Hosted cloud-based Web CMS provider Osmek claims to have “rethought” the Web CMS model by shifting focus from the framework to the actual content being published.

Becoming a ‘Content API’

On its site, Osmek says it has transformed itself into a “content API,” rather than a traditional Web CMS provider. What this means is the Osmek CMS is platform-agnostic. Developers have their choice of programming language, framework, etc. and can also distribute content to an unlimited number of sites and in formats such as content templates and XML.

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Through the use of “content bins” that replace frameworks, Osmek also says its CMS (or content API, if you prefer) developers can pick from a variety of back-end models including photo gallery and podcasting. The Osmek API allows remote access from any location and managers can set different levels of permission controls for different users.

Osmek – The Old Days

Osmek has always presented itself as a lightweight publishing system that gives the users multiple options for formatting content, but has not always used the content API model. In May 2010, CMSWire covered the introduction of Osmek into the hosted Web CMS marketplace. Osmek, the brainchild of Matthew McCloskey, founder and Principal at Kemso, LLC, was presented as a Web-based content management system that leverages the cloud for content storage.

Osmek did offer a language-neutral development API, a series of section modules and templates and system wide core functionality that enabled site features such as comments and tags. The system targeted the same customer base as Squarespace and LightCMS. Specifically, Web developers and designers who are looking for a content management solution for their clients.

However, although Osmek always offered a high degree of individual choice and language-neutrality, it still followed the typical framework CMS model. By completely eliminating frameworks and turning the whole CMS into an API, Osmek is maximizing the flexibility and scalability of the developer environment. Will it be stable enough for widespread use? If this proves to be the case, look for other CMS vendors to start ditching frameworks in favor of flexibility.

A Friend of the Developer

A friend of the developer is a friend of mine, but is the revamped Osmek CMS a true “friend” to developers? AppStorm recently asked this question, noting that the traditional “PHP-based application installed on your server that lets you log in and add/edit pages” works well, but “the way these websites work can make it difficult to customize your website, leaving the back end dictating how the front end works.”

In comparison, AppStorm deems Osmek’s user interface to be “a little clunky and convoluted.” However, overall Osmek gets a “very good” rating, with specific praise for the ease of using content bins, customizable data fields and quality of the developer API. On a scale of one to 10, Osmek receives an 8. Sounds pretty friendly.

Osmek pricing ranges across five basic levels from US$ 9 to US$ 149 per month, depending on number of content bins, users and servers.