Yes, we don't want to let any work go to waste. I'm talking with Michael about his experiences. Not that there's a whole lot of work done here, is there, Michael?
I'd like to set up a project workspace on dev.openacs.org, so if one of the dev.openacs.org hackers is reading this and would create a space for us, that'd be hunky-dory. Thanks! :)
Here's a partial to-do list of things that I've thought of. When we get the project space up, it'll be easier to keep track of everything and develop this collaboratively. It goes without saying that we're building this on dotLRN.
1) Configure for intranet use. This includes at a minimum changing text at the level of changing "class" to "project". The extended version would be to factor out the class community into a separate package and have the dotlrn core package not know anything about that community type in particular. Ben said he estimated this at 2 solid hacker-weeks worth of work for someone who knows the stuff intimately. So definitely not trivial.
2) Simple CMS: Edit-this-page, ability to attach a directory of static pages to a community, something is needed. Again, we can do something quick for now, then expand later.
What I'm looking for, though, is really something that's compelling out of the box, so I'm going to add these things, too:
3) Graphic design: Make it look good. Don't shoot me! I think this would really, really make a difference. The quick solution would be to slap on some templates, for example using those from Sloanspace as a starting point, if they're willing to share. Deeper version would be to find a solution that would work for all of OpenACS, with skins, widgets, site-wide consistent design, etc.
4) User interface cleanup: Group admin UI is the classic, but let's walk through the whole UI and clean it up, streamline it.
5) And then let's configure it out of the box with an Employee group, departments groups, the ability to invite people to join your project group (extranet?), perhaps there's a default "company" community that spans the whole company, with subcommunities for each department ... I haven't thought this through all that much, but you get the picture.
There's lots more we can add, obviously, but I think this are the critical things that I think would make it compelling for more people to buy into this platform.
I'm researching a number of competing intranet systems these days, and I'll come up with my thoughts for what this thing should look like.
I think there'll be plenty of room for different people pushing different visions, all variations on a theme, and for this thing developing in really exciting ways over time.
My focus right now is on doing the least amount of work possible that we need to do to start attracting people's attention (and money) for real.