really nice to read your opinion on this topic AFAIK you have real world experience with other CMSs except CMSimple.
snafu wrote:anyway, speed optimation is always a good thing
We should distinguish at least 3 different peepholes:
1. network delay
2. server response time (i.e. from starting to process the request till the response)
3. the time the browser needs to display the page
We can't do anything about 1. and 3. (at least, if there's no JS involved) This is in the hand of the user: which content he wants to be served (many or large images, or even videos), which hosting service he had chosen. And it's in the hand of the visitor: which browser he uses, which internet connection he has (56k modem vs. DSL2000).
And this is IMHO the greatest performance problem. Consider a gallery page with 100 thumbnails ('ve just took at look at your website; I found the galleries well divided, with far less than 100 thumbnails; but not all users will handle it that way). Even if the typical thumbnail is very small in size (say < 10KB), the server has to answer 100 separate requests just to serve the thumbnails, with several hundret KB total size, until the page can be fully displayed in the browser!
It is in the hands of the developers to influence 2. It is important not to waste ressources. But we have to consider the costs vs. the benefits of those optimizations. IMO the costs of neither an incompatible plugin loader nor parsing CMSimple scripting will rectify it's benefits.
And finally it's the users choice how many different plugins he wants to use on a single website. Are ten or more really necessary?