Monday Nov 02, 2009

CMS - Startup in a Box ?

Free and open source content management systems (CMS) like Drupal and Joomla have given entrepreneurs everywhere an opportunity to bootstrap their concepts quickly and effectively. What's the difference between them, and which one is right for you? Let's take a look.

Joomla - This CMS is very popular and freely available as an open source software package. It can be used to design Web sites, community portals, online magazines, corporate intranets, and even e-commerce sites. Out of the box, users can build data reporting tools, inventory control systems, product catalogs, business directories, and more. You don't need to be a technology whiz, however, to use Joomla. To get a feel for how easy it is, try this interactive online demo.

Mambo - Another open source option on the playing field is Mambo, a CMS with Web- and server-based installation options. Its template system means there's no complicated coding required but, because it's open source software, you can customize, tweak, and get as technical as you want. Mambo handles media content like images and video exceptionally well, and has a robust content publication scheduling feature to help keep your site fresh and updated around the clock.

Drupal - This open source content management system made headlines recently when it was announced that the White House uses Drupal to power The basic package is loaded with tools to create all kinds of terrific Web sites and portals, but when you include the free add-on modules things really get interesting. Use Drupal to create e-commerce sites, podcasts, newsletters, picture galleries, forums, message boards, and more.

concrete5 - For many startups, an online presence is mainly about branding and selling your company's message. When that's the case, many entrepreneurs wish they could find a CMS that's meant for marketing. Concrete5 may be just the ticket. Designed for "regular people," not developers, concrete5 makes setting up a Web site as easy as sending an email. Down-to-earth editing tools make it possible for someone with no developer experience to build and edit a quality Web site in minutes. That's a terrific bonus, since most startups don't have extra cash lying around to spring for a professional Web designer.

Most open source content management systems have the same basic capabilities and features, and mainly vary in level of difficulty to set up and use. The easiest way to determine which CMS is best for you is to try their online demos and play around a little bit to get a feel for which one best matches your computer skill level. No matter which one you choose, each project has a healthy community of developers and users at the ready to help you get set up and troubleshoot along the way.

Flickr image courtesy of Marco Belluci.

Originally posted at

Tuesday Sep 22, 2009

Events oh boy do we have Events - Discounts for all - Roll up Roll up

Are you a Sun Startup Essential member ? If not sign up now as discounts on tickets and members only webinars coming your way.

As you will see on the blog we have a listing of events that we are supporting, co hosting, sponsoring, attending or just chilling at, would you like to attend these events ? Would you like a discount on the ticket price ?

Mashup Events -"Investment Opportunities in Digital" - 29th September London - 50% off Demo Slot - Two passes to event

The Next Women - Darwinian Business : Survival of the Fittest - 20% discount - 7th October - London

Media 140 - London - Everything you wanted to know about Brands - 15% discount - 26th October

The 140 Characters Conference  - Exploring "The State of NOW" - 12% Discount - 17th November - London

So do you want the discount codes ? Email me Stewart Townsend or @stewarttownsend and as long as you are a Startup Essential member Ill send them direct to you.

Ill be at all these events and more.

Random Codes  -  discount code of SPKD10

Wednesday Apr 22, 2009

Mashup - Cloud Computing Event 28th April

I wanted to make you aware of an event that is being held in the Sun Startup Essentials London office next week around Cloud Computing, more details below :

mashup\* Event: 28th April 2009, 6pm - 9pm

Theme: Cloud Computing

"What does the cloud do best.....?"

This mashup\* event will focus on which are the best applications to run in/on the cloud and which ones locally and why! Like outsourcing, not everyone should do it, not every service is sensible and there are stong opinions in both camps.

The debate will cover data ownership, security, privacy, backup, staffing, policy and governance. There are many applications that should run on the cloud but but is company policy protecting the directors or delivering shareholder return?

Price - £35 + VAT

For more information and to register go to :  Mashup Website

Tuesday Jul 08, 2008

Downing Street for Startups

Why would 20 UK Startup Companies be invited to Downing Street ?

I had the pleasure last week to be invited to Downing Street, as part of the webmission contingency to network, catch up and generally discuss with all the UK Startups that took part in the mission what they got from the week in San Francisco and what had happened since then. I was also one of the three to talk to the audience and put forward my thoughts personally, but also as a manager of the Startup Essential programme to answer what did Sun get from this tour.

So what did I get from Webmission08  ?

A large wide deep network across Government at local and Central levels, in reach into the UK press and alongside that more introductions from the startups themselves to other companies and contacts, that has meant I have built a wide far reaching audience to help convey Sun's message out to not only just the UK market but EMEA and the US. That was only from the 4 days I spent there, how powerful is that ?

Well to quantify it, from that point on I have met due to webmission08 at least 100 more people, who have then linked out to other networks and opportunities, I have now a deeper understanding of the UK Startup market but also the bodies that are involved within it as well.

So was Webmission08 worth it ? Yes definitiely, I gained some new friends a whole load of people to help push the message out about Startup Essentials, and gained Sun credibility in this area, so Ill end on the Sun tag line, the network is the computer, but in this case the power is in the network that helps to sell computers.

Friday Oct 26, 2007

Manchester Mashup

So the first Mashup Manchester happened on 18th October 2007.


We had a good turn out, 30-40 people in the building to hear some fantastic speakers and quality material being delivered, around what does Web 2.0 really mean ? 

Simon Grice talked about the convergence of media, something I truly believe has to happen soon, the necessity to be able to access Tv, films, music, when and where we want to, not be bound by location or time, and how the times are moving quickly to enable this to happen.

David Terrar, spoke around what web 2.0 means in the Enterprise, how Pfeizer are using it as a new medium, and how the BBC have embraced it whole heartedly, and interesting enough the activies SAP have around their development partner programme, some insightful discussions.

Lee Strafford, gave a lively talk on, the ups and downs, and now Project Sahara, one of the exciting projects to be kicked off this year, watch this space, for a seperate piece if you havent heard of Sahara.

Manoj Ranaweera, was the host and brought all of this together as usual, and talked a little on edocr, his new business, and also check out his blog for more on the space, and E Invoicing, Manoj is a specialist in this area.

Netvibes and Meecard

Also presented on the evening, around their offerings.

 All in all a really good night, networking went on till past 11, o clock, most of the food and beer consumed, and it seems overall a very well received event, and thus we are doing another, on December 6th.....For some highlights see below.


Connecting the Startup Essentials community with all the events, information and resources required for them to grow and scale.


« June 2016