Re: Drupal and Microsoft CMS Options?

  • From: "E.J. Zufelt" <lists@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 11 Dec 2010 06:47:58 -0500

Good morning,

Thought I'd jump in here.  I am currently the Drupal 7 Core accessibility 
maintainer, which basically means I help to organize efforts around ensuring 
that Drupal is the most accessible CMS that it can be.  We are by no means 
perfect, but we have made some noticeable improvements over Drupal 6, and 
Drupal 6 wasn't all that bad.

Yes, Drupal powers, along with many other government sites.  It 
is a robust, secure and highly extensible CMS.  However, any accessibility 
problems you may notice on a site powered by Drupal has very little to do with 
Drupal itself, sometimes people who make custom themes for Drupal end up making 
their site less accessible than Drupal would be out of the box, because they 
know little if anything about accessibility.

Drupal is a more difficult to learn system than something like Wordpress.  
Generally speaking, Wordpress is designed for people who want to quickly throw 
up their own site, whereas Drupal is designed for site builders and developers 
as a platform that can be used to launch more complex web solutions.  With the 
recent release of Wordpress 3 and the soon to be released Drupal 7 (currently 
in RC1), this difference has been lessened, but definitely still exists.

Both Wordpress and Drupal have many contributed modules and themes, to extend 
functionality and to modify the look and feel (along with the markup) of your 
site.  Most anything you would ever want a Drupal site to do can be 
accomplished with existing contributed modules.  If you do need functionality 
that is currently not acheivable with contributed modules then you would need 
to create a module using the module API, modules are developed in PHP, as is 
all of Drupal.

Everett Zufelt

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On 2010-12-11, at 5:46 AM, RicksPlace wrote:

> Hi Katherine: Well, don't give up on MS just yet. I have just started looking 
> at how to develop Sharepoint solutions in Visual Studio and it sounds pretty 
> clean and powerful as an integrated approach. I know I tried building a Local 
> Website using Web Parts in 2008 and found the experience not screen 
> reader friendly. Or, at least, not as friendly as using standard UI Controls 
> in a regular old Website. When Windoweyes 8 comes out I might take a look at 
> 2010 to see what, if any, Sharepoint tools are included in the package 
> and how accessible they are. In the meantime I have seen that various U.S. 
> Government agencies and even the White House are supposedly using Drupal 
> according to one Drupal Website Webpage. That means that it must be 
> accessible and quite configurable since I would never have guessed those 
> websites were CMS sites. They just look and perform like regular websites 
> unlike many of the Drupal and other CMS sites I have visited recently. So, it 
> seems Drupal can be used effectively if one knows what they are doing. My 
> only reason for not jumping on it is that I like to develop on my local 
> machine and to do that with Drupal I would have to either install something 
> like xampp or whatever to get a simulated Linux Environment, set up a Duel 
> Boot software disc somehow or implement the Microsoft IIS based Web Platform 
> which is a huge mess to fix if anything goes wrong with any of it's many,, 
> many modules installed. In fact, one problem would likely be port conflicts 
> between my current Sql Server and the MySql server which would be 
> automatically installed. Anyway, I don't like headaches so am just holding 
> off on playing with Drupal even though it sounds pretty nice I am of the KISS 
> school of thought - Keep It Simple Sir! (Note: you can substitute any word 
> starting with "S" for the word "Sir" in the above phrase - grin. Oh Ya, I am 
> not so sure that the thousand or so apps created by third party folks are 
> designed to be accessible to screen readers so that is always a concern as 
> well when working with an Open Source Project with no Accessibility standards 
> for third party software plugs or apps.
> Well, that's all I have this morning from
> chilly Farmington Michigan and I am off to do a little more reading on Visual 
> Studio 2010 and Sharepoint 2010 with any related offerings like Office or 
> other modules and compare the development and maintenance process to that of 
> Drupal. Right now I am not sure which way to fall - headaches with Linux on a 
> Windows machine or working in Visual Studio and withthe built-in Sharepoint 
> and other tools and the learning curve of WPF and Silverlight if necessary. I 
> really will tend twoard the one that is the most stable over the next 5 years 
> or so, has the easiest procedures for working with sites and offers the 
> greatest flexibility. Oh ya, also add in a weighted factor based on the 
> learning curve. I would like to work in the Linux environment mainly because 
> so many of the old timers on this list work in it but I have had my doubts 
> about how productive I might be in that environment compared to a 
> comprehensive integrated IDE.
> I must wait  for  Windoweyes 8 to see how accessible 2010 or other VS 
> products will be with it since they use the new UIA Accessibility hooks.
> Later Katherine and don't give up on MS Stuff just pick the right tool for 
> the job - that is what the qualified professionals do:
> Rick USA
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Katherine Moss" 
> <plymouthroamer285@xxxxxxxxx>
> To: <programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> Sent: Saturday, December 11, 2010 1:27 AM
> Subject: RE: Drupal and Microsoft CMS Options?
>> Oh gosh, Jamal, thanks!  These anti-Microsoft folks are killing me!  And
>> whoever called Mojo Portal "Mojo thing that no one has heard of" better
>> think again.  I'm a volunteer on the project, and I don't appreciate
>> people's work being insulted.  And besides, that CMS works on Linux despite
>> it's coding.
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> [mailto:programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Jamal Mazrui
>> Sent: Friday, December 10, 2010 12:27 PM
>> To: ProgrammingBlind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> Subject: RE: Drupal and Microsoft CMS Options?
>> Hi Rick,
>> Here is the web site of an ASP.NET-based CMS:
>> DotNetNuke - The Leading Open Source Web Content Management Platform for
>> ASP.NET -
>> Jamal
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> [mailto:programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of RicksPlace
>> Sent: Friday, December 10, 2010 9:43 AM
>> To: programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> Subject: Re: Drupal and Microsoft CMS Options?
>> Hi Gang: Jim, I don't know just yet. My preference would be to just learn
>> whatever Jamal is doing but I am now thinking of putting up some sites for
>> some blind folks so their sites are kept up to date and work well with
>> screen readers so I am not sure about the scope of my involvement. It might
>> be Drupal based or, more likely if really accessible, something in the
>> Microsoft venu since I am familiar with their DB stuff and coding websites
>> using various ASP Controls and Server Side coding technicals.
>> For development I might use one of the packages Jacques or Katherine
>> mentioned but I can start reading up on them to get some color on what this
>> stuff is all about.
>> Hay, Jacques, are you French? If so, are you from across the pond?
>> Later and thanks for the ideas to explore.
>> Rick Farmington Michigan USA
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: Katherine Moss <mailto:plymouthroamer285@xxxxxxxxx>
>> To: programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> Sent: Friday, December 10, 2010 9:19 AM
>> Subject: RE: Drupal and Microsoft CMS Options?
>> Look at both Umbraco and Mojo Portal.
>> From: programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> [mailto:programmingblind-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of RicksPlace
>> Sent: Friday, December 10, 2010 8:01 AM
>> To: programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>> Subject: Drupal and Microsoft CMS Options?
>> Hi: I know very little about CMS. As a result of Jamal using it, I
>> have looked at some of the Drupal docs by googling but am having trouble
>> wrapping my head around exactly how it all works since I am an old
>> Microsoft user. I am trying to figure out a similar option in the
>> Microsoft World. So far I think that Sharepoint and Open Office, both 2010
>> versionws with accessibility, sound like they are the Microsoft
>> counterpart to Drupal. does this sound about right? Since they support
>> ARIA and the other new Web Standards, or at least some articles say they
>> do, has anyone tried them out? If there is another Microsoft thingy where
>> it looks or works sort of a CMS with DB storage and perhaps Media support
>> could you mention it so I can do a little more digging?
>> It looks like allot of blind folks are trying to use various CMS
>> Websites and most of them are pretty bad. They also sound almost as
>> complex to create and maintain as a standard Website developed in
>> something like VWD. Anyway, thanks for any input you provide on CMS,
>> Drupal or any Microsoft counterpart products that I can research a little
>> more.
>> Again, the Microsoft 2010 versions of the Open Office and
>> Sharepoint are suppose to be accessible where the older versions were not
>> very accessible if that helps.
>> Rick USA
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