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Symfony CMF: why, how, when (part I)

Note: This article was originally published at Planet PHP on 19 April 5660.
Planet PHP

I have blogged about how I wish there was a developer friendly CMS for a while now. I have also blogged that I wish that top applications would be build on top frameworks instead of homegrown ones. I have also blogged how I hope for the Symfony CMF initiative for solve all of this. Now back in fall 2010, when the community agreed to pursue using the Java Content Repository (JCR) specification as the basis for our work, things kinda fell in to a hole. The vision seemed clear and one of the main benefits was that we could get going faster. At the same time the number of Symfony2 developers were few and they were mostly busy keeping their projects in sync with the on going development. So in the end it was basically Liip that kept pushing things forward by continuing to invest into Jackalope (the connector between PHP and Java implementation of the JCR spec) as well as a Doctrine2 ODM implementation on top of this. One area where there was in fact a fair bit of community feedback was in how to better PHP-ify the JCR specification which was more or less literally translated to PHP in the original PHPCR implementation.

I presented the end result of these efforts in Paris and all of us at Liip where kind of hoping that the result would be that the now almost 150 mostly dormant people on the CMF dev list would start waking up and smell the cheese. That they would now realize that in terms of tool chain they have most of the same connivence of the other Doctrine ORM/ODM implementations and what is missing will be coming soon. But of course the goal is to also offer things that go beyond what the other ORM/ODM solutions offer when it comes to managing content.

To give things a little jolt I started a thread with the tongue in cheek subject "Mommy, where does the code come from?". This thread made it clear that there is still a fair bit of hesitation mostly because it seems we still haven't gotten the point across that it isn't rocket science to install or use any of the components in the stack. Also some of the late comers that weren't involved in the discussions and voting over the summer and fall last year might be wondering why all of this? So over the coming week or two I want to go over some of the points raised in that thread and I invite anyone else to post here or on the mailinglist any other reasons why they aren't all over the CMF stack yet despite needing a CMS for their work projects. Of course one reason is that right now a lot of the early adopters are still busy finishing Symfony2 and the people who cannot jump on SOTA stuff will need to wait until after the first 2-3 patch releases after Symfony2 goes stable. I am focusing on other reasons from here on out.

So as I prepare the next few blog posts, feel free to post questions here, so that I can make sure I cover all the angles you guys care about :)