Cafecito Sprint: the lost post
The long awaited first public release of collective.cover is finally available for download.
After many months of delay, collective.cover 1.0a1 was finally released last Monday, January 10, 2013.
It has been a lot of work: more than 5,000 lines of code, more than 700 commits, 20 contributors, endless hours of testing and reviewing… a lot of excitement and satisfaction, in a nutshell!
You can use collective.cover to create elaborated landing pages especially well suited for news portals, government sites and intranets.
Current release includes some basic layouts ready to be used, a working layout editor (kind of) and some pretty basic tiles:
- Basic: shows general information about objects
- Carousel: shows a carousel of images
- Collection: shows the results of a collection
- Embed: used to embed content from a remote source
- File: shows a file object
- Image: shows an image object
- Link: shows a link object
- List: shows a list of items
- Rich Text: shows rich text format
We included a couple of mechanisms to compose a page: a search box that lists the most recent items created on the site (better suited for sites that change their front page very often, like news sites) and a content tree box that lets you navigate your site structure to select the items (probably more useful for intranets).
We know the UI still sucks. I had a brief conversation with David Glick and Alex Limi after our presentation at the Plone Conference 2013 in Arnhem. Limi was very critic with our approach and I think I understood his reasons. We think most of the mess could be easily solved when plone.app.toolbar becomes usable.
If you want to try it, please read the instructions on the package, take special care on pinning correct versions of dependencies and remember that collective.cover was developed to run on top of Plone 4.2 and later. Read carefully the reviewers guide prepared by André and Thiago, and have fun breaking things around.
We spend a lot of time trying to make this release stable enough to be used in production sites. I want to make special mention of the great work done by Silvestre Huens (quimera), Juan Pablo Giménez (jpgimenez), Franco Pellegrini (frapell), Cleber Santos (cleberjsantos) and Gonzalo Almeida (flecox).
Work on release 1.0a2 is already on course with the following main objectives:
- Make collective.cover fully compatible with Plone standard tiles (issue 81) and probably get rid of some of our own basic tiles
- In-line editing using Create, a comprehensive web editing interface designed to provide a modern, fully browser-based HTML5 environment for managing content (issue 77)
- Refactor of some tiles, like the carousel (issue 123)
- Refactor of some ugly UI approaches
- Refactor of some ugly internals
- Bug fixes
We have collective.cover in production in a couple of sites (one news site and one intranet) and we're going to use it on, at least, half a dozen of new sites we're going to release in the following weeks.
Are you trying collective.cover? We want to know about it.
Please feel free to send us your comments, suggestions, bug reports and, of course, fixes.
Development of collective.cover was sponsored by OpenMultimedia, Ravvit and Simples Consultoria.
Share and enjoy!