is CB a car without wheels?

14 years 8 months ago #5333 by Raj
Probably a better analogy is building a house. First you build the foundation, then you put up the framework for the walls, do the plaster and dry walling, and so on.

Real hard to build the roof without the foundation.

Roger

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14 years 8 months ago #5334 by andyahoo
I just bought one of the more popular commercial components. I felt a little duped after I downloaded it. I figured there would be a pdf file with some good documention. None. The forums at their site are not well attended and the admins responce to posts are not nearly as fast to come as my presales questions.

Well I've spent the cash and there is no return policy.

It's easy for them to do what you want because they have something that is done well and the competion is not up to par. I would like to see a rival product for this company and see how things change. They kind of have a monopoly going. What are the concequenses of any monopoly? Don't they do what they want when they want?

The open source products I use have great support and great communities.

Joomla! 1.0.9
CB 1.0

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14 years 8 months ago #5337 by achintya
Hi

I like that analogy, to pick it up in my terms and understanding, then the foundation is the ability to querie and sort the database of registered users in order to find people and connnect with them. The walls and the framework and roof are the plug-ins, the design, the filtering systems etc.

This runs contrary to quite a few others here, who seem to be saying that the foundations are what I call the Roof and the walls!


achintya



Raj wrote:

Probably a better analogy is building a house. First you build the foundation, then you put up the framework for the walls, do the plaster and dry walling, and so on.

Real hard to build the roof without the foundation.

Roger

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14 years 8 months ago #5338 by Raj
Hmmmm...I must respectfully disagree. I think Nant described the foundation earlier. I dont' know how to quote text, so I'll just copy and paste from Nant's message:

"Something had to be created to allow the information to get into the database in the first place (new fields, field types, etc). Something else had to be created to allow information to be extracted from the database (profile displays) and organized in a descent manor (tabs, templates, etc). Also before an advanced search is created simple things must be in place, for example simple searching by scrolling through a linkable profile list (CB lists). Granted that for large sites this is not efficient - but before running one has to be able to walk."

Makes senses to me.

I also think it's impossible to make everyone in the crowd happy, but if you stick around, I think the functionality you need will arrive, and you'll be very happy. Let's face it, CB is in a class by itself. It's awesome now and it will get even better. Coming up on 5000 registered users now.

Wouldn't surprise me if CB gets bundled with Joomla someday as part of the core. Right now, CMS means Content Management System, but in the future, it may come to mean Community Management System. I think History will show that the development of CB marks a fundamental change in the meaning of a CMS. Content is nice, but it's communities that develop content, along with everything else. The number of plug ins being developed is incredible and development is ramping up in lots of areas. You need search, someone else needs Google maps, someone else needs a PHPBB bridge, and to each person, those pieces are absolutely mission critical. To some extent, we are all impatient with CB, because the vision which is CB is now plain for all to see, and none of us can stand the thought that its potential might go even one iota unrealized. So our impatience is a tremendous compliment to the developers. :) But have patience and it will all arrive. People want to be part of something great, and this is.

Roger

Post edited by: Raj, at: 2006/02/02 00:20

Post edited by: Raj, at: 2006/02/02 00:25

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14 years 8 months ago #5339 by achintya
Hi

I appreciate the information that the search feature will be included in a future release.

I have to underscore my belief that it is not 'advanced' searching I am looking for, it is ANY searching other than by name, which is currently all that can be searched on. I think it is a misnomer to call it advanced searching because that makes it sound like a really special thing I am asking for. I am using many many components on a variety of Joomla and Mambo sites and I think all but a few have very thorough search facilities, and these are components which are not really set up for people information management etc. What baffles me is that all these other components who don't really need really effective searching (remository comes to mind, and Ext Calendar - a wonderful search tool there) actually do bother to provide it as standard, nothing advanced there at all. It is standard, not advanced.

My point is to wonder why it is not standard in CB from the very beginning and now has to go through all these development and plug in loops? It seems very difficult to get this across at the moment. One of the primary needs of any registered community member is to find out who else is a community member and connect with them according to various criteria. This is what many of my users are looking for, I get emails about it all the time.

My analogy is NOT simplistic, I think it is an extremely appropriate analogy, because my users (hundreds of them) want to interrogate and explore eachother's credentials and unique features, not just be presented with a list of 300 other registered users that can only be sorted by name.

I agree that a sortable list is a start, and many components already offer that. But just looking at the way the little search box is set up onscreen says it all. It is, for example, horribly easy to leave a * in the box and think that suddenly there are no users. Many of my users have done that and eamailed me about it. So even the current search system is pretty dodgy, to my mind. I have tried to use the filter system, but end up havig to second guess all possible searches in order to set up a decent array of possible search criteria in the drop down list, which ends up half a mile long. Again, not a good way of displaying choices.

When I say I have been using CB, it is because there is nothing else out there which DOES allow more than a few basic information fields. In terms of registration alternatives to the core registration component, it is the best of a pretty bad bunch as far as I can see but if someone could come up with a really good registration system, which displays the data in a properly sortable way and which allows full database interrogation, representing data attractively at the FRONT END in various ways, then I would desert CB in a flash, because it is those functions I and hundreds of users REALLY want.

So no, I am not stupid enough to drive a car without wheels, the car has served some useful functions along the way and there are no alternatives anyway, but I have been pushing it along the road very slowly with a great deal of effort and often wondering why I am doing it!

Please don't attack me here, whoever you are. I am not being personal about this, I am not presenting myself as a kind of human target just because I am trying to get understood. In fact your email is one of the first to acknowledge my frustration rather than attack me. I am beginning to wonder if I have wandered into some kind of macho computer programmer gladiator school or something!

I am trying to get to the bottom of why such a splendid piece of software (which does do several things brilliantly, and search appallingly) doesn't prioritise plain simple ordinary searching on all fields. Given the amount of hacking code out there, it must be possible to put something together in the core code without having to wait another two years for it?

Anyway, I have said my piece and you guys will be pleased to know that I am going to leave this discussion for now. I have a UK Joomla site to construct in a few weeks, I will be installing CB because it does several things brilliantly and no other piece of software can do that, However, I will also be apologising to users that they can't search on all fields when they ask, and we will all be waiting to see when this vital function is added.

I won't say thanks for the attacks, but thanks for the useful information about how software developers work, it has opened my eyes.

best of luck


achintya


nant wrote:

Wow - very heated debate going on here.
I have been following it trying to with-hold participation in order to get more work done on 1.0 stable ... just couldn't resist ... so here is goes...

I understand achintya's frustration about the advanced search capabilities - it will certainly add to the overall functionality and completeness of the OS product suite. Having said this is is the Core Team's position that this is the next major feature that must be implemented (after 1.0 stable).

Having said this a dont agree with achintya's analogies - very simplistic and misleading.

For example:

I have been using CB without a proper search component for about a year or so ...


followed by

a. Why release ANY database software which only allows searching on just one of the core fields in that database, ie name? This is, to my mind, like producing a car without wheels?


one could be led to believe that achintya has been driving around for one year without wheels.

Seriously, CB is not a car without wheels. Something had to be created to allow the information to get into the database in the first place (new fields, field types, etc). Something else had to be created to allow information to be extracted from the database (profile displays) and organized in a descent manor (tabs, templates, etc). Also before an advanced search is created simple things must be in place, for example simple searching by scrolling through a linkable profile list (CB lists). Granted that for large sites this is not efficient - but before running one has to be able to walk. And lets assume you do find someone from any existing search mechanism - you must connect to him (connection plugin).

Just by reading these forums, one can easily see that there is no way on earth CB (or any other product) could satisfy all end-user individual needs. The plugin framework was created to allow some of these less core features to be easily (well it does need programming skills) without compromising core code (by hacking) and ensuring the actual feature survivability after the next core release. I personally and very excited at the 3PD that have been coding away creating plugins to satisfy their needs (whatever they may be) and I hope that at some point people will start paying them to create the plugins and extensions needed. Yes paying them. Why not? The engine might be free but the accessories are not.

Enough with the analogies. I have to get back to spending my little spare time to fine-tune the engine of this free car and update the owners manual B) .

I might not have time to respond to this thread anytime soon again so dont feel that I am ignoring you guys - just trying to spend my time as productively as possible.

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14 years 8 months ago #5346 by rick
achintya,

I think that we all get the idea that "you" feel that the search is the number one priority and that with out it this is like a care without wheels and you keep saying that we don't get it.

I think that it is you don't get it. Let me try to prove it with a couple of points.

First lets define a car without wheels, a car without wheels would be completely useless so by definition you are implying that CB is useless. Now let me counter that silly notion.

1. If in fact CB was useless then why as Nant said earlier do you yourself use it for over a year.

2. As mentioned elsewhere we have about 5000 registered users here so that means that besides yourself there are many others that are using this software and do not feel it is useless.

3. Community Builder has been at number 2 and is currently at number 3 for the most active projects at the Joomla Developer site. If you don't believe me ten check it for your self at http://forge.joomla.org/sf/sfmain/do/home

4. This is not only one of the most active projects as in just the Community Builder project but is one of the most activly supported projects in that there are more addons / plugins being developed every day.

Seems kind of strange that all these people are working on a project, developing addons / plugins, building live Community Builder sites with a program that by your definition is useless.

I submit to you that this is one of, if not the most useful component ever created for Joomla and as such cannot and does not meet your definition of being useless (a car without wheels).

So I guess what my point is that many, many, many of us find Community Builder to be very useful (a car "with" wheels) and that it is you that is putting way to much priority on the search functions that "you" want so bad.

That is not to say that Community Builder does not need improvement, far from it and that is why the core team added that API so that these improvements could move along much faster. And let me also so that I to would like a better search function but to imply that CB is useless with out it is just plain silly.

I have to repeat what has been said here many times and that is if the search function is so critical to you then hire someone to add ot for you, otherwise be glad that the very generous people that put this together where kind enough to put this out for free. Another question I would ask is have you contributed to the project which can easily be done from the front page? Actually you don't have to answer that, even without the search functions I very quickly noticed that you have not. Contributing to projects like this would make it much more enticing for the programmers to add features to a system than just implying that their software is useless.

Bottom line is that CB is far from useless so lets just get real here.

My 2 cents,

Rick

Running:
Joomla! 1.0.7 Stable
Community Builder 1.0 rc2
SMF 1.1 RC2

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