I didn’t really like CMS (Content management system) systems for editing or creating web sites. I have created many web sites, but I have created all of them in pure HTML or PHP, without helper applications. I like it that way, because it gives me all control over the code and thus over the final result. This approach to web design, of course, takes time. More time then it should for a simple site, specially when you already have the graphic design. That’s why I have started to look at the CMs systems for small, not so important sites. I found Joomla, Drupal and several more PHP content management systems, but whichever I tried, none were good for my taste. I didn’t know why, but finaly I realized it.
The problem of all major CMS systems is that they’re big. They have the logic for building big sites. None of them is made for simple minimal sites. That’s why they have sections, categories, articles, separate menus, multimedia and so on. This could still be understandable, but the way to connect all those together and create a working site is almost never intuitive. The problem as I see it is that the user can’t create a content (“a page”) and put it in the main menu. No, the user has to create a section, create a category inside the section, write an article (which will later be “a page”), then create a menu, create a menu item, then create a menu item action, then go to special options and select the article from the list, then… Hell, I don’t remember any more. I had to buy a Joomla book and follow a step-by-step example. And apparently, I’ll do it again.
The important thing here is that every of this actions has tens of attributes so you really get lost easily. Even if you’re a professional web developer. Or even better, specially when you’re professional web developer and used to work with pure HTML.
By the way, a really good site for testing all kinds of CMS is http://www.opensourcecms.com/ – you can try all of them without the need for installation on your server. Great!