Having just recovered from the shock of my daughter becoming a teenager, or more to the point, me being old enough to have a teenage daughter, we had another milestone to celebrate. Perch, the “really little CMS” that we have developed over at edgeofmyseat.com, is now a year old.
To celebrate we rolled out our 1.5 release, a free upgrade to existing licenses, which contains some very exciting new features which we think will change the way many people use and think about Perch.
Since launch, people have really taken to Perch and we get a lot of emails and suggestions on our forum for new features that users would like to see make it into the product. The thing with Perch though, is that we want to keep it really simple. We have never aimed to make it a competitor to some of the big CMS products out there. We want people to be able to be up and running with an editable site in a few minutes, with no fuss and only the most basic of hosting requirements.
One of the biggest features that people have requested is the ability for people to add new pages to their site. However many other users absolutely don’t want the client to be able to add new pages to a carefully thought through site architecture. Adding new pages also adds an additional layer of complexity and server requirements if, for example, you then want to do url rewriting to give friendly page URLs.
Thinking around this issue carefully we came up with the plan of creating a Perch API. The API allows us – or other developers – to create “apps” in PHP that can add new functionality to a Perch site. These just drop in and appear in the Perch admin and could be used for all kinds of functionality that you might need in an otherwise simple site. The Pages app is essentially the first Perch app and allows creation of new pages – for those users that want to use it.
Drew and I recorded a quick podcast last night discussing Perch apps and other new functionality added in this release.