XOOPS: Xoops (R)évolution

Posted by: solo71on 2006/3/8 19:50:00 11824 reads
Last week-end, the french Xoops community representatives have meet for one of a decisive meeting. The AFUX (Association Francophone des Utilisateurs de Xoops - Xoops Users French speaking Association) has invited Skalpa to make the point about XOOPS developments.

The project is far from being dead, and the code is existing... we have seen it... and it's a revolution!

Ladies and gentlement, let me introduce you what would be the next major version of XOOPS.

4 o'clock am. My radio clock start up, but I'm already awake. Just the time to pass by a shower, jump in my clothes and grab my luggages (a portable pc and some clothes) and I get in my car. Direction, Metz (in France), where I'm going to get the TGV. Direction Lyon. This week, once again, I'll meet my Xoops-Franc(ophon)e teammates. The AFUX (Association Francophone des Utilisateur de Xoops - Xoops Users French speaking Association) has booked a house near Clearmont-Ferrand. We have invited Skalpa Keo to make the point on the situation regarding the Core development progress. This meeting has been organised one month ago, as nothing had been planned for the FOSDEM 2006. Only the frxoops.org team members were invited, mainly for obvious organisation and logistic reasons. Everyone spontaneously responded present, except for Marco who was in Russia for his work. He did everything he could to be there, but he isn't able to clone himself yet - I'm sure he would have done so if he could... At 11.40am, Kris is waiting for me at train station. Rendez-vous to Alain01's appartment, where Fooups (Xoops-France documentation manager) is already there... waiting for us. It's good to see now familliar faces (we all already had meet at the Dijon RMLL 6 month earlier). Alain's wife has cooked a very delicious meal (3 plates services, please...) and at 2.45pm we all jump in Kris' car, direction Clermont-Ferrand, 150km away. 5pm. Thanks to Kris GPS (with Pamela's voice *gosh*) we arrive to the place. A very sympathic and rustic french farm, install to host tourists. Checking to through the windows, to see if we are at the right place, I see a 3 meters table covered with portable pc's, wired to a central data server. On the white room wall, the retroprojector is displaying lines of PHP code... Well, no doubt, we are at the right place. Inside, I'm very happy to find Philou, Hervé and Chrisitan, the famous core team of Xoops-France and module developers. There are two new faces as well, Pemen (Pierre-Eric - author of the LDAP part) and Xvitry (Xavier, frxoops module beta tester, forum supporter and module translater). 5.30pm. We are now all expecting the latest members to come : Thecat (Claude - module developper), Winsion (Paul - webdesigner and forum supporter) and, of course, Skalpa. The AFUX chooses this place because this was geographically central. People were coming from all over the hexagone, being the only belgian of the group. Hervé receives a message from Marco. Xoops.org is closed. Another hacker attack. After a short introduction, and a warm drink, we start the session. Skalpa opens fire. On the white wall we have a projection of his work on process. As far as we can see, the project is heading very well. Skalpa's exposure is a little bit more clear as it had been last year (at the XOOPSdem).
Not only he can expose in french (his native language), he also has something to show. Actually, we can see lines of Phpcodes, alternating with a development site. Exposing his project, a virtual revolution in matter of development plateform.
Questions are arising. What about compatibility with existing modules? What about themes? What about standards? What about users expectations regading their favourite CMS functionnalities (user profiles, block management, theme modification, SEO - url rewriting, meta generation, etc.)? Every point has a reply from the core developper. He stresses the importance of giving developpers and designers a proper environement for a community implication.
Some modules are already running on the demonstration site. I can see Marcan's SmartSection for instance. Some points are debated. Suggestions arises: a default wysiwyg theme editor, which would probably attract more theme designer. A new cache organisation, updated at each change. 9.00pm. Dinner time! Everybody around the table is digerating the datas. We talk about various things. About frxoops organisation, the brand new Inbetween wysiwyg editor, and Frank Black interventions on our forums, the increase of Xoops-France statistics, trafics and users.
We are surprise to discover splendid Xoops sites on the net, while the webmaster is totally unknown by us... We are more and more conviced that Xoops is a powerfull tool, appreciated by its users... 10.00pm. Skalpa is gone sleeping. That's the occasion for Pemen to expose his xoops module: a LDAP manager. He uses his application for his own company and for various customers' intranet.Next to this Philou presents his content module: Page. This module is a derivation of the WFChannel module, where he has included Frank Black's wysiwyg editor. This brand new editor is really impressive (note to myself: include this in Edito ). Discussions about modules, themes, and various Xoops aspects are headings. 2.45am. Time to go bed. As soon as we get upstairs, the most difficult part of the trip is arising: who's going to sleep with who? I must say that the two twin beds are not as attractive as the kid bed. lol. I succeed to jump on a single bed in the same. I share the room with Pemen, Alain01 and Xvitry. *phew*
7.30am. I'm awaken by a big laugh outside the room. I rekognize Philou's one. Everyone wake up. The day and the meeting is not over. We have the whole morning to carry on with discussion about the Xoops future. 9.30am. After a delicious lunch, we are back in the improvised conference room. Skalpa is back to his conference. Explaining why his project had changed since our latest meeting, last year at FOSDEM 2005. Explaining his views about the 2.2 version. Giving his opinion about the current events in the Xoops community. As a kind of conclusion about his core project, the discussion turns about the fact that Skalpa presents this as a 2.3/2.4 evolution of Xoops, where, we do see a 3.0 one. There are so much changes, evolutions and promises in this new system, that we believe it deserves a new name. Let's make a new step to the futur, and forget about all those 2.x confusing versions! Everyone agreed in the room. It's a first step for this Xoops Revolution. 11.30am. Paul is leaving, he has a train to catch. We all gather around the diner table for our latest meal. The discussion about the futur of Xoops is carrying on. We all know that we are only here as the french representatives of the community. This new project need to convince the whole community as well: english, spanish, brasilian, german, asiatics (chinese, japan), mexicans, and all those communities gathered around their respective local support sites. Skalpa reminds everyone that in his opinion, Xoops is an open source project, where everybody should have the ability to contribute, wherever in coding, designing or documentation. He wants the now so called Xoops 3.x version to be a contributive plateform, where everyone would have the possibility to share and contribute. 1.30pm. Our host takes a picture of our group. We should meet up again by the end of the year. Probably at the same place. Anyway, we would get in touch everyday on the net or on our private forums on www.frxoops.org. Solo71 PS: by the end of the week, a more technical article will be published, annoucing the core developments.