[thelist] searching and JSON

Nadeem Hosenbokus nadeem at nadeemh.com
Fri Sep 21 03:28:37 CDT 2012

Sarah and Renoir - thank you both for your replies.

Renoir said " It is better using the right tool for the right task" and I think that is why I don't use the open source CMSes - I started in this business by developing custom applications in VB6 with SQL Server and Oracle. 

The competitive key at that time was analysing the client's business processes and providing a custom built solution; a mindset that I have taken with me into web development. Also I come from a background where normalising a database and avoiding unnecessary fields is a standard.

When I look at solutions like Joomla and Drupal, I see them as generic solutions for a wide range of uses which you can then mould into the specific solution you need provided that the target site fits within whatever limitations the CMS has. And this is where I give up.

It took me several hours to modify a customised news module for Drupal. Granted, I'm new to it but the actual process involved editing several files in different places and then changing styles that then had an impact on other design elements (I may have done that part incorrectly). When I look at the nodes in the Drupal database I understand why they've done it and it's brilliant but only if you're designing a database without any specific requirements.

The sites that I specialise in are more web-applications that follow a company's business processes for particular tasks - the framework that I have built over the years caters for my needs - it's a flexible OO system that I can plug modules into and I keep the security as up to date as I can using OWASP recommendations. I couldn't begin to imagine building a stock management system with a CMS solution. Now, when a client asks for something new that eventually turns into a new module that I can reuse.

Now I can use my framework for pretty much anything so I stick with it because it does the job and I know every single line of code making it easier to maintain and expand.


Nadeem Hosenbokus
(230) 766 9169

-----Original Message-----
From: thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org [mailto:thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org] On Behalf Of Renoir Boulanger
Sent: 18 September 2012 17:07
To: thelist at lists.evolt.org
Subject: Re: [thelist] searching and JSON

<nadeem at nadeemh.com> wrote:
> OK - let me ask the question I've always been unclear about.
> If you could build your own would you still use an off-the-shelf CMS and why

I assume it was a question aimed at me.

 To answer your questions:
- I can code my own CMS
- Use a OSS CMS: Yes  ;)

# Why

## Short version:

My reactions are due to questions about bending a CMS into something else that is /not/ content. 

A use-case for a inventory-shopping-cart-payment-processing dragon is, you will agree, not content.

It is better using the right tool for the right task and not re-invent the wheel.

## Details as of why

A little background first.

Like many others in this list, my bread and butter is making websites. Mostly with graphic designer agencies. 

Today I'm consulting as software developer but that's an other story.

I actually built my own CMS and made more than 150 client's websites between 2001-2007. During that period I did a few web applications too such as B&B reservation system.

My code was procedural, PHP 4, closed source and I was always re-creating html+css patterns.

All those years, I learned the hard way: no university studies. Only passion.

Lots of wasted energy and no re-usable code. After that phase I did quite appreciate open source CMSes.

So yes. I had my lessons learned and actually use "Off the shelf" CMS.


When project requires MORE than simply "managing content".

There are solutions for those situations.

Many startups, open source and/or dual licensed projects exists to fulfill the use cases. Those solutions are meant to save time, or who do not have the skills to create (or extend) using frameworks.

Using and modifying is not bad. Don't get me wrong. It is actually a very educative process. But have it's share of caveats. Ones you do not fall into for client work. It costs money, time, and some of our sanity ;)

Among what I learned in my experience is;
  - using a tool for it's destined purposes is much easier than bending
  - Extending (the extendable) is what (ideally) to seek for
  - Learn from the experienced ones ... not re-inventing the wheel

Learn from the experienced needs the seeker to search for the concepts because cleverer people most likely found how, gave a name, and is extensively documenting it.


Use Open-Source. Search how others do. See if it makes sense. Try to improve. Repeat.

My two cents :)

Renoir Boulanger

(envoyé de mon téléphone)


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