Saturday, April 12, 2014

Everybody is writing about Heartbleed this week. The reason? It probably affects more people than any other vulnerability we've ever seen. If you ever log into any web site, anywhere, your password might be revealed -- and that is just the start. The biggest problem? Nobody really knows if somebody actually used this attack.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Ha. Just got another message from a client who has been the victim of several comment spam campaigns:

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Robyn asks:

I work for a company in the automotive tech industry ... as a Technical Editor for the Technical Service Bulletin team and decided that now that I know I'm capable of doing tedious work I should make a lateral move into the Information Technology industry. ... In your opinion, should I invest the time to learn Drupal?

Hi, Robyn, thanks for the question!

First of all, there are many different paths to becoming a professional software developer. So the quick answer is, yes --

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Will asks: I ... have been thinking about alternatives to QuickBooks. I sent these links to my bookkeeper but she has not used any of these. Do you recommend any of them, or is a “custom open source” option viable for me at this point? Are you familiar with any of these? http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/five-apps/five-alternatives-to-quickboo...

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Marc asks:

I am building an ecommerce site in Joomla using Virtue Mart as shopping cart to sell MP3 downloads of original music; small site but fun (doing in my spare time)
Using Virtue Mart but has some distinct limitations; any other suggestions for carts that integrate seamlessly with Joomla?

Hi, Marc,

In my experience, nothing integrates seamlessly with Joomla. That's why we switched to Drupal ;-)

yes, i have heard similar things about Joomla but my dev guy is more familiar with Joomla...how much of a learning curve is it for Drupal if someone knows Joomla?

Monday, January 23, 2012

We've had several clients recently chafing at how confining Drupal sites can be -- it can be a lot more work to make individual pages vary from the template, and if you have build web sites using a tool like Dreamweaver, you can't tweak the layout the same way.

We call these hand-built sites brochure, or static, because they are a collection of files you build once, and then don't change very often. Drupal is a Content Management System (CMS), a program that helps you manage content.

So what's the difference? Why would you want Drupal over a static brochure site?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Mavis asks,

I have already spent thousands of dollars on my [Zen Cart] website. What would be your advice for [a company] who wants to transfer their site to a new host but not redesign it?

Just like a physical store, the costs of running an e-commerce site very quickly exceed the costs of opening it. And any time you're handling money, you automatically become a target for thieves -- you need to take security seriously, or you're bound to get robbed.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

A question came across the Drupal Developer's list today asking whether Drupal could auto-update itself, like WordPress. As someone who thinks about security a lot, the very thought of this horrifies me.

It's a bad idea for several reasons, but the biggest reason:

It could easily lead to the biggest most powerful bot-net on the planet.

This could just as easily happen to WordPress, too. It already has, in fact, to a small extent.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Short answer: it depends.

We still do most of our projects in Drupal 6, mainly because it's been around a few years, and modules we use on many sites are not yet stable for Drupal 7 (and some are still a ways off).

However, for sites that don't need particular modules, Drupal 7 at its core is a nice improvement.

My first Drupal 7 site is a personal one, http://www.hikeswithhazel.com. So far as a user, it doesn't seem that different from Drupal 6, especially if you turn off the "Overlay" module which pops open editing screens in what I find to be a highly annoying way.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Mike asks,

I came across your site as i'm a member of NWEN.  My current site is built on a wordpress template and I want to change it as it's pretty rough.  What are the pros/cons of having a site built with Drupal vs. word press?

The simple answer is, WordPress is for designers, and Drupal is for engineers. Kind of.

Like any simple answer, that's only part of the story.

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  1. If you are a user of business software and are interested in finding out more about open source options for your business or office, you may be a little bit frustrated about the lack of introductory-level information on this topic... The best single source of such information that I have found so far is John Locke's "Open Source Solutions for Small Business Problems." It provides an excellent introduction to the concepts, advantages, and disadvantages behind open-source.

    Julius Walczynski
    Sourcio user review

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