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I am currently putting together a computer based training website. My main site is made of PHP-Nuke open source (www.phpnuke.org) written in php with mysql. I also am wanting to use squirrelmail (another open source in php, www.squirrelmail.org)to offer e-mail to my clients (unknown on best IMAP). In addition, I want to integrate something like phpgroupware, phpgroupware.org, for other educational institutions to have a section for themselves that I may provide a subdomain for them (therefore, the students and instructor from "whatever university" can have their own site at www.whateveruniv.mysite.com so they can collaborate together post projects, etc (something like blackboard.com I suppose)
I will also be using phpBB for my forums (also open source at www.phpbb.org)
First off let me say that I am not stuck on squirrelmail and phpgroupware (I do like phpnuke though) and am willing to try other programs if they are better, easier to integrate, etc. I just like their "professional" look (which is VERY important to me). So I am open to suggestion.
This is what I am needing:
First I need all of these programs to appear "transparent" in the way of a single sign on. Meaning that once you go to my site and log on with a username and password, you have access to your email account, your appropriate groupware with your school (if the school has an account), the forums, etc.
With this sign on, I also need there to be the option of 2 levels of membership (I will be selling tutorials at a discounted price to higher level members, regular "free members" will still be able to purchase tutorials (but at a higher price), have access to their free email, and access their schools groupware page for free as well.) Therefore, this second type of membership will need to be attached to some e-commerce section (I had thought about using OsCommerce (oscommerce.org, i think...it's through the exchange project and is opensource as well)).
Another item that I will be needing is the ability for the storage of the tutorials that they will be viewing. I don't want to allow the download of the tutorials onto the users computer in order to protect my intellectual property, I just want to allow access to the tutorial. So, I will need some way of tracking what they have downloaded and allow them access back to that tutorial whenever they want it (up to a year). I would like this to be part of the phpnuke interface as an "addon" so when they log on, they will be able to see what tutorials they have downloaded (as well as the ones they have not), then they can click on that tutorial and start it back up again. This could be created in a phpnuke "block" (i guess) and in this block the tutorials purchased would be an active link to the tutorial site, and the ones that they have not purchased will be a link to an e-commerce site to where they can purchase it. Once purchased, the next time they go to their site and click on that tutorial, it will go to the appropriate tutorial section. So, let me give you an example of what I mean:
Let's say that someone is taking a class and their instructor says that they (the school) have a website where they post lecture notes, exam dates, and get together to chat. This is at www.whateveruniv.mysite.com. The student comes to my website at www.mysite.com. The student has the option of loggin on as a "Free Member" or "Paid Member." If the student registers as a "Free Member" they will have an email account set up automatically for them, have access to their schools subdomain, and all of the content (articles, forums, etc) contained on the site except for the discounted tutorials. If they don't register at all, they will not have access to anything, they at least have to register for free. If they download a tutorial either as a free or paid member (the only difference will be the price) they will have access to that tutorial for 1 year. Now lets say that they are half way done with the tutorial and have to stop it, or want to come back to the tutorial 3 months after they have finished it. All they will have to do is go to a section within their membership "homepage" (or whatever) and click on that tutorial again and they will have access to it.
Whooooaaaahhhh, that was a long post, I hope that you all are still awake! Anyway, I hope that you get the point from all of that above. If not, I can address your specific questions in PMB. Again, I am open for suggestion on the use of different programs (as long as they are comparable to a professional look as the ones above.) I am using open source for the ability to cut down on programming and ease of integration (hopefully!) and I really believe in those guys' mission!! I am assuming that this is going to boil down to tweaking php to look at the same mysql fields....I don't know....you all are the professionals not me.
As for payment, post your payment requirements in your response (I really believe in escrow to protect both of us) I probably will also need your assistance in setting it up (depending on how easy it is) I can upload phpnuke, get it going and all of that, but if it is something really off the wall (maybe with the mail program, I don't really know too much about mail programs) I may need your help. We could possible go to an hourly rate after approval of the project. We can work something out!! I'm sure!!
I will be in need of some future projects as well (more than likely a program in java comparable to MSN messenger specifically for my site) and would like it to be integrated as well. For this reason, I would like to stay with the same programmer for all my future projects if possible.
Thanks for taking the time to read this ungodly long request. I look forward to working with you.