Google Contacts + LinkedIn = CMS

connecting_people

I’ve been asked to think about a possibile CMS (contact management system, not to be confused with content management system) that should be somewhat in the middle between LinkedIn and Google Contacts. Not another social network, but a (web) software that allow to easily manage people data – or let users them manage their own info – adding contacts, capabilities and skills. Opened also to business, whether they are startups or large companies, and link between all of them.

Interesting challenge!

I’ve pondered various alternatives and finally decided to use WordPress as base framework. It has indeed many advantages:

  • WP is a stable and mature project
  • user account control and user management is very strong
  • taxonomy system is outstanding
  • WP is easily extensible with plugins (blog, file manager…)
  • most important, I know it ridiculously well :)

Of course, WP is also well know for it’s heaviness. And using custom-post-type for that will mean lots of waste in DB. But since this CMS should serve some few hundreds (now) to some thousands (future) users, I think it will be ok.

 

The basis have been laid. So where is the glitch? Obviously in the admin area!

I cannot imagine that users should access WP admin area to change anything, they should stay on front-end. Fortunately WP helps with that, giving two choices: forbid the admin area access by changing roles and capabilities, or using actions. The first one may seems much reasonable, but that way an user that will try to access the admin will get an error page. I don’t want this, I want him/her to be thrown back to home.

So I’ll use actions, coding something like this.

<?php
function throw_home(){
if ( is_admin() ){
wp_redirect( home_url() );
exit;
}
}

add_action( 'init', 'throw_home' );

Easy, isn’t it? :)

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