Forum OpenACS Q&A: suggestion for our main content area of the new site...

The design on is getting really great, but I am not as content with the main content area...

Here is my suggestion:

WHAT is OpenACS?

Features [Details]
OpenACS (Open Architecture Community System) is an advanced toolkit for building scalable, community-oriented web applications. If you're thinking of building an enterprise-level web application, OpenACS is a solid, proven foundation that will give you a 3-6 month headstart.

OpenACS consists of a "Core" and many "Packages":
The Core administers users, groups, permissions, subsites, personalized portals etc.
The Packages offer functionality like CMS, eCommerce, file-storage, forums, calendar, news, bookmarks etc.

Technology [Details]
OpenACS relies on AOLserver, a web/application server, and PostgreSQL, a true ACID-compliant RDBMS. These are two high-quality products available for free under open-source licenses. for example runs on AOLserver and on PostgreSQL.

History [Details]
The OpenACS toolkits are based on the ArsDigita Community System (ACS). Ars Digita kindly GPL'd their work, making all of this possible.

License [Details]
OpenACS is available under the GNU General Public License, which makes it open-source. You are free to use OpenACS for commercial and non-commercial use.

References [Details]
Different sites run OpenACS and ACS. Here are just the largest:
» Greenpeace (OpenACS)
» Siemens ShareNet (OpenACS)
» MIT Sloan Space (OpenACS)
» World Bank (ACS)
» (ACS)

How do I work with OpenACS?

Installation & Problem Solving
Download OpenACS from our Download Repository.
Check out our Documentation.
Check out our FAQs.
Check out our Forums whenever our documentation and FAQs didnt't give you satisfactory answers.

If you would like to contribute on programming, design, marketing etc., check out our contribution instructions.

Professional Help
If you want to let a professional company build and maintain your visons on OpenACS, just contact one of the following OpenACS companies.
I think we should also mention that you have a choice between
Postgres and Oracle.
You may want to remove reference to Slashdot -- AFAIK they use MySQL:
Didn't Slashdot used to run on PostgreSQL?

We might also put Hosting below Professional Help...


were you thinking about SourceForge by any chance?

I once asserted that Slashdot had switched to PostgreSQL at my one-and-only ACS event, and was quickly corrected. SourceForge switched, Slashdot hadn't, although it's possible they switched since. The following is from the FAQ on Slashdot:

Slashcode itself is based on Apache, mod_perl and MySQL. The MySQL and Apache configs are still being tweaked -- part of the trick is to keep the MaxClients setting in httpd.conf on each web server low enough to not overwhelm the connection limits of database, which in turn depends on the process limits of the kernel, which can all be tweaked until a state of perfect zen balance has been achieved ... this is one of the trickier parts. Run 'ab' (the apache bench tool) with a few different settings, then tweak SQL a bit. Repeat. Tweak httpd a bit. Repeat. Drink coffee. Repeat until dead. And every time you add or change hardware, you start over!

I think we need a rewrite of the content on the home page.

Please post your opinions of David's ideas. Let's get something that we can use. The more links to specific information the better I think.

I am not a real good writer.  But I am fine with David's suggestion.  Of course I hope Cathy's write up will end up somewhere in the site.
We might want to add a section named "Hosting" below "Professional Help"...

If you don't want to host your OpenACS installation from your home DSL line, try one of the OpenACS Hosting Companies.
I just heard that SourceForge wants to migrate to IBM DB2 and Websphere, probably sponsored by Big Blue...
Good PR move for IBM I'm sure....... best of luck with DB2 though *Chuckle*
Also please check out What is OpenACS?

and please comment. Post the comments in this thread, not on the actualy page. Thanks.

I'd make it a lot more like Cathy's blurb: http://
I have to agree with Jade in that I prefer the cohesiveness of Cathy's effort.

My main observations would be that the piece lacks a little flow, it jumps a little and doesn't really link its major points.

Also, at the start I'm not entirely happy with

'OpenACS is the ArsDigita Community System ported to run on free database servers, initially the PostgreSQL RDBMS, while maintaining compatibility with Oracle.'

I think that this sentence kindof reduces the importance of Oracle to a side thought. In actuality the Oracle version is *slightly* better than the postgres one, and even dotLRN are essentiallt leading with Oracle and porting to PG second.

Also, the term 'large datamodel' is not really all that meaningful. Its certainly a comprehensive, cohesive datamodel that has a wide variety of applications. I think the term 'large' makes it sounds unweildy and possibley 'bloated'..

In general I think this page needs to be punchier, but better structured.

Actually, sorry about this I sound like I'm criticising everything. Its a good effort, but I think it does need a few revisions at least.

I like it better than Simon does, but I agree it needs something.  Cathy's is good, but I think we need something inbetween.

So how do we help with this - do you want us to submit rewritten content to illustrate what we'd like to see, or what?