OK, so this is what I was talking about: I've been asked to add some content to the Music School's pages on UEA's new content management system. And it seems that, yet again, they've wasted money on another useless product to fullfill an unnecessary role (which could have been accomplished with a free product like Zope). It seems that people have been complaining that its difficult to use and, having had my "training", I can see why - it seems to allow for lots of working concepts (like workflows) which UEA don't want to use but can't hide and which just end up cluttering the interface.

As well as being potentially difficult to use its also bad for UEA's public Web presence as its broken all the URLs! They've decided to call the server www1.uea.ac.uk which looks really bad. Then it prepends a whole load of guff to the beginning of the paths which, as well as looking bad, makes it difficult to give people URLs over the phone. But, worse than all this, the "article" abstractions in the CMS only allow user defined titles and don't allow you to specify what the "filename" should be. And do you know what it uses for the "filenames"? NUMBERS!! Yuk! (I've found a hack for this, though: you can make everything using the "directory" abstraction and avoid "articles".)

However, despite all this, why does UEA need a content management system anyway? Their excuse is that they want to homogenise the UEA's web pages but why is that a good thing? My colleague described it as "empire building" and I think I'm inclined to agree. UEA isn't a corporation - its a university. Its supposed to encourage free thinking and individualism not restrict people into neat little boxes.

Its going to be another UEA IT disaster!

On a lighter note: I played in a recording of a piece for air horns yesterday. It was teh loud! (But we did have ear plugs.)