Sure, sure. Building those apps is all fun and games until someone needs to make a living from it. And then? Then things get a little more confusing.
While I like to wax on about Portland being the de facto hub of open source, truth of the matter is that—just to the south of us—there’s a literal hub for open source: the Oregon State University Open Source Lab.
Bend-based EllisLab took SXSW as an opportunity to give attendees a sneak preview of the upcoming version of ExpressionEngine. [Update: EllisLab has released a video of the ExpressionEngine 2.0 sneak peek.]
From a user standpoint, the big news is the new ExpressionEngine control panel, which the team has designed to greatly simplify the usability of the product with a wealth of AJAX-y goodness.
From a coding standpoint, the big news is that ExpressionEngine 2.0 is now built on top of CodeIgniter, EllisLab’s open-source PHP framework. This means a huge leap forward in the options for customizing and extending the functionality of the tool.
Don’t like how that feature works? Build a new one yourself.
The most interesting thing about this move is that both the ExpressionEngine and CodeIgniter community become one single community, which should push ExpressionEngine development farther and faster than ever before. Best of all, this marks a decided step forward in the EllisLab philosophy as it continues to embrace open-source collaboration.
Oh and one more thing? JQuery. Boom.
For those of you not familiar with ExpressionEngine, it’s designed for the power user or company who has grown beyond the capabilities of current blogging tools, but isn’t interested in wrestling more unwieldy content-management systems. Or, in EllisLab’s words:
ExpressionEngine is a flexible, feature-rich content management system that empowers thousands of individuals, organizations, and companies around the world to easily manage their website.
If you’re interested in seeing ExpressionEngine 2.0 for yourself, I’d recommend checking out Startupalooza where Kurt Deutscher, Chief Technology Evangelist for EllisLab, will be providing a similar preview of the product.