Roadmap and Objectives
We will try to keep this page up to date synchronized with the current activities and releases of the I-Metrics CMS.
In terms of development to make the website more relevant and this web package more useful for site owners the primary plans include:
- The introduction of a Plugins/Addons manager to increase the flexibility and decrease maintenance of websites using I-Metrics CMS.
- The inclusion of an Upgrade Manager to synchronize some of the core components with bug fixes reported and enhancements created over time
- The creation of a bulletin board system or forum to simplify and group discussions for the I-Metrics CMS users using the base engine..
- Conversion of the main asymmetric software website into a Software Development Blog, with an open source Plugins repository.
In terms of website updates for the online demonstration and main website as well as maintenance for the I-Metrics CMS secondary plans include
- To schedule regular releases for the I-Metrics CMS.
- To create additional template themes to expose the potential of the web-front.
- Update the documentation of the I-Metrics packages and facilitate the Document Synopsis Engine (DSE).
- Prohibit spiders from indexing content on all our sites.
- Exposure of the I-Metrics CMS.
Primary Development Plans Details and Completion Estimates
1. A Plug-ins/Addons manager is planned for the coming releases of the I-Metrics CMS. Initial deployment for the framework is now implemented since v1.10. Four plugins were released with version 1.10 and more expected to increase the different types of websites this system can be integrated into. The main feature that is incomplete is the automatic retrieval and browsing of plug-ins from the administrator end. Right now the plans are to implement a handshake mechanism between servers instead of the usual RSS feed in order to control the server resources consumed.
Estimated completion date: August 2010
2. An Upgrade Manager will be included with the coming releases to synchronize some of the critical components of the package. A very basic handshaking will initially deployed to accomplish code synchronization. Files related with the theme of the web-front will not be updated. However there are plans to further isolate the template related code so a full update of all necessary files will be possible.
Estimated completion date of the prototype code: December 2010
3. Creation of a forum based on the existing framework. This is a very complex task and will be extremely hard distributing our current resources. The first objective is to create three separate addons for the existing CMS. The first to process account control, user creation, user profile etc. The second to list the questions users can post and have others to answer. The third will be a set of scripts under the forum to do basic administration of the forum posts. We will not use an external or existing forum for the same reasons that we did not use an existing CMS to build the I-Metrics CMS but instead we used osCommerce for its simplicity.
Estimated completion date of the prototype code: Fall 2011
4. Now the main site www.asymmetrics.com has lots of pages having e-commerce content. Although the e-commerce services represent our primary source of income today, we feel the evolution of the I-Metrics CMS will be sufficient to cover for the exposure of our domain and generate organic traffic via the relevant open source channels and open source repositories. Long term plan is to retire the existing content of the main site and create a Technical Blog or Editorial to present our development activities to our users. Part of the current content of the online demonstration of the I-Metrics CMS will be moved to the main site following the conversion process.
Estimated completion date of the prototype code: Spring 2011
Details for the Secondary Plans
1. Regular releases for the I-Metrics CMS are planned for this year and until the major items listed above are done. The release system in place is a sequential one where changes to the primary release number indicate a major upgrade of the framework. The two digits that follow the major release indicator refer to minor improvements, bug fixes and minor features added. Once the milestone of one of the primary plans is reached, you should expect the major release indicator to change. Regular releases of the package will be posted officially into the sourceforge.net repository, online demonstration website and possibly to the main asymmetrics website.
2. Current template themes are taken from the freewebsitetemplates.com site. The reason is the minimal requirements by the authors for a theme to be integrated as well as the quality of the themes that is pretty good. There are plans to also create a theme based on the primary asymmetrics website for the I-Metrics CMS. Contributions added to our repository may also be used with our online demonstration website. Using different template themes we can demonstrate to our users the simplicity of the layout core functionaltiy and motivate them to customize existing themes or create new ones.
3. Continuous documentation updates for technical articles, tutorials for the basic use of the I-Metrics packages are also time consuming but are required. As the things progress and subject to our resources the documentation will be improved and new information will be released for the internals of the package via the forthcoming forum, the online demonstration site and the main asymmetrics site. Detailed documents is planned to be generated from within the I-Metrics CMS. The integration of the Document Synopsis Engine (DSE) with the web package is also in our future plans to simplify document generation. Document format will be initially in HTML although there are also plans to optionally extend the functionality of DSE to include XML and PDF formats.
4. The restriction of access to all pages and sub-domains hosted in asymmetrics.com from certain search engines. As awkward as it may seems exposure of our content to search engines in the past have brought very little value if any. Generated traffic may seem increased over the recent years but our research indicates it is 99% artificial. Results were taken from the main asymmetrics website with various content using the tools of search engines to monitor crawl cycles as well as testing the traffic from our server logs. At the same time there was significant increase in spam, hack and scrap attempts by links exposed by the spiders without any bot-filtering. We introduced security measures overtime to counter several types of attacks at the application level, overcome the side effects and turn around junk traffic to service our interests. Those countermeasures will remain in place, likely refined and re-integrated with the forum and CMS packages. Restrictions posting comments are none right now. The manual approval by the administrator will be inverted as we are confident our countermeasures completely deny access to our forms by automated scripts or engines. We believe these modifications will make our sites very friendly and easy for our users to operate, communicate their thoughts and not waste their time. The restriction will take effect once the plugins manager prototype code is in place.
This topic consists of articles that describe the project development cycle, milestones and future plans for the I-Metrics CMS.