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Can I get your feedback on the best tools to build an auction website with the following features:

  • The site takes a commission (like 5%) on each transaction
  • Each user can assign a rating (like 4.5 stars) to his completed transaction,
    and comment on the seller's profile.
  • Accept payments in paypal and credit card

I've been looking into Joomla! and JomSocial but they haven't convinced me much so far.

I have some programming experience in C, Python and Java. If no CMS tools are of use I'd appreaciate if you could tell the best route to take in programming to get the auction site done.

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The second part of your question (the roll your own part) is way too broad. You should ask about specific aspects of it, or give it a try and then ask the SO community for help when you run into problems. –  Lèse majesté Dec 17 '11 at 11:42
    
thanks! I'm looking into Drupal now, it seems more promising than Joomla!. If that doesn't cut it, then SO community, brace for questions!! :P –  Daniel Loureiro Dec 17 '11 at 22:10
    
check out magento: magentocommerce.com –  alfasin Feb 27 '12 at 9:03
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3 Answers 3

up vote 0 down vote accepted

Personally if I were to roll my own I would choose Ruby on Rails. I have done C# and Java development extensively and I have supported PHP web applications, RoR will get you there faster and the Ruby language is very dynamic and has some great "short cut" methods and functions that cut down on the amount of code you need to complete your task. All I'm saying is if you are going to develop your own site then take a couple of hours to investigate Ruby and the Rails framework.

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I would probably try and avoid any CMS' (Content Management Systems), since the primary focus of your application is not content management.

If you do choose to use an application framework, make sure it is unbiased to the type of application you're writing, or tailored specifically to what you are doing. Trying to make a CMS be an auction site could very well cause scalability issues, as well as hinder the development speed of auction related features.

Whatever language you choose to use is probably not important, but some are more tailored to websites and web applications. My choice language and framework are C# with ASP.NET MVC.

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All websites/apps have content to manage. It's just the format of the content and the method of using and managing it that varies. For instance, Twitter is a microblog--its main content is comprised of tweets; StackExchange is a Q&A network--its main content are questions and answers; an Auction site's content are the individual auction pages, as well as the categories and store pages. It's perfectly reasonable to build an auction site off of a CMS framework like Joomla or Drupal. –  Lèse majesté Dec 20 '11 at 13:40
    
Also, pretty much all web apps share certain general CMS requirement, like static pages (home, about, contact, privacy policy, etc.), contact forms, login system, media management, search... Modular frameworks also let you drop in standard features like editors, a messaging system, user profiles, comments, notifications, RSS, dashboards, etc. into your app anywhere and however you want. –  Lèse majesté Dec 20 '11 at 13:48
    
I'm just saying that I think for this particular application, I would not use a CMS. The primary focus would be the auction listings and bidding system which need to perform as fast as they possibly can. Using a once size fits all CMS, even with plugins/modules, might just get in your way in the long run. I think a better solution would be to use a CMS for the public site, and put the actual auctions on a sub domain or sub path running outside the CMS. The core of the business is auctions and letting people bid. I would want complete control over that. –  John Bubriski Dec 20 '11 at 14:48
    
I don't see why building on top of a CMS framework would "get in your way". CMS frameworks are designed to be modular so that you can use pre-existing components where needed, or leave them out if you don't need them. Your auction site is still going to need a router, a templating engine, an ORM, a user management system, view engine, autoloader, and all the other convenience functions and modules that pretty much all major web applications require. –  Lèse majesté Dec 20 '11 at 15:24
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The only difference between using a CMS framework versus a framework like ASP.NET MVC is that the general content management system is already in place. So instead of building those parts by hand, or integrating a separate off-the-shelf CMS into it, your app is integrated into your CMS functionality from the start. –  Lèse majesté Dec 20 '11 at 15:26
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What ever you do just stay away from wordpress/joomla. As project becomes larger your code becomes more and more harder to maintain.

If you are php developer, i would recommend you to try symfony 2 framework. You will need more time to develop initial version, but on the long run its way better solution.

Symfony 2 has a lot bundles(user written bundles) for almost any thing you will need for auction webiste(knpbundles.com). All bundles are free to use.

There are also bundles for easy integration with Facebook for example. Bundles for easy User managment and so on.

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