Web Pages CMS is designed to be a simple to use, open source content management system. So are countless other content management systems, so what makes Web Pages CMS different? Well, Web Pages CMS is built using the ASP.NET Web Pages framework.
ASP.NET is a mature web development framework from Microsoft. It offers three development models: Web Forms, ASP.NET MVC and Web Pages. Web Forms is an event-driven development model that closely mimics that which Windows Forms developers are used to, with controls, labels and so on that map to HTML elements. One of its major criticisms is that in its attempt to mimic Windows Forms development, ASP.NET Web Forms adds numerous layers of abstraction that hide HTML, CSS and other web technologies. These layers add to the complexity of the framework and result in an increased learning curve.
ASP.NET MVC was designed mainly to resolve another criticism levelled at the Web Forms development model - the difficulty in being able to test Web Forms development. ASP.NET MVC is founded on the principal of extensibility - allowing the developer to cleanly separate modules of code for easy reuse and testing. It implements the Model-View-Controller pattern, and while it brings the developer a lot closer to HTML and other core web development technologies, it is a daunting way to learn web development from scratch.
ASP.NET Web Pages was developed with one aim in mind - to lower the concept count required to learn how to use ASP.NET to develop dynamic web sites. It offers a page-centric development model similar to that experienced by classic ASP or PHP developers, which permits the intermixing of HTML and server-side code in the same file. It introduced a new templating syntax: Razor. Despite the fact that Web Pages makes ASP.NET web development simpler, it still sits on top of the full .NET framework offering developers access to all the same libraries as those that enterprise developers use.
In keeping with the principals behind the ASP.NET Web Pages framework, Web Pages CMS is intended to be simple to use. It is ideal for small to medium sites and over time, additional modules such as blog will be made available so that the system can just as easily be used as a blogging engine.
Web Pages CMS is released under the MIT licence, which basically permits you to do anything you like with it - so long as any copies of the software that you make and distribute retain a copy of the original licence.
The Web Pages CMS project was started by Mike Brind, author of ASP.NET Beginning Web Pages with Microsoft WebMatrix, recipient of Microsoft's Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award for ASP.NET every year since 2008, owner of popular ASP.NET blog www.mikesdotnetting.com and occasional tweeter as @Mikesdotnetting.