To PHP, or to CMS?

Quick but interesting chat with Alastair tonight on the Learning Proposal … I had initially started with the idea of working on isolated elements with PHP and MySQL, and then integrating into a common prototype. But researching last night I found an open source CMS called Joomla! which seems to do a lot of what I want in one already-integrated package …

The negative if I use the CMS: possibly losing the “build from the ground up” benefits of learning PHP from a blank screen.

The positive if I use the CMS: faster results, and “build from the ground up” benefits of learning to install a CMS from scratch.

I’m leaning toward Joomla! right now, as I’m results driven, but I think I’ll wait for my week of analysis before I make a decision.

2 thoughts on “To PHP, or to CMS?

  • August 27, 2008 at 11:52 am

    I’d go with something off the shelf and save a load of time (both in the initial site build and ongoing updates). You can use that time for other critical tasks like marketing and writing content.

    I’d recommend 3 tools…

    Joomla, Drupal, WordPress

    WordPress is the easiest to use and is best for blogging (though add on modules can make it more like a traditional CMS).

    Drupal and Joomla take longer to learn but offer more options and are proper CMS tools.

    All 3 have strong communities with hundreds of add on modules.

  • August 31, 2008 at 1:38 pm

    One of my group members from the MIM Development Process subject from last semester used Joomla for her DMT project and found it a positive experience. Joomla was one of the things I was thinking of basing my project around as it seems to be a great tool that can be used to build quite sophisticated websites
    I’ve had a quick play with Joomla and found it quite a polished tool. One thing I noticed was that appeared that you only had two levels below the home page – categories and sections – before you got down to article level. I don’t think you can create divisions more granular than that, but then 95% of projects wouldn’t need more than that
    From my reading of a few comparisons some think Drupal is a little more customisable, but Joomla is a little easier “out of the box”. There doesn’t seem to be too much in it – they both seem to have their strengths.

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