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How I Met Plone

written by Gabrielle Hendryx-Parker on Monday September 6, 2010
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This month, Six Feet Up's blog will feature "How I Met Plone" entries. It is our hope that these short narratives will introduce new CMS users to Plone and remind seasoned Plone users what makes Plone unique.

No system is perfect, and we don't claim that Plone is either. However, Plone is dynamic, time-tested and a solid problem solver. We hope you will find the upcoming blog posts to informative and engaging.

Posted by on Sep 17, 2010 06:09 AM
Shortly after being hired as the Information Core coordinator for the Maryland Population Research Center I was reviewing alternatives for the html/css-based website. The Computing Core administrator put me on to content management systems and I started experimenting, I think with Joomla. I had a tough time shifting my thought processes from standard pages-management to the CMS model, and I was a bit frustrated. One day he said, "Why don't you try one of the Python-based CMSes, like Plone ?" I did a google search for "python plone" and one of the links was Sean Kelly's classic screencast about giving up on Java. His emphasis on elegance and clarity got me very interested. We did a local install of Plone and I was immediately struck by the ease of navigation - the folder-like structure was something I was quite used to, and it gave me a sense of power on the new system. I said, "This is it" and have never looked back. A few months later I attended the annual Plone conference in Washington DC and met a lot of Plone developers and users of every stripe. What a crowd. I loved the spirit of everyone sharing and having a good time. Because I'm in education I've been especially interested in the Penn State Weblion contributions and have been trying to get some interest at Maryland for Plone. In summary : There's a learning curve here, but your end result is a very robust system that - properly configured - is very secure. That's becoming a very important consideration for a lot of website admins I talk to. Learning to theme the product can be challenging too, but there are a lot of resources now available, and Deliverance / XDV appears to be changing the whole game.
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