Open Source Systems Power Library Websites
Open Source Content Management Systems Power Library Websites
Drupal, Joomla and Wordpress are free, open source CMS systems that have been widely adopted as platforms for library websites. Compare features of the ten most widely used in this 2011 Content Management System Software Review. Then check out the newcomer Omeka.
Drupal (http://drupal.org/ ) is a powerful database-driven CMS with a large community of users to provide support. The Beginner’s Guide to Drupal (updated Jan 2011) covers background and reasons to use the program before launching into the Drupal Primer (page 9). There is also a video series for Getting Started With Drupal 6.
Library sites using Drupal:
Joomla (http://www.joomla.org/ ) is the CMS of choice for many library websites. The name is derived from a Swahili word meaning “all together” or “as a whole.”
Free Joomla Video Tutorials start with the basics for building your first Joomla website and work up to more advanced features.
Library sites using Joomla:
Wordpress (http://wordpress.org/ ), the popular blogging platform, is another free CMS that works well for library websites.
Wordpress For Libraries is a collection of resources from an Internet Librarian workshop (Oct 2010). Find links to lots of examples of current sites and to this SeeHowTwo set of just-in-time Wordpress video tutorials. Or follow the blog posts from one Australian librarian as she builds The Grove Library website step by step.
Library sites using Wordpress:
- Berlin Peck Memorial Library (CT) is an example from a small library.
- Park County Library System (WY) is a very small library
- Stillwater (NY) Free Library uses a magazine style theme.
Omeka (http://omeka.org/ ) is a digital collection management tool designed with libraries, museums and “non-IT specialists” in mind. The free open-source publishing platform facilitates attractive design and user interaction through Web 2.0 technologies. Watch the demo video for more information and play in the sandbox to see if it’s right for your library.
Sites using Omeka:
- Voices For the Lake has plug-ins for contribution, geolocation and social bookmarking
- Merchant’s House Museum combines Omeka and WordPress.
- Franco American Library (University of Maine) has plug-ins for geolocation and social bookmarking.
Other Web Tools For Your Online Presence
One Pager: (http://influx.us/onepager/): A website template designed especially for libraries. Emphasis is on paring pages and content down to the essentials and making the site mobile-friendly above all. Developed by Aaron Schmidt, Amanda Etches-Johnson and Nate Hill.
Tumblr (http://www.tumblr.com/ ) has been described as a cross between Twitter and blogging. It aggregates text, photos, quotes, links, music, and videos that you post from your browser, phone, desktop, email, etc. to create a tumblelog. Tumblr uses “tag channels” (like Twitter’s hashtags) to collate posts on a topic, such as #public libraries. And there are dozens of third-party apps available.
Posterous (https://posterous.com/ ) wants to make it easy to share thoughts, photos, videos and now slideshows. You can post content online from anywhere via email, including mobile posting and auto-posting to Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites.
- School Library Journal
- Zoology Vodcasts from the General Zoology Students at the University of Minnesota
This free online image resizer helps you optimize photos for web or email.
Color Scheme Designer(http://colorschemedesigner.com/ )lets you play with color combinations, preview page examples and pick up the hexadecimal codes to apply to your website. You can also create your own free website from an assortment of templates.
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