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#1 June 16, 2010 17:26:17

f.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


Hi,

I have with interest followed the thread "Seeking Django vs. Joomla
comparison", and it has inspired me to start this new thread.

I consider myself a Python/Django programmer, and I do so because my
experiences with a number of programming languages, CMS'es and web
frameworks has lead me to believe that Python and Django is simply the
better choice from a technical perspective. I am not a fanatic and I
won't say that everything else sucks, but honestly - if you have the
choice between a better and a no-quite-so-good technology, you will of
course want to use the better one, despite that the other would work,
too.

Now to the problem: a lot of people who needs websites have heard of
Drupal or Joomla! or WordPress or PHP. But NOBODY has EVER heard about
Django. If somebody suggests that they make their website with
something called "Django" then this "Django-thing" must at least have
some reasons to why it exists and why one should prefer it over well-
known solutions. Consequently, people come the this discussion group
and ask: "What are the reasons that you think your product is
better?", and the answer they get is: "our product cannot be compared
with the others because you cannot compare apples with oranges." This
means that people who where willing to listen to a good sales talk
leaves the shop in a hurry because the salesman obviously didn't want
to sell anything at all. Which leaves me and a lot of other Django
entusiasts with not so much work as we would as we would like to have.

I think that we - the Django community - could do a better job selling
our product, and I'd like to volunteer in this work. I just don't know
how to do it.

Let me end this post with a comment to the "compare-apples-with-
oranges"-thing that I hear so often: every programmer knows that
"apples" can be compared with "oranges". Since "o" has a higher value
then "a" in most encoding systems, "oranges" > "apples". What we need
to do is simply to convince people that the flexibility and code
cleanness they get with Django gives them much more value than all of
the 1000+ Drupal modules together.

I think that was all...

Finn Gruwier Larsen

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#2 June 16, 2010 18:01:00

Tom E.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


On Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 5:26 PM, finn <finngruwierlar...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I have with interest followed the thread "Seeking Django vs. Joomla
> comparison", and it has inspired me to start this new thread.
>
>....
>
> Let me end this post with a comment to the "compare-apples-with-
> oranges"-thing that I hear so often: every programmer knows that
> "apples" can be compared with "oranges". Since "o" has a higher value
> then "a" in most encoding systems, "oranges" > "apples". What we need
> to do is simply to convince people that the flexibility and code
> cleanness they get with Django gives them much more value than all of
> the 1000+ Drupal modules together.
>
> I think that was all...
>
> Finn Gruwier Larsen
>

This kind of discussion comes up frequently whenever there are people
who like a bit of software, they get used to using one particular bit
of software, and start to think that that bit of software is so
clearly the best that choosing another bit of software is "wrong" and
their way is "better".

Different tasks may require different tools, and just because one
knows a particular tool extremely well, they think it should be used
for all of them, where as it is usually more accurate that many
different tools can produce an effective solution.
The most important thing for any project manager is that they know
precisely why they are using a particular tool. You should be able to
justify to yourself why to use a particular tool, and the answer is
never "it's better".

For instance, on one of my projects we are using django. Why are we
using django?

1) Django is written in python, python is quick and easy for
programmers to learn, lots of job applicants (profess to) have python
skills.
2) Django has an elegant structure of middleware and context
processors that allow us to modify/update important parts of the web
stack.
3) Django has a sane template system, not based on XML (use ZPT/XSLT
for a while, see what I mean :)
4) Django has useful 3rd party apps we can use to shorten development
time, eg django-rosetta for our translators to update translations,
django-south for managing database structure, contrib.auth and
contrib.admin.
5) We have resource to maintain development on this project

For other projects, eg our wiki, blogs, bug tracking and vcs we use
COTS software (well, Open Source Off The Shelf perhaps may be more
accurate), because we don't want to spend the time
maintaining/updating/improving these applications, we just want them
to work (hacking them until they work).

This is a long way of saying "Just because you can write a CMS in
django, you probably shouldn't". Unless your goal is developing a CMS
in django, you will waste time you could be doing useful things in!

Cheers

Tom

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#3 June 17, 2010 01:44:50

Kenneth G.
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Selling Django


On Wednesday 16 June 2010 21:56:12 finn wrote:
> I think that we - the Django community - could do a better job selling
> our product, and I'd like to volunteer in this work. I just don't know
> how to do it.
>

which is your market? The CMS market is aimed at the end user - the django
market is among developers.
--
Regards
Kenneth Gonsalves
Senior Associate
NRC-FOSS at AU-KBC

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#4 June 17, 2010 05:45:13

Venkatraman S.
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Selling Django


On Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 9:56 PM, finn <finngruwierlar...@gmail.com> wrote:

> I think that we - the Django community - could do a better job selling
> our product, and I'd like to volunteer in this work. I just don't know
> how to do it.
>

Very well structured email - and i concur to the views expressed and i
myself am sometimes at loss of words when i have to sell Django. I mean, i
can talk technically, but django needs more sales-tone to it now - which
basically means more user acceptance. Consider RoR - this is a framework
which i think is more 'marketed' than Django. Recently I heard one of my
pals who was new to web pragramming, who wants to build the site in RoR just
because it has a ORM and a templating engine. I was like @#$%^&* -- i told
him that in Django its much easier and it *also* has the same things and
ended up explaining it to him that most of web-languages/frameworks do
support all these, but the question is not that of supporting , but the ease
of development and maintaining the code --- in which Python scores a big
10/10.

Things like 'South' simply amaze me - data migrations on the go have never
been more easier. There are many more amazing components which are simple
but at the same time solve many of the complex routines - and all this
happens in the Django world which needs to be showcased. At the same time,
look at Pinax - its almost dead since 0.7 and #pinax is mostly silent;
whereas this is a kickass mashup which needs more innovation.

Django needs to be evangelized more.

Now, what can i do in this effort? I intend to start a django blog and go
through some of the nuances of the framework and start writing more and
showcase how certain things can be done more easily than other frameworks.
There are lots of django blogs around, and mine would probably be one more
in the list. But again, I am just trying :)

-V-http://twitter.com/venkasub--
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#5 June 17, 2010 09:01:34

Dmitry D.
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Selling Django


Hi!

finn wrote:
> Now to the problem: a lot of people who needs websites have heard of
> Drupal or Joomla! or WordPress or PHP. But NOBODY has EVER heard about
> Django.

That's because Django is not a CMS. You cannot take it, install onto web
site and start adding content. With CMS you do exactly that. With Django,
you don't. Yes, there are Flatpages but this is not serious for any big web
site.

If it makes you easier to understand, your comparison "Joomla vs Django" is
the same as "WordPress vs Zend Framework" or "Apache vs Python". These all
are different things, they are not comparable. Thus you cannot sell one
thing as another.

--
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#6 June 17, 2010 09:19:31

Russell K.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


On Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 12:26 AM, finn <finngruwierlar...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I have with interest followed the thread "Seeking Django vs. Joomla
> comparison", and it has inspired me to start this new thread.
>
> I consider myself a Python/Django programmer, and I do so because my
> experiences with a number of programming languages, CMS'es and web
> frameworks has lead me to believe that Python and Django is simply the
> better choice from a technical perspective. I am not a fanatic and I
> won't say that everything else sucks, but honestly - if you have the
> choice between a better and a no-quite-so-good technology, you will of
> course want to use the better one, despite that the other would work,
> too.
>
> Now to the problem: a lot of people who needs websites have heard of
> Drupal or Joomla! or WordPress or PHP. But NOBODY has EVER heard about
> Django. If somebody suggests that they make their website with
> something called "Django" then this "Django-thing" must at least have
> some reasons to why it exists and why one should prefer it over well-
> known solutions. Consequently, people come the this discussion group
> and ask: "What are the reasons that you think your product is
> better?", and the answer they get is: "our product cannot be compared
> with the others because you cannot compare apples with oranges." This
> means that people who where willing to listen to a good sales talk
> leaves the shop in a hurry because the salesman obviously didn't want
> to sell anything at all. Which leaves me and a lot of other Django
> entusiasts with not so much work as we would as we would like to have.
>
> I think that we - the Django community - could do a better job selling
> our product, and I'd like to volunteer in this work.

I completely agree. We've relied on our technical merit to get
'sales', and while that has served us well so far, there is a lot of
potential to promote Django further.

> I just don't know
> how to do it.

One idea that has been bounced around many times is to start an
'enterprise.djangoproject.com' companion site for djangoproject.com --
a site that makes the case for Django in a way that isn't technical,
but focuses on the business case. This could include content such as:

* Case studies
* 'Sales Brochures' suitable to give to a boss who might be
considering technical options
* Lists of contractors that will provide support when things go wrong
* Lists of training opportunities

There are at least three subtasks in this:
1. We need to actually design, build and deploy the site
2. We need to gathering the initial content for the site
3. Long term, we need to curate the content, including moderation of
case studies submitted by users, and direct solicitation of new case
studies.

If this sounds like a way you might like to contribute, then the first
step is to turn this skeleton proposal into something more concrete. I
don't have any particularly strong ideas, other than "it must be
awesome" -- here's the opportunity for you (or anyone else in the
community that wants to help out) to wow us.

Yours,
Russ Magee %-)

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#7 June 17, 2010 13:18:34

Richard S.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


I have been thinking about this for a while and am writing this
because everything said so far interests me greatly...

I am not a qualified django developer (yet), but have been
successfully building commercial sites for over ten years with the
last five in python/zope/plone. I love the pluggability of zope.
Just drop in a "product" and it is ready to use with minimal
configuration at the next restart. New features and content types are
very easy to mix and match. Having said that...

This is what I thought django was too, at first. It is more pluggable
than most but is still not really there. Pinax is a great example.
The fact that the project exists to integrate all those different
features and modules is evidence. Putting them together correctly is
so hard that it requires a project of it's own. If we need a showcase
I think Pinax is it. It is like Plone but better.

I would like to suggest that we consider using Pinax/Satchmo/LFS as
pet projects. The effort being to re-factor everything to follow a
list of "community approved" best practices and make everything more
plug and play. A manager/developer making the decisions on a platform
for their next project should be able to download django and just plug
in the functionality he/she needs. Dependencies will exist but that's
normal.

So with specific projects to work with, the real next step may be to
create that "Enterprise" site and give it a narrow focus of writing
guidelines and best practices. Then making the necessary changes to
the to Pinax/Satchmo/LFS projects to bring them into compliance.

If all that would happen django would be an easy choice for anyone,
well absolutely for me. Without these I spent months swinging back
and forth on various decisions because the above situation does not
exist for django.

I know I am just re-hashing but please move forward with this, or
something. I am most eager to help.

Thanks,
Richard Shebora
703-350-4707 office
202-215-2600 cel

On Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 4:19 AM, Russell Keith-Magee
<russ...@keith-magee.com> wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 12:26 AM, finn <finngruwierlar...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi,
>>
>> I have with interest followed the thread "Seeking Django vs. Joomla
>> comparison", and it has inspired me to start this new thread.
>>
>> I consider myself a Python/Django programmer, and I do so because my
>> experiences with a number of programming languages, CMS'es and web
>> frameworks has lead me to believe that Python and Django is simply the
>> better choice from a technical perspective. I am not a fanatic and I
>> won't say that everything else sucks, but honestly - if you have the
>> choice between a better and a no-quite-so-good technology, you will of
>> course want to use the better one, despite that the other would work,
>> too.
>>
>> Now to the problem: a lot of people who needs websites have heard of
>> Drupal or Joomla! or WordPress or PHP. But NOBODY has EVER heard about
>> Django. If somebody suggests that they make their website with
>> something called "Django" then this "Django-thing" must at least have
>> some reasons to why it exists and why one should prefer it over well-
>> known solutions. Consequently, people come the this discussion group
>> and ask: "What are the reasons that you think your product is
>> better?", and the answer they get is: "our product cannot be compared
>> with the others because you cannot compare apples with oranges." This
>> means that people who where willing to listen to a good sales talk
>> leaves the shop in a hurry because the salesman obviously didn't want
>> to sell anything at all. Which leaves me and a lot of other Django
>> entusiasts with not so much work as we would as we would like to have.
>>
>> I think that we - the Django community - could do a better job selling
>> our product, and I'd like to volunteer in this work.
>
> I completely agree. We've relied on our technical merit to get
> 'sales', and while that has served us well so far, there is a lot of
> potential to promote Django further.
>
>> I just don't know
>> how to do it.
>
> One idea that has been bounced around many times is to start an
> 'enterprise.djangoproject.com' companion site for djangoproject.com --
> a site that makes the case for Django in a way that isn't technical,
> but focuses on the business case. This could include content such as:
>
>  * Case studies
>  * 'Sales Brochures' suitable to give to a boss who might be
> considering technical options
>  * Lists of contractors that will provide support when things go wrong
>  * Lists of training opportunities
>
> There are at least three subtasks in this:
>  1. We need to actually design, build and deploy the site
>  2. We need to gathering the initial content for the site
>  3. Long term, we need to curate the content, including moderation of
> case studies submitted by users, and direct solicitation of new case
> studies.
>
> If this sounds like a way you might like to contribute, then the first
> step is to turn this skeleton proposal into something more concrete. I
> don't have any particularly strong ideas, other than "it must be
> awesome" -- here's the opportunity for you (or anyone else in the
> community that wants to help out) to wow us.
>
> Yours,
> Russ Magee %-)
>
> --
> You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups
> "Django users" group.
> To post to this group, send email to django-us...@googlegroups.com.
> To unsubscribe from this group, send email to
> django-users+unsubscr...@googlegroups.com.
> For more options, visit this group at
>http://groups.google.com/group/django-users?hl=en.
>
>

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#8 June 17, 2010 14:44:07

Matt H.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


<snip>
> plug and play.  A manager/developer making the decisions on a platform
> for their next project should be able to download django and just plug
> in the functionality he/she needs.  Dependencies will exist but that's
> normal.
<snip>
> If all that would happen django would be an easy choice for anyone,
> well absolutely for me.  Without these I spent months swinging back
> and forth on various decisions because the above situation does not
> exist for django.

The market you talk about sounds like one where things like Pinax/
Satchmo/LFS are a substantial match for their requirements and who can
then benefit from the power of Django in extending beyond the
capabilities of what those apps provide. The drupal/joomla/plone/
wordpress type market, perhaps?

The kinds of applications I build in Django aren't in the style of
public-facing websites, they're web-based applications where few if
any of the facilities from Pinax, Satchmo or LFS are of any interest
to me. In fact for me one of the appeals of Django was that it didn't
try to do too much for me (i.e. it didn't quickly start to get in the
way like, say, drupal tends to once you get beyond a certain point).

I quite like the skeleton proposal Russ sketches out in the mail you
replied to - that sounds like it would have more of a general reach
rather than trying to get into the drupal/joomla/plone/wordpress
space.

Regards,
Matt

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#9 June 17, 2010 15:06:25

Richard S.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


@Matt

You are correct. The "drupal/joomla/plone/wordpress space" does exist
and it is where most people (non-developers) look first. These are
the people who need to perceive django in a more positive light if the
goal is to increase django market share. They are the people who hire
you and I. If not, it's a moot point.

@Everyone

I was not clear that I support everything Russ said, and that I am
most in favor of an "Enterprise" site that sets forth standards and
best practices which make apps more compatible and hence more
marketable.

I will die, maybe tomorrow by blunt force trauma from a bus, but I
will die. There has to be a clear path for my clients when that
happens. I am still eager to be involved.

Thanks,
Richard Shebora

On Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 9:43 AM, Matt Hoskins <skaffe...@googlemail.com> wrote:
> <snip>
>> plug and play.  A manager/developer making the decisions on a platform
>> for their next project should be able to download django and just plug
>> in the functionality he/she needs.  Dependencies will exist but that's
>> normal.
> <snip>
>> If all that would happen django would be an easy choice for anyone,
>> well absolutely for me.  Without these I spent months swinging back
>> and forth on various decisions because the above situation does not
>> exist for django.
>
> The market you talk about sounds like one where things like Pinax/
> Satchmo/LFS are a substantial match for their requirements and who can
> then benefit from the power of Django in extending beyond the
> capabilities of what those apps provide. The drupal/joomla/plone/
> wordpress type market, perhaps?
>
> The kinds of applications I build in Django aren't in the style of
> public-facing websites, they're web-based applications where few if
> any of the facilities from Pinax, Satchmo or LFS are of any interest
> to me. In fact for me one of the appeals of Django was that it didn't
> try to do too much for me (i.e. it didn't quickly start to get in the
> way like, say, drupal tends to once you get beyond a certain point).
>
> I quite like the skeleton proposal Russ sketches out in the mail you
> replied to - that sounds like it would have more of a general reach
> rather than trying to get into the drupal/joomla/plone/wordpress
> space.
>
> Regards,
> Matt
>
> --
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>http://groups.google.com/group/django-users?hl=en.
>
>

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#10 June 17, 2010 16:24:09

Russell K.
Registered: 2009-11-02
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Selling Django


On Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 10:06 PM, Richard Shebora <sheb...@gmail.com> wrote:
> @Matt
>
> You are correct.  The "drupal/joomla/plone/wordpress space" does exist
> and it is where most people (non-developers) look first.  These are
> the people who need to perceive django in a more positive light if the
> goal is to increase django market share.  They are the people who hire
> you and I.  If not, it's a moot point.
>
> @Everyone
>
> I was not clear that I support everything Russ said, and that I am
> most in favor of an "Enterprise" site that sets forth standards and
> best practices which make apps more compatible and hence more
> marketable.

Perhaps I wasn't clear, but that's not what I meant by an "enterprise" site.

The enterprise site I'm talking about is the list of stuff you can use
to convince your pointy-haired, non-technical boss that Django is
worth considering instead of J2EE, .Net or whatever other big $$$
"serious enterprise" framework they're being sold. This means reducing
the risk factors from a non-technical perspective, or at least framing
technical factors at a level that non-technical people can understand.
Case studies show that other big companies are using Django, and
benefited from using it; lists of contractors show that there are
options when problems arise; and so on.

The technical requirements for interoperability are a separate issue.
It's certainly an issue that should be addressed, but I'm not
convinced it requires a whole other site. What is needed in this area
is for someone to condense the best practices that have evolved in
Pinax (and other comparable large tools) into a coherent guide that
can be integrated into Django's own documentation. If this is a
project that interests you, I heartily encourage you to pursue it.

On a historical note -- Pinax exists as a concrete manifestation of
django-hotclub, which is/was a project to do exactly what you describe
-- to define and document best practices for reusable Django apps.
However, over time, the abstract idea of the Hotclub has taken a back
seat to the practicalities of Pinax.

Yours,
Russ Magee %-)

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