Content Management System question

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I'm currently building sites for a fairly small dev shop, and we've run into  
a subject that we simply don't know where to take. So, here we go:

We have built all of our sites statically for the most part, using  
Dreamweaver Templates, and provided Contribute for the customer to edit the  

So, a while back my boss and our lead dev asked me to look into a Content  
Management solution using PHP/MySQL. So, I have built a system (oo design  
using classes for all queries) that allows users to add pages, edit their  
current pages, etc.

My problem is that our boss is wanting to see a much more dynamic system  
that will allow a user to format text WITHOUT using HTML (currently we  
provide the customer a small HTML reference guide). After some discussion,  
it came back to the fact that maybe we should simply stick with Contribute  
and dog the CMS all together.

I have a few questions:

What is everyone's opinion here? Is Contribute still a better solution for  
giving customers the ability to update a website? Or are there major  
advantages of the CMS I'm not seeing?

Also - is it even possible to build a system that is true WYSIWYG design  
that won't use HTML at all for editing? We don't want to just provide a  
text-based management system, but our boss doesn't want HTML to be used. Is  
there a better way to do this using PHP? Maybe get AJAX involved?

Thank you in advance.  

Re: Content Management System question

Jon wrote:


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I have created my own custom CMS that is used for all of our clients
(only about 50 right now). We've had many comments of praise on the ease
of use, etc. but there are 3 clients that explicitly said that it is
much better than using Contribute as they had done in the past.

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In my CMS, I implement this:

By using this, you control the content that they can actually mess up.
It's still possible to kill the layout by not closing tags and such, but
if you disable the toggle mode, they can't get into the source code, and
the supported browsers remember to close all tags that they create.

Justin Koivisto, ZCE -

Re: Content Management System question

Jon schrieb:

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You can adapt it for your needs by editing the javascripts - in my cases  
I don't want the users to make tables and such stuff, or insert and  
resize images. It works with Windows IE and with Firefox on both Windows  
and Mac.


Re: Content Management System question

Using a CMS allows many other things than just allow the user to update the
content. The same content can be presented dynamically in different ways :
let's say you have products organised in categories. You enter products in
the database through the admin interface. Then on the website you can let
the user browse all products, products of a given categories, products of
severall selected categories. You can make a search engine, etc...

For WYSIWYG Editors, there are plenty on the web (see Google). I think
FCKEditor and HTMLArea are very good, and they both work in Firefox
(multi-platform) and IE (windows).


Re: Content Management System question

Awesome - I guess I had no idea there were HTML editors like this all over  
the place. With as dynamic as I've built this system (basically I put in all  
the bells and whistles I could to get these guys on board - and because I'm  
a new developer :P ) this could put it over the top.

Thanks a ton for all the help guys :)

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