Building on a CMS 2

14 February 2007

Lego blocks

When it rains, it pours goes the old saw. For the last couple of weeks I’ve been up to my ear lobes in two proposal writing projects. I expect two more by the end of March. The normal pace is two in a year. These are good for business, but hard on my personal and online lives.

This time crunch has tightly focused the effort I told you about in a December post about an off-the-shelf content management system (CMS) as basis for a website. To recap: I’m working a pro bono project to help a worthy historical non-profit upgrade their online presence. Last we talked I had built a demo website on WordPress and was planning to migrate to the more sophisticated Textpattern platform.

I just won’t have time for that anytime soon, and the non-profit wants to publish fast. So, after some reassuring research, I’ve decided to stick with WordPress and avoid the learning curve and rework needed to implement on Textpattern.


First, there is an array of proven plugins and custom modules available for WordPress to meet all the likely business needs of the client. Just ask Lorelle, for instance. Sure, there is danger that too many plugins or widgets will result in Lego architecture, but for the few functions we’re considering, I think the maintenance burden will be low.

Second, the client wants to implement new functions and features iteratively–one at a time at a moderate pace–so I will have opportunity to write custom PHP within the WordPress framework or bite the bullet and convert to a new platform later, if worst comes to worst.

It comes down to the fastest and easiest way to get function online with minimum investment.

I’d appreciate hearing from anyone with similar projects: I need all the advice I can get! I’ll keep you up on how it goes …

3 Responses to “Building on a CMS 2”

  1. Jenny says:

    I always figured if I ever decided to use a content management system on my behemoth of a website (I wish I had built it with one to begin with but that’s now water under the bridge …), I would use Word Press. All of the plug-ins, the amount of documentation available, and the ease of use make WordPress a good choice, I think.

    As far as customization goes, so many people work on and with WordPress that it also seems more likely you can find some existing code and then just be able to tweak it rather than having to write something totally from scratch.

    Good luck Brian!

  2. Brian says:

    Thanks very much for popping by, Jenny. Your thoughts of WP confirm my leaning that way. I’m with you about our old websites, also. It would have been a lot less work (but less fun, prob) had WP been around when we began.

  3. Daniel says:

    Hi Brian

    Thanks for the wonderful article.. Hmm why dont you try Modx at its got lots of customization and there isn’t much of a learning curve….heck its not called a CMS but a CMF (content management framework). Try it out sometime !

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