My first-hand experience at creating a CMS — Camaleon for Beginners and Programmers

Camaleon is a content management system (CMS). A content management system is a computer program that lets people create and change information on a website. CMSes are designed to be simple and easy-to-use for people (who do not code). If you have used any of the following: WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, Shopify, Wix, Weebly, and Tumblr, you’ve used a CMS.

Camaleon-CMS is based on Ruby on Rails, which means your project can be scaled enormously. Camaleon also has a lot of perks likes allowing users to manage lots of websites at once, having tons of built-in plugins, being SEO friendly, and allowing drag and drop functionality.

Also, Camaleon has a really confusing name — it reads “KA MA LEON” but I can also see it said out loud as “Calmeleon”. Whatever. The pronunciation doesn’t matter now because I’m typing it out so assume that I’m saying it right.

Anyways, here’s a step-by-step recap of my first-hand experience working with Camaleon V2. Are you ready?:

  1. First, I created a rails app called “tutoreview”. It’s going to be a very successful review site for me to write about my extensive experiences with different online tutorials.
  2. Then, I followed all the instructions for installing the Camaleon gem and creating the database here: https://github.com/iregina/camaleon-cms. When it was time to hit “rails server” in my command line — I had no idea what was going to happen next. Scary!
When I was running the migration, i was trying to see if I could visualize the data structure based on this.
Clearly, I can’t. There are sure a lot of “cama” stuff

3. So this is what I see:

localhost:3030

I didn’t know what the fields meant — there were no instructions, only labels. I felt like Alice in Wonderland, except instead of “Eat Me”, I had “Domain”. Yum.

3. I left the default options for domain and template, and filled out the name of my app under “name” then hit “Submit”. I was then led to this page:

4. An admin page also popped up. I logged in using the given credentials (username: admin, password: admin), I was led to a dashboard, which came with a little tutorial on where everything is:

localhost:3000/admin/login

5. Since I love design, the first thing I wanted to do is get my lands on this layout. I clicked on “themes” in admin dashboard and given a choice of three layouts. I selected the “WordPress” to see what it looked like, and the entire theme of the website changed quickly.

The “WordPress” Theme

6. I played around with the contents section. This looks and feels just like WordPress — amazing! Actually, now that I think about, it looks exactly like WordPress from the left navigation bar with the grey background to the categories and “update” button on the right side.

7. There were some issues with uploading photos in the profile, but that’s okay, for now. Updating posts and pages seem to work somewhat smoothly.

On “http://localhost:3000/admin/profile/edit

8. I decide that I want to learn how to create a theme so I enter in the following command in the terminal:

rails g camaleon_cms:theme my_theme

To Be Continued… thanks for reading!