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TYPO3

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TYPO3 is a free Open Source content management system for enterprise purposes on the web and in intranets. It offers full flexibility and extendability while featuring an accomplished set of ready-made interfaces, functions and modules.

Over the years, TYPO3 has grown and expanded rapidly by meeting the needs of clients and end users. Some of the world's best programmers and consultancies have a vested interest in the development of TYPO3 and have formed a strong community in response to that need. When ideas are initiated, they are openly discussed among the group and quickly integrated within the next version of the software or built into an extension. The community drives the product and TYPO3 thrives on team effort.

Since TYPO3 is so modular, it has allowed developers to quickly create their own extensions and share them through a central repository that is available to the community. Over 800 extensions are freely available today, with many others in the planning stage. With a click of a button, you can install a shop, news system, calendar, gallery, document repository, search engine, website statistics package, login box and newsletter. Please visit our feature list for more information about these and other extensions.

If you don't see it, you can create it. TYPO3 provides you with a framework for building your own applications. The kickstarter extension allows you to quickly extend the database with a table for your own data and provides you with a dummy extension that can be edited using PHP. Developers can access the core API online at typo3.org/documentation/api/.


Ease of use

A CMS can only be successful if content editors and administrators are willing to use it. This makes usability a very important factor when choosing a system. Unfortunately, most of the time you have to choose between a CMS that is easy to use or one that has the functionality you need. With TYPO3, you won't have to make that decision since the software already maintains a good balance between the two.

For administrators, TYPO3 offers a wizard for creating a site based on an HTML template or series of templates. You define where you want the dynamic content or menus to appear. You can further extend the templates through a well-documented scripting language called Typoscript. This provides you with the tools to access your data in a variety of ways. Not only is there a wizard for creating templates, but also there is a similar tool for creating your own extensions called the Extension Kickstarter. While it may take awhile to learn all aspects of this complex system, building a basic site is very simple to accomplish and tutorials are available on typo3.org.

For content editors, TYPO3 takes very little time to learn (from 30 minutes to a few hours) and there are many tools available to help. TYPO3 is a browser-based CMS that runs on most platforms (Windows, Mac or Linux) and is compatible with a variety of current browsers (Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari, etc.). With few limits on what editors can use to edit the site, enterprises can easily integrate TYPO3 into their multi-platform environment.

There are two ways to edit in TYPO3; on the web page itself, "frontend" and through the software, "backend". Text is edited using familiar Office icons. You can cut and paste text and images from a program such as Word into the TYPO3 editing window. Images can be automatically resized. Content can be set to hide and unhide on certain dates. It can be restricted to certain users and groups.

Editing through the frontend allows editors to make changes directly on a page. They can navigate through the site, making updates and additions with little effort using toolbars at the bottom of each piece of content.

The backend offers more advanced editing features and tools. Editors can create pages and content, cut and paste items using multiple clipboards, move records, insert pages or a series of pages, search inside the system for a specific string, view logs, add a translation, access the task center, etc. Unlike many CMSes, TYPO3 intuitively lays out pages in the backend, following a page-tree format that mirrors the website's architecture. Editors will be able to find the pages they need quickly. They can even create shortcuts to access frequently edited pages. As they move or delete pages, the menu will automatically update to reflect the changes.


Price and license

TYPO3 is open source, available under the GPL and free to download. With commercial systems, the cost of license fees can add up quickly as you add content editors, software extensions, servers and databases. None of these fees apply to TYPO3. With the open source licensing model, you can minimize the amount of your initial investment, which increases your ROI (Return on Investment) over the same time period.

Besides the financial gains of using open source, you will also have the freedom of choice. With similar commercial systems, you cannot alter the software, build additional functionality or even control your data because you are locked in a contract that prevents you from doing so. As the web changes, you won't be able to change with it. Instead, you will be at the mercy of the company that developed the software. With thousands of CMSes available today, it is not uncommon for these software companies to go out of business unexpectedly. You may end up with an expensive CMS that you can no longer even use and the cost of migrating your data to a new system could be astronomical.

Fortunately, you can avoid these problems by choosing TYPO3. Not only will you enjoy the benefits of a well-established system that has been around for years, you will also find support in the large developer community. You can control all aspects of the system from the beginning.


Freedom to extend and adapt

Any content management system is a large investment in time and money. Once you move to a CMS, you will need to continue supporting it for years. For this reason, you need to protect your investment from the start. As your business grows, you will want to know that your CMS can grow with it. For example, a retail business has been using TYPO3 to maintain a simple website. They recently decide to move into ecommerce and want to add a shop to their website. To solve this problem, they download a shop extension from the repository and install it. They realize they need to add a few fields to the product record and so they make an additional extension that modifies the shop extension. In this scenario, you can see how TYPO3 "grew" with this business. Since TYPO3 is open source and extremely modular, the business was able to adapt the software to fit its needs.


Large client base

TYPO3 has been used in over 3,000 websites around the world. With over 20,000 developers registered on typo3.org, you will find you are in good company while learning and using the system. You can join the ranks of other enterprises using TYPO3, such as Philips, EDS, Volkswagen, General Electric, Stanford University, MGM Home Entertainment, 3M, New York Times, Lufthansa, Ford, T-Online and Samsung.


TYPO3, one of the fastest growing CMSs

The past few years have marked a period of sustained growth for TYPO3. It is no longer just another open source CMS. Instead, TYPO3 has developed into a CMS that rivals most commercial quality systems. If you take a look at the number of references, extensions and developers within the community, you will see that it is not only one of the leading CMSes in Europe, but that it is quickly spreading to the rest of the world.


Determing TCO and ROI

The biggest challenge in determining TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) and ROI (Return on Investment) is deciding how much of a role the influencing factors will make in the final decision.

With commercial systems, the cost of license fees can add up quickly as you add content editors, software extensions, servers and databases. With the open source licensing model, you can minimize the amount of your initial investment, which increases your ROI over the same time period.

With the money you save in expensive licensing fees, you can invest it in the part that matters most to your business -- customization of the software and training. By hiring a professional consultancy to build upon the Enterprise Content Management System, tailor it to your business and train your editors, you will be starting your project off right from the start, saving even more money in the future.