Tag Archives: websites

Paul Smith’s College Launches on Buzzr Higher Education Edition

Congratulations to Paul Smith’s College on their new website, created with the Buzzr Higher Education edition. You can seeit here.

The orignal design was created by mStoner.com, our partner in Buzzr Higher Ed. mStoner is the national leader in website design and strategy in the Higher Education market. We have an exclusive deal with mStoner to partner on websites for small colleges.

The Buzzr Higher Ed platform allows mStoner to offer small colleges their services at a fraction of the million dollar price tag typical for large university websites.

The sleek design was created by mStoner and is a beautifule example of the type of sophisticated website that can be created with Buzzr.

The Paul Smith’s College website introduces a host of new features, including content hierarchy, which allows the administrator to specify which pages and which widgets the content should appear on.

We’ll follow up soon with a longer blog post describing new features of the platform and the Paul Smith’s College website in particular.

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Introducing Buzzr’s New PayPal feature for E-commerce

We know lots of our customers want e-commerce but without the hassle of setting up, paying for and running an elaborate e-commerce website. For example, you might want to sell tickets for a seminar. Or take donations. Or sell a 10 or 15 items from your retail store.

It’s because of this that we’ve added our new PayPal feature. When you turn on the feature (in Features/Permissions on your site), you’ll see a new icon in Add Content to add a Product/Service.

The form that pops up will let you do a few things: add a headline for the product, a description, a few images, a price. Plus there’s a field to insert code for a PayPal button/widget. PayPal offers several types of buttons that can be configured to allow different types of payments. You’ll need to open a PayPall account and get the code to create a button.

After someone pays on PayPal, they are automatically routed back to your website. PayPal accepts Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, plus PayPal online transfers.

You can arrange your products for sale on a menu page on Buzzr (sorted as you please: alphabetically, by star rating, by most recent entry, etc.) or as a widget that can be dragged and dropped into any position on any page on your website. That includes the homepage.

You can also add PayPal buttons to am image gallery if you’d like to take advantage of image gallery features such as large pop-up slideshows.

We think you’ll find the Buzzr PayPal feature to be fast and easy to set up — and much less of a hassle than running a full e-commerce website, which you probably don’t need if you aren’t an online retailer.

Let me know what you think.

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Great Interview About Buzzr 2.0

Ryan Price of DrupalEasy.com sat down with me at DrupalCon for a talk about the release of Buzzr 2.0.

[blip.tv http://blip.tv/play/AYKqxScC%5D

For those of you who don’t know, Drupal is an open source platform that developers use to create enterprise websites, like WhiteHouse.gov, TheEconomist.com and MarthaStewart.com.

Buzzr simplifies and streamlines Drupal with an entirely original interface. Drupal is a very complex developer tool that takes months to master, but with Buzzr, in just minutes, regular, non-techie people can build websites with the same great publishing power.

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Kudos to Cooperation and Color Picking

As we gear up for the official launch of the Buzzr.com DIY solution, we’re especially excited about our new color picker feature. It’s a pretty amazing tool for creating or adjusting styles — you can change colors, spacing and fonts of virtually any element on the page.

We have the very talented people at ONE Agency, based in Belgium, to thank for this incredible tool, and the lead developers Kristof De Jaeger and Jan-Yves Vanhaverbeke. They are working feverishly on the project, and contributing the code to the world at large, through a new open source Drupal module called Sweaver. We’ve been helping out a bit where we can — our patches are being committed by Buzzr lead developer Karen Stevenson. Time permitting, when we launch, she”ll be writing a blog post about her work with integrating Sweaver into Buzzr. We’ve streamlined it to make it simpler for regular users and are working to make it compatible with our existing styles.

I must admit that despite having now worked with open source Drupal for almost five years, I still can feel a sting when I see a competitor (we really only have one and their platform is mostly for Drupal pros, not the ordinary user Buzzr is targeting) has adopted a tool we spent a great deal of time and money developing. True, we released it for the world to use freely, and in exchange, we get the benefit of any improvements the world gives back to the project. But I still get a little miffed when I know a competitor’s site would be much weaker were it not for ideas we developed.

I’ve confided this feeling in the past to my colleague Angie Byron, or “webchick”, the co-lead of Drupal 7, the next release of Drupal, and an important contributor to the Buzzr project. Angie is always reminding me that the nature of open source is give and take — and that Buzzr gets a huge amount from the Drupal community. It’s allowed us to create a platform for a few hundred thousand dollars that would have otherwise cost many millions of dollars, possibly tens of millions.

Nothing has brought that concept home more than the Sweaver theme module, the result of thousands of hours of work that we now get for free. The ONE Agency is going to do their own commercial work around Sweaver, and I’m delighted we can help make it better in any way we can. For all I know, we’ll end up offering similar services to certain clients. But when it comes to Sweaver, we’re friends and co-workers, not competitors. And that’s pretty amazing.

An update for those awaiting the official launch: we’ve pushed it back just a tad to incorporate Sweaver. We’re coming soon.

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Filed under Buzzr, Drupal, Media, Start Up, Uncategorized

Summer Update for Buzzr.com

We’ve been working under the radar the last couple of months, turning down press interviews and requests for meetings from investors. That’s because we’ve got some great stuff coming out end of the summer, and we’d rather not waste our powder before then. But thing are heating up, so I thought I’d write a quick preview for our followers:

-we’ll debut a service (now in beta) to assist small clients create custom designs and feature configurations, along with coaching to take charge of running a great professional-grade site all by themselves.

-we’ll have our DIY platform ready to take out of beta, with a slew of important new features that will make it easier than ever for regular people to create and run their own powerful websites.

-we’ll be adding social features that create a whole network of activity for our site builders and site members beyond site-building tools. It’s what creates the Buzz in Buzzr and is the most ambitious part of our company plan — and also the trickiest to execute.

-we’ll be announcing at least one important new partnership.

In the meantime, check out our Showcase of sites created with the Buzzr platform and let me know what you think. (Keep in mind we have a bunch of new features set to debut that have not yet been incorporated into these sites.)

If you’d like to join us — whether as a customer, staff member or freelancer, feel free to e-mail me at ed@buzzr.com.

Cheers,

Ed Sussman
CEO

Buzzr.com

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Filed under Buzzr, Drupal, Media, social networking, Start Up

Scoble Interview About Buzzr

Famed technology blogger Robert Scoble (whom I co-founded FastCompanyTV with in 2008) spoke to me about Buzzr.com, our super-robust platform for ordinary users to create and run great social media-rich websites.  We spoke at the TechCrunch Disrupt Conference a couple of weeks ago. The interview is a broad overview of Buzzr, its capabilities and our intended place in the market.

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Filed under Buzzr, Drupal, Media, online communities, social networking

Ten of Thousands of Websites Are Using Buzzr Software Before We’re Even in Public Alpha. What’s the Deal?

Buzzr, our platform for simplifying the creation of sophisticated websites, has been in development for more than a year now. Yet even though we aren’t public yet, tens of thousands of sites have already adopted software from the project. More than 100,000 sites, we estimate. How? Open Source.

For this of you not too familiar with open source technology projects, a word of explanation is necessary. Strange as it may seem, we’ve released, free of charge, interesting parts of our work (“modules”) well before we were ready to release it on our own site. We’ve also contributed extensive work we’ve done on existing modules to make them much better.

The work ranges from making it easier for website visitors to vote on content they like, to making it easier to create a custom form, to making it easier to configure a website to begin with.

The open source deal is this: you can use the module for free, but once you come to depend on it, you’re probably going to want to see it working well. So you help by reporting bugs, submitting patches and making suggestions.  And we end up getting free help supporting our work. Below, I’ve listed some of the modules we’ve created or done a great deal of work on, along with some usage statistics.

We’re building Buzzr leveraging the Drupal project. A big part of what we’re doing is creating a usability on top of Drupal, as well as integrating a bundle of Drupal modules that work as a simplified solution for creating, hosting and running websites.  You can see a preview of the work here. http://buzzr.com/buzzr-demo-video-making-drupal-usable

We have lots more good stuff coming.  And if there’s a particularly important feature you hope becomes part of Buzzr or one of the modules we release on Drupal, please let us know!

Thanks to the entire Lullabot team, including Karen Stevenson, Nate Haug, Jeff Eaton, Angie Byron, James Walker, Jeff Robbins, Addison Berry and Matt Westgate for their work on these and many other Buzzr tools.

New Modules:

jQuery UI ; SimpleViewsViews Attach; Views Gallery ; Form Builder;

And here are some of the modules we’ve made significant contributions to:

Embed Filter ; Fivestar; jQuery Update ; MultiblockVoting API

Sample Usage Charts:

Picture 3

Picture 2

Simple Views Usage

Picture 6

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