7 great CMS Report articles from 2008 you still need to read

In keeping with tradition, the following are seven articles that were posted here at and received less attention than I had hoped.  Either the reader didn't show up to view the article or there was little discussion on the subject matter.  I'll let you be the judge on whether these articles deserved the obscurity they received in 2008.

Revealing numbers from Alfresco regarding the enterprise stack

Alfresco Software released a press release on the results of a survey by them intended to help determine "how companies evaluate and deploy open source and proprietary software stacks in the enterprise". There is some very interesting numbers summarized in the press release that should be of interest to not only using those Alfresco products, but to almost anyone using enterprise software. Some of the more interesting numbers and statistics pulled from the study:

  • Operating system: “Users evaluate on a Windows laptop and deploy on Linux” – 41% of evaluations were on Windows, dropping to 26% for deployments, whereas 51% of deployments were on Linux.

  • Linux: “Ubuntu and Red Hat pull away, SUSE remains flat by comparison in the US” – Ubuntu 24%, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 21%.

  • Windows: “Users stick with XP and 2003, Vista lags at 2%” – XP 63%, Windows 2003 28%.

  • Databases: “Sun still shines on MySQL” – MySQL 60%, Oracle 14%, MS SQL Server 13%.

I especially find it interesting that while open source MySQL is the dominate database used on the enterprise, two propriety database systems (Oracle and MS SQL) follow. I wonder where PostGresSQL falls on the list? But wait, there are two points I want to make about this study.

First, the business world no longer survives solely on propriety software. Secondly, these numbers reflect something I've just concluded recently...those arguing for propriety-only or open source-only systems don't have a clue what is really going on in the world of IT today.

InfoWorld reviews five CMS: Alfresco on top and Drupal at the bottom

I'm still in need to read this InfoWorld article in its entirety, but thought it was worth mentioning now.  InfoWorld's Mike Heck has written an article, Open source CMSes prove well worth the price, which reviews and compares five content management systems.  The five CMS under review are Alfresco, DotNetNuke, Drupal, Joomla, and Plone.

The good news is that all five CMS ranked Very Good or higher. However, Alfresco was the only CMS that ranked Excellent with a score of 9.2.  Plone 3.0 received the second highest ranking with a score of 8.6.  DotNetNuke and Joomla tied for third and fourth place with a score of 8.4 which put Drupal a fraction lower with a score of 8.3.  While none of these CMS ranked poorly, I'm sure the open source communities are bound to scrutinize over how the individual criteria were scored and ranked.

Why open source gets my attention

From CMS Report's very beginning, I had every intention to talk about not only those content management systems (CMS) that are open source, but also those CMS that are considered propriety systems.  I personally don't have a problem seeing companies making profit for the products they develop and promote.  Yet, if you look at the majority of posts I have written in the past year you'll find that about 95% of the articles center around open source CMS and not propriety systems.  Part of the reason I don't talk much about propriety CMS is tha

Web 2.0 is for the Right Side of Your Brain

John Newton, Alfresco, has written an interesting posts regarding "Web 2.0".  I find the article interesting because I think Newton does bring up some new ideas or at least something that hasn't been talked about in some time.  Newton has observed that the main audience for those of Web 2.0 appear to be users that tend to think on the right side of your brain.  Newton also takes it one step further by saying perhaps it is time we start taking into account the personality types of users when it comes to CMS development.

This was a real revelation for me. However, I don’t think that John and Caterina shared my excitement. Maybe it’s already bleeding obvious. The next day I did a Google search on “Web 2.0” and right brain and didn’t find a lot. However, for me it is profound and it is something I think that we can apply immediately to the development of Alfresco. I am going to explore the concept more and I believe that there are implications from Myers-Briggs personality types in how they interact with the Internet.

Taking this further, this might also mean why those who are "left brainers" are kind of annoyed with this whole Web 2.0 terminology.  It has been my experience that while the general public still craves Web 2.0 those involved in the project are exhausted of hearing the phrase be used so much these days.  If you know anything about Myers-Briggs personality types you know there may be some truth to why some of the strongest groups that dislike the Web 2.0 concept appear to be the hard core developers.

Packt offers free sample chapter from Alfresco book

From the Sample Chapter Kshipra Singh of Packt Publishing sent me an e-mail the other day. Packt Publishing focuses on the publication of computer and information technology books intended to be read by developers, administrators, and newbies. Mr. Singh wanted to let me know that they just recently published a new book for the Alfresco CMS. The book is titled, Alfresco Enterprise Content Management Implementation, and is written by Munwar Sharrif.

Packt Publishing has offered me "a sample chapter from this book, to be published" here at CMS Report . To make things easy we decided just to offer the link onsite to the sample chapter stored directly on Packt Publishing's servers. You can download the the sample chapter in PDF format. The sample chapter being provided is Chapter 5, "Implementing Document Management".

Given that I only have the sample chapter on Alfresco to read, I hesitate to offer any type of review for the book. I will say, however, that just in the opening pages of the sample chapther the author had my attention on his reasons for using Alfresco as well as writing the book.

Unlike most other open-source CMSes, which offered only web content management, Alfresco provided a wide range of solutions to Enterprise customers with an impressive roadmap. And most importantly, it is created using completely open standards. This excited us a lot, and we started implementing Alfresco in many enterprises...I have trained many users, administrators, and developers in Alfresco and many other systems. This book distils the hands-on approach of my training courses into a concise, practical book. The book focuses on business needs rather than technical syntax.

The author also make a brief mention that there are currently around 1700 content management systems out there on the market.  No wonder I have been feeling a little behind keeping up on today's content management systems!  Either way, if you have read or are reading the book...I'd be glad to hear your thoughts on either Alfresco or the book.  Feel free to leave your comments here on this page.