[Evangelism] The State of Drupal

Ken Wasetis [Contextual Corp.] ken.wasetis at contextualcorp.com
Mon Nov 23 20:16:20 UTC 2009


Regarding the different approaches, I think it's worth mentioning and 
possibly getting some input/material from Chris Johnson at ifPeople on 
the concept of 'Social Sourcing'.  He's made some presentations at Plone 
conferences on the topic and this is how the PloneGetPaid.com 
site/project was run and it worked very well.  Contextual, Groundwire, 
Tootsie, Trees For Life, and ifPeople put up some of the initial 
funding, with help through for-paid client projects that needed 
ecommerce for Plone, and then other organizations kept adding more and 
more.  Kapil with the bulk of initial development, then Six Feet Up, 
Maurits van Rees, and Red Domino and many others following on with much 
more code (to handle shipping, more payment processors, taxes, etc.)

I think it may also help (and open some eyes of those who aren't 
familiar with OSS projects) to point to stats/metrics that quantify 
efforts on projects such as PGP, but especially for Plone as a whole, on 
https://www.ohloh.net/p/plone   This currently indicates over $3M and 43 
developer years toward Plone development.  Additionally helpful is the 
project summary by Ohloh indicating the project 'velocity' - that 
development efforts are increasing year-over-year, it has a large 
developer base, establish code base, etc.

By comparison, Ohloh warns in its summary of Drupal that it has a small 
development team, though its 4.4/5.0 rating is higher than Plone's 4.2 
rating.  Alfresco gets a 3.7 rating, by the way.


Scott Paley wrote:
> This is very helpful - thanks!
> One can cite that the Royal Bank of Scotland, FBI, CIA and NASA are
> using Plone, and Plone is on the list of approved and secure platforms
> for use at NASA.
> I know one of the questions that will come up is examples of sites 
> where the platform is used in the enterprise, govenment, or major 
> educational settings. Basically, what are the "major wins" for Plone 
> in those 3 areas in 2009?
> Other topics that will likely come up on the panel:
>         * Shoot down common misconceptions about open source in general
>         * Discussion of the "single company model" (Alfresco) vs. the
>           "democratic foundation model" (Plone) vs. hybrid (Drupal)
>           and the differences between community and company driven
>           projects
>         * How does an enterprise properly evaluate open source
>           platforms? How is that evaluation different than with
>           proprietary systems?
>         * General compliance issues
>         * Plone's approach to workflow vs. the other platforms
>         * Why and when should companies contribute back to the
>           project? What's the value? Examples.
>         * Standards such as CMIS and RDF, why they're important, and
>           when are they not really important.
>     On Mon, Nov 23, 2009 at 2:13 PM, Nate Aune <natea at jazkarta.com
>     <mailto:natea at jazkarta.com>> wrote:
>         I've been putting together a "10 Things that make Plone a good
>         choice
>         for the enterprise" factsheet, and have come up with the following
>         talking points.  Many of these echo the excellent ones that Ken
>         already posted in his email.
>         1) Security
>         Since Plone is built on top of Zope and Zope uses a security model
>         similar to Unix, the security and permissioning can be very
>         granular.
>         Since Zope uses the ZODB, you don't have to worry about SQL
>         injection
>         exploits.
>         One can cite that the Royal Bank of Scotland, FBI, CIA and
>         NASA are
>         using Plone, and Plone is on the list of approved and secure
>         platforms
>         for use at NASA.
>         There are the CVE graphs from the IBM report comparing Plone
>         security
>         track record to other CMSes and frameworks.
>         http://www-935.ibm.com/services/us/iss/xforce/midyearreport/xforce-midyear-report-2008.pdf
>         The "Hardening Plone" howto on Plone.org is an excellent document
>         about how to lock down Plone even more for highly secure
>         environments.
>         http://plone.org/documentation/how-to/securing-plone
>         And the accompanying talk from the recent Plone conference
>         which was a
>         use case of a high-security Plone solution, which was audited and
>         approved for handling sensitive data from a multi-billion
>         industry.
>         http://www.slideshare.net/khink/hardening-plone-a-militarystrength-cms
>         Zope is very secure
>         http://zope2.zope.org/about-zope-2/six-reasons-for-using-zope/zope-is-secure
>         2) Scalability
>         At the recent Plone conference, we heard case studies about
>         sites that
>         have millions of page views per day and hundreds/thousands of
>         users
>         logging into the site. I'd like to collect these case studies
>         (perhaps
>         on plone.net? <http://plone.net?>), so when potential
>         customers ask for real data, we can
>         produce reports that show Plone can scale.
>         Since it's built on top of Zope, Plone has built-in load
>         distribution
>         using ZEO (Zope Enterprise Objects)
>         http://zope2.zope.org/about-zope-2/six-reasons-for-using-zope/zope-is-highly-scalable
>         With Plone 4, we get plone.app.blob which stores large files
>         on the
>         file system. Even Sharepoint can't do this OOTB without an
>         expensive
>         add-on product.
>         Plone has built-in caching and with CacheFu, we can send purge
>         requests to an upstream caching proxy such as Squid or Varnish.
>         Load tests can be written easily with Funkload to test before and
>         after performance optimizations using collective.funkbot.
>         http://pypi.python.org/pypi/collective.funkbot
>         With RelStorage, you can use Plone with any RDBMS including MySQL,
>         PostgreSQL and Oracle and take advantage of these database
>         clustering
>         and redundancy capabilities. See Shane Hathaway's recent blog post
>         about performance improvements when using RelStorage.
>         http://shane.willowrise.com/archives/relstorage-1-4-0b1-and-zodbshootout/
>         3) Interoperability
>         Since it's written in Python, Plone can talk to just about any
>         backend
>         system, from relational databases to authentication services
>         to web
>         services, and can be integrated with 3rd party search engines.
>         The Salesforce.com integration is the best of any open source tool
>         available today. David Glick from GroundWire gave a good
>         overview at
>         the PloneConf.
>         http://www.slideshare.net/davisagli/integrating-plone-with-ecommerce-and-relationship-management-a-case-study-in-plone-getpaid-and-salesforcecom
>         Because Plone ships with PlonePAS - pluggable authentication
>         service,
>         it can authenticate users against Active Directory, LDAP,
>         OpenID, SQL
>         or even Gmail.
>         Plone's built-in search tool can be easily replaced with the open
>         source Solr search tool which provides faceted search and
>         enterprise
>         level search capabilities. Andi Zeidler gave a lightning talk
>         at the
>         PloneConf about how easy it is to integrate.
>         http://plone.org/products/collective.solr
>         Massimo from RedTurtle gave a talk at the European Plone Symposium
>         about integrating Google Apps / Google Docs with Plone
>         http://www.slideshare.net/massimo.azzolini/googledocs-on-plone
>         Sally Kleinfeldt from Jazkarta organized a panel discussion about
>         Plone and web services at the PloneConf and has also blogged
>         about it.
>         http://blog.jazkarta.com/2009/08/07/plone-web-services-things-are-looking-up/
>         http://blog.jazkarta.com/2009/10/27/plone-web-services-what-about-cmis/
>         4) Data portability
>         Moving your Plone database to another provider is usually just a
>         matter of copying the Data.fs file and tar up the eggs/products
>         directory. Makes it very easy to switch to a different hosting
>         provider / vendor if you're not satisfied with your current one.
>         Besides using the web services APIs mentioned above to get
>         data in and
>         out of Plone, one can also leverage ContentMirror, which will
>         serialize and replicate all the content in Plone into a relational
>         database asynchronously. See Kapil's talk about it at last year's
>         Plone Symposium.
>         http://docs.google.com/present/view?id=dntgmzf_17547q5j3wq
>         enpraxis.static site is an add-on for Plone that lets you easily
>         create a static HTML snapshot of your entire Plone site.
>         http://pypi.python.org/pypi/enpraxis.staticsite
>         Also, using new tools such as Transmogrifier and Funnelweb (which
>         builds on top of Transmogrifier) it's even easier to get data
>         in and
>         out of Plone.
>         See Lennart's talk from the PloneConf about Transmogriier.
>         http://www.slideshare.net/regebro/transmogrifier-migrating-to-plone-with-less-pain-2387600
>         And the project page for Funnelweb, which gives you a TTW
>         interface
>         for importing static sites into Plone.
>         http://www.coactivate.org/projects/funnelweb/project-home
>         5) Accessibility
>         Plone is the most accessible open source CMS available on the
>         market.
>         Conforms to Section 508 which is a requirement for all government
>         agencies and W3C accessibility guidelines. The functionality
>         gracefully degrades on older browsers, or when using a
>         screenreader.
>         http://plone.org/products/plone/features/3.0/existing-features/accessibility-compliant/
>         and http://plone.org/accessibility-info
>         An all-too-often forgotten aspect when people construct web
>         sites is
>         how accessible these sites are to the blind and
>         sight/motor-impaired.
>         Plone was probably the first CMS out there that focused on
>         accessibility. With the ruling that web sites can be sued for not
>         providing access to the blind, things have changed for
>         government and
>         corporations who provide information to the public through their
>         websites.
>         http://www.infoworld.com/d/security-central/target-sued-over-web-access-blind-917
>         Aaron VanDerlip from Jazkarta gave a talk about Plone and
>         accessibility at the PloneConf 2006
>         http://plone.org/events/conferences/seattle-2006/presentations/plone-and-accessibility
>         6) Internationalization and multilingual content
>         Plone already supports over 50 languages out-of-the-box and with
>         Python 2.6 excellent handling of Unicode, we can support multibyte
>         languages as well such as Chinese, and even right-to-left (RTL)
>         languages such as Arabic and Hebrew.
>         Using the LinguaPlone add-on you can translate the content of your
>         Plone site into any language, and even export the content in
>         standard
>         XLIFF format for hand-off to a professional translation
>         agency. after
>         they've done the translations, they send back XLIFF files
>         which can
>         then be imported into Plone. See Sasha's presentation on this
>         from the
>         PloneConf.
>         http://www.slideshare.net/valentineweb/manage-multilingual-sites
>         There was a lightning talk at the Plone conference about an
>         in-place
>         translation tool that made it possible to translate the message
>         strings in the Plone interface just by clicking on them, and
>         then this
>         could be exported to a .po file.
>         7) Theming and branding
>         Plone already has excellent separation of presentation and
>         content,
>         and almost any element in the Plone interface can be styled
>         using only
>         CSS. With Deliverance, we have an even easier theming story,
>         and the
>         possibility to theme multiple applications using the same static
>         HTML/CSS design. Now any design can be made to work with Plone
>         with
>         minimal effort - simply add some rules to the Deliverance
>         rules file
>         to wire up content generated by Plone into placeholders in the
>         theme.
>         See my presentation from the Plone symposium (conference
>         slides to be
>         posted shortly)
>         http://www.slideshare.net/Jazkarta/deliverance-plone-theming-without-the-learning-curve-from-plone-symposium-east-2009
>         8) Hosting
>         Plone can be hosted on any platform including Linux, BSD,
>         Windows or
>         Mac OSX. Basically any platform that can run Python will work.
>         Plone can be hosted on a VPS, a dedicated server or virtual
>         machines
>         on Amazon EC2 or using Ubuntu's Enterprise Cloud.
>         http://www.ubuntu.com/cloud/private
>         Using GenericSetup, it's very easy to capture site configuration
>         settings, and programatically replicate the site on a different
>         instance.
>         Using buildout it's very easy to make repeatable deployments
>         so that
>         you can easily replicate a development environment, push it to
>         staging
>         and finally production.
>         See Tarek's excellent presentation on this subject:
>         http://www.slideshare.net/tarek.ziade/delivering-applications-with-zcbuildout-and-a-distributed-model-plone-conference-2008-presentation
>         A new development by Dylan Jay is collective.hostout which is
>         a series
>         of buildout recipes for defining your hosting settings
>         directly in the
>         buildout configuration file.
>         http://www.slideshare.net/djay/collectivehostout-how-to-host-a-python-app-for-20-in-20min
>         We've also started working on an Amazon AMI, VMWare and VirtualBox
>         images of Plone to make it even easier to evaluate and get Plone
>         hosted on a server quickly and using best practices.
>         9) Open source
>         Similar to Linux, Apache, Firefox and many other popular software
>         tools, Plone is open source. Open source is a methodology to
>         programming that puts great emphasis on community development.
>         Rather
>         than one firm or organization building a particular product,
>         an open
>         source project can be built by a variety of individuals or
>         companies.
>         We like open source because it helps us stop trying to
>         reinvent the
>         wheel and instead choose the best of breed systems for our
>         clients and
>         deliver them at an affordable price.
>         Plone has won 3 years in a row the Best Other CMS Award from
>         Packt Publishing
>         http://plone.org/news/plone-wins-packt-2009-cms-award
>         Martin Aspeli wrote about Plone: a model of a mature open source
>         product for his MSc dissertation for Analysis, Design and
>         Management
>         of Information Systems course at the London School of Economics.
>         http://martinaspeli.net/publications/Plone%20-%20A%20Model%20of%20a%20Mature%20Open%20Source%20Project.pdf
>         10) Foundation backed international community
>         With over 300 vendors in 50 countries, and Plone being used by
>         governments and universities all over the world, Plone is truly an
>         international movement. With a non-profit foundation owning the
>         trademark and copyrights, Plone is protected and it's
>         governance is in
>         good hands. http://plone.org/foundation
>         The Plone community has an annual conference in a different
>         city every
>         year with regional symposia in Europe, N. America and S.
>         America also
>         taking place every year. The most recent conference attracted 400
>         attendees from 30 countries. http://ploneconf2009.org
>         In additional to the usual issue tracking systems, Plone also
>         has a
>         user feedback service to collect suggestions form the users of the
>         software. these suggestions are reviewed by members of the
>         core Plone
>         development team and considered for future versions of Plone.
>         http://plone.org/news/plone-launches-user-feedback-system
>         There is also a formal process to get a new feature considered for
>         inclusion in the Plone core, a paid release manager and a clear
>         roadmap for what future versions of Plone will bring.
>         http://plone.org/documentation/manual/plone-developer-reference/overview/release-process
>         http://dev.plone.org/plone/roadmap
>         This is still very much in a draft state but I would love any
>         feedback
>         on the points, and I plan to write some blog posts about each
>         point to
>         go into further details.
>         thanks,
>         Nate
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