The April issue of Adobe Edge contains the article, Review of open source content management systems. The article provides an overview of what the author describes as "five of the top open source software (OSS) solutions". The five open source CMS included in the author's list are CMS Made Simple, Drupal, Joomla!, WordPress, and XOOPS. After reading the article, I found myself wondering how we "reviewers" can actually improve our reviews of open source CMS. More importantly, I've come to the realization that I can no longer claim to be non-biased in which CMS I believe is the best out there.
The author does a fine job in the article describing the similarities and differences between the CMS being reviewed. However, one of the issues I have in this article and many others I've read that review CMS is the big jumps in the conclusion:
Drupal, Joomla!, and XOOPS are best for building an e-commerce site because all three offer:
Support for third-party payment processing mechanisms (such as PayPal)
Modules for shipping and sales tax calculators
Shopping cart functionality
While it is true that Drupal, Joomla! and XOOPS can do e-commerce, none of these CMS can do that straight out of the box. I can just imagine a shop owner or design company trying Drupal, Joomla!, or XOOPS for the very first time and wondering, "how the heck do I get a shopping-cart into the CMS?". While the author does hint in the article that third-party modules are needed to make the e-commerce work, I think the author would have been better off better explaining that "some work is required" to get those features into the CMS.
I was really surprised not only find out that Joomla! 1.5 is going through a third release candidate, but will likely be followed with more release candidates. In most projects, the release candidate is a nearly-done final product where the only thing left is to make sure all the i's are dotted and all the t's are crossed. Not so with Joomla! 1.5.
Johan Janssens's writes in his post, "Is Joomla! 1.5 RC3 really a release candidate?":
In the last two weeks after the release of RC3 I have seen this question popping up on forums and mailing lists. I have seen complaints about RC3 being more of a break in development then a real release candidate. Some people seem to feel that we are still adding features and making functionality changes.
In this post I will try to give, in all honesty and openness, a status update on development and provide an answer to this question.
Mike Gifford, Open Concept, commented here at CMS Report that his company had just posted a report they did for a client comparing three open source content management systems. His company needed to recommend to their client whether Wordpress, Joomla, and Drupal would be a good replacement for their current CMS, Back-End (BE).
We've just done a report for one of our clients comparing Drupal, Joomla & Wordpress for (1) multilingual capabilities (also called internationalization or i18n); (2) end-user usability; and (3) developer usability.
As a national organization in Canada, being bilingual was a must. Check out our CMS comparison.
Amy Stephen over at Open Source Community has put together a good summary for how differing open source CMS projects have interpreted the impact the GPL has on third-party extensions/modules/plugins/add-ons. Movement in the Joomla community ensuring GPL compliance for extensions is what prompted her comparisons of license interpretation between Drupal, Joomla, Plone, Typo3, Wordpress, and XOOPS.
A couple weeks ago, I found on my doorstep Hagen Graf's book, Building Websites with Joomla! 1.5 Beta 1. The book was sent to me by the book's publisher, Packt Publishing, in hopes that I would review the book on the Joomla! content management system here at CMSReport.com. While I do not promise to review every book or Internet link that comes my way, I always appreciate the opportunity to do such reviews. In this case, I was eager to review the book since I have lost track of the new features introduced in version 1.5 since Joomla! 1.0 first arrived in 2005.
There was a time when I thought technical reference books would be a thing of the past. Why would anyone purchase a book when all you needed to do was go to your favorite Internet search engine and after a few clicks of the mouse find your answer? Lately though, I've found that the Internet is still no match for that thing we all call a book.
CiviCRM 1.7 has been released. The CiviCRM is the "first open source and freely downloadable constituent relationship management solution". CiviCRM is web-based (integrating with Joomla! or Drupal), internationalised, and designed to meet the needs of advocacy, non-profit and non-governmental groups.
The following are highlights for CivicCRM 1.7:
Integrated online event registration and management for paid and free events. This release also includes a new "Contact Dashboard", which gives constituents a consolidated view of their subscriptions, contributions, event registrations and more.
Create and save re-usable email templates (with mail-merge tokens)
CiviContribute plugins for Authorize.net and Google Checkout
Use customized versions of templates for any screen
One-click copying for existing Profiles, Contribution Pages and Events
Restrict access to selected custom data fields and selected profile screens
This fork of Joomla to improve accessibility interested me
Accessible (a8e) Joomla! is a Joomla! fork that conforms to accessibility guidelines and web standards. A8e Joomla! will follow regular Joomla! releases. The project should implode when regular Joomla! finally conforms to the standards.
Accessibility of Internet sites is very huge within the federal government and addressed by Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, 1998.
In 1998, Congress amended the Rehabilitation Act to require Federal agencies to make their electronic and information technology accessible to people with disabilities. Inaccessible technology interferes with an individual's ability to obtain and use information quickly and easily. Section 508 was enacted to eliminate barriers in information technology, to make available new opportunities for people with disabilities, and to encourage development of technologies that will help achieve these goals. The law applies to all Federal agencies when they develop, procure, maintain, or use electronic and information technology.
On a recent visit to Drupal's forum I found another post with both Joomla and Drupal in the subject line. Making comparisons between Joomla and Drupal are very common these days as they are currently considered the top two open source content management systems (CMS) out there. The forum post written by Steve Burge contains a link that takes you to a comparison table he did between Joomla and Drupal. While the table may not give the full picture of each CMS, I'm convinced that Burge tried to be as non-bias as he possibly could in his comparison.