Franklin Veaux (tacit) wrote,
Franklin Veaux
tacit

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Dear God, what can of worms am I opening?

Okay, so my 'main' Web site has been on the Interweb for more than twelve years now, which is, like, 614 years in Internet time. It's hundreds (literally, hundreds) of static HTML pages, each with a hand-coded navigation system. That means it's clunky, inconsistent, and a big honkin' pain in the fucking ass to update. It is time to reign in the madness.

I'm considering, God help me, moving the whole mess to a content management system. I'd kind of prefer one that doesn't suck, but hypnagogie says there's no such thing as a CMS that doesn't suck--the only thing you get any say over is how bad it sucks and in what way it sucks.

Here's what I'd like:

- Security. I don't want to have to install security patches every three days and I don't want to get pwned if I don't.

- Flexibility. I don't want to port every page over to the CMS, but I do want to port big sections over. I want hard-coded, static HTML pages to be able to live happily side by side with CMS-managed pages, and the navigation to work consistently across all of them.

- Template flexibility. I do not want the entire site to have the same template; I do not want the whole thing to get poured into the same HTML containers. I want, for example, all the BDSM pages to have a consistent look, all the polyamory pages to have a consistent look, but I want to make the BDSM pages look different from the poly pages.

- Ease of updating. WordPress sets the bar here. When I log on to WordPress, if there's an update, there's one button that installs the update automatically--downloads the files, unpacks them, installs them, updates the back-end database, all with a single click and all without disturbing any settings or customizations. If WordPress can do it, I figure other people should be able to do it too.

- The ability to incorporate JavaScript (even if it's built against a library like Jquery or Mootools) into pages as I please.

- Compatibility with analytics tools.

- The ability to specify an exact URL on managed pages. This is very important. Right now, for example, my BDSM page at http://www.xeromag.com/fvbdsm.html has awesome Google rank and literally thousands of inbound links. I do not want this URL changing to something like http://www.xeromag.com/cms/scripts/showpage.php?sectionid=4&pageid=23 and I do not want to create redirectors from existing URLs to point to the new, managed page URLs. The ability to do this is non-negotiable and is an absolute dealbreaker for any CMS that can't manage it.

- An optional comment system that can be turned on or off on a per-page basis.

- Free and open source.




So, lazyweb, whaddya think? Am I living in a Utopian fantasy dreamland where naked mermaids cavort with dolphins under a cotton candy sky, or is this actually going to be doable? Is there a CMS out there somewhere that will do what I want?
Tags: geek
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