Archive for May, 2011

Spree 0.60.0 Released

Spree 0.60.0 is now officially released. The primary purpose of this release is to deprecate use of the resource_controller gem. It’s been a long journey with this library but its usefulness has come to an end. Special thanks to Neeraj Singh, Roman Smirnov and Brian Quinn for their hard work on this.

We have gone to great lengths to preserve most of the functionality of resource_controller by reimplementing it in a more "rails like" way (using inheritance, etc.) In a few cases, however, we have not been able to maintain 100% compatibility with previous releases of Spree. This may affect some existing extensions as well as stores that rely on this functionality. The new approach to overriding just the respond to stuff in a controller is described in the customization guide.

We’ve been doing a pretty good job these days of having regular releases. There are some pull requests piling up and the issues in Lighthouse need to be addressed so that will be the next step. We also have some cool promotions stuff coming to edge in the next few days.

For a more detailed description please check the 0.60.0 release notes. You can also use the Github compare tool to see a complete list of changes included in the 0.60.0 release.

Initial Results from the Spree Survey

About two months ago we asked people who were using Spree (or evaluating it) to participate in a quick online survey. We also promised the community that we’d share what we learned with them. We’re still trying to figure out the best way to share the results of the survey but for now I’d like to go over some of the highlights.

First, we asked users to rate how important various requirements were to them.

Which Requirements are Most Important?

  • Custom Appearance
  • Custom Business Logic
  • Documentation
  • Open Source

Next, we asked the same users to rank how well Spree did against this same list of categories.

Where Does Spree Excel the Most?

  • Open Source
  • Cost
  • Programming Language
  • Custom Appearance
  • Custom Business Logic

The first two seem obvious, although we somehow managed to disappoint a few people in these categories despite the fact that Spree is 100% open source and 100% free! We are attributing the high marks for programming language to mean that even though the choice of programming language is not crucial to users, they are pleased that Spree is written in Ruby. We were also happy to get high marks for customization since that is not only important to users but also an area where we have deliberately chosen to focus our energies.

Now on to the question we were most interested in asking …

How Can We Improve Spree?

  • Documentation
  • Mobile Store
  • Custom Themes (No Ruby Needed)
  • Real Time Analytics (w/E-Commerce Focus)

Like most projects, we suffer from less than perfect documentation. Unlike most projects, this is an area where we continually strive to improve our efforts. We’ve made considerable improvements to the documentation and we’ve taken care of most of the stuff that became out-dated with the massive series of Rails 3 changes.

Brian Quinn has been hard at work on a cool new solution for creating customized Spree views and themes. This code will be merged into the core soon and we’re also planning on showing it off at our talk next week at RailsConf. We also hope to discuss more about our plans for analytics next week as well.

We have some big plans for mobile support in Spree but nothing major to announce yet. We’re still experimenting with several different solutions to see what will work best.

This project is maintained by a core team of developers and is freely available for commercial use under the terms of the New BSD License.