Wow! What a few months it has been for the Plone content management system! It truly feels like Plone has reached some sort of tipping point. The momentum behind it has been amazingly positive of late.
To summarize some of the good vibes:
- Plone was recently downloaded for the ONE MILLIONTH time. Consider how incredible this is. We're talking about a content management system. Not a word processor. Not a general purpose database. Not a computer game or a viral online video. A content management system. A HIGH-END content management system. To develop high-end websites. Written in Python. Just amazing.
- There have been a rash of MAJOR company website launches on Plone in the last few months, including Novell.com, Akamai.com, CIA.gov, and our own DiscoverMagazine.com. I've heard from solid sources that Novell.com is getting over 20 million page views per month (that should answer the questions of those who question whether Plone can scale). And figure that if the CIA chose Plone for its public website, its security must be REALLY strong.
- I've already written too many words on the CMS Watch report that came out last month that rated Plone extremely highly.
- Major progress has been made in developing certain areas of Plone due to several development sprints, including eCommerce and multimedia management (video, podcasting, syndication, etc.)
- The documentation area of plone.org, historically considered a weakness, has been completely revamped and I believe is now a strength. The work done in this area has been phenomenal. Thank you so much to everyone who worked on that. I now believe that Plone's documentation story is top notch and a model for other open source software projects.
- Plone recently won the biggest French open source project award for a Plone-based e-government initiative.
- Plone 3.0 is about to launch. It's now in "Release Candidate" status, which means "any day now..." Seriously, Plone 3.0 rocks! This is by far the best release of Plone to-date. So many of the little things that were sub-optimal in Plone have been dealt with. Jon Stahl wrote up a list of 8 really cool things about Plone 3. I'm also excited by a preliminary performance assessment by Alexander Limi. Early indications are that Plone 3 is fast. Really fast.
- Speaking of Plone 3, Packt Publishing will soon release a new book on developing websites with Plone 3 (targeted at programmers and integrators) written by Martin Aspeli. I can't wait to get my hands on that.
- And speaking of Packt Publishing, they are once again holding a vote for the best open source CMS platforms (or, well, the most popular anyway). Plone was a runner-up last year, which is pretty impressive when you consider Plone runs on Python, which is not quite as widely used as PHP. If you are a Plone fan, please vote!
- The Plone Conference 2007 is coming up in October. This year it will be held in Naples, Italy. Mmmmm pizza.... Seriously though, if you have a business or personal interest in Plone, this is the "can't miss" conference of the year. I have submitted a proposal for a presentation. If it is accepted, I'll tell you what it is. ;-)
- If you are able to get to the Conference, consider taking one of the pre-conference classes being offered. The classes are not just for developers. There are also classes for content editors and designers. The people teaching these classes are fantastic - easy to understand, patient... if you can be there, it will be worth your while.
- And finally, just anecdotally, we have been seeing a real pickup of interest in our Plone integration and design services. I suspect this is not a coincidence.
The Plone community is doing fantastic work. Keep it up!