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I am beginning to create a large specialized content management system for my workplace.

This Content management system is for a School District. I have looked at a handful of CMS's and came to the conclusion that in order to get mine to do what I want, it would take more effort to re-work their open source CMS's than to just create one myself. This is mainly due to the fact that this CMS will perform ALOT of specialized functions.


I am going to do my best to blog about the entire process, about pitfalls I run into and thoughts going into the architecture process. On that note, here are the basic, first revision of goals for this CMS.

1. Allow Schools to post their own "custom" website, or create their website via my CMS, this will allow the "design" burden that I've noticed most of the school suffer from. School website administrators get too focused on "designing" their website and not on supplying and managing the content.

Although, some schools such as middle/high schools use their website design as a class, for that reason, they have the option to create their own design.

2. Allow teachers to use the CMS to modify their website. Teachers will not have the option to make a custom design website. This keeps the core of the site navigable, and keeps out ugly, messy designs. The aim here is again to get the teachers to focus on the "content" instead of the "design"

3. Each department within the school district will have their own site, while individual staff members will not, although this may not be true for blogs/podcasts/video podcasts

4. Create a login system that parents/teachers/staff/students can use. I believe this will be one of the more complex areas of the application. Teachers/Staff and Students will use integrated Active Directory Authentication, while parents and the public will have to use a custom authentication system. The mingiling of these two systems will be difficult to manage. In the end all authenticated clients will be using an authentication ticket.

5. Allow Schools/Teachers/Departments/Staff to blog and eventually podcast. In the beginning I see alot more people blogging, so that is where the initial focus will be. Later on podcasting will be more at the School and Teacher level than at the Department and Staff level. My first thoughts is these two systems will be coupled to each other as a podcast is basically a blog with an enclosure included.

6. Students will be allowed to post comments to teachers blogs, pending teacher approval. This opens up another issue, if the student uses their school login, I will be able to enforce these rules, but not if they register for a public account, perhaps I can create some comment authorization system that the teachers/schools can change the levels of authorization required to post comments.


These are just my initial thoughts as I bang away on the keyboard. I have had several meetings to help "bang out" some questions/ideas in the beginning. The next step is to actually begin some rough draft of class design in UML, then actually deciding on how some implementations will be handled such as authentication and permission sets, and then on to setting up the assemblies, and then setting up the testing bench which will be NUnit.

Some of the other technologies that will be used at first glance are:

  • NHibernate - for persisting objects to a SQL Server backend, or any database supported by NHibernate for that matter
  • NUnit - for the TDD aspect of the project
  • NMock2 - For setting up mock objects for the test bench
  • MVP Pattern - for wiring up all domain entities to the frontend UI (this way I can later introduce a windows forms assembly for blogging, podcasting)
If anyone has suggestions, comments or just wants to flat out flame me then by all means proceed =)

More coming! Posted on Sunday, October 1, 2006 9:54 PM | Back to top


Comments on this post: Custom tailored CMS

# re: Custom tailored CMS
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kan je vinden op de Ordina n-technologies website (met dank aan Yves Thomas) en verslagen van Gill Cleeren en Sven
Left by 硬盘数据恢复 on May 07, 2007 12:41 AM

# re: Custom tailored CMS
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Students will be allowed to
Left by 硬盘数据恢复 on May 07, 2007 3:25 AM

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