Seeking Advice: Building A Web Store From Scratch

Daniel C. dcrookston at
Mon Nov 6 14:39:00 MST 2006

On 11/6/06, Kimball Larsen <kimball at> wrote:
> Your implication is that I can start with OSCommerce/ZenCart and
> simply modify it to do what I need.  That locks me into PHP.  I have
> decided not to use PHP for this, thus I can't just modify
> OSCommerce.  I would have to re-implement it all in RoR.  This would
> be fine, if I thought OSCommerce offered some best practices.

I see now.  I was thinking "Can't you do your stuff in RoR and have
the cart in PHP?"

> My original question is where can I go to find some best practices
> with regards to setting up a Point of Sale solution.  I have done
> extensive work with OSCommerce, and don't feel it really adheres to
> what I consider to be best practices in several areas, not just
> accounting.

I second the notion that you should do it and write a book about it.
I'm in the middle of rewriting a billing module myself; it'd be great
to have some pointers regarding the stuff accountants like to have in
the system.

> (stuff like - at the time of an invoice it is a good idea to take a
> snapshot of all the relevant data, flatten all relationships and
> store it all with the invoice

Funny you should mention that, I just penned in a charge_log table
into my database that will contain a flattened version of all
transactions, expressly for the purposes of generating invoices and
receipts =)


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