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TWD.CMS 6.0 – ALVIN: Faster, Easier, More Flexible Content Management

October 20, 2014

Third Wave Digital is excited to announce the latest release of their content management system, TWD.CMS, version 6.0 (Code Name “Alvin”). The Alvin version of TWD.CMS is a radical departure from previous versions in its presentation and simplicity.  Built on a mix of Bootstrap, JQuery, and AJAX technologies running on an Adobe ColdFusion platform, Alvin represents a significant evolution of TWD.CMS 5. It delivers a comprehensive and much improved set of features and capabilities while radically improving the user experience at every level.

As with any web-based product, design and technology must change for it to remain compatible and accessible. With this in mind, Alvin has incorporated the immensely successful Twitter Bootstrap framework to provide a clean, powerful, and intuitive experience to the CMS user. In another improvement, Alvin’s toolbar has migrated to the left side of the screen and can be expanded and contracted based on user preference. Alvin employs HTML5 standards and modern JQuery libraries to allow seamless use of the toolset and effortless transitions from one section of the toolbar to another. Alvin is also designed to integrate with any type of website, from simple brochure sites to highly-customized, enterprise-level responsive websites.

Content management for anyone
The new release of TWD.CMS 6 contains a bevy of exciting new content management features. The foundation of the content editing utility is an upgraded multi-function rich-text editor that is more compatible with modern web browsers.  The new editor allows even the least experienced user to create fluid, logical content with minimal effort. It also features drag and drop content manipulation, UI click management as well as standard image/file uploading and image handling.  Additionally, Alvin provides a source-view mode for advanced users to write their own HTML, Javascript or ColdFusion code to support their website and applications.

Alvin’s Menu Manager has also received an extensive overhaul.  With the new TWD.CMS, users can easily manage many site pages with a minimal amount of work. The menu manager supports drag-and-drop ordering of menu items and the process for creating a new page or modifying an existing page has been streamlined and simplified. Users will also appreciate the new SEO tools included in the Menu Manager which allows users to manage metadata such as keywords and descriptions.  This powerful Menu Manager gives users nearly limitless control in how they will manage their site’s content and pages.

Control your permissions
TWD.CMS has always recognized the need to control user access to various resources on a website. With the new CMS release, Alvin vastly simplifies the process while still allowing for granular control over any user’s ability to affect content. The new user manager now supports user templates which means administrators can easily create new users with pre-defined permission sets.  The new user manger also allows for cloning so that admins can create a new user based on the permission assigned to another user. Both of these features make user creation and management faster and easier than ever before. 
 
Extended tools for extended content management
Content management is only as powerful as the tools that support it. TWD.CMS has always featured a custom set of plugins to allow user’s extended control of more specialized content. However, with the release of Alvin, we have significantly improved the existing plugins and added two new powerful tools for additional functionality.

All of Alvin’s plugins now boast a new cohesive user interface that has been meticulously simplified and streamlined. Thanks to the new Bootstrap framework, every tool within Alvin has a unified and intuitive interface.  Every plugin also features helpful Tooltip popups that explain its various functions.  These Tooltips are particularly helpful to the new or novice user.

Two tools in particular have undergone massive redevelopment to improve their usability.  The new photo gallery plugin has revolutionized the way users manage image galleries on their website.   Alvin now supports an unlimited number of photo galleries that can be located anywhere in the site.  And uploading photos is easier than ever before with a simple-to-use and intuitive AJAX powered interface. The new tool supports uploading many photos at once, drag-and-drop ordering, and editing photo captions inline all within a single interface.

The TWD.CMS 6 Form Builder has also undergone extensive redevelopment to improve the user experience.  Alvin’s new Form Builder allows for the creation of powerful web forms in three easy steps all within a single interface.  Forms are built in “real time” allowing users to see fields as they add them and drag-and-drop ordering allows users to rearrange the fields’ position at will.  A new preview feature allows users to view and test the form before committing it to the site.  Alvin’s Form Builder now also supports form templates and form cloning which allows users to easily create new forms based on existing one.

Two brand new tools are also now available with TWD.CMS 6.  Alvin’s Calendar Tool is a powerful new solution for colleges, universities and other large institutions that need to have a single, unified location to organize and promote events.   The new calendar tool does just that by allowing users to easily create events, manage location and contact information for those events, and define recurring events with just a few mouse clicks. Previews of events in the Calendar can be pulled to the home page or any other page of the website.  The Calendar plugin also integrates Google Calendar and iCal.

Want to add a blog to your site?  TWD.CMS 6 now supports blogging with a new native plugin customized for your website.  Alvin’s new Blog plugin integrates seamlessly with your site and includes the most common and popular blog features such as categories, tags, commenting and the same easy-to-use rich text editor that is the core of the CMS.

Third Wave Digital President, Bart Campione commented, “Alvin represents a huge leap forward for what was already a powerful and popular Content Management System.  We’re confident that our customers will be thrilled with the new user interface and completely blown away by some of the new powerful features we’ve incorporated into TWD.CMS 6.  I couldn’t be prouder of our development and management team and all the hard work and dedication they’ve shown to get us to this point.”

Behind the scenes development
What you don’t see in TWD.CMS 6 is almost as important as what you do.  In addition to the improved user experience and expanded tool set, Third Wave Digital has invested heavily in debugging and streamlining Alvin’s code base.  What does this mean for our users?  Fewer errors, greater stability, improved security, faster response times and dramatically reduced overhead on your web server’s resources. 
Troy Jones, Lead Developer and Technical Manager at Third Wave Digital stated, “We have paid great attention to the inner workings of our CMS product and the new codebase used by Alvin represents a huge advance in responsible use of server resources and bandwidth. Alvin uses only the bandwidth it needs, creating a fast and easy loading CMS experience. Additionally, the ColdFusion platform Alvin uses gives us great flexibility with caching and memory management. Alvin makes use of this extensively through its entire codebase and we feel the results are truly outstanding.”

TWD.CMS 6 – Ongoing Development
As improved as TWD.CMS 6 is, Third Wave Digital is committed to making it even better.  Development is already underway for additional features and improvements that will enhance our customers’ content management experience. Future releases will support mobile management, tighter social media and rich media content integration, built in 508 compliance features, more flexible page layouts, integration with Google Analytics and much more.  Third Wave Digital’s customers have been notified of the TWD.CMS 6 release and can contact Third Wave Digital to upgrade their sites.  For more information about TWD.CMS 6 sign up for the October 5 Feature Review Webinar or visit www.twd3.com

About Third Wave Digital
Third Wave Digital is a comprehensive media design company specializing in a wide array of digital media competencies including digital video production, website design & development, content management system development & support and complete web hosting services. Third Wave Digital clientele represents a diverse cross section of mid to large sized businesses seeking award winning creative services in the areas of web design and digital media.   Third Wave Digital is headquartered in Macon, Georgia with satellite offices in Atlanta, Georgia and Orlando, Florida. For more information about Third Wave, call 888-578-7865, click www.twd3.com  or e-mail info@thirdwavedigital.com.

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