3.1 Welcome to the world of open source
Umbraco has been free software under MIT licence since 2005. It is the first Open Source CMS entirely based on.NET technology. Its source code is accessible to all. An important strategic detail when you want to built a website on a sustainable technology that Is also both independent and inexpensive.
"The most important functionality in this project is the community!"
Moreover, continuous improvement is ensured thanks to the interest it has for us the users. It’s simple: if it is recognised that an update or correction should be introduced, then it is developed and released. Full stop. No commercial, strategic, or economic considerations will hinder the process.
Umbraco source code is hosted on a Github plateform, a web service for hosting and managing software development that is popular throughout the world. Any developer can propose suggestions for improvements. To date, there are more the 85 contributors for an impressive total of 10 000 contributions and 50 releases since June 2013.
Finally, unlike commercial solutions, freeware is frees. No fees, no licences to pay or renew. Umbraco is a very cost-effective solution.
3.2 No, you’re not alone
Tweet #umbraco, it won’t be long before you get your answer!
Umbraco users have their rallying point: the community site Our Umbraco. Guided tour.
- Forum: all questions find an answer here (most have already been asked). Umbraco users also use the forum to recruit or arrange encounters. The real addicts can actually monitor activity on Our Umbraco in real-time.
- Projects: this section presents the list of packages and tools, free or not free. Regardless of your needs, a solution has probably already been developed and is ready to be installed. Here are a few examples:
- ImageGen: tool to automatically resize photos, images…
- uComponents: set of additional components for the typing of contents
- jCarousel: slideshow creator
- uCommerce: set of additional components for use on e-commerce sites
- …and so many more!
- Documentation: there’s nothing like good documentation to quickly expand your knowledge and understand the logic of the CMS. Featuring a wealth of illustrations and examples, the documentation addresses all the essential aspects: templating and scripting methods, MVC patterns, creation of plug-ins, events management, document or media search…
- Download: lists the downloadable versions of Umbraco, and displays progress on the development of versions to come.
- Members: more than a mere list of members of the community, the section highlights the best rated expert, shows their location on a map and even proposes a summary of their activity (latest posts, contribution to the development of packages etc.)
- Events: so that you don’t miss any of the many opportunities to meet other Umbracians. Many events are held around the world. The most well known, and the one that gathers the most people is the CodeGarden.
In the world of Open Source, the importance and dynamism of the community of users is a token of quality. An approach that is in line with the increasing importance of social media.
And social media is something that Umbracians know well. Pages dedicated to their favourite CMS are particularly active on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus and represent powerful vectors of federation. Information, tips, reports on events. You can follow all the latest news concerning the Umbraco world. Each idea is challenged in view of the users’ opinions and needs.
3.3 All over the world
Very popular in English speaking countries, Umbraco is used on all continents.
More than 2 000 Umbraco Certified Developers are distributed throughout approximately forty countries. This certification, obtained via tests taken on Umbraco.org or as part of training sessions, attests to an excellent level of skills with this CMS.
In France, Stéphane Gay, consultant for .NET technologies and expert contributor to Umbraco source code, recently created the GUUFR "Groupe des Users Umbraco Francophones" (group of French Umbraco users) to facilitate exchanges and contacts among the French speaking community.
There are many opportunities to get to meet members of the Umbraco community in person. "Festivals" (Umbracian encounters), Masterclass (Umbraco training sessions), or meet-ups are organised regularly throughout the world, mainly in Europe and the USA.
For developers, the highlight event for the community is the CodeGarden. This festival is open to all and in held every year in Copenhagen, in June. In 2014, 450 umbracians are expected to attend. Everybody speaks fluent .NET, and there are many exchanges on new web technologies, all this in a very Umbraco-like ambiance: friendly!
Semmeo ranking: A very active community
Each year Umbraco holds conferences that bring together hundreds of contributors and users. The community is very active via the social media.
- Drupal and WordPress are of course among the leaders due to the large number of users and contributors.
- Over the years, Ez Publish has managed to attract a large community.
- Jahia, a highly business-oriented solution, has a more limited circle of users. They will hold its first international event in 2014.
Friends who are competent and available, and who have all ‘been there’. Don’t forget to return the favour, as the Umbraco community also offers the opportunity to earn legitimacy.
With an exhaustive documentation and a wealth of tutorials, every effort is made to ensure it is easy to master. And, if you still have some questions, the Umbracians are there to help you, via Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook or on Our Umbraco!