haeflimi - 2 months ago

Hey Ryan and other Pyro People out there,

I am evaluating and testing different CMS Systems to use as a base for a modular, and flexible application in the field of Online Gaming Communities, eSports and LAN Parties. - Since i am a CodeIgniter Veteran and built websites using PyroCMS 2 before i've had an eye on PyroCMS3 ever since it came out. From a technical perspective i would still favour it - but there are other aspects that i've to take into account for this project and other stakeholders and developers that i have to convince.

One thing that puzzles me a lot and has prevented me from committing to pyroCMS so far is the seemingly non-existing Ecosystem. When PyroCMS3 was first released i had high hopes that soon the AddOn store would fill up with various useful AddOns/ Themes and whatnot thereby becoming a practical platform to eventually publish the AddOns that i am going to create (and partially have created already) in the process of the mentioned project. With bearly over a dozen AddOn's in the store this has obviously not come to pass and the whole ecosystem pales in compare to other modern CMS's like octoberCMS, ModX or even Concrete5.

Am i wrong and just not looking in the right place? Does anybody here have a good guess why that is? - Why are you devs out there not putting your Code on the store? Is it too hard to get AddOn's approved for the store or are there just to few devs working with PyroCMS3?

Anyone willing to give me some reasons why we should opt in on PyroCMS anyway? - I'would be very happy to hear them.

Furthermore it would be very helpful to have some actual data on how many people are using PyroCMS, how many Pro Subscribers it has or how well the store is used. - Information i can find on most competing CMS, but not on PyroCMS.

Something like that for the store would be nice: https://octobercms.com/leaderboard although with the current number of AddOn's it might not make that much sense.

Answer

ryanthompson - 2 months ago

@haeflimi you mention your target audience (which may be niche given your details earlier) you could use the addons module to deliver your subscription / paid software since the addons module supports adding your own repositories (and removing the ones that are there too).

If I were building a custom "distribution" of Pyro (which was built with distributions in mind) for an audience I would probably fork the base project - which is just a composer file and some adjusted laravel files - and ship my flavor Pyro and a custom admin theme maybe and a custom addons module too so it comes with my repo only.. which people can buy on my site. Your project might be different as far as white-labeling n such but just as an example - you can do what you're after now. Just our PYRO store is not setup for that kinda stuff. YET ^_^

As for the PYRO ecosystem.. that's where we are heading. Buying online - and deploying via addons module (click to download like WP). Keep in mind this STILL uses composer behind the scenes so it's easy for users to see that updates are available and update. Easy for developers who make this stuff cause it's parallel to their workflow anyways. It's just Pyro itself is not there yet - we have features and projects we work on too. But it will come. And if the addons are developed in such a way.. no code will be needed by the end user. Much of what we have now are like that anyways.

Hopefully that makes sense :-P

edster - 2 months ago

Hey there!

So one of the reasons people haven't really been putting things up on the store is the ease of updates (speaking as someone who has put stuff up on the store).

Anouther reason you don't see things up there is alot of people find it is fast to code things in pyro, so would rather code it themselves (not true of everybody).

I would recommend pyro regardless for its ease and speed of development. You can get things done faster in pyro then in alot of other platforms.

edster - 2 months ago

Also want to add I have some theme ideas I want to do ,but am waiting on the blocks module from @ryanthompson to make it more streamlined.

ryanthompson - 2 months ago

Howdy! Welcome to Pyro ^_^

Regarding the store first and foremost.. it honestly should not even be there. It accounts for <1% of addon usage / traffic. It's there for PyroCMS v2 types that look to use downloads instead of use PRO (which has almost 100 members and grows weekly). The store is built on magento and is a royal pain in the ass - not even on my server (a good friends) and it's been a nightmare. So we don't use it.. I try and keep what's on it up to date and PAID community stuff get's added there but that's about it. PRO is high and above the path of developers who use our first party addons.

That said, one of the reasons you don't see many addons on the store is because it's insanely easy to build custom addons for jobs. So the PRO addons (which are many, link below) tend to be very flexible to integrate further. Also Pyro does a TON of stuff right out of the box I can't tell you how many people have told me they are not PRO because they simply have more than enough without it. Looking at the first page of October's store.. we have most of that built in. With our pure Laravel approach.. development is a dream. So little nick-nack addons are kinda silly in concept. Because our system is extensive and versatile enough to do it without piling on addons. That said.. I / we use PRO addons heavily because they're designed like the system. To be super versatile and easy to use, integrate, and extend.

Speaking of the store again.. I can't remember why I kept it up but it really should go down and our version of a store going forward will be very much different. We don't use downloads.. that's old school. We use SATIS / composer technology to deliver things so the "store" in the future will be linked to user's repos so that updates / distribution is automatic. Until then though.. I don't care to even have our store currently online. PRO is more than capable of providing extra tools / goodies for professionals and their clients.

Again.. it's crazy easy to build for Pyro as a developer. Which can be hard to say about the other systems.. Specially when it comes down to deep customization or integration to the system to make it bespoke for your client.. just extend it. EVERYTHING is extensible and the addon layer writes itself for the most part. Who needs a store?

Hope this clears some of the air around things!

First party / PRO addons: https://packages.pyrocms.com/

First party / PRO addons in development: https://development.pyrocms.com/

Community addons (limited to FREE only and only about 30 days old): https://community.pyrocms.com/

haeflimi - 2 months ago

@edster Thanks for your take on the topic. - So you're saying it's hard to keep AddOn's that are put on the store up to date? - This seems a bit odd to me in times of tools like composer. Or do you mean to say you have to update the AddOn's a lot because of PyroCMS Updates? - Do you know if it differs between free and paid AddOns? - I mean in order to put a free AddOn on the store it basically just needs to be able to link to a Repo on GitHub. - Besides some sort of auditing/ QC that might need to be done.

"alot of people find it is fast to code things in pyro, so would rather code it themselves " - This is hard to understand for me. - I currently work in a CMS world ( concrete5 ) where it's also quite fast and easy to code custom functionality but a typical site operator does not need to have any coding skills to extend his site with AddOns (called packages in c5) - To me such people are the target audience for a AddOn Store and also for the project i am aiming to build.

ryanthompson - 2 months ago

@haeflimi he means that because the Store is magento and requires a zip to be uploaded.. it's a pain to do that for patch updates for example (sometimes I patch my own addons multiple times a day even - v1.0.1, v1.0.2, etc). So that's why we use composer for the addons and the links I posted. Only problem is it doesn't support PAID community addons right now very well.. Hence the clunky Magento one. Which doesn't support composer.

I think our typical entry audience is not someone without dev skills. Pyro is handed off to people without dev skills of course but they are not expected to build or extend Pyro. That's quite obviously NOT the job for an end user. However such deliver could be made possible. And we're working towards it (currently the addons module allows OTA downloads / updates through those same links I sent you above). The last link in the chain is PAID community addons. Which I have tools releasing soon to assist with that.

To Pyro - the addon store will be a way for community members to distribute their paid addons easily and efficiently. Their audience will depend on their addon I suppose. All I do is work to make it easier to deliver and sell.

Pyro v3 is about half the age of October CMS which is the youngest of the bunch you've mentioned - we'll get there ^_^

haeflimi - 2 months ago

@ryanthompson Thanks for joining the discussion! "Again.. it's crazy easy to build for Pyro as a developer." "... it's insanely easy to build custom addons for jobs".

I really do know and get that. - And it's also a reason why i am a fan of PyroCMS 3 and want to bulid upon it for the project i've mentioned.

But that's a pure developers view of things. I wouldn't need a store either but my target audience most certainly does. And i as a developer need a easy way to deliver (sell) my AddOn's to them. - I am afraid the Satis repos won't cut it. (Although i know it's a great thing for tech-savvy folks, we also use it to manage our concrete5 Packages at my daytime job)

The people who are (hopefully) going to work with the tools that i want to build are (mostly) not developers. They need to be able to maintain (and ideally extend) their sites without to write even one line of code or hire a programmer to do it for them. I want to focus on building AddOn's that add the functionality they need. If they don't like the way things look i want to be able to point them to a store and tell them: Buy a theme that you like and install it. - Done deal. (Ok, maybe some HTML templates and CSS need adjustments for different frontend Frameworks.) But i'm shure you get the idea.

As for the PRO option: I really think you made a great package there with a lot of awesome functionality (as far as i can tell not beeing Pro) - If i would create customer websites using PyroCMS and actually create revenue the way we do with c5 in my daytime job at an agency i would go for it without to hesitate. Unfortunatly the monetizing/ subscription model doesn't quite fit into the rather slow moving- no guaranteed revenue creating side project i am talking about now. And i also don't quite understand how it could work in my use case. - So i'll most likely have to do without Pro AddOns or purchase the one i'll probably need separatly. - Which is not a big deal for me... just sayin.

frednwt - 2 months ago

For me PyroCMS is more like a "turnkey platform" for developer. Even if it can be used for basic websites. For them you don't need anything else. The Post / Page is already quite flexible, and the Pro Addon help for the remaining features.

For "custom" small modules, scaffolding in Pyro is quite easy and fast, so excepted if you want to build a ERP, you don't really need any addon from the store.

Well, I think the only module I would love to see finished is the ecommerce one.

But I do agree for themes. The problem is, like Ryan said, that Pyro is highly "dev" oriented. Because of that I don't think many webdesigners are using it... :(

haeflimi - 2 months ago

"Pyro v3 is about half the age of October CMS which is the youngest of the bunch you've mentioned - we'll get there ^_^"

I am aware of that. And dont get me wrong. I think you have created a really, really great product with pyroCMS 3 and i really want to commit to working with it. But in order to do that i have to convince some other people that Pyro indeed is the right platform to build upon and also invest into. - And the lack of a visibly active store for AddOns doesn't make it easy for me to do that since it's an essential part of the project strategy.

If this project is taking off we are probably going to release quite a few AddOns and also are eager to contribute to the core whenever we can.

That said i'am really looking forward to see the mentioned tools for paid Community AddOns and hope i can convince my folks to decide for PyroCMS.

ryanthompson - 2 months ago

@haeflimi you mention your target audience (which may be niche given your details earlier) you could use the addons module to deliver your subscription / paid software since the addons module supports adding your own repositories (and removing the ones that are there too).

If I were building a custom "distribution" of Pyro (which was built with distributions in mind) for an audience I would probably fork the base project - which is just a composer file and some adjusted laravel files - and ship my flavor Pyro and a custom admin theme maybe and a custom addons module too so it comes with my repo only.. which people can buy on my site. Your project might be different as far as white-labeling n such but just as an example - you can do what you're after now. Just our PYRO store is not setup for that kinda stuff. YET ^_^

As for the PYRO ecosystem.. that's where we are heading. Buying online - and deploying via addons module (click to download like WP). Keep in mind this STILL uses composer behind the scenes so it's easy for users to see that updates are available and update. Easy for developers who make this stuff cause it's parallel to their workflow anyways. It's just Pyro itself is not there yet - we have features and projects we work on too. But it will come. And if the addons are developed in such a way.. no code will be needed by the end user. Much of what we have now are like that anyways.

Hopefully that makes sense :-P

ryanthompson - 2 months ago

I have my eye on making some themes too... mostly free stuff and such but still it'll help.

edster - 2 months ago

I have about 6 themes I want to build (time is freeing up soon! yay!).

@ryanthompson what is your time frame for blocks? is it more or less usuable to start with or are you still doing schema changes?

@haeflimi what Ryan said, it is the constant patching and zipping, if you have seen the new addon improvements for the community satis etc you can see what we are going towards with paid addons, which should improve visibility and usability of a paid addon community moving forward.

haeflimi - 2 months ago

I think i am starting to see the big Picture now. Thank you so much @ryanthompson @edster and @frednwt for those insights. I myself am very convinced that PyroCMS indeed is the right platform for this Project and by now I am positive that i'll be able to convince my stakeholders and fellow developers as well. I'll look into the "distribution" concept and the existiong OTA update mechanics @ryanthompson mentiond allthough i don't think it'll be necessary to fork the base project for what i intend to do. - I don't want to hide the fact that i am building upon a great CMS instead of doing my own thing from scratch and i also don't want to prevent site operators from using PRO or any other community AddOns if they wish to. "your target audience (which may be niche given your details earlier)" - You are right of course but given the fast rise of Gaming and eSports as a legit hobby (at least here in Switzerland and other European countries) i am confident that it's a potent one that is worth "targeting".

"Keep in mind this STILL uses composer behind the scenes" - I think that is great and i wouldn't want to have it another way.

"opefully that makes sense :-P" - Yes it does make a lot of sense!

ryanthompson - 2 months ago

@haeflimi by all means continue to speak your mind here too - critical or not I personally need that check from community members if anything to light a fire under my ass on different topics and push it into my mind.

I also try and maintain the active things I am working on in the roadmap channel here: https://pyrocms.com/forum/channels/roadmap