Still active?

Hello,

I’m a ruby developer and very enthousiastic about Radiant. The review
on http://www.a3webtech.com/index.php/cms-3.html mentioning the less
mature state of the project and the lack of an installer even made me
more enthousiastic.

However I am still hesitant using it for a serious business websites.
I miss some critical documentation on creating templates for a decent
website, i.e. how to use the system in the role of webmaster. Reading
the documentation on radiantcms.org didn’t help me much. Fortunately
the article in artofmission.com cleared up some things for me.

Overall I get the impression that project is not very active, judging
on releases, the blog and the mailing groups. However I can’t see
what’s going on behind the scenes. Is Radiant still alive and kicking?

Regards,

Maarten Oelering

Maarten,

Let me assuage some of your fears. Radiant is VERY active, people are
using the CMS all the time to build websites, and I receive at least 15
messages a day on the mailing lists. Your perception of inactivity in
the project may be because we release fairly infrequently, for an
open-source project. I would say that’s a combination of the limited
time our core developers can devote, the overall quality of the code
(fewer bug fixes) and our commitment to that quality (we try not to
release broken code).

I would not fear using it for “serious business websites”. If you want
evidence of its usage in a “serious business website”, look no further
than redken.com (USA site) and redkensalon.com. Granted, we made heavy
customizations to Radiant for that site, but the team I worked with
assured me that all of the sites they have built, most of them with a
PHP-based CMS, have required an equivalent customization effort.

Regarding templates (layouts, actually), Radiant gets out of your way in
that regard. Design whatever template you want, Radiant can serve it.
If you want to know how to create a layout, it’s best to bootstrap
Radiant with the “Styled Blog” template and read its layout(s). They
are actually a lot simpler than you might expect.

Let me be clear. Radiant won’t do everything for you, but most of your
needs will be satisfied by the base installation: designing, creating
and publishing pages. For other things, you will need to look into
extensions.

Sean

P.S. Those lacking features made you MORE enthusiastic? Did I understand
you correctly?

Hi Sean,

Thanks for your extensive reply. I am happy to hear that Radiant is
very active.

However others might get the same impression as me, which probably
would not be the case if radiantcms.org is updated more frequently.
But, as you say, the quality of the code is what counts, and not the
packaging.

The fact that Radiant, like any other CMS, may not do eveything out-
of-the-box is not a problem. That’s one of the main reasons why I
prefer a Rails based CMS, since it makes developing extensions a lot
easier.

What made me enthousiastic in the review I mentioned is that Radiant
is part of list of well-known CMS’s and considered as an interesting
new contenter which looks very promising. As a ruby developer, the
only lacking feature I have a problem with is the part about the
documentation. I will check out the Styled Blog template as you
suggested. This might help me creating the layouts and structure of
the site. However my less technical colleagues must also be able to
edit content or add pages to the site. If the rather conceptual
documentation is extended with more concrete examples, it might help
a lot.

Cheers,

Maarten

Maarten Oelering wrote:

The fact that Radiant, like any other CMS, may not do eveything out-
the site. However my less technical colleagues must also be able to
edit content or add pages to the site. If the rather conceptual
documentation is extended with more concrete examples, it might help
a lot.

Cheers,

Maarten

Hi Maarten,

Here’s the thing - I had proposed a plan for documentation for Radiant
on the documents mailing list but have had absolutely no time to
contribute to it. However, Radiant is very much alive and a lot is
going on.

One of the things that gives Radiant a bad name (and in many places a
good name) is the fact that it doesn’t have everything and the kitchen
sink thrown in. It’s got just enough to do a solid job of content
management! It doesn’t come with a dozen styles, templates, etc. that
force you to create a certain kind of content/ site. That does mean,
however, that you need to design your own layout.

OK, so here’s what I’m willing to offer. I wrote a “Hello World” guide
for Radiant that talks you through the idea of creating a non-blog style
Radiant setup (i.e., starting with an ‘empty’ project). It’s online
here: http://notepad.onghu.com/2007/5/26/hello-world-using-radiant-cms
There’s also another article also at the same blog:
http://notepad.onghu.com/radiant

That said, there are a number of jewels of wisdom on this list and some
in the wiki. Unfortunately, the wiki is a bit slow and that’s quite a
problem. I still want to get around to the idea of the documentation I
had proposed, but I can’t say much till I get more time. Anyway, the
idea is here if anyone else is interested.

http://lists.radiantcms.org/pipermail/radiant-docs/2007-December/000034.html

Can I ask a question? How many people here are willing to write a
one-off one article about using some facet of Radiant in a time
period of the next 3 weeks? Shall we aim for that? I’ll write one,
I’ll coordinate it if there are at least 10 people willing. Then, we
can put them all out. If there are about 15 - 20 people, it would be
quite a sudden push! What do you guys thing?

Cheers,
Mohit.
2/22/2008 | 1:03 AM.

That said, there are a number of jewels of wisdom on this list and some
in the wiki. Unfortunately, the wiki is a bit slow and that’s quite a
problem. I still want to get around to the idea of the documentation I
had proposed, but I can’t say much till I get more time. Anyway, the
idea is here if anyone else is interested.

The core team is working with Andrew Vonderluft to migrate all the
Radiant sites (home, demo, dev, wiki) over to a better hosting
solution. The wiki will be faster and more reliable after this
migration. Getting this stuff off TxD’s shared hosting will be a boon!

Sean

Sean C. wrote:

Sean

That’s great!!

Cheers,
Mohit.
2/22/2008 | 1:23 AM.

Maarten,

Yes, I understand the documentation problem. That is one reason why we
have been trying to promote the wiki; documentation is time-consuming to
write.

Sean

Hi Mohit,

I’d be willing to contribute an article during the next weeks.

Cheers,
Casper

Casper F. wrote:

Hi Mohit,

I’d be willing to contribute an article during the next weeks.

Cheers,
Casper

I’d be willing to write a howto article on set up, installation and make
a basic website.

Count me in,

Jasper

Jasper Kooij wrote:

I’d be willing to write a howto article on set up, installation and make
a basic website.

Count me in,

Jasper

That’s great! So, I now have Casper and Jasper! It’s a good start -
I’ll put in one also. Here’s a rough plan - I’ll try and wait for
entries till about the 5th of March or so. Then, after that, we’ll set
a date of end of March to finish the article and we’ll launch it by
first week of April.

I think I’ll post a call for articles - so that everyone can get
involved :slight_smile: Also, I’d like to avoid having a few articles about the
same thing, so it will be good to ensure that we’ll all do different
things :slight_smile:

Cheers,
Mohit.
2/22/2008 | 10:18 PM.

Here are some really great articles/reviews on Radiant. Maybe these will
help alleviate your fears.
http://www.servicecycle.com/blog/2008/01/11/reasons-to-choose-radiant-cms-a-ruby-on-rails-cms/

http://www.servicecycle.com/blog/2008/01/14/best-ruby-on-rails-cms/

Hope this information helps you. It helped me.

Maarten Oelering wrote:

Hello,

I’m a ruby developer and very enthousiastic about Radiant. The review
on http://www.a3webtech.com/index.php/cms-3.html mentioning the less
mature state of the project and the lack of an installer even made me
more enthousiastic.

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