Review of recommendations: pros and cons

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Staying with Dgroups as core (Mailing list)

Pros:

  • History with Dgroups
  • Feel like the right people
  • Good for low bandwidth
  • New platform reported to be solid, robust
  • Maarten has said that KM4dev contribution would be in-kind if we stuck with Dgroups

Cons:

  • It is at the moment quite limited in terms of document/object management
  • It's not a sophisticated list management software (the platform that the new dgroups will be built on)..it is solid, but not sophisticated, like Lyris List Manager. The Dgroups partnership would benefit from concentrating on making the list management part more robust (if you want to get clever with digests, statistics, bounces, notifications, etc.)
  • The platform will have to add some functionality for Dgroups 2.0 and we don't know when this will happen


Ning option

Pros:

  • Is cool, looks cool
  • The advantage of Ning is that the technical maintenance risks are low as it is a service
  • Extremely powerful
  • Some Nings are big (i.e. large communities)
  • Dummy proof, least headache option, easier for non-techies
  • They do hosting and updates and fiddling with the buttons is relatively simple
  • Can easily mash with Dgroup, Mediawiki
  • Free with ads
  • Will be a pilot of Ning/Dgroup for the SA workshop, which we can evaluate
  • Michael Roberts (KM4Dev member) has offered his services to create this


Cons:

  • Future prospects for Ning to continue to exist unknown, as it is a service
  • Library/archive/filing is weak or even non-existent
  • Proprietary and not free (without ads)
  • Need to look into possibilities for backing up content on another server


Drupal option

Pros:

  • Nice once properly set up
  • Downloadable product, more customizable
  • Been around for a while
  • Supported by people who have virtual libraries
  • Matthew Slater (KM4Dev member) has offered his services to create this


Cons:

  • Hard to use, needs ongoing maintenance
  • Might be overkill for KM4dev
  • Used more for publication
  • Non-technical person feels less confident he can help manage a Drupal platform