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eZ Community » Forums » Discussions » Expanding the developer community

Wednesday 03 August 2011 4:59:04 pm - 9 replies

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I have been working as a developer with eZ publish since 2002 and version 2. For the past 10 years I had my own company and exclusively developed eZ Publish websites. As the technical director I was responsible for the sales, marketing, development and support of eZ Publish, clients including Hitachi and the UNESCO. eZ Publish has been my main source of income for those years, and I consider myself a loyal supporter of the product. However, as a mid-sized company it has been a continuous and very tiresome struggle to find and keep developers who were capable and motivated enough to work with eZ publish for more than a year. I think my company was not the only mid size company with that problem.

Wednesday 03 August 2011 7:46:25 pm

I can only agree with you, Sebastian. I am sure most of eZ partners feel it as we do too.

My blog post on this topic from November last year:! with some interesting discussion discussion afterwards. 

Wednesday 03 August 2011 8:07:17 pm

Hello Sebastiaan,

Thanks for your thoughts, and feedback. I briefly read it and I think there are some good ideas to increase adoption of eZ Publish. I'll need to read it again and let it sink in. I'll make sure it get's the necessary attention also.

Regards Robin

Wednesday 03 August 2011 11:56:24 pm

Excellent post!

Actually we have already taken this to heart (and action) for the last 6+ moths, and you'll see what I'm talking about when we will publish code, blog-post(s) and calls for feedback on API later this month.

To give a peek of how far we have taken it* (making eZ Publish easier to learn):

  •  Concepts have been renamed to make them more intuitive, some:
    • Node -> Location
    • Class -> Content Type
    • Attribute -> Field
  • Full use of PHP5 and it's oop model with high amount of code reuse, and less code needed to extend / develop against it.
  • Fully documented API (and fully unit tested, but that goes without saying)

It does not stop with API (Annapurna) though, after API the rest of the kernel should receive a similar treatment making eZ Publish easier to use, more intuitive, lighter (far higher degree of code reuse, thus easier to maintain and grasp), faster and more modern, all while still being the most powerful, extendable, adaptable CMS(/F) out there.

Nico and others have also been hard at work making sure there are more educational content online, making training and especially certification more accessible.

So once again, great post!

* These things will of-course to some extent be open to debate, but we hope they make sense to all or most of you.

Modified on Thursday 04 August 2011 9:24:45 am by André R

Thursday 04 August 2011 8:32:57 am

Hi André, thank you very for your feedback on my blogpost. I am looking forward to see how the new updates will make it easier for 'novice' developers to work with eZ Publish. However, I would like to emphasize that, in addition to technical innovation and simplification, there needs to be an all pervasive marketing effort to push eZ Publish to potential developers. This should have a high priority - many of the suggestions mentioned in this post spring from issues that have been around for years but have never been properly addressed. The point here is that I think we are starting to run out of time and I really don't think we can afford to have these issues lying around for another 6+ months. In my opinion this is too important to be left to the community alone - eZ Systems should take the lead in this. Hi Ivo, I like your blog post - many good ideas in there!

Modified on Thursday 04 August 2011 8:35:42 am by S V

Monday 08 August 2011 2:49:05 pm

Great and important post!

In addition to the allready mentioned suggestions, I would like to emphasize the importance of extensions. Even with skills, extending eZ Publish can be quite cumbersome and even difficult. Systems like Drupal and WordPress, thought one can argue that they have messier API's, have easier entrypoints when it comes to extension. Hence they have lower startup costs. eZ Publish should have an easier interface when it comes to extensions.

Another thing is documentation. Luckily things are improving in this area, but more could be done. Specifically in the areas of tutorials and books. Tutorials make people start. Books make them stay.


Modified on Monday 08 August 2011 2:49:36 pm by Felix Laate

Thursday 11 August 2011 3:22:56 pm

I could not agree more with this post. Thanks Sebastian for keeping the torch lit happy.gif Emoticon  

Additionally, I would like to emphasize on the need to develop more concise and straightforward documentation material for introducing newcomers to eZ.

Right now there are nuggets of knowledge spread on multiple sites (,,, and a number of blogs and sites), but I see the need for an "official", up-to-date, step-by step introduction material that would help climbing that steep learning curve for newcomers. Ranging from defining content classes and publishing objects in adminsitration interface, to developing custom extensions. There is some really great content on, but it needs to be presented more clearly and also kept in sync with new eZ releases to be of help for novice developers.

We are right now getting ready to train a few new developers in our company, and this kind of content would really help a lot.


Thursday 28 June 2012 2:35:14 pm

Hi Sebastiaan,

I just stumbled upon your blog post from today on, which exposes statistical data for the eZ Community and gives a small series of recommendations for general development, and also Community Management. Thank you for sharing your insight, always valuable.

I would have two questions before answering your post : 

  • How did you consolidate the data ?
  • Do you feel that the efforts made in the past three years in Community Management specifically are headed in the right direction ?

This second question is open to about anyone in the eZ Publish Community, particularly those who are daily or close-to-daily active persons.


Friday 29 June 2012 11:17:30 am

Hi Nicolas,

Thank you for your interest in my blog post. I'm not sure the issues raised in the post concern community management alone. You asked: "do you feel that the efforts made in the past three years in Community Management specifically are headed in the right direction ?". Yes, I do think the Community board has done an outstanding job in terms of strengthening relations between existing community members. In fact, over the past 10 years that I have been part of the eZ ecosystem, I have never seen the community as vibrant and connected as it is currently.

However, 10 years have passed - and each year eZ Publish appears to become increasingly obscure, rather than more popular. The slow rate of growth of the community is a tell tale sign, as is the lack of involvement of newly registered members and extension development. Other worrisome signs are the constant changes in the professional license models, the overly complex partner contracts, the very slow advances in the eZ Market, unrealistic contract proposals, unclear and indistinct press releases and publications, constantly changing marketing focus, etc. What bothers me is the lack of urgency throughout the eZ ecosystem (specifically at eZ Systems). The managment doesn't seem to be aware, descision making processes take too long, etc. Let's face it: eZ Publish is not going to sell itself based on its technical qualities alone. After all, it becomes increasingly difficult to sell eZ Publish as a cutting-edge product if it has been around for a fairly long time. Speaking in the parlance of our times, "The goddamn plane has crashed into the mountain", and nobody seems to really care.
 On a positive note: Why is eZ Publish a succes in France? What can we do to make eZ Publish equally successful in the USA? What can we learn from the one-off forum posts? We need a sense of urgency to answer these questions and to address the issues mentioned above. This is beyond the responsiblity of the community, or the Community managers/Board.

Modified on Friday 29 June 2012 11:24:48 am by S V

Wednesday 11 July 2012 6:00:08 pm

Hi Sebastiaan and thanks for your reply.

I would love to get a reply to my first question too : "How did you consolidate the data ?"

Cheers !


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