Forum OpenACS Development: Re: ANN: Photobook module added to contrib
Can you expand what you mean by "user profiles"? Is this an extension of persons or parties? If so, would this functionality be easily extracted and used in a general manner to add other bits of data related to an individual person?
IIRC, there was mention in a thread in the recent past (related to new packages/capabilities of .LRN) about personal information whose visibility could be set to private, public, etc. Does Photobook provide or utilize these features?
This package is based on the CR. It uses the data from persons/parties as a starting point (so it can display a profile for any registered user, even if they haven't entered any data yet) but it collects lots of other stuff (info about previous academic work, employment, addresses, personal stuff like your favorite movie) and stores it all in the CR. Eventually we will build in the ability for an admin to completely customize the fields and categories, but for now they are hard-coded to what Sloan needed.
Everything in a new profile is suppressed by default except for their name and a couple of other general things about them (I think it's program and graduation year). They can choose to unsuppress the rest of the data as they wish, by category and by field. Not all fields are individually suppressable; again, this was done to Sloan's specifications.
dotLRN is not required to use photobook, but in it's current configuration it wouldn't really make sense if the users weren't students.
Why would you want to use Photobook?
You want to collect and display profile info.
For Sloan (ie photobooks current configuration) it collect demographic info, employers, schools and degrees, several addresses and of course a photo.
Has some cool data like a huge list of schools around the world.
Users have some control over what data is suppressed from display to other users.
If you want to create functionality to manage giving your users firstname.lastname@example.org email addresses, the code to manage Sloan's EFL might be a good starting point.
What's the bad news?
Needs a programmer to customize, not web configurable.
Not trivial to install.
Various places in the code say "sloan" and contain very Sloan specific logic.
Still some rough spots in terms of bugs and some of them are in CMS and CR.
My next step is to customize it for another client. I'm sure I will have more good and bad points after that process.
Bottom line: seems very useful, if you are comfortable programming in OACS definitely try it out. If you're not a programmer it's not ready yet.