Forum OpenACS Q&A: Response to Request for Comments and Discussion: Building a Leaner, Meaner OpenACS with MIST
First of all, I'm in total agreement with everyone that a monolithic openACS is not the direction the toolkit should be going. I'm glad that most involved in development see this need and are talking about it and making plans to make it more modular and easier to handle.
In addition, I think MIST is a great idea that should be considered and discussed on its technical merits. It is true that most users of openACS will need to be pretty savvy to get everything installed correctly, but for the most part this only requires some attention to the docs and some unix/linux experience. With the current way of setting up a site, you have to have a pretty good familiarity with the toolkit in addition to being comfortable in unix. This is something that not everyone will have right off the bat. Being able to choose an "distribution" that contains only needed packages and is set up close to the way the user wants will allow him to gain experience with openACS more gradually, while giving him a good, functioning website with a minimum of previous openACS knowledge.
Personally, I could see myself making my own MIST scripts to help speed up the process of installing my own websites to get a base of common packages I normally like to use.