If you were to believe all the hype surrounding concrete5, an open source Web content management system, then a remarkable new system has just gone on General Availability (GA).
While its usually a good idea to give every company a hearing and every piece of software a trial run, generally PR emanating from a company about their own product should be taken with even the tiniest pinch of salt.
Especially when they are claiming to be better than Drupal and Joomla, two of the most well known open source web content management systems.
Big Processing Power, Easy-To-Use
They claim that concrete5 matches Drupal and Joomla in its processing power, but that unlike concrete5, these systems were built by developers and for developers forgetting about the ‘little guy’ who has to use a content management system for his business, but does not have the resources to employ developers.
With concrete5, an open source web content management system, its developers say building your website is both easy to do and in the long term, easy to run.
They also claim it combines the ease-of-use of a blogging platform and the power of a web development platform.
Version 1 Built For Flexibility
concrete v1 emerged on the scene in 2003 in Portland, Oregon, when the developers built it from scratch in PHP 4, developing a system that they say is highly flexible and in keeping with three basic principles:
- Ease of Use: The system had to have an easy-to-use interface that would allow even the novice builder construct a website.
- Adaptable: It had to be adaptable so that a solution to any content-related task could be either built in or added on as an extension with the user defining how the site would work, not the technology or the capabilities of the system defining it.
- Powerful: It needed to have quite a lot of power behind it as the original version was built as a site for a local AdCouncil and would have a high connection with TV advertising — with up to 10,000 visitors to the site per second at peak TV viewing times.
New Features With v.5
concrete v5 was released in June last year. This is the version that has just gone on General Availability. The developers say this version has succeeded in achieving the goals they set for v.1.
There are a number of new features with v.5:
- First and foremost, given the importance simplicity of use for concrete, the file manager interface has been revamped and there is now improved searching and ordering connected to this redevelopment.
- They have also integrated the image editor from picnik.com which allows users manipulate images from within the browser.
- Automated site augmentation allows users to shop for add-ons and other pieces of associated software that will allow users adopt concrete5 to their own needs. These add-ons can be found in the Concrete marketplace and will be automatically installed without coding issues or opening FTPs.
- An advanced permissions system gives greater definition to who can access certain files and how those files can, or cannot, be changed
- A new help system connecting directly to concrete5.org will communicate results and queries to users in real and real quick time.
- Site owners will also be able to make edits directly onto a page that needs manipulation by virtue of a toolbar that gives them that power.
File Manager Interface has been redesigned
In essence, concrete5 brings a ‘playing with Lego’ concept to the building of websites with very few limitations to what can be conceived, designed and built by this new system.
GA Will Put v.5 To Market-Wide Test
With the announcement of the General Availability of concrete5, there are a number of testimonials as to the efficacy of this version. While no one is disputing the veracity of these case-studies, it remains to be seen as to whether the wider market takes to it or not.
Taking market share from the likes of Drupal and Joomla would appear to be a very difficult thing to do. The communities for these two open source web content management systems are extremely large and strong.
We will be watching to see what happens.
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