own, download a free one, or buy one
  • Lots of plug-ins
  • A large and active developer community
  • Great support and documentation: https://plone.org/support
  • Other active support communities like: http://www.whoishostingthis.com/compare/plone/resources/
  • Very good web standards support
  • Accessibility compliant

Choose it because:

  • Plone is huge, and can handle huge requirements.
  • Python is a religious choice, like any programming language. There’s a substantial number of developers available, though not as many as PHP, perhaps.
  • Zope is a commitment. It’s not just Python; it’s Python on steroids with muscle grafts and an attitude.

But if you want the maximum features, and are a deep coder ready to deal with a complex platform, Plone is likely the platform for you.

One Odd Note:

Plone sites are contained lock, stock and barrel inside a single file, usually named data.fs. This is weird, and can cause problems when hosted on 32 bit OSs that choke on files larger than 2GB.

Examples:

https://plone.com/try-plone

CMS Overview: Drupal

Drupal: Come for the Software, Stay for the Community

Choose it because:

  • You are a hard-core PHP programmer
  • You want to go deep. Very deep.
  • You are attracted to the community

Get it at:

http://drupal.org/

Features: Is Drupal the right tool for the job?

http://drupal.org/node/346217

Installing Drupal:

http://drupal.org/documentation/install

Drupal Themes:

http://drupal.org/project/themes

Drupal Distributions:

http://drupal.org/project/distributions

(Ridiculously Beautiful) Sites made with Drupal:

http://drupal.org/case-studies

http://www.aetherinteractive.com/portfolio