How Skejo Runs

I have finally submitted my Skejo.com showcase entry at Drupal.org. The full text is also captured at How Skejo.com Works. Since Skejo.com is really my flagship, design/configuration site using Drupal, I made a long forum post there, highlighting what I have done, and what Drupal is able to do. Hopefully it inspires others to try bigger things, and it just might drive a little traffic to Skejo as well. :)

Here is the text from my post at Drupal.org.

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At Skejo.com, the key idea is that rewarding people for their contributions, will stimulate more participation and better submissions. So we built a site that makes finding helpful articles fast, and submitting content easy, coupled with a rewards system that goes beyond what has been seem before.

We decided to find the middle ground between the volunteer, anonymous submission of Wikipedia, and the ‘pay-the-few’ way of About.com. We believe that all our members and visitors should be recognized for their contributions, large and small, and even reward them for taking the time to give to the community.

Our Rewards System gives incentive to our members to contribute regularly, and is open to all who contribute quality, needed articles. Credit is given to the authors, and above that, they are rewarded for it (not like professional writer’s, but we do spread it around to more people).

Skejo.com is a complex Drupal site sporting over 75 core and contributed modules, a customized theme, along with a few custom modules and changes to the core. We started with the Andreas1 theme as a foundation and then made many layout changes, as well as the header functionality.

We use a multi-site setup, with some distinct tables (mostly for look and feel changes across the sub-domains like menus, blocks, views and panels). The multi-sites are differentiated along taxonomy vocabulary lines.

Sub-divided permissions were created using distinct permission tables, with shared roles and users, matched with the Taxonomy Access control module. This setup enables sub-domain specific editors and administrators who oversee content and submissions in one or more taxonomy categories.

With this robust but flexible permissions, taxonomy and sub-domain setup, Skejo.com is ready for quick and sustainable growth as new content authors and editors arise.

A small change to the url function merges our implementation of the Taxanomy Breadcrumb module to make persistent article based URLS across the sub-domains.

Key Drupal Modules:

The Userpoints module sets the foundation of the Skejo.com Rewards System. This module has been extended to enable a total point count along the current counts (patch has been submitted). A completely custom module has been written to add new Reward System events and administration abilities.

The Views and Panels are the amazingly flexible modules that helps differentiate the look and feel of different pages and administration functions, as well as allowing for the segmentation of editorial processes across content sections.

The invaluable Workflow and Actions modules streamline and empower our publishing process. Automatic emails and notifications help keep our editors and administrators stay on top of the user submitted content and move them quickly to publication or, as needed, back to the author for further rewrites.

Skejo.com will constantly be adding new features to this site. From helping streamline the submission process, to making it easier find new articles, or to just plain make the site load more quickly. This is all done so that our visitors and members can find or submit new articles quickly, but here is a brief listing of our current assets:

For all visitors and members:

  • Great Rewards System for all members (free membership).
  • Active Forums - Where new questions can be answer
  • Printer Friendly Pages - Lets you take articles with you.
  • Email Articles to Friends - Spread the word regarding articles you find helpful.
  • Site Map - See all our subjects in one place.
  • RSS Feeds - For all you who browse the web by teasers and titles, we have you covered.
  • Category Filters and Navigation - Numerous modules are used to help filter our content, making it ease to search and navigate this site
  • Bookmarking News Promotions - Use sites like Digg and del.icio.us to spread the work about key articles.
  • Anti-Troll & Censor scripts - Helps ensure your privacy, and keeps the site spam free and safe from vagrants.
  • Instant Private and Email messages between members.
  • A Personal Blog

For our contributors:

  • Easy to use Editor - Helps replace HTML encoding with more familiar tools for content submission.
  • Picture/Video Multimedia module - Enables inline picture inclusion during article composition.
  • Upload/Download module - Allows users to upload meaningful patches, modextension packs and other files.
  • Submit Links - Tell about important sites that complement our content subjects.
  • User Reivews and Article Voting - Help us find the best, more popular articles by voting for them.
  • Personal Workspace - Lets you view all the work you have contributed, all in one place. You can even compose new articles from there.
  • Forum Extension Modules - Lets us place recent forum posts in the content area, as well as promoting high quality forum posts into full fledged articles.
  • Authoring Information - Expert writers will be given a byline on each of the articles they have written.

For our editors and administrators:

  • Book Module - Helps quickly structure your expert articles into books of knowledge.
  • Content Construction Kit - Enables admins to create new content types, to fit with expanding article needs.
  • Content Moderator - Quickly summarizes the pending submissions, sorted by subjects and content type.
  • Article Metadata - Helps the search engines classify your contributed content, placing it higher in their results.
  • Page Panels and Views - Allows our editor and admins to create varying page layouts, without needing HTML or PHP knowledge
  • Subject Access Controls - Allows for distributed access permissions for editors and admins, as well as conveniently categorizing your content.
  • Workflow scripts - Helps structure the submission and approval process, enabling our editors to have more time to help you write more articles.

Come visit this new Drupal site.

Please Digg the original article posted at How Skejo Works