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#1 2016-09-07 06:30:05

hcgtv
Plugin Author
From: Miami, Florida
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2,721
Website

The evolution of Textpattern

Textpattern, such a small and compact set of PHP scripts. Fell in love with it from the moment I installed it. Got to learning Textile, and have never looked back.

Over the years it has evolved, as has everything around it, but it’s remained nimble, kicks ass if you ask me.

There used to be a time when all you needed was a text editor and access to SVN to contribute code. If you decided to participate in the ecosystem, well you ran a Textpattern site and created suitable content.

Official sites were manned by trusted volunteers, they all ran Textpattern. New site designs were worked on and content massaged in a beta.Textpattern.site, the forum got a peek here and there.

Other than Textpattern, we used PunBB for the forum and MediaWiki for the docs. There was a definite need for a forum script, I’m not too sure we needed a collaborative wiki for docs, Textpattern would of sufficed.

Today, Textpattern relies on many other projects for it’s development and presence. The barrier for participation is a bit higher now, needing to install all kinds of stuff just to get a glimpse.

Progress, sure I’m all for moving forward, but are we faster at producing code, or launching sites?

Textpattern, such a small and compact set of PHP scripts.

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#2 2016-09-07 11:44:58

Destry
Member
From: Haut-Rhin
Registered: 2004-08-04
Posts: 4,851
Website

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

Sounds like a nostalgic way to propose putting the docs on a Txp install, which is a very belabored old chestnut.

I, as one late-adopter, have come to realize the benefits of GitHub for certain things, and collaborative documentation being one of them. Not the least of which is because every editorial change, no matter how small or large is tracked and recorded for easy referral or recovery. You don’t have that traceability with Txp. It also eliminates having to manage user accounts. Anyone can create a GitHub account and make contributions. No admin-intervention needed.

As for the choice of the wiki, originally, back in 2004 — that was Dean’s, when he supplied the .net domain for it. It was a feasible choice then too, for the same reasons: content traceability and easily leveraging contributors. It further allowed doc translations, which was the only tool that did at the time. The setbacks of a wiki, on the other hand, revealed themselves over the years, and it was good to move away from it, but I would not choose Txp for community documentation, however.

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#3 2016-09-07 12:47:11

Bloke
Developer
From: Leeds, UK
Registered: 2006-01-29
Posts: 10,736
Website GitHub

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

Sidestepping the docs for a moment, if you’re referring to the use of grunt for example then, yeah I see your point.

All these productivity tools like Grunt, Travis, Node and even Composer have mostly passed me by. I made a passing nod at Composer, and can see the benefit of Sass (though don’t use it), but the rest just do nothing for me. By the time I’ve downloaded the damn thing, grokked what the hell it does, followed a few simplistic examples and then sat down to configure it to do something mildly more complex that’ll save me three seconds per commit, I might as well have put the energy into writing code instead.

I’m sure they’re all brilliant once you get your head round them and can save time in the long run, but until I hit a brick wall that stops me from coding, I’m faster on a keyboard and muscle memory.

So, for now at least, I don’t need anything more than a text editor (currently Sublime as it has some great plugins like docblockr and gitgutter), command-line git and a GitHub account to contribute.

Git is just sooooooo much nicer than SVN to merge and collaborate. I must use fewer than ten of its commands regularly, and that’s it: clone, pull, push, checkout/branch, status, diff, log, show, commit, merge. It just makes perfect sense most of the time and I only have to reach for the docs if I get myself in a pickle.

So don’t let the peripheral tools put you off contributing. To paraphrase the Beatles: all you need is Git.


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#4 2016-09-07 12:55:23

hcgtv
Plugin Author
From: Miami, Florida
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2,721
Website

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

Destry, at this point I just observe, I’ve done my share of proposing in the past.

All I’m saying is that we have an excellent little content management system, I’d use it more often.

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#5 2016-09-07 13:06:55

hcgtv
Plugin Author
From: Miami, Florida
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2,721
Website

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

Stef, I think Git is great, and I’m glad the repository moved there.

Yes, I’m referring to all these dependencies to test out things. I think they are all wonderful advancements in developer productivity, and I can see their merits when you’re juggling multiple projects.

Personally, I long for the simplicity of grabbing a zip or tar ball, unpacking it into XAMPP, MAMP, or your favorite flavor of *nix, and trying things out.

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#6 2016-09-07 13:26:37

etc
Developer
Registered: 2010-11-11
Posts: 4,657
Website GitHub

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

I’m developing and contributing without any notion of Grunt, Travis, Node and even Composer. And Github suffices for most Git tasks.

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#7 2016-09-07 13:55:37

gaekwad
Server grease monkey
From: People's Republic of Cornwall
Registered: 2005-11-19
Posts: 3,886
GitHub

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

hcgtv wrote #301150:

Personally, I long for the simplicity of grabbing a zip or tar ball, unpacking it into XAMPP, MAMP, or your favorite flavor of *nix, and trying things out.

Like this?: github.com/textpattern/textpattern/archive/master.zip

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#8 2016-09-07 14:02:25

michaelkpate
Moderator
From: Avon Park, FL
Registered: 2004-02-24
Posts: 1,378
Website GitHub Mastodon

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

etc wrote #301153:

I’m developing and contributing without any notion of Grunt, Travis, Node and even Composer. And Github suffices for most Git tasks.

I love Github – but I mostly interact with it via the online editor and retrieving .zip files via the download button.

Destry wrote #301145:

The setbacks of a wiki, on the other hand, revealed themselves over the years, and it was good to move away from it, but I would not choose Txp for community documentation, however.

Quoting Dean in 2003

Creators of personal journals, images, web logs, periodicals, magazines, gossip, fiction and/or commentary of any form are those for whom Textpattern is ideal.

Note that he did not include Documentation.

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#9 2016-09-07 15:16:10

hcgtv
Plugin Author
From: Miami, Florida
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2,721
Website

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

michaelkpate wrote #301165:

Note that he did not include Documentation.

He also mentions charging for business related sites.

Weebly is a nice example of what could be done with a Textpattern hosted service.

Their docs are simple, and to the point.

Oh, and the Wayback Machine link has a %3A instead of a “:” in the url.

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#10 2016-09-07 15:30:29

philwareham
Core designer
From: Haslemere, Surrey, UK
Registered: 2009-06-11
Posts: 3,553
Website GitHub Twitter

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

To put this in context, to contribute all you need is a text editor, a (free) GitHub account and the GitHub client app (and/or CLI if you desire).

Further to that, because it’s 2016 not 2004 I use Sass and an automated build chain to build websites. This is because the build does all things like minifying code and prefixing CSS rules where needed. The only thing you need to preinstall is NodeJS on your computer (because Grunt and Sass compiler need it). Hardly a barrier to entry.

If you don’t use Sass then unfortunately you’re not going to be much help to me anyway.

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#11 2016-09-07 15:34:46

michaelkpate
Moderator
From: Avon Park, FL
Registered: 2004-02-24
Posts: 1,378
Website GitHub Mastodon

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

hcgtv wrote #301179:

Oh, and the Wayback Machine link has a %3A instead of a “:” in the url.

Updated to a bit.ly link :)

He also mentions charging for business related sites.

Weebly is a nice example of what could be done with a Textpattern hosted service.

Their docs are simple, and to the point.

Paying $99 a month for Zendesk Enterprise seems a bit excessive.

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#12 2016-09-07 15:41:59

hcgtv
Plugin Author
From: Miami, Florida
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2,721
Website

Re: The evolution of Textpattern

philwareham wrote #301180:

If you don’t use Sass then unfortunately you’re not going to be much help to me anyway.

I’ve just gotten an understanding of CSS, so Sass is like way overkill for me.

michaelkpate wrote #301182:

Paying $99 a month for Zendesk Enterprise seems a bit excessive.

I was pointing out how simple the docs were, one page, linking to examples, instructions, etc. Not too overwhelming, everything easily accessible, no having to click here and there to dig a find.

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