XOOPS: the exclusive CMS for Government of Paraná in Brazil

On March 24th, the new portal of Government of Paraná went live. This new communication tool was presented at the weekly meeting of the School of Government by the President of the Company Informática do Paraná (Celepar), Mr. Vanderlei Iensen.

Among the main features of the new website is the color-based visual model to differentiate between the content for its relevance and ease of maintenance, and statewide access to government services.

Clearing the weeds in taxonomy

A number of content management systems allow for data to be classified using taxonomy (sometimes called categories or tags in a CMS).  Most of us that use CMS and taxonomy aren't experts in how best to structure our vocabulary and usually end up with a mess of terms.  In the end, we have a mess on our hand and wonder how best we should approach cleaning up the terms we're using.

Drive your own website

I've never agreed and disagreed so much with one article as this one from The Sydney Morning Herald, Drive your own website.

I agree...

I hate being held to ransom. And I'm sure you do, too. But that's the scenario you're creating when you hand over your website to a web designer or developer and relinquish control over when and how you can change your content...

...That's why I think it's vital for small-business owners to use their own content management systems (CMS). My recommendation is to initially use a designer to create the overall look but after that you at least want to be able to change the text on your website whenever you want.

I disagree...

If you are planning to use a free CMS, such as Wordpress, Drupal or Joomla, expect a steep learning curve and a lot of time poring through forums and blogs trying to figure out how to insert that picture just the way you want.

On the other hand, monthly subscription-based models can offer more flexibility. While you might baulk at being tied to a monthly subscription, the benefit is this is usually accompanied by technical support - so you can call or email for help

The fact of the matter is whether you're going to be using a CMS that is propriety, open source, or subscription based...there is always a learning curve involved.  The advice I often give to those looking for a CMS is to look at which CMS meet the requirements then worry about the licensing along with the how/where the site will be hosted. The fact is that if the CMS doesn't meet your requirements...no subscription-based model for that CMS is going to meet your needs.  Also, if you think Wordpress has a steep learning curve...you likely haven't done your homework on Web content management systems.  Just my opinion...

SitePress - a new mega plugin for WordPress as CMS

WordPress is the de-facto standard blogging engine and is often used to build full websites. Its power lies in its simplicity, allowing authors to start building their websites in minutes. However, WordPress is still missing some basic features keeping it from becoming a full fledged CMS. SitePress tries to close that gap.

SitePress is an ambitious mega-plugin for WordPress. It intends to turn WP into a reasonably featured content management system. SitePress contributes exactly where WordPress is short:

Two CMS Worlds on Twitter

Jon Marks, a technical analyst from the United Kingdom, posted an interesting article last week on his blog.  In the post, The CMS Word on the Tweet, he discusses the difficulty of finding "his world" on Twitter when seeking conversations centered around content management system.  Jon even uses CMSReport.com's CMS Focus as an example for showing what he observes as a large divide between open source Web content management systems and propriety enterprise software.  A divide that many of us may already recognize but haven't quite put into words like Jon has.

To the Big Wide World (which includes Twitter, and all the sites I’ve mentioned above), CMS means “Free Open Source CMS with Low Cost of Ownership”. The commercial Open Source CMS solutions don’t make the cut either. Four of the five Open Source CMS products reviewed by CMS Watch (Drupal, Joomla!, Plone CMS and TYPO3) live in both worlds. Open CMS doesn’t as my feeling is it is a bit too complex. Alfresco, DotNetNuke and ez Publish made one of the lists above, but don’t really feature in the Tweetosphere.

I inhabit a world populated by analysts, commercial vendors, systems integrators, large agencies and other such creatures. I don’t believe we pay much attention to the other world until a product jumps the gap. And it seems difficult for a product that isn’t Java or Microsoft based to make it in to My World.

Jon asked me via Twitter to let him know what I thought of his article.  I think Jon has done an excellent job of identifying the dichotomy found within CMS.  It does seem that the enterprise often takes an approach to content management that differs greatly from open source projects.  The approaches differ so much that the parties involved often end up defining what is a CMS in two different ways.  The only thing I would like to comment on is that I unfortunately live on a third, yet unidentified, world that the other two worlds don't fully understand.