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asp.net developer - new to the OS scene - need advice

[eluser]Sgt Quagmire[/eluser]
I have been developing and designing web apps for 3 years now (professionally) with asp.net. Now that I have graduated college I am interested in doing some sidework.

My dilemma is trying to figure out the best route to take with open source technology. I have went through a few CI tutorials, and I must say CI is a very intuitive framework and actually fun to program with. I just don't know whether or not it is the best route to go for making web sites quickly.

What I'm looking for is the best, and quickest, way to develop a site that has a blog, login/register, and forum. Along with these I want to have to option to develop or add existing modules/plugins if the client needs it. Some examples would be using the twitter api, a simple cms, data management, and jquery widgets.

I've been googling and researching this stuff for weeks now, and still haven't managed to decide on which technology to invest my time learning. I work full time so time-saving is definitely a priority. My true expertise are with html, css, and jquery. I also know C# and have a solid foundation on OOP and MSSQL. This is why I have also looked into Kohana, but the community, documentation, and existing code samples have no comparison to CI.

If anyone here could give me some insight I would be grateful. Codeignitor? Kohana? Joomla? ModX? I have no idea lol...

well, ... i'm an asp.net developer since 2001/2 and did it until 2007, i said did it because i finally managed to leave MS world for good ... the only reason that kept me in MS world was that because i was working professionally with it and it paid my bills ... but always un-confortable to the directions of web development with MS and mostly because imho, web development must be done with an interpreted language. (period)

then in 2008 i faced a dilemma similar to yours, but my goal was to leave MS development ... i was hearing things from ruby and rails and decided to give it a try ... not bad, but although ruby language is pure oop and very dynamic, i've found rails framework to be a bloated one, plus it's now merging with another framework named merb (to fix rails issues and i guess, to kill merb as a frmwk) ... i then tested other ruby frwrks like ramaze and sinatra, bacause i like small frwrks, but felt that lack of great community and documentation (although you get some) and the major issue i found is that in the ruby world, it's going to be real hard to find jobs, unless your in the rails bandwagon, plus ruby is not that popular, at least where i live and i think in the rest of the world too.

so i spent almost a year testing new stuff and at the end what i really learned is that you'll be wrong in thinking that using the fastest language (ruby is far from being fast, by the way), the coolest framework will pay your dues, but what really is important is if in the average you'll get your job done and done in a nice way ... rails uses a so strong DSL that will hide ruby language at a point that you think you're programming with ruby, but in fact you are using rails idioms and it's magic ...

so look for a framework that doesn't hide the base language, i think CI does a good job, it has its helpers, some magic, but you don't forget how to code in PHP

in the ruby land, ramaze and sinatra doesn't hide the ruby language, but in ruby land rails dictates :-(

i'm new to CI and also to PHP, but by reading the manual, it's so easy and clear :-)

plus i think rails are for rockstars!

[eluser]Sgt Quagmire[/eluser]
Yea I agree with you about rails. I pretty much let the other web devs out there who had already tried it make my decision for me. After reading literally hundreds of articles about php, rails, django, etc, etc and their corresponding frameworks, I finally decided that I was going to dive into a framework and try it out. So how did I decide to go with Codigniter?..

I realized that just about everyone who had used CI loved it, or they heard about someone who loved it. Rails got alot of trash talk about performance and scalability, CakePHP being pretty much a php port of rails got the same treatment. Zend looked like the Asp.net of php, which is what I do at work so nope to that one.

The 2 frameworks that took a close spot behind CI for me was Kohana and Yii. Both are young, yet growing rapidly. They also use OOP and PHP5 which, whether old school php'ers like it or not, is much better coding practice and allows for an efficient way to re-use code and separate functionality from presentation.

The reason I went with CI was the same reasons you hear all over the place - great documentation, responsive community (although this post hasn't received much love lol), and it's so damn intuitive that it's almost fun.

I just hope CI goes php5 sooner than later. If not then I can see myself heading Kohana's way in the future. But I seriously doubt that such a successful framework would let itself get stuck in a technology of the past.

While I'm here I'd like to thank everyone in these forums. Because of the great support around here I already have a shell site made which has phpBB forums built in. I plan on making my own freelancer/developement site and I would like to contribute back to the community with code snippets and links back to this great site. Bought the domain name WebThirsty.com - I know a little cheesy but I hope it serves me well. Thanks again!

[eluser]Sgt Quagmire[/eluser]
[quote author="chinathong" date="1236476919"]well, ... i'm an asp.net developer since 2001/2 and did it until 2007, i said did it because i finally managed to leave MS world for good ... the only reason that kept me in MS world was that because i was working professionally with it and it paid my bills[/quote]

So did you decide to go full time freelancing? I think MS has done a good job with Asp.net honestly. For cooroporate apps the .net framework has so many useful libraries and the visual studio ide is hands down the best ide out (imo anyway).

The new Visual Studio gets MVC integrated into it, and even better, it will have JQuery built into it's core. How smart of MS was that?? Jquery integration? I could see some OOP Jquery, with libraries, intellisense, widgets, etc... very promising i think.

But with all that said, I love the open source community and for doing freelance/hobby/sidework php seems to be perfect. If I could pay the bills by being my own boss and using open source software, I would do it no doubt.

MS and it's Vista and IE can kiss my *** as far as I'm concerned though. IE has added so many horrible production hours to our development cycle. It's just one big hack lol.

BUT - MS has also helped create lots of jobs with their .net framework. Rapid enterprise app development is now actually made possible. I have health insurance, 401k, steady paycheck. So yes MS has it's bad points (lots of em), but it also has come a long way.

btw, please don't take me as a MS workshop fanboy. I just like looking at things from more than one angle.

[eluser]Jonas G[/eluser]
In response to your original question: I have been working quite a bit with modx and CI. It's basically all I work with now-a-days. I decide between the two by looking at the level of "freedom" i want vs. the level of "prebuilt stuff" i could benefit from (actually modx gives you A LOT of freedom still). It pretty much always comes down to who needs to manage it (is it a project for myself or is it a site for a client). If it's for a client I always go for modx as it has so many CMS features and writing your own snippets/plugins and working with the modx api is very easy and straigtforward. Also, modx really does allow you to easily control every single output of code.

I have been working quite a bit with Joomla and after switching to modx I would never dream of touching it again.



[eluser]Sgt Quagmire[/eluser]
[quote author="CtheB" date="1236649568"]Google:


Interesting article. Seems like the comments are the most useful part of that link. Sounds like there is a new version of modx coming soon.

I'm currently trying to figure out a. what blogging app should I integrate, b. should I just make my own blogging app (re-invent the wheel), and c. do I really need a CMS?
It seems like if a client wants a full cms based site, why not just use Joomla or something like that?

Comments and questions about CMS - build from scratch, how to integrate, do I really want, etc - seem to crop up a lot. Which is not too surprising, I guess, given the nature of things. But I'm curious why Deki doesn't pop up more often in these discussions. I've never really looked under the hood of that thing, other than to know they've maintained separation between the UI and the actual CMS engine, and I suspect that gives it some advantage when you're looking at roping in an extant codebase.

Couldn't say for sure, though.

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