Content Management System

  • zaiah
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Okay my client (who has not techy skills at all) wants a CMS implemented into her site. This is at the advice of the project manager. The site is going to be mostly flash with a few pages that she wants to update her shows and appearances on. Can someone suggest a CMS that is both user friendly for me the developer and for the non-technical diva? LOL. Again most of the site will be flash except two pages. And those are the pages she wants to be able to easily edit.

I need something that is also cost effective. Preferably without a monthly fee. Because if that is the case I can just charge her to make any changes.

I was thinking about this company however: http://www.speaklight.com/
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • Hob Bramble
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well, if most of the site is in Flash, Flashblocks might work out: http://flashblocks.com It doesn't have monthly fees, and it's made for Flash websites, so it should fit both of your criteria.

There's also fCMSPro: http://fcmspro.com/ It's slightly more expensive ($299 v.s. $240), but again there is no monthly fee, and it is made for Flash websites.

Another option would be to look for an open-source CMS - try searching somewhere like SourceForge for a Flash CMS: http://sourceforge.net/search/?type_of_search=soft&type_of_search=soft&words=flash+cms
Obviously there are some risks involved with going that route, but it's also completely possible you'll find the perfect solution and end up not paying a cent.

Hope that helps.
  • zaiah
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hob Bramble wrote:
Well, if most of the site is in Flash, Flashblocks might work out: http://flashblocks.com It doesn't have monthly fees, and it's made for Flash websites, so it should fit both of your criteria.

There's also fCMSPro: http://fcmspro.com/ It's slightly more expensive ($299 v.s. $240), but again there is no monthly fee, and it is made for Flash websites.

Another option would be to look for an open-source CMS - try searching somewhere like SourceForge for a Flash CMS: http://sourceforge.net/search/?type_of_search=soft&type_of_search=soft&words=flash+cms
Obviously there are some risks involved with going that route, but it's also completely possible you'll find the perfect solution and end up not paying a cent.

Hope that helps.


Thanks for the response and help. But I wasn't clear when I asked my question. She's going to have only 5 pages: Bio, Gallery, Works, Media clips, Latest News and Press Releases. The "News and Press" pages are the only pages she wants to be able to update. ANd he wants those in HTML. Personally, I want to building the whole thing in HTML and just add some effects to the navigation. I really don't think she would miss the difference but the "client is always right". So I really don't need CMS that will work with flash. But I guess if she really wants the site in Flash, I might as well do the whole thing and implement the service you recommended.

Thanks

Sidenote: Having a site that was half flash and half HTML would be a little tacky right?
  • Hob Bramble
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Personally, I'd say if your going to do part of the site in Flash, do all of it in Flash. Half and half is rather inconsistent feeling, and doesn't really make much sense, unless you expect certain visitors who don't use Flash to only want those two pages.

If she really wanta those two pages in HTML, and won't let you just go all-Flash, you could use any number of pre-made content management systems to run the HTML pages - again, I'd search sourceforge - there are billions out there, though, for only two pages, most of them would be overkill. I'd look for a lightweight one. Something along the lines of TextPattern might work quite nicely.

Actually, depending on her exact needs, you could even use a blog system such as Wordpress in place of a standard CMS. After all, they preform very similar functions.

Another option would to to simple write a small CMS of your own. This article at A List Apart descibes how to set up an extremely simple one that would work fine if she knows a little bit of HTML.
  • zaiah
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Post 3+ Months Ago

LOL. She doesn't know any HTML. None nada zip. I think I am going to do the whole thing in Flash and just call it a day. But people always ask for Flash and then later realize they really don't need it. Thanks.

So any Flash CMS suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks. I have like a month to put this thing together!
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well I went looking for a Flash based CMS a while ago and it doesn't look like there are a lot of them. Here's the best I found... http://www.flashblocks.com/

A more complex but less expensive alternative might be to find a CMS that can generate xml for the page and then have your flash shell consume the generated xml. The place I work has gone this route a few times (with a custom built CMS), but I'm not enough of a developer to tell you exactly how they got the xml file that I then read in with Flash.
  • dyefade
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
She's going to have only 5 pages: Bio, Gallery, Works, Media clips, Latest News and Press Releases.

Wordpress sounds perfect for this (though I'm bias as I'm already versed in it - for such a small site you could use loads of alternatives).

What I'd do: set up Bio, Gallery, Worlds and Media clips as Pages.
Have Latest News and Press Releases as blog Categories.

When you make the navigation, don't make any distinction between the Pages and the Categories (note the capital letters). Also, set up the URL schemes to look the same. Make a user for your client with just enough control to add new posts, turn off new registrations and all comments. Job done!
  • zaiah
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks much!
  • Atrus
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I hope she is aware that Flash sites arent very search engine friendly. I always advise against flash sites, if possible. Then again, she's paying the bill. You might want to inform her if you havent already.
  • graphixboy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

@Atrus. While its true that the way Flash sites are frequently built is not overly search engine friendly (It can be done you just need to know how). In the end SEO is NOT the holy grail of the internet. Most people have no need to have their site come up in the top of any category other than their business name. The last statistics I've seen say that 90% of the sites on the web do not sell product directly over the internet or sell advertising that requires a large number of hits.
  • Atrus
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
In the end SEO is NOT the holy grail of the internet.


I agree... it all depends on the purpose of the site. But there are quite a few that dont think about this and come back blaming the webmasters. I like to tell clients up front to avoid this.

And yes it is possible to get these sites listed but it's a bit more tricky. I just recommend letting the client know where a flash site stands vs a content site.
  • psyche
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Actually we can now SEO Flash...

visit this: http://www.jehochman.com/articles/seo-f ... lash.shtml

Regarding to "is there a need for site optimization", it depend to the site just like what the other guys said but I am favor to optimized site whether what kind of site it is. Website purpose is to expose something to the world...we need visitors that's why we create a site...If you don't want to be seen don't create a site...
  • graphixboy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I agree, I'm not saying SEO is bad. Its just that frequently Flash is unfairly blamed as a "poor" solution for a site that won't receive a significant enough benefit from a spider friendly technology.

Case in point. I'm currently building a microsite for a running shoe company that shall remain unnamed (at least until after it launches). The site consists of 3 sections, 2 show video and the third lets you send an ecard to your friend (lame I know). The entire site contains about 3 paragraphs of text and those are either instructional or marketing fluf. There aren't links and there aren't really product names. Now two weeks before the site launch people are complaining that "no one will find the site" because its built in Flash. This seems like a pretty unfair rep for Flash when adding proper meta content (which the site has) will do far more for SEO than a non-flash site with the same content ever could.

On a related note I'll be trying this technique on the next Flash site I build...
FAUST
  • zaiah
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well the site I'm building is for a comedian/actress. So her name is already "known" and she has a site currently that is listed at the top of Google. So this really isn't an issue. I don't think she even really knows a Flash site from a non-Flash site. But her project manager is really pushing it, because she wants the site to be "technologically advanced" so it can be as creative as possible. So now I am having the hardest time just getting some comps together and tomorrow is my DEADLINE!

But thanks guys for the responses. I will have to take a further look at the links provided. Because I hear that SEO comment about Flash all the time. I think it really boils down to what people are comfortable designing in. And there is always more than one way to skin a cat :)
  • 4folds2
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I'd suggest using a site called http://www.iUpdateIt.com that'll do some of what you want. It isn't Flash specific, but it'll allow the client to update select spots on their site. It does have some "rotating" functions so the client could simulate an animation by rotating the content. Not sure if this is what you want, but figured I'd put in my comments anyway... Hope it helps.

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