Today we’re going to talk about the history of Miva Merchant. To fully understand Miva Merchant’s current ecosystem, it’s important to look and understand where Miva Merchant came from. Miva Merchant’s roots date back to 1995. It started out as a web scripting language called HTMLScript. This was paired with an engine called Empressa. The engine was installed on the server and this is what allowed the htmlscript to run. A couple years later in 1997 the first product made of html script was released called KoolCat. While not pretty, the KoolCat admin looks like something you’d expect from web software in the late 90’s. However, it was useful to prove that a web application could be written using html script. Later, in 1998 the core language, htmlscript, was renamed to MivaScript and rewritten to add new functionality and features. This was also when Miva Merchant 1.0 was released.
Miva Merchant 2.0 and 3.0 were released in 1999 and 2000 which added new features to the core software. In 2001, Miva Merchant 4 was released. Up and to this point, MivaScript was interpreted software. This means that you could edit any source code file, make any changes you need, resave it and have it run. This is very similar to the current architecture of PHP today. Because of this openness and flexibility, Miva Merchant quickly developed a strong developer following. However, this openness and the ability to edit anything you want also came with its downsides. A developer could edit the source code in a way that would prevent them from upgrading to a future release. To solve this problem and to ensure future compatibility with all versions of Miva Merchant the language changed from an interpreted language to a compiled language. This means that the source code is first run through a compiler which generates byte code and then the engine runs. This is where Miva Merchants .mvc extension comes from. .mv is the default extension for any uncompiled MivaScript file. Once it runs through the compiler, a .mvc file gets created which is a compiled version of that source code. You may be familiar with mvc as the acronym for model view controller. However, in Miva’s case, it’s simply stands for a compiled MivaScript file.
Miva Merchant version 4 was a highly successful e commerce platform. It was used as a foundation for hundreds of thousands of online stores. Version 4 was the product of more than a decade of software development. However, it had some limitations. It’s template system, which controlled the look and feel of the store needed an overhaul and it’s database system it was built upon needed to be updated as well. To continue to keep Miva Merchant as a cutting edge ecommerce platform, Miva Merchant version 5, which was released in 2005, was a complete overhaul of the platform. Miva Merchant version 5 was restructured from the ground up to run on a MYSQL Database. This gave it the scalability you’d expect from today’s modern day web applications. Also, a brand new page template system and template language was created. This allowed you to control the look and feel of every single page template in Miva Merchant without having to edit the underlying source code. This is a very powerful feature of Miva Merchant and one of the main reasons why developers love building ecommerce stores on the Miva Merchant platform.
Miva Merchant version 5 also introduced an all new module API that allowed third party developers to create plugins for the Miva Merchant platform to extend functionality as well as integrate with third party platforms.
In 2007, Miva Merchant 5.5 was released. While the core foundation is similar to Miva Merchant v.5, the Admin got an updated look and feel and new features and functionalities were added. The template language was also expanded to give even more design flexibility for developers. Between 2007 and 2014 most of the features of the core software were either rewritten or improved upon to give users and developers greater functionality and ease of use.
This brings us up to 2014 with Miva Merchant vs. 9. Miva Merchant vs. 9 is the same highly secure and very flexible ecommerce platform from the past ten years. However, it includes a ground up rewrite of the Admin. Version 9’s focus is on usability, navigation and organization to allow you to do the things you need to do quickly and efficiently within the Miva Merchant Admin. There is also a new set of Marketing and Discounting Features which truly take Miva Merchant to the next level.