I’ve now spent some time with cbdb, and thought I’d share getting it running, and my takeaway from reviewing TrackStar and cbdb features (after that, it’s time to check in with Larry and see what tricks CMS is up to). First though are some comments on WordPress.
I thought I’d include comments on WordPress, since I’m consolidating my personal content using WordPress.
- WP has a nice plugin management system, with plugin’s automatically adding themselves into the application’s admin menu structure (or Dashboard).
- If a WP module uses roles role-based authorization, the roles are managed using the plugin’s menu – or at least that’s how the NextGEN gallery plugin does it. Achievo has a single security profiles system that combines the privileges from each module (i.e. the actions that the role controls access to) onto a single role management page. To be honest, I’ve only ever used the system, but the privileges are grouped by module, and are a combination of basic CRUD actions that can be performed on a business object, with some extras. My preference is the Achievo approach, with all the permission for a role managed in one place (so far, cbdb’s rbac seems close enough).
- I like how NextGEN handles image uploading (a choice between a drag and drop interface or an Explorer-style interface fr uploading files, multi-file select in the Explorer-style interface, support for uploading zip image archives, and an upload progress bar). Similar functionality would work for uploading files in Maestro.
- The views generally show raw data, rather than user-oriented information (e.g. type, signed, grade …), and only the create/update form shows user-oriented data (a dropdown selector for Type and Grade, and radio buttons for Signed, Bagged and Collectable). TrackStar polishes things off a bit better in this area.
- I like that the menu system for cbdb is created early in the development process compared to TrackStar, but the menu colors don’t work for me. I don’t agree that hiding menus a user isn’t authorized to use is good practice, and believe it actually leads to more confusion when users don’t understand why they don’t have have different menus presented, and prefer a static menu (greying-out menus that the user doesn’t have the authority to use, or showing the menu with data but greying-out the Edit or Save button).
- The calendar wizard to enter dates looks nice, but it’s missing buttons to move between years (although I suspect it can be configured).
- User management hasn’t been fleshed out as well as in cbdb, in particular not being able to view a list of users associated with a project.