The League of Extraordinary Developers

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Whilst working on client projects we often find useful bits of information out. Where possible we blog about that information to pass on our knowledge. Below are some of our most recent entries.

Screengrab of the new LED site

Why we use RadiantCMS

RadiantCMS is an open source Rails based CMS. It is highly extendable and we can pretty much bend it to fit any purpose.

This post attempts to explain why we chose RadiantCMS as our CMS. Of course if we find a better system in the future we will have no choice but to change, but for now we are staying put. We have a sneaking suspicion we may move to HarmonyApp, but currently we feel there are a number of things that mean it isn't production ready.

The core is simple

The core of RadiantCMS is kept deliberately simple. The core system allows admin staff to manage:

  • layouts, snippets and pages
  • users

This simplicity means that there is no unnecessary bloat, and that each site only has the the CMS functionality it needs

Adding functionality

There are two ways to add the functionality you require to RadiantCMS.

The first method is to search the Extension registry. There are so far 224 user submitted extensions and installing them is nothing more than a command line away. Granted the extensions may not do exactly what you require, but as they are all open source you can tweak them to fit your requirements.

The alternative method to extending RadiantCMS is to write your own extensions and there is plenty of documentation to help you do this. We have written plenty of our own extensions and we can confirm you can pretty much change or extend any aspect of RadiantCMS.

The extensions system works so well due to the conventions put in place. You can pretty much guarantee how every extension will be written and as such modify very easily. Also you can feel confident in the quality of extensions due to automated testing.

The community

There are a good number of Rails developers who use RadiantCMS. This is turn means there is a great community, so whenever we've needed advice about extensions or core functionality, including overwriting core code, we've managed to get answers very quickly. One example of this was when we recently had problems using the Page Factory extension the author, Josh French, fixed the extension in a few hours and we were able to do a pull from GitHub for the fix.

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  • Ruby on Rails
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