Monday, April 10, 2006

I'm seeing increasing interest in the Typo3 CMS here in the Dallas area. When I first started using Typo3 in 2002, I had just wrapped up working on a Vignette based site which was my first real hard core CMS project. Vignette is a massive system that was one of the first CMS products so it is a big crufty mess in a lot of ways. It was orginally mostly based in Perl and then large parts of it were ported to Java when that became the buzzword. Despite the messy nature and many oddities of Vignette, I really liked the structure and discipline that a CMS brought to site development and wanted to find a similar tool for projects that couldn't handle the kind of budget that Vignette needed.

CMS development has been one of my main focuses ever since and I've worked with or studied quite a few. My mainstay is Typo3, an open-source PHP based system. Though not quite as bad as Vignette, it has some cruftiness too but is really versatile and has a great feature set. Despite working with several commercial CMSs since then and other open source systems, I find I can build really feature rich sites faster in Typo3 than any other system. I'm glad to see more shops here in Dallas picking it up. PHP is already pretty popular around here so it's natural for tools like Typo3 and Drupal to start seeing more use.

Typo3 4.0 just came out and has many improvements in UI and a few major features especially around workflow. Workflow was one area where commercial systems were ahead of it. I haven't used the new workflow features much but they look like they are on the right track. It's hard to handle that and keep the interface good for non-technical content people.

After my big current Typo3 based project, I'll probably be working with Sitecore again, a commercial .NET CMS. Sitecore is well suited for high traffic sites and makes really good use of XSLT. The interface is a little over-the-top, it's basically mimicing Vista in DHTML. But it has a lot in common with Typo3 in just how it makes you plan your structure and templating even thought the detailed mechanisms are different. I'm expecting to be able to reuse a lot of my typo3 experience in integrating Flash.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

how do i get in touch with you regarding website design?

2:35 PM  

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