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Dec 06, 2004: Usability and Content Management Systems

Peanut butter and chocolate? Or ammonia and bleach? My pal Tony Byrne of CMS Watch fame is interested in exploring the usability of CMS, and we were both wondering if much had been written about this topic. We've all heard plenty of kvetching from content authors about poor CMS usability, but who out there is actually doing something about it? Or who knows what should be done?

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Comment: Liv (Dec 6, 2004)

Related... from James Robertson via Intranet UX discussion list today:

'10 ways to continuously improve your intranet '
"Explores a number of practical ways that an intranet can be improved incrementally without yet another redesign."

Comment: Garrick Van Buren (Dec 7, 2004)

From my perspective, the actual, functional differences between a CMS like Movable Type or WordPress and a more complicated enterprise system is the complicated part. Peer publishing tools are continually striving for greater usability because their resources are so tight. They know of the inverse relationship between usability and customer support. I've heard of large CMS vendors charge for training and support. To improve the usability of these larger systems, vendors need to stop investing in training and support staff.

Comment: James Robertson (Dec 7, 2004)

I wrote a one-pager on this a little while back ("The importance of CMS usability"):


Cheers, James

Comment: Jeroen Coumans (Dec 7, 2004)

Have you read Jeffrey Veens' article about this? He had some good respones from Open Source CMS builders, notably from Mambo and Drupal.

Comment: Lou (Dec 8, 2004)

Thanks for reminding me about Jeff's piece; the URL is: http://www.veen.com/jeff/archives/000622.html

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