Customer Stories: Al Macmillan of Atomised Co-operative Ltd

This series of posts profiles some of the people using Perch. If you use Perch and would like to be featured here drop us a line at:

Al Macmillan of Atomised Co-operative Ltd


I started using Perch at the end of 2010 having had experience of Mura (a Coldfusion CMS), Symphony, WordPress and Textpattern. I had just built a web application for a friend’s new online audio mastering business, Hark Mastering, in a beautiful light Python web framework called Flask and when I came to design and content manage the public site the thought of battling a CMS and hacking templates was the last thing that appealed. What I immediately liked about Perch was that it is itself built on a modern light MVC framework and you can content manage your site rather than the other way round. For example in something like WordPress the underlying assumptions are so fixed you need to fit your site into the WordPress mold. So many CMS work this way but I want to manage my site architecture rather than have it dictated to me.

Perch makes creating sites easier for both the developer and the user. Clients love the editing experience as it gives them so much control yet is intuitive and easy to use. When it comes to training the clients book training for a whole day and after an hour we are ready to head home!

My favourite thing about Perch is having a client on the phone asking to content manage a part of the site and me doing it there and then. “Refresh your browser. See that new section?” Job done!

- Al Macmillan

Example site

In 2010 Atomised started bulding a web application for Dan Lyth’s new online audio mastering service Hark. I designed and built the web application in Python using the Flask Web Framework. The app allows anybody in the world to use Dan’s amazing mastering skills and handles all the user accounts and secure uploads and downloads to Dan’s Amazon S3 account.

When I finished I looked for a Python CMS and they are pretty bloated and just too vast for such a small site. It had been quite a long development and Dan was itching to go live. I wanted a painless solution: a CMS that would just content manage my pages and content fast and painlessly and have an easy to use user interface that would also sit on an apache install with Mod WSGI & Python. I’d seen Perch on twitter and decided to check it out. I’m not even a PHP programmer and am really a designer and I had the site content managed in an afternoon (admittedly a small site). Best of all the client who is very web savvy and loves Tumblr, Wufoo, Bandcamp and other great web apps really loves it and thinks it’s really cool.

Perch features used: Content editing – but will be launching a blog using the Blog add-on soon.