[ic] some newbie questions

Dan B db@cyclonehq.dnsalias.net
Thu, 18 Jan 2001 20:27:36 -0800

*) Why did you choose Interchange?

For me, it was these features (in order of importance):
Open source, unix, easily extensible (very important), good database 
connectivity, stable, fast, perl.

Basically, it's what I would build if I was going to build an e-commerce 
solution from the ground up.

>*) What other open source solutions are worth being tested?

There are a few dozen open source e-commerce apps out there.  Interchange 
is the best, but Zelerate doesn't suck that bad (I don't think it can hold 
a candle to IC, but it might be worth looking at).  Zelerate just lost 30% 
of their employees though, probably from the recent .com flu that's been 
going around.

>*) What difficulties did you encounter when using what is
>referred to in the manuals as "multiple catalogues"?
>  (which seems to be what I referred to as "several online
>   shops on one server, correct me if I am wrong)

No probs whatsoever.  In fact, you can run multiple versions of IC 
processes that are each serving multiple catalogs!  (whoa).  For example, 
one could have separate production catalogs (IC 4.6.1) and development 
catalogs (on 4.7.x).

>*) I would like to hear your opinion on this problem: In many
>cases, it is desirable to restrict access to certain items to
>certain customer groups (like resellers, ...) or to display an item's
>price according to the customer's group. (with / without taxes for
>resellers, ...).
>Would you set up one catalogue for each customer group and
>manage access control on the first page, letting customers log
>into "their" catalogue, or is it possible to do all this using only
>one catalogue?

Try out IC for yourself -- have you seen the "Affiliates" functionality?