Dictator CMS

Please note that Dictator is now ProcessWire CMS (processwire.com)

About Dictator CMS

Dictator CMS is an enterprise-level content management system built from the ground up for simplicity and power.

Dictator takes charge of your web site and takes commands only from you. With Dictator you can edit all of your site’s content from a secured web-based application that is exceptionally powerful and easy to use.


Dictator was a CMS platform produced from 2003—2006. It has since been rewritten and replaced by ProcessWire. ProcessWire is a GNU-licensed open source platform.


Dictator is built to handle the needs of large scale web sites as easily as smaller sites. Need to manage thousands (or millions) of pages with ease? No problem. Inspired by the simplicity and power of Google, Dictator provides industrial strength content management in a unique system that makes sense from the moment you login, regardless of the scale of your site.


Unlike many content management products, Dictator does not require your site’s design to follow a particular format or use a specific type of navigation. Dictator is built to fill the needs of those that want the ultimate power in a CMS without having to specifically design their site for it. If you prefer, your entire site can run from a single HTML file (like this site), or it can run from many templates. Dictator can also be integrated into existing sites more easily than you might imagine. Should you need a new site design in the future, Dictator is ready. Dictator’s architecture makes it completely independent of your site design so you need only replace the [one or more] HTML templates to have an entirely new site. Dictator is also capable of performing content management for Flash-based web sites.


Dictator runs on the industry standard web hosting platform (UNIX, Apache, PHP, MySQL) currently provided by almost all commercial hosting providers. This means that Dictator is inexpensive to run. You don’t have to pay for any extra software or seek out a special web hosting environment. Dictator is ready to go with what you have now.


Special emphasis has been placed on making Dictator CMS a highly secure solution. The code has been created by a very small team in close collaboration that places security as the first priority. Unlike many open source solutions, Dictator is not prone to automated hacking attempts or other expolits that target widely implemented systems en masse. Dictator 2.0 may run in “stealth” mode which hides any indication that a CMS is even powering the web site. Furthermore, Dictator CMS is backed and supported by Ryan Cramer Design and approved Dictator CMS vendors. We stay abreast of security trends and do whatever it takes to ensure optimal operation of all sites running Dictator CMS.


Dictator is built with accessibility and search engines in mind. By fully managing and optimizing your page titles, body copy, crosslinks, and meta content, Dictator ensures that your site is highly accessible to search engines. You don’t have to know what SEO is, Dictator is your expert. When it comes to the technical details, Dictator outputs W3C and section 508 standards compliant XHTML 1.0 code to ensure broad accessibility. Dictator also may use “clean URLs” which ensures that URLs follow a logical format, i.e. “www.mysite.com/products/widgets/” rather than a mess of question marks and ampersands.


Ryan Cramer Design builds a custom installation of Dictator specific to your needs. Actual costs depend on how much customization and additional features are needed for your web site. Dictator’s combined license and implementation fees are competitive with - and in many cases, lower than - implementation costs of open source CMS systems. Dictator is now included with all web sites designed and developed by Ryan Cramer Design. Ryan Cramer Design also licenses Dictator CMS for implementation by other design and development firms.


From the technical side, Dictator consists of two parts. The “core” and the “custom”. The “core” is common to every web site running Dictator, and contains no code or elements specific to your web site. The “custom” contains all design and custom features specific to your web site. This split architecture allows us to rollout new features to your site easily and automatically without worry of breaking your site in the process. We simply replace the Dictator core without having to touch your web site: new features with the flick of a switch. Your site need not be limited by the core either. It can serve as an application development platform while your “custom” is expanded or integrated with other systems. This means Dictator CMS is a solution that’s built for the long term, able to grow as your needs do.


Thanks to Dictator’s Google-like interface simplicity, reading the manual is not required to make effective use of Dictator. But power-users will find a wealth of new features and optimizations available in Dictator’s documentation. Dictator is fully documented in an online manual located at dictatorcms.com. Dictator CMS’s administrative console contains context-sensitive links to specific topics in the manual which provide quick answers when you need them.