World of Xoops (WOX): World of XOOPS Newsletter, edition 6

Posted by: m0ntyon 2005/6/10 16:00:00 32833 reads World of XOOPS Newsletter, edition 6

This is the Sixth (6th) issue of the World of XOOPS Newsletter, where the XOOPS News Team informs you about their work, and gives you an overview of the recent additions to the XOOPS system, done by our great community.

In this issue:

World Of XOOPS
It´s been a long while since the last World of XOOPS Newsletter, and there have been many developments since then of which I am going to summarize in this section.

1st off this issue I would like to inform you of the recent re-organization of xoops.org and what effect this will have on the future of XOOPS.
As you maybe aware there have been many discussions lately on the forums regarding how XOOPS is managed. Earlier this year the XOOPS Core Team announced the creation of the XOOPS Foundation. The primary objective of the Foundation is to facilitate, support and promote the use, development and support communities of the XOOPS project. The Foundation is an open and transparant organisation that represents all of XOOPS. Now it's up to all of us to use the Foundation to it's maximum benefit.

A new organisation model
The organisation model that the XOOPS Foundation offers is based on that of another very healthy and active open source development project: the Apache Software Foundation, but has been adapted to our situation and needs. The XOOPS Foundation is the 'umbrella' under which collective projects can be placed and managed. To make it more managable and transparant, the organisation will be more project oriented. Anyone can start a new project.
Requirements for projects are simple: they need to add something to the XOOPS collective, it needs to be open, it needs to have goals and a plan (the roadmap), and it needs to communicate.
The Foundation Board will review every application for approval, and provide the means, if possible (server space, funds etc.), making the projects 'official xoops.org projects'.
Every project or team appoints itself a Captain, who will be part of the XOOPS Management Team. The XOOPS Management Team is responsible for intra-project management and general magament of xoops.org.
The Foundation Board is responsible for the main roadmaps and general strategy. We already have a couple of teams working together on making the XOOPS system and community work better, These are:

QA - Quality Assurance Team
The role of the QA Team is to provide quality assurance testing on modules, they will test modules to see if they do what they say they do and also provide feedback to developers regarding results.
For more information on what the QA Team is responsible for, or if you would like to assist, please contact the QA Team Captain Dave_L.

Marketing & Communications Team
This team is responsible for creating a strategy for our external marketing and communications, and defining activities in order to improve the visibilty of XOOPS outside of our community.
Team captain is wtravel

Liaisons Team
The Liaisons team is responsible for communicating with local support site representatives (Ambassadors) to provide them with the latest news from xoops.org and relaying information from each support site so that everyone is made aware XOOPS.
Captain of this team is JDSeymour

WOX Team
The WOX team are responsible for actually producing news and presenting it to the community in a timely fashion, this includes news from local support sites if it is relevant to XOOPS as a whole.
Team captain is M0nty

XOOPS Documentation Team
Lets not forget the wonderful work the Docs Team has done the past year under the guidance of Carnuke! They have created quite a bit of documentation, but they can always use more help!

XOOPS Dev Teams
Of course we also have the XOOPS 2.x core dev team lead by Mithrandir, the XOOPS4 Dev project which is lead by Skalpa, and the module development forge.

XOOPS is looking for help!
We are looking for people who are willing to help us out with the teams above, and with other tasks such as moderating the forums, maintaining the Theme Library and Links page, maintaining and moderating the XOOPS FAQ, or other projects you'd like to start.
Please contact the Team Captains or Herko or Mithrandir if you have any ideas for projects.


XOOPS Developments
Mithrandir is very busy lately developing the next version of XOOPS which will be labelled XOOPS 2.2, you maybe wondering why XOOPS 2.2 and not XOOPS 2.1. The reasoning behind this is to use Linux based versioning where Alpha/Beta (non stable or development) releases are released with odd number versions and Stable/Final releases will contain even numbers.
So XOOPS 2.2 will be the stable version and XOOPS 2.1 is a non stable development version. All future versions of XOOPS will use this method of identification. XOOPS 2.2 is expected to be finished by June 30th but this is a general date and is not final.
From XOOPS 2.1 there will be no modules included as before with previous versions, core modules in this version will mainly just be the system modules such as Profile and PM module and other core functions which will be more modulised instead of being a part of the actual core, this will provide a more flexible and diverse system to work with for developers and users alike. A new admin interface with improved navigation and more powerful user interface than previous, it will also be themeable so that you can customise the looks of not only the front page of your site but also the admin area itself. To view the 2.2 Roadmap click here

Skalpa is working on the future version of XOOPS which many will know is to be called XooSphere, XooSphere is essentially XOOPS 4 and is being designed from scratch, it will probably not be released till next year at least. So what does Xoosphere have in store for you? You'll be surprised non the least. To find out more and to view the Xoosphere roadmap please click here. More on XooSphere will be provided as & when information is available.

Mithrandir is currently looking for experienced programmers to help with the 2.2 release and future versions who can dedicate some time into the project. Phppp, Marcan, & Hervet have also joined the XOOPS Core Development Team which is good news and I’m sure their experience, skills and dedication will make XOOPS a far better system than it already is. It is also very good news to hear that Catzwolf aka John_N has returned to XOOPS as a Core Development Member. For a more technical explanation of what is going on, please read Skalpa's draft reference for the X2.2 core, posted on the SourceForge.net project forums.

I'd like to thank everyone who has contributed to XOOPS (the list is long!), released a hack, module and/or theme (see below for the lists), made a donation (also see below), and to those that helped the people who had questions or needed help on the forums. It's not for nothing that we say:
XOOPS: Powered by You!


Local Support News (in brief)
XOOPS France has confirmed it's millionth visitor since it first started 6 months ago when it merged with 3 other french XOOPS sites. XOOPS France has fast become a haven for French XOOPSers and has at last count over 15,000 members & over 400 registered XOOPS sites in it's directory. You can view the announcement here (in french) or visit their website by clicking here. We'd like to thank Alain, philou, solo, christian & hervet for their support and for making XOOPS France what it is today.


Xooper of the Month: PHPPP
Xooper of the month is a new section in the wox, replacing 'Site of the month' as we felt that it will provide a more communal area to the newsletter by focussing more on the community itself. For our 1st Xooper of the month we decided on Phppp.
As you are aware phppp is very active in the XOOPS community, so we asked him a few questions (below)

m0nty: You've been an active developer for XOOPS for quite some time, when did you 1st start to use XOOPS and what reasons did you choose it over other CMS?

phppp: In Jan 2004, it was the first time that I was told of a CMS named "XOOPS" when being asked by a friend to choose a program for him, XOOPS was suggested as a candidate. I had played with a variety of stand alone PHP scripts and been maintaining several community sites. I was so excited to find such a flexible, extensible system, just an ideal framework for both PHP+MySQL study and production site. Since then, I have been a XOOPS geek. Apart from technical considerations, goghs, the creator of XOOPS has inspired me from the beginning as he is from my country and we have a similar family background.

m0nty: Do you have any tips you could offer to new XOOPS users to help them get all they can out of using XOOPS for their websites?

phppp: As a developer, I have no extensive experiences in building XOOPS sites. However, as a local support webmaster, I wish my suggestions could be helpful to new XOOPS users. First, get XOOPS installed successfully: English users are lucky to have XOOPS FAQ and the biggest support forum at xoops.org. For other language users, just feel free to ask for help at your local support site, do not be shy. Second, choose proper modules: For a production site, the simpler the better. Ask advice from your local support site or check Yet Another XOOPS Site (YAXS) at xoops.org to get a reasonable module candidate list. Don't forget "Site of the Month" presented in previous WOX.
Good news, Mithrandir and his team are preparing packages for different application purposes. Themes, really a hard choice. Be careful, playing with themes could make XOOPS an addiction to you:) I would strongly recommend the XOOPS Stand Alone Server (XSAS), either as a sandbox for webmasters or as debug toolkits for developers.

m0nty: What do you think of the support of the XOOPS Community? Do you feel that XOOPS provides better support than other CMS programs and do you think it could be improved at all?

phppp: Powered by you! XOOPS has the most active and fast growing community. A XOOPS user can always get timely help from the community. I am extremely glad to learn that, besides a technical support community, several management teams are just kicking-off, including teams of WOX, News, promoting, and more. Power of the community will for sure make XOOPS management effective and benefit the community as return.

m0nty: You have contributed some great modules for the XOOPS community such as the Digest module and Newbb2 aswell as your most recent CBB Forum based on Newbb2. As i read that CBB was meant for chinese users initially and with your departure from the Newbb development team, there is still some confusion with users regarding the status of these modules. Could you give any insight into the future of newbb or CBB as many users are wondering if CBB is to replace newbb officially?

phppp: I am proud having contributed several modules to XOOPS community and several for Chinese community, among of which NewBB 2 was the one that I had been loving most. It was a great collaboration with my friend Marko Schmuck since I joined the NewBB 2 Project. We had a very comfortable time and formed an effective work pattern.
In Feb, on a high request for customizing NewBB 2 from XOOPS Chinese community and with other concerns, I decided to quit NewBB 2 project and to focus on CBB and several other projects. It was a hard decision but I had to manage to continue my support and development life. CBB was meant to be a "Chinese version of NewBB" and I am glad to see it now targets a "Community Bulletin Board". NewBB 2 is a native module based on XOOPS codebase, highly object oriented and, most important, completely integrated with XOOPS framework.
Based on NewBB 2 and with great assistance from XOOPS community, including bug report, feature request and improvement suggestions, CBB is towarding a fast, secure, stable and user friendly forum product. To speed up the process, a project team is going to be established with coders, layout designers and graphics. It is not important whether CBB is going to be an official takeover of NewBB, but for sure CBB will be kept on the top of my priority. As the further development of NewBB 2, CBB is going to keep the dirname of "newbb" and I wish Marko will come back once everything is settled down.

m0nty: What developments are you working on at the moment (if any) or have you any new modules planned for the future? I hear WF-Sections 3 maybe on the go, can you tell us a little bit more about these projects?

phppp: I would like to use the same "C" from CBB to CMS, Community Management System. Wfsection 3 is another major module I am working on with WF Projects Team led by Eike. It is at internal test stage with some features: cross-category, easy-clone, interaction with other modules, XML support, basic/adv edit mode, and more. However, Wfs 3 is more like a conceptual project with some experiments for backend coding and front feature, and it will be expanded to a community based multi-use blog project "xblog", along with which remote content repository (expanded from XMLine module) and social bookmark will also be implemented.

m0nty: it's also good to hear that you have become a XOOPS core team member along with Hervet & marcan, this must be a welcomed move for you as i'm sure your skills and contributions will make XOOPS better for everyone.
phppp: It is a great pleasure that I have the chance to make contribution to XOOPS core. I hope we will help improve XOOOPS from various aspects based on our experiences.

m0nty: From a user point of view, what would you say is the best features about XOOPS?

phppp: XOOPS is a most competitive open source CMS and the first choice for Chinese and Asian users. Security, comprehensive permission system, easy to install and convenient/active community support are among the biggest contributors.

m0nty: and from a developers point of view?

phppp: As a developer, I stay with XOOPS for I could not find a better framework that provides well designed architecture allowing me just to focus on application development. And the lead developers provide XOOPS with promising and reliable perspective.

Thanks for taking the time to do this interview, and for your continued support of xoops.

Additionally, Phppp is looking for Users to help him with development of CBB in various areas
if you are interested in joining the CBB team then please contact him or click HERE to view the news article.


XOOPS International Support Sites

Have you made a hack for the XOOPS core (not any of the modules!)? Please submit your hacks to the core system, to the XOOPS Patch Tracker on the SourceForge.net project pages.


XOOPS Stats:

Current members: 30957   |   Total Topics: 24436   |   Total Posts: 113074