After the announcement a few days ago, I think that we should see the final release in the 2.x cycle of osCommerce.
I’m hopeful that there will be no more editions of osCommerce 2.x and that full attention will now turn to osCom3.0 (the 3 cycle of osCommerce).
Over at github, action has been fast and furious – with recent updates including an implementation of phpass and some “social bookmarking” ideas (digg, facebook etc) amongst others. I fully expect to see a few more code changes in the next few days with a final release announced sometime towards the end of this week.
2.3 or 2.2rc3?
The new 2.3 (I suppose it could also be called 2.2rc3, but that would be too confusing I think) has quite a number of new features compared to 2.2rc2a. One of the niftiest (for design purposes) is the inclusion of template files (header and footer) to allow designers to easily change the look of a website (eg, by removing a column) – no more editing of 30 odd pages!
The death of STS (Simple Template System)
The unique selling point of STS has always been the fact that the “designer” only needed to change 1 page to affect the entire site. Now that the header/footer files are changed, I hope to see the end of STS being used by people who know no better than to add an extra layer of complexity to an already complex setup. Just last week I encountered a site where the “designer” had installed STS simply to center the website!
The way forward
With this final release of the 2.0 cycle, as developers we now need to concentrate on getting osCom3.0 to a useable and stable point. At that time, it needs to be released as a Beta offering to customers – allowing developers and users the chance to work on a release that we all know will not change very much. Let’s stop offering half finished scripts that are buggy and unstable to the general public!
What is holding 3.0 back is the constantly changing ideas introduced, it simply needs it’s foundations made more rigid – which will be good for developers and good for business owners wanting to use osCommerce.