[Web4lib] RE: Is your library using a Web Content Management System?

Bret Parker Bret.Parker at ci.stockton.ca.us
Fri Jul 8 15:05:02 EDT 2005

See answers, below. These apply to the use of a CMS for our Intranet only, which is a work in progress, but gaining momentum as we speak.
We are looking at implementing a web Content Management System (CMS) 
here at the University of Illinois Library, and want to hear from any 
libraries that have implemented (or are in the process of implementing) 
one at their institution.

We are especially interested in the following things:

   1. What CMS did you choose to use, and why?

    Plone (runs on Zope and Python powered) for the Library Intranet; it is Open Source, we test drove it and liked it. 
   (See plone.org for downloading and details.) The software will run on Windows, Mac, or Unix/Linux. The Windows installer gets the operation running in five minutes, installing Python, Zope, and Plone, all at once.

   2. Could you share some URLs of sample pages that show the
      implementation of your CMS?
   As an intranet, this is not accessible to outside users.

   3. What have been some of the benefits/drawbacks from your
      implementation of a CMS?

     We are still learning about these. At this point, we are at the stage of learning what Plone offers out of the box and how that fits in with our needs. While I have looked at it, making others aware of what it can do, and how this might be significant for us, takes time. The out of the box deployment is feature rich and so far the requests for Intranet functionality have been very simple.  So, turning features off may be a first step. The ability for Plone to handle photos with the photo album add-on that offers thumbnails of photos, and metadata about them is well liked. That said, we are still learning about how we might add lots of photos and metadata batched, rather than piecemeal. Not yet tapped, but on the list to look at is the use of Plone archetypes.

   4. What needs did librarians, staff, and users express for your
      website that led you to pursue using a CMS for your library website?

      Ability to add content easily, without needing to know html. 

   5. If you have completed your implementation, are you now hosting all
      of your web site via the CMS, or is it a mixture of traditional
      web pages and CMS-managed content?

    We do not yet host all the Intranet with this one solution. That is our eventual goal. The external web site is not done with CMS.

   6. How many people are directly involved in contributing and editing
      the content on your website?

   Still under development. In the first test implementation, we tried 3 people. Most like that number will stay the same.

We appreciate any other comments or insights you might have to share as 


John Weible
Head of Library Systems
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
email: jweible at uiuc.edu  phone: 217-244-4688

More information about the Web4lib mailing list