[TYPO3] TYPO3 viable as eCommerce system for Amazon-like webshop?

Daniel Smedegaard Buus daniel at polyteknisk.it
Tue Sep 12 17:07:15 CEST 2006

Dmitry Dulepov wrote:
> Hi!
Hi Dmitry! Thanks for your reply! :)

> Daniel Smedegaard Buus wrote:
>> Basically, we have these extra needs/wishes, that we're hoping we might 
>> meet/fullfill if we use TYPO3:
> ...
> Do you want to make it yourself? Typo3 is capable of all it but learning 
> curve is long. This project will not be for one day or week for 
> experienced typo3 developer.
I hear the learning curve is quite steep with TYPO3, but my feeling is 
that this is due to the power and customizability of TYPO3, and not 
because it is needlessly complex by design or something like that?

I'm working full-time on the project, and the current release schedule 
says a functionial test version should be running by March 1st 2007, and 
hopefully a completed, well-functioning system by June 1st 2007. I am 
the sole programmer on this project, backed by my boss, who is project 
leader and responsible for database design (will optimize, create stored 
procedures, make sure the XAL system is synchronized, etc.), and the 
webmaster, who has tons and tons of ideas, and is able to help with 
diagrams and such, but not with any programming.

I haven't used TYPO3 before. I've installed it earlier this year for a 
different project, and fiddled with it a bit, but then summer and new 
jobs came, so I shelved it. Now I'm considering it for this project. Of 
course, I need to get up to grasps with all the concepts of CMSes in 
general, and TYPO3 in particular. So, it's basically a clean sheet for 
me when it comes to using a CMS/CMF for developing sites, although I've 
been doing PHP and MySQL on and off for some years now.

> You need to understand that it will be a complex project. No idea about 
> osCommerce (is it still alive?)
The 3.0 Alpha 3 (AFAIR) was just released, ending more than two and a 
half years of close to no activity, it seems. Not sure about the future 
prospects, though, and they do have a certain weight in the 
decision-making when choosing a system.
>  but one can do it with typo3 if he has 
> enough knowledge and time.
That's what I'm hoping to hear. Not being familiar with how 
CMS/CMF/eCommerce systems are built, one concern is whether or not I'll 
be able to use TYPO3 as a base system to build this new "Amazon" without 
having to make changes to core code, that is, by "playing nice" and only 
using the API/modules/etc.

One of the things that make me concerned about this is the need to track 
every user's complete behavior. We want to record *everything* in the 
database, so that when a new idea for semantic data analysis arises 
(such as the ability to figure out what new books this user would like, 
so that we can mail him and actually present him with something he wants 
instead of just annoying him), we already have all the data about users' 
behavior in the database. This may just be my lack of experience with 
TYPO3 and the likes speaking, but I'm thinking that if this isn't 
already a built-in feature of TYPO3, I'd have to mess around with the 
core code to implement it?

> Looking at your list, it seems that guestbook fits better than forums if 
> you want discussions for individual books (amazon style). And I really 
> doubt you want any ajax functionality there.
That may very well be. Also, these things don't necessarily have to be 
existing already, as they're fairly simple to implement. Only thing is 
that if they already exist, there's more time for me to do other things 
- and not worry about not meeting a deadline ;)

Ajax is not a priority as such, it's just one of the webmaster's many 
ideas. If there's no apparent benifit, and it takes too long to 
implement, it's thrown away immediately.

It'd be great to see if someone has made something like this using 
TYPO3... I'm just not sure if customizing an eCommerce system like 
osCommerce makes more sense than starting from scratch in something like 
TYPO3. And finding out for myself would mean having to climb the 
learning curve on the latter option, perhaps to find that the former 
option is the way to go, and having wasted a month in the process... Not 
a nice prospective! :)

Again, thanks for your input!


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