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Online Publishing & Content Management with Open Source Software The Non-Profit Technology Conference March 27, 2004. Session Overview. Introductions Where We Are Today Is an OSS CMS Right for Your Organization? Examples of Open Source CMS in Use A View from Within Resources Q & A.

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Online publishing content management with open source software

Online Publishing & Content Management with Open Source Software

The Non-Profit Technology Conference

March 27, 2004

Session overview
Session Overview Software

  • Introductions

  • Where We Are Today

  • Is an OSS CMS Right for Your Organization?

  • Examples of Open Source CMS in Use

  • A View from Within

  • Resources

  • Q & A

Introductions Software

  • Panelists

    • Jeff Herron, Beaconfire Consulting – Washington, DC

    • Shefali Gupta, HealthWrights – Palo Alto, CA

    • Manu Gupta, HealthWrights – Palo Alto, CA

  • Questions for Audience

    • What is your role in your organization?

    • What would you like to learn today?

Current state of oss cms
Current State of OSS CMS Software

  • 50+ OSS CMSes to choose from

  • Nearly all on LAMP platform

    • Linux

    • Apache

    • MySQL

    • PHP

  • Standards finally emerging

  • Forking still rampant

Decision making challenges
Decision Making Challenges Software

  • Decision Making Challenges

    • No clear decision maker or ‘owner’; budget = control?

    • Lack of buy-in and support from stakeholders

    • Making the case for spending $ on technology

    • Not determining and budgeting for full cost of ownership

    • Complex mix of choices, sacrifices, trade-offs and risks with few clear ‘right’ answers – How to choose?

    • Will I get stuck with something obsolete, proprietary, or tied to a particular vendor?

    • Viability of vendors and technology options. Will they survive?

Considerations Software

  • Functional Considerations – Project Specific

    • What features are required?

    • What features are nice to have?

    • Budget

    • Timeline

  • Business Considerations – Organization Specific

    • Opportunity Cost / Strategic Goals

    • Total Cost of Ownership (one time, recurring, support costs)

    • Change Management - Impact to Organization

    • Time to Implement

    • Risk Tolerance (to project and to organization)

    • Usability

    • Vendor Characteristics (financial viability, culture, customer service, licenses)

Considerations Software

  • Technology Considerations – IT Specific

    • Maturity of Product/Technology

    • Scalability & Performance

    • Portability – multiple platforms, lock-in

    • Reliability

    • Interoperability: Compatibility, Data Exchange, & Integration

    • Security

    • Flexibility / Extensibility

Decision making criteria
Decision Making Criteria Software

  • Must have a clearly defined and widely accepted basis for making a decision, otherwise…

    • Lack of buy-in

    • Pre-determined selection – just a formality

    • Decision by intuition or gut feel or style of sales team

    • Don’t realize how minor vendor differences affect organizational priorities

  • Which considerations rise above the rest? Make your decision criteria reflect your priorities and USE THEM.

    • Common Decision Making Criteria

      • Budget

      • Key Features

      • Timeline

      • Technology Ownership Model Preference

Best practices
Best Practices Software

  • Selection Process Steps

    • Prioritize requirements

    • Determine Key Decision Criteria

    • Research available solutions

    • Head to head comparison of options

    • Objective evaluation of capabilities vs. sales claims

    • Demos

    • Q&A with vendor/solution reps / Due Diligence

    • Negotiations and contracts etc

  • Recommendations

    • Making smart technology selection decisions is based on clearly defined criteria and an understanding of your needs.

    • Evaluate Functional, Business AND Technical considerations.

    • Realize limits of the process and overcome challenges with planning.

    • Most often the business considerations are overlooked. Functional and Technical considerations are usually part of the process

Technology ownership models
Technology Ownership Models Software

  • There are several common models for technology ownership.

  • Ownership Model Impacts:

    • Total Cost of Ownership

    • Fit to client requirements

    • Development time frame

    • Dependence on vendor

    • Upgrades and innovation

    • Control of code and future enhancements

    • Maturity of features

Cms solution options
CMS Solution Options Software

  • Depending on the Features and functions required of a CMS, there are several categories of solutions.

  • Open Source software can be present in any of these solution categories. Majority of well known open source tools in the CMS Framework, CMS Product and CMS + Community categories.

Pros cons
Pros & Cons Software

Oss vs proprietary cms tools
OSS vs. Proprietary CMS Tools Software

  • Total Cost of Ownership

    • Lower Acquisition Costs for OSS (no license)

    • Often higher implementation effort – requires customization and polish for business users

  • Maturity of Solutions?

    • Explosion of OSS CMS tools means more options

    • However, many are fragmented and development stalled.

    • OSS best suited for use by technologists not business users

      • Derivative products more refined (PostNuke better than PHPNuke)

    • OSS Strongest in Content Delivery

      • Evolved from application server environments (Zope)

      • Frameworks for development rather than fully formed solutions

      • Best suited for intranet/extranet or workgroup CMS

    • OSS Weakest in Content Production (entry, workflow, versioning)

      • End user features & administrative interfaces are less polished

Oss vs proprietary cms tools1
OSS vs. Proprietary CMS Tools Software

  • Support

    • Documentation and training often less complete for OSS.

    • OSS projects supported by a company (Plone, eZ Publish) are be better.

    • Developer Community – typically a strength of OSS;

  • Upgrades & Enhancements

    • OSS driven by user community rather than a company.

      • Great if community is motivated and innovative.

      • Less ideal if effort stalls or becomes fragmented.

  • Proprietary Solution Competition

    • Inexpensive, feature rich proprietary solutions are emerging that mitigate OSS’s most compelling benefit vs proprietary solutions – price.

Examples Software

  • African Conflict Journal – PHP Nuke

  • - eZpublish

Case study healthwrights
Case Study: HealthWrights Software

Knowledge Sharing Network

  • Spectrum of health & policy issues

  • Participatory: representing global voices

  • Professionally managed and edited

Case study healthwrights1
Case Study: HealthWrights Software

Why CMS?

  • Content Management

  • Create truly collaborative network

  • Ease of use for all audiences (international, low tech)

Case study healthwrights2
Case Study: HealthWrights Software

CMS Selection Criteria

  • Desired features in CMS: article submission, workflow, referencing…

  • Costs

  • Technology familiarity

  • Support: documentation, community,

  • Clients/references using CMS

Case study healthwrights3
Case Study: HealthWrights Software


  • Prototype

  • Volunteer Model

    • Collaborative

    • Learning curve

  • Model Sites


  • Customization

Case study healthwrights4
Case Study: HealthWrights Software

Project Management

  • Timeline

  • Technology Building Capacity

Case study healthwrights5
Case Study: HealthWrights Software

  • “Our experience with Open Source CMS technology has revolutionized our thinking.”

Resources Software


  • Content Management System Comparison


Final thoughts questions
Final Thoughts & Questions Software

  • Open source ≠ Free

  • Not all OSS CMSes are created equal

  • Hit the books

Closing Software

Ryan Ozimek

PICnet, Inc.

(202) 585-0239

Shefali Gupta


(650) 325-7500

Manu Gupta


(650) 325-7500

Jeff Herron

Beaconfire Consulting

(703) 534-1559