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Philip and Alex's Guide to Web Publishing

re: http://philip.greenspun.com/panda/index.html

I was fascinated by this account of Phil's journey into create an ecommerce website.

Still, some of the info in there is pretty dated, e.g. creating a site using Netscape server.

Does anyone know if there exist a similar account, using today's technologies?

Mtl_Dev
Friday, July 23, 2004

Try this.

http://philip.greenspun.com/seia/

MT Heart
Friday, July 23, 2004

Well a modern treatment would be about the same. Except for some simplifications:

* Back in the days, Philip & Co had smart clients who just weren't really clued in to the complexity of e-com. So Philip was the entire IT Dept Savvy With All This Web Stuff stack for them so all the clients saw was a stack of contract and a stack of email requests/replies. That meant they took care of everything and had a lot more to bill and manage than today's web master or i.t. outsourcing firm. You aren't going to find that kind of companies today, there are only so many brick and morter stores completely clueless about some the basic leverages of the net. So a modern book would probably spend some time talking about edge technologies emerging and connecting these technologies to problems still affecting current companies.


* They didn't have ASP.Net, Windows 2003, SQL Server 2000 and Commerce Server back then. They had HP/UX, Tcl, AOLServer and Oracle. So they get to do things 5000 times more efficiently than you would do it today. Giving them a lot of time to start universities, drive fast cars, make up for all the things we take for granted today (like analytics and warehousing that comes free in SS, the session management, security, html manage, and event model of ASP.Net, the analytics, ecommerce and caching of ASP of Commerce Server). So a modern book would just talk about how to borrow tons of money from the bank so you can start a Microsoft Partner shop.

* Philips had the right network and right talent pool. We don't. So I think a lot of treatment of a modern book would be on how to make up for that inescapable gap.

Li-fan Chen
Friday, July 23, 2004

The current state of that technology: http://openacs.org.

David Burch
Monday, July 26, 2004

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