Things have been quiet, so I thought I'd open a discussion on something. If we can learn from each other to make better online experiences, then all the better.
I've kicked the tires on a variety of systems over time, and was curious if any of you have any input, experience or suggestions for managing your comic online - and using a Content Management System (CMS).
I personally have kicked the tires on the following:
Wordpress (Free and flexible - a bit of nightmare though if something goes screwy - somewhat limited, though big name Newspapers are using it...)
Expression Engine (Costs a bit of money - I love it...not sure if it's best choice - also needs some coding experience, and you might need to know a little bit about using something called XAMPP or Wampserver.*)
Joomla (Free - hate it)
Wordpress has a theme called Comicpress anyone have experience using it?
I've also messed around with a bunch of other free ones, but they've all fallen short. I've been sniffing around Drupal - anyone have experience with it?
Pros? Cons? Suggestions? Alternates?
Also, if someone wants to set up a site - but do it on their own machine, and have it act like a server, you can check out the BitNami Stacks - it will package the "server" and the CMS so you can just launch and get started.
So, if any of you have suggestions, I'm all ears - and if you didn't know about these things already, well then here's a starting point.
*I am not an expert in these technologies. I barely know how to use them. Please don't ask me any technical questions regarding them. Thank you.
I created my own PHP code that allows browsing through comics in a directory by naming the files via their date. 20110101.gif, etc. I host multiple comics under the same directory by adding a particular letter after the date and then separate them accordingly. That works for me...
As for Drupal. I don't like to use it for comics, even with extensions or whatever. I used and liked Comicpress just because getting responses to comics is something I desire and yearn for, and I hadn't yet developed code for that.
If you want I can help you get started with whatever you decide because you're likeable.
Shucks. Your own PHP thingy - does it allow you to click back and forth? As in next page/previous? And where would I see a sample of your script in action?
It does those things. I must preface before showing you an example of my code that the reason the FIRST COMIC button doesn't work is because there is a problem with the image file itself. Otherwise, in this site's heyday the comic browser fit its need good and worked well:
Anyway the code is at http://gopus.xepher.net/comics.phps
Wow. Thanks for the script Sven.
I'll play with it to see what it can do.
I've been using wordpress with the comicpress plugin for my Magical Space Pony webcomic. I'm using mostly the default comicpress setups with very little customization.
As you noted, Wordpress can be "a bit of a nightmare though if something goes screwy"... and so can the Comicpress theme. When it works, it's great. When it doesn't -- it then means I have two things than can go screwy rather than just one.
(One problem is the constant stream of updates required for both Wordpress and Comicpress. It seems like any time I get things set up in a stable way, either Wordpress or Comicpress pushes out another security patch that puts one or the other off balance again.)
I wish I knew more about php scripting and such so I wouldn't have to rely on these somewhat clunky management systems where I'm never quite sure how things actually work "under the hood". But computer code is most certainly NOT where my talents lie.
I like Wordpress. Wordpress is more CSS (Cascade Style Sheet) based. So, it easier to edit, modify, and change.
Wordpress has Inkblot with Webcomic theme as well. In my opinion from research, Comicpress is good because it has a Content Manager. When I finish my graphic novel. I may use Comicpress but I'm definitely using Wordpress.
Hm. I see Tumblr as a very specific application of blogging. Unfortunately, it doesn't leave much room for expansion...unless -can you have multiple Tumblr's on a single web site?
Yup. Tumblr is that simple.
But if you want more than one Tumblr at your .com - is that possible?