CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
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Joined: Sep 2010
28-01-2011, 11:47 AM
CONTENT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
Content Management Systems (CMS) have evolved into more than just publishing content, but managing your workflow as well. CMS’s nowadays allow you to easily conceive, edit, index, and publish content, while giving designers and developers more flexibility in customizing their look and functionality. Although there are many that require advanced skills to operate successfully, this article is going to cover a select few that offer a balance between design, code, and end-user usability.
Evaluating Content Management Systems
Evaluating content management systems can be an overwhelming task, not because it’s rocket science, but simply because there are tons of them to choose from. However, with a structured approach to your evaluation, things can be much easier and less intimidating. Let’s talk about the things you should look at when deciding what CMS to use; here are eight characteristics that a good CMS should have.
CHARACTERISTIC OF CMS
1. Intuitiveness: easy to understand and use
Your CMS should have a GUI (Graphical User Interface) that’s easy on the eyes, doesn’t have overly complicated options, and offers simplicity in its administration interface. A good interface means that tasks pertaining to creating and managing your content will be quicker, saving you a lot of time and increasing your productivity.
You should also look at it from an end user’s perspective: if you’re building a content management system for a client who’s not "technology-savvy" and you choose a solution that requires a Ph. D. in computer science, it’s less likely that they’ll be able to use the system (thus, defeating the whole purpose of a CMS, which is to empower its users).
2. Flexibility and Ease of Customization
When taking into consideration a content management system, make sure that you’re not obligated to use their design templates. A large quantity of CMS solutions allows you to customize your own design without major restrictions. If your CMS forces you to choose a fixed and unalterable design template, then you’re stripped of creative license and your website will look like everyone else’s.
CMS’s that offer customizations on templates are Expression Engine, WordPress, and Joomla just to name a few; these content management systems boast and promote their ability to be easily modified.
3. Extensibility via Plugins and Modules
A good CMS will allow you incorporate helpful site features into your site by letting you extend the default configuration with plugins.
Plugins/extensions/modules (their terminology varies between different platforms) make a difference in terms of enhancing your site’s ability to provide your site users with useful options for interfacing with your site.
Look for a CMS with a powerful Application Programming Interface (API) in case you need to write your own extensions. Make sure that the CMS you’re considering already has a huge list of plugins. Though you might not need plugins right away, it’s important that this is available to you, later down the road.
4. No Need for Programming Knowledge
If you’re more "design-oriented" than anything else, make sure you select a CMS where you won’t need to have extensive programming abilities to publish and maintain your site.
There is a wide selection of CMS’s that have WYSIWYG editors, letting you edit content without the need for code. Having to edit text through HTML markup can be time consuming and takes you away from other aspects of your managing and building your site.
Complex sites, however, can require a CMS that will let you type in some code, edit files with extensions such as .php, .css, .html, and make changes without that need for a third-party source code editor.
5. Optimized for Performance and Speed
Taking into consideration the speed your pages load on the browser, and how fast your site can make a connection to a server, is vital. Choosing a CMS that is bulky will drive away visitors rather then bring them in. By visiting examples of live sites, you’ll be able to gauge somewhat how fast pages load.
Keep in mind that you can increase the load time of your site by choosing a good host, and adding plugins that cache/compress/minify feeds, CSS, JS and also caches your database objects..
A simple and free tool that you can use to evaluate page response times of your CMS candidates is YSlow. Install it and head on over to demo sites of your CMS’s to see how well it’s front-end performs.
Adequate security for your site is very important and must be in place in order to protect your content. There are CMS’s that allow you to install specific plugins and edit files/permissions in order to increase security levels. Make sure you choose a management system that offers modules to protect the integrity of your site. You can also protect your site by selecting a CMS that allows you to easily assign a different username and password to each user. This will let you view and control what each user has access to.
7. Documentation and Community Support
Nothing’s more frustrating than trying to figure out how to do something, and not have references online that you can take advantage of. One way to ensure that you won’t be running into this problem is by reading through the documentation of your candidate CMS’s. Also, a quick Google search will tell you how popular and well-documented a content management system is.
The availability (or lack thereof) of support from users of the system can be a deal maker or deal breaker. When users are active and proud of being part of the community, you not only have access to individuals that are more familiar with the system, but also, you can be assured that the project and implimentation will be developed continually. Nothing’s worse than investing your resources and effort on a dead (or soon to be dead) project and implimentation.
8. Emphasis on Web Standards and Best Practices
Content Management Systems developed under web standards guidelines and best practices will ensure that you won’t get burned later down the road. When applications are designed with best practices in mind, you can be assured ultimate cross-browser compatibility, lean-and-mean code, and ease of maintenance.
Look for content management systems that promote the use of web standards, and those that put it at the forefront of their development and design philosophy.
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Joined: Feb 2012
08-02-2012, 01:55 PM
Content Management Systems
CMS.ppt (Size: 214 KB / Downloads: 53)
Programmatic Content Management
Display Context (e.g.,ADA compliance)
Device format requirements
Scheduled Site Maintenance
1. Input Once…Output Many Formats
. Pass Responsibility for Content
Creation to the “Experts”
. Create Self-maintaining Sites
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