Radiant: A Ruby CMS and PHP alternative

So far I've mostly posted here at CMS Report about PHP-based content management systems. However, PHP isn't the only language being used on the Web. Other Web friendly languages include Perl, Java, Ruby, ASP, Python, etc.

So for one of our first non-PHP based CMS we're going to take a look at Radiant. The Radiant CMS is a Ruby on Rails CMS that has yet to reach version 1.0. Like a lot of CMS in early development it is considered a "no fluff" CMS for small teams. In other words, Radiant is not quite ready for enterprise level work. Radiant however may work well for those personal sites and small companies that have an invested interest to promote Ruby on Rails based applications.

Current features of Radiant, according to its home Website, include:

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New Drupal 4.7 theme available... Blue_mark

Screenshot of Blue Mark themeSomething old is new again. The Blue_mark theme for Drupal 4.7 is available at CMS Report. The Blue_mark theme uses Drupal 4.7's default theming engine, PHPTemplate. This theme is released under the GPL.

The Blue_mark theme was originally offered by Charles Lowe and available for download at his site, cyberdash.com. The original theme was written for Drupal 4.4's Xtemplate theme engine. I maintained the theme through Drupal 4.6 for a personal site of mine. With the switchover to the PHPTemplate theme engine as the Drupal 4.7 defualt, significant work was needed to keep old Blue_mark alive. The Blue Marine theme was used as a starting point. Minor tweaks were made to Blue Marine's PHP files and significant changes were made in the CSS.

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Dizzying Thoughts of Drupal Developer, Nick Lewis

A post by Nick Lewis, Drupal and XML: Looking Forward, caught my attention. In his post he discusses work on developing the CAP XML format (Common Alerting Protocol).

In preparation for my /Nick Lewis/ trip to Washington D.C. next month, I’ve begun to develop a module that integrates the CAP XML format (Common Alerting Protocol) with drupal’s node, location, google map, category, and CCK modules.

Put plainly, the CAP format seeks:

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Drupal Updates and CVS patching

A very common question among users of Drupal is, "How do I upgrade to the latest version of Drupal?" Drupal releases often contain instructions for how to upgrade your site from a previous release of Drupal (for example, 4.6 to 4.7), but quite a bit of confusion remains for updrading from much older releases (such as 4.3 to 4.7). The folks at 2bits offer some advice on how best to update your Drupal site in their post, Upgrading From Old pre-4.6 Drupal Releases To 4.7. The post is short yet helpful in getting you started on a Drupal update.

After looking at the 2bits article, you'll see they suggest the use of a CVS client to install any files changed from older version to 4.5. If you're like me, your initial reaction on the suggestion of using CVS clients and applying patches is the emotion of fear. However I'm quickly finding out that there isn't really much to it. Applying and creating patches is a lot easier than you think.

InformationWeek: Accidental Tech Entrepreneurs

Information Week has an interesting article about those involved in such online ventures as digg, del.icio.us, Zoot, and Six Apart's Movable Type. Basically, the article discusses how people have made their money off of blogging or providing the blog-like software and services.

Most people who pull down a paycheck dream of making a living at their hobby. For IT managers, the dream is more within reach than it is for most professionals, as their technical skills can give them a head start in building businesses on the Web. A supertalented few have even made fortunes.

How do they do it? We went straight to the sources, interviewing tech pros who turned their cyberhobbies into full-time jobs. Many of them truly were accidental entrepreneurs; others at least had an inkling they could make a go of it. All were helped along by a business-fertile Internet environment, their raw ambition, supportive spouses, and a little luck. They haven't all become rich, but they're all making a living at what they used to do for fun.

IT Surveys are not the answer

I don't care who you are. I don't care how much education or how little education you have. If your profession is in information technology (IT), you and I share the same exact thoughts, questions, and even dread toward this particular topic. The topic is user surveys.

What am I talking about, you ask? Ok, picture yourself arriving to work and finding "it" in your inbox at the entrance of your cubicle. Let's go even further, you're the one that placed the survey in everyone's inbox and now the time has arrived to collect the paperwork, tally the results, and draw conclusions for the project that you are working on. At this moment, reflect on your thoughts and frame of mind while you hold those surveys in your hands. We all have that same creepy voice in our heads asking us the question, "Do these user surveys hold any real value?" The voice demands an answer.

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Earl Miles: Another Attempt at Administrative Bliss

So Earl Miles, tell us what you really think about Drupal's administrative menus:

Drupal’s actual administrative pages suck ass. It’s not just the organization that’s wrong, as I had actually thought going into this. Unfortunately, no, it’s worse than that. While there are some pages that are (by dint of their brevity) relatively good, there are other pages that are nearly unworkable. block administration, menu administration, module administration, access control administration are all headache-inducing pages.

While I personally don't mind Drupal's administrative menus, Mr. Miles makes some good points in his posts about what could be improved in Drupal on the administrative side. You can read more at his Angry Donuts site by clicking here. He also has a mention about user surveys and their worth. Something I would like to touch on later in the day.

2bits: Google Adsense module gets new features

The Google Adsense module for Drupal has been updated by 2bits. Since we use it here at CMS Report, we thought we would also talk about it here. Some of the new features include:

  • Five pre-defined blocks that are easily configurable by the site admin without the need to use any PHP code.
  • A new "test mode" that ensures Adsense is working correctly specially when setting up revenue sharing.
  • The Adsense client ID is now stored in a profile field, both for site owner as well as other users.
  • Increased number of ad groups (type, color, ..e.tc.) from 3 to 5.
  • Increased the number of channels from 3 to 7.
  • Updated the online help and instructions, and made it collapsible/collapsed by default, so it is not in the way.
You can read more by clicking here.

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