Setting a new standard in appearance and function. The new version of the Open Source Content Management Framework impresses with focused branding, standards compliant templating and versioning.
Today the TYPO3 Association is launching version 4.0, a new release of the successful open source project, TYPO3. The new CMS version makes it impressively clear that TYPO3 has reached a new level of maturity as it reinforces its key position in the worldwide ECMS market.
A new identity ...
In the last 5 years, TYPO3 has enjoyed an impressive growth, from an unknown open source project to an internationally successful ECMS. A robust project structure, large community base and a strong focus on market demands have been critical to its success. Unfortunately, TYPO3's image as an unstructured project did not reflect its true quality.
"It was time to change our image and public appearance," explains Rasmus Skjoldan, head of CI & Branding. For the past few years, TYPO3 had been developing its own corporate identity. Now it was time to communicate it to the rest of the world. The challenge was combining the technical seriousness of the software itself with its user-friendliness in a broad branding project. Skjoldan adds, "Along with the marketing-related aspects, the new logo is meant to convey the core vision of the TYPO3 project: the ambition and willingness to share."
... to grab hold of
TYPO3's branding efforts goes beyond a new logo as it can be found in the software itself. Version 4.0 offers a complete redesign of the backend interface. Not only is TYPO3 sporting a new modern look for its administrative functions, a new '"look and feel" is also offered for TYPO3's content editors, making it a corporate identity to grab hold of.
With version 3.8 having eliminated numerous minor errors as well as having optimized the internal operation of TYPO3 down to the last detail, version 4.0 had a clear path to focus on matters of applicability and function. Besides the compatibility with PHP5 and expansions regarding data integrity, fundamentally new functions were integrated into TYPO3.
Broad range of functions
With version 4.0, the WYSIWYG Editor, HTMLArea, comes pre-installed as the standard editor in the TYPO3 backend. Along with its impressive list of features, this extension makes intuitive entry of content possible across different browsers and operating systems. With version 4.0, useful features like 'drag and drop' functionality within the page-tree and filelist view as well as 100% true-colour support for all image processes has been built into the standard product. Additionally, a completely integrated database abstraction layer (DBAL) supports the connection to DBMS systems which is often demanded by larger installations. This enables database systems such as Oracle and Postgres to be used by TYPO3 for data storage.
Advancements in versioning, administration and publication
In addition, the new combination of the 'versioning', 'workspaces' and 'workflow' extensions constitute a base for targeted administration and publication of various content, versions and entire TYPO3 page structures, making it easier to control large amounts of content within an organization. With the revolutionary 'workspaces' extension, editors can now select a variety of objects (pages, content, even entire websites) all at once and edit the bundle without changing any live content.
TemplaVoilà, an alternate XML-based templating engine, celebrates its first major release. It is now seamlessly integrated with the TYPO3 framework and has improvements in localization and translation handling.
Compliant and easy-to-find content
In addition to the new backend features, the frontend has also received a facelift. Thanks to several modifications to the CSS Styled Content extension, TYPO3 is now in the position to produce standards compliant XHTML, laying the foundation for accessible (WAI compatible) websites. The Indexed Search extension has been thoroughly revised as well and has increased in both speed and function, making mass indexing of several TYPO3 sites and its content possible. Enhancements include crawler improvements, template support and the indexing of Oasis OpenDocument files.
Dividing, evaluating, describing
With the upgraded extension repository 2.0, the incorporation of new security updates and new extensions will be available for installations of TYPO3 4.0 and future versions. In addition, the possibility of evaluating individual updates via the TER will facilitate a target-directed selection of qualitatively superior supplementary modules. This solution was demanded by the sheer number of extensions. TER 2.0 has also caught up technologically, and will please the ambitious TYPO3 administrator with its automated dispersion of mutually dependent extensions and its markedly increased speed.
A well-rounded result ...
Kasper Skarhoj, president of the TYPO3 Association, is pleased with the launch: "Version 4.0 represents a milestone in the development of TYPO3 that we have been working toward for a long time. It supports qualitatively superior enterprise modules. The introduction of the the long awaited versioning feature is not to be forgotten. With the management framework for versioning that we call 'workspaces', versioning will be brought to the user's desktop. And that brings a transparency which even surpassed my own expectations."
... with perspective
"I believe with version 4.0 we have achieved a kind of 'feature complete' status. This does not mean that we have nothing more to do; but now all the essential demands (pertaining to the modular building-block system of TYPO3) have been met. We can finally apply ourselves to the consolidation we are aiming for: the important usability demands." Skarhoj has already issued a rallying cry for version 4.5; and indeed the first steps toward a user-friendly interface have already been taken in version 4.0.
TYPO3 version 4.0 is available as a free download on typo3.org/download/packages/
with version information at typo3.org/development/articles/version-40/