Flexible Content Management System


Interview: Steffen Voss

Contributed by on Dec 20, 2004 - 08:49 AM

What is your real-life job?

I'm a student and going to be an Englisch/Geography teacher. But I also have a job at the university ( and I help the local youth council with their websites (e.g.

Tell me about your postnuke "career". (Why do you prefer Postnuke over other CMS?)

When I worked for a bigger German company I had to maintain the intranet. They used static pages until then but I had heard something about CMS and took a look at Postnuke and was overwhelmed. It did almost everything I needed. So I convinced the head of department to use Postnuke and it became my first Postnuke project. Only little later, friends of mine wanted to relaunch their local website ( so I helped them to implement that with Postnuke. was the first contact I had with the Postnuke community, but as the site was a bit messy I offered my help. The webmaster ranted a lot but never let me do anything but post news and forum posts. Little by little I realized that this endeavor what pointless and started looking for like-minded people in Germany and finally found A reservation for the shunned. Larsneo and others had similar experiences with and built up their own community.

By and by we created a German documentation and had more and more people joining us. This year we established a German foundation and organized the first international Postnuke meeting. So things are going well. :-D

What is your task in within pnCore?

I don't have an official function. I do interview, comment and try to keep contact to the core/module devs and to allude them to what the others are doing. "Networking" I think you can call it.

When did you start programming for PostNuke?

I started programming for Postnuke during the - a module called tinyraffle which you find in the noc in a not finished state. I don't need it anymore - so feel free to adopt it ;-)

What is your work like?

As I said - I read and write a lot in the German forum, I mail with devs and try to keep them together and strengthen the company.

What is the biggest difficulty in your work?

It's often hard to promote Postnuke, because of the special communication strategy the project management embarks. There are a lot of nice people working very hard on the future of Postnuke, but the average user only hears about that when a new release comes.

Which route will Postnuke in your opinion go in the future?

The Postnuke core is already far away from PHPNuke but there are still serious lacks on the user side - content handling hasn't improved since PHPNuke - disregarding modules like pnCommerce, Photoshare, Pagesetter aso. .8 will bring the new and for the time being final core. Next thing should be a concentration on the content side of the project. This is what gives new users a good first impression - not a well written source code. Sad but true ;-)

What is the weakest/strongest point in PostNuke?

The weakest point is the name - The general public always mistakes Postnuke for PHPNuke. The strongest point is the great community.

Are you also working on modules?

Yes and no: I released pnAmazon - a module that allows you to include Amazon product-data into you Pagesetter publications using Amazon Webservices. But as it now does all I need, motivation is little to develop it any further.

Internally I work on a module that does almost the same as pnAmazon with an information system that almost every German university uses (uniVIS) - It allows you to include data such as addresses, lectures aso. directly from the central information system into your page. So the department's page is always as up-to-date as the central system. Maybe I'll release it, when it's more advanced. But I'm still looking for a co-developer for this module.

What features should the Postnuke .8 core have to simplify your work?

pnRender is a killer. I love it. It does all I need, but Xanthia has to become more user friendly.

What should users of your module regard?

I only include things that are either needed by me or very simple to implement - I'm not such a good coder...

Anything else you always wanted to say about Postnuke?

Postnuke has such a big user bases and too few people, who actually work for it. A main issue for the future of Postnuke is IMHO to activate the community and to make it easier for people to add their work to development, support, marketing aso. Even the smallest help is help.

Thank you very much for you time.

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