For those of you new to the web design community exploring the vast amount of technical information available might be a bit overwhelming. From plugins and css styles to Flash and jQuery, new content is constantly being blogged, published and discussed all of the web. Our firm wants to cipher through all of that information and focus on the fundamental understanding of one increasingly popular topic: open source code. Let’s get started!
What Does “Open Source” Mean?
Open source means that it is made available freely to the public allowing anyone to copy, modify and redistribute the code without paying royalties or fees. This code evolves through community input from programmers and corporations who continually work to improve the code. So basically, anyone can customize and use the code without having to worry about its proprietary rights. Best of all, it’s free! (Unless you need purchase a template, that is.)
Popular Open Source Web Solutions
There are a great deal of e-commerce, content management system and blogging open-source web solutions available, here are few of the most popular available today:
WordPress is a popular blogging web software that was built by an open-source community and has over 25 million users. They provide a variety of themes, plugins and fully customizable templates for your website.
Joomla is a content management system, open source software that allows you to easily update and manage your site even after it is built. It can be used for corporate websites, online publications, E-Commerce and online reservations, non-profit organizations etc. Joomla can be paired with Virtuemart for an online e-commerce solution.
Magento is an e-commerce software platform that grants you the versatility to control every facet of your online store. They also provide Search Engine Optimization as well as a myriad of templates to choose from.
Drupal, like Joomla is also a content management system platform developed by an online community. It allows you to have multiple user accounts on the back-end, a myriad of themes 6,000+ modules.
Which One Is Best?
There has been much debate over which is the “best” open-source platform out there today. Some say Magento is better than Joomla because it is fairly new, has analytics integration, advanced marketing promotions and has regular updates. Joomla on the other hand is more user-friendly and requires less technical knowledge- (just read Joomla for Dummies!) It’s Virtuemart is quick to use and will help you get your shop up and running in no time. Our advice is just to try one and see how you like it! Feel free to inquire today about the open-source solutions we have available.