Forum OpenACS Development: Learning to use/develop in OpenACS 4.0?

I realize OpenACS 4.0 is in development and (considerable?) effort on documentation has been put forth. As a user/programmer of OpenACS 3.x, it is high time I learned enough to support the OpenACS 4.0 initiative, plus I want to be "ready" to implement 4.0 real-time when it is ready to release. But I am not sure I know enough, yet.

So I wonder... in addition to reading the ACS 4.0 Developer's Guide and reviewing the OpenACS 4 Porting HOWTO are there additional suggestions on what to read/do to learn OpenACS 4.0 architecture such that I can starting coding custom modules, or even help in porting existing modules? Yes, I am late to jump on the 4.0 wagon, but I am jumping.

Also, I have read posts regarding Documentation Issues of past and am wondering if effort has been (or is being) spent on generating OpenACS 4.0 docs such as the traditional tree-killer (see RedHat's release of Professional Server 7.1) Customization Guide, User's Guide, Administrator's Guide, Programmer's Guide, Custom Developer's Guide, and Reference Manual? Of course I would love to give my $.02 on a comprehensive "Consultant's Marketing Tool-Kit for OpenACS 4.0" but I will refrain. :)

Keep in mind, I have successfully completed the ACS 3.x Bootcamp in Boston, so you can assume I know how to spell Tcl and understand the basics of SQL, AOLserver, and database-back web communities. What is my next step on the path to OpenACS 4.0 enlightenment? Thanks, in advance, for your gentle nudges in the right direction. -Nate

Posted by Roberto Mello on

Glad to see you jumping up to help!
I'd say you (and anyone else) should do the following to get jump-started on the 4.x effort:

  • Look at the OpenACS 4 central page:
  • From there you'll find links to several documents, including the status page, which lists all the packages and their status.
  • Pick a package you'd like to port and e-mail Don Baccus (the 4.x Manager) telling which package it is. We will create you an account at that you can use for CVS access.
  • Read the Porting Guide (including the "A day in the life of a porter" section) and the OpenACS 4.x Porting FAQ (both well-written by Vinod). They are linked from the 4.x central page.
  • Start committing.

    Regarding documentation, I'm almost done with the initial document and guidelines to bootstrap the OpenACS 4.x Documentation Project. I'll link it from the OpenACS 4.x central page and announce it in the bboards, probably tomorrow.

Posted by Michael Yacavone on
If I were going to start to play with OpenACS (Mac OS X / PostgreSql) would
you recommend I begin with 3.2.5 or 4.x?