Wading into CodeIgniter

After posting about my desire for a Simple Website System several readers have offered solutions; either helping to develop such a system itself for the challenge (and potential revenue), or pointing out solutions like Unify, CushyCMS, and Perch. CushyCMS and Unify are close to the simple solution I’m looking for, featuring in-context editing, simple tagging of editable areas through the use of CSS classes, and no need for a database. Even Adobe is getting into the game with their InContext Editing product (currently in preview) which appears to work with Dreamweaver CS4’s templating features. I may deploy them for upcoming Agenceum clients to see how they like them. This considerably streamlines the client side of editing, which means that I can close out two projects that have been lingering.

However, I’m still in a curious mood, and have decided that I really should see if it’s possible to roll-my-own website publishing solution from one of the many powerful PHP and Javascript code libraries that are out there. The problem is that I’m not really that familiar with them. To date, my PHP/CMS templating experience is fairly thin:

  • Writing an image thumbnail plugin for WordPress 1.0 – 2.0.
  • Installing and customizing WordPress with my own theme
  • Converting the WordPress blog to use Expression Engine 1.5.x and 1.6.x.

That’s not a lot of experience, but it’s given me a working outline of how one theoretically develops applications in PHP. I am about to attempt to apply this knowledge to understanding CodeIgniter, which is another PHP framework on which Expression Engine 2.0 is built.  Since I’m planning on migrating my website to Expression Engine 2.0 in the future, why not kill two birds with one stone?

I’m going to take the approach I learned in my ModX documentation experience and start by making some assumptions about how a PHP Framework should operate. I’ll stuff it all in my CodeIgniter Integration Notes WikiLab page for now.