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What is Joomla?

Joomla can be best defined as “The Mighty CMS.” It is an awards winning free open source content management system written in PHP language as its front-end and MySQL database as the backend and is mainly used to develop international quality dynamic websites or web applications for internet as well as intranet with robust features like menu creation, page creation, website search, polling, newsflash, page caching, RSS feeds, print option, export to PDF option, language internationalization, feedback etc. Joomla has more than 4000 free and premium extension that can be used to create website of any nature and of any type according to the end user requirement.

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Its user-friendly interface and robust admin backend make it the very best content management system or website software of planet earth. Among all the content management system, Joomla is regarded as the most sophisticated yet easy to use software for developing high quality portals with basic knowledge of php and MySQL. It is released under GPL licensed and is a descendent of Mambo. Joomla to web 2.0 revolution is what a mainspring to a watch.

When someone ask you the same old questions repeatedly, “What is Joomla ?”. Well, simply answer him that Joomla is the Cutting age Content Management System. In fact, Joomla is one of the most powerful open source content management system ever made. It is used all over the world for creating simple websites to corporate portals. It is very easy to install, simple to manage and is highly reliable. The most important thing about it, is that because Joomla is open sourced, this software is absolutely free.

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In other words, Joomla is an award winning Content Management System or you can say a ‘CMS’ that helps webmasters to build powerful applications, websites and blogs. At present, it is the best open source solution, freely available to anyone. This software is used by millions of webmasters across the globe for creating almost anything they want. Yes ! Almost anything.

People use Joomla for creating corporate portals, small business websites, eCommerce sites, Government applications, Non-Government blogs, School and Church sites, Personal to Family website, Community based portals, Magazines and Newspaper websites, Real Estate sites as well as sites of any nature. Any type of website, that you can think of, can be easily created with Joomla.

Joomla is a framework, in fact it is simple to use framework, that enables your users to get themselves registered in your website, to become active members, to create profiles, to interact with others. It other words it is a social networking framework, designed to empower website owners, by eliminating the technical expertise generally required, for setting up a website of this complexity.

This mighty CMS has over 4000 third party extensions, or you can say enhancement, that can be added to the framework to make it more powerful, more useful and more complex. You can downloads thousands of international quality templates, and implement them on your Joomla site for giving a unique look to it . Moreover, you can also contact some Template providers for developing dedicated custom Joomla Templates for your niche.

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The Origin of Joomla


The theory of the origin of Joomla is based on the consequence of the famous Mambo Controversy and dates back to the early months of 2005 when the Mambo development team was divided into two groups and original mambo software was finally released by the later group under the brand named ‘Joomla!’ on August 17 2005. During that period Mambo was trademarked by Micro International Pvt Ltd and they formed a non profit foundation to fund a content management system project and protect the same from lawsuits. The Mambo Controversy begins when some member of the core development team claimed that the foundation structure of Mambo was against the previous agreement made by the elected Mambo Steering Committee. Further they also claimed that the software lacks necessary consultation and includes elements that violate the core open source values.

The revolution for the rise of Joomla lead by Andrew Eddie, a.k.a. “Master Chief” was at is esteem high, when his group of motivated Mambo developers launched a website named ‘Open Source Matters- www.opensourcematters.org to broadcast revolutionary information to the user, webmaster, web developers and the community in general. They published an open article in the announcement section of the public forum at mamboserve.com regarding the above web revolution and within no time hundreds and hundreds of supporters joined opensourcematters.org and posted their tremendously positive supports towards the popular “Mambo Open Source Controversy”.

Thus strong back clouds clouded over Mambo controversy and questions were raised on the actual definition of “Open Source.” All the free software community started exchanging their views on defining ‘Open Source’ in various active forums of allied disciplines. Within just 14 days of an announcement made by Eddie the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) started providing legal support to the core Joomla team. Soon Mr Andrew Eddie asked the suggestion of the community members for setting up the name of the project. But anyhow at last the name which was chosen was not the one that was suggested by the community.

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The project name was officially coined as ‘Joomla!’ on 1st September 2005. The very word Joomla is derived from an Arabic world ‘Jumla’ which means “all together” or “as a whole”. On 22nd September 2005 finally the Joomla logo was officially announced as per the suggestion made by the community. After that on 2nd October 2005 the brand manual and logo resources were officially published for the sake of the community.

Finally the first version of Joomla that is Joomla 1.0.0 was officially released on 16th September 2005. Expert quoted this version as a “Re-branded release of Mambo 4.5.3.3”. On 22nd January 2008 the Joomla 1.5 version was released with advance medium of security and features. Joomla has won the “Best open source content management system Awards” in both 2006 and 2007.

What is Content Management System?


A content management system is nothing but a web based software which is used to design, develop and manage websites with reasonable technical knowledge’s. It enables us to create and manage sophisticated websites with minimum effort. A typical website powered by content management system includes text, images, videos, documents and many more advance features. The main advantage of using a good CMS is that even a non technical personal with basic computer knowledge can easily operate a comparatively complex website. The content management system works both on internet as well as on intranet for managing large volumes of contents for any scale of organization.

Core Features


Joomla is the best content management system every made in the history of CMS revolution. At present more than 100 types of free and premium content management systems are available for download but what make Joomla the best among them? Is it its user friendly interface? Is it the availability of 1000’s of free extension? The answer is ‘No’. It is the quality of support and trust that Joomla provides to its members that makes the difference. The users of Joomla are not regarded as clients rather they are more positively regarded as active members of the great technological Joomla community.

The core features of Joomla can be broadly classified into three segments (a) Admin Back End (b) Website Front End (c) Extension (modules, components and plugins). The entire Joomla website is generally management by the Admin back end while some work can also be done from Joomla front-end. The Vitamin E that makes Joomla ahead of times is its extension which includes modules, components and plugins. Perhaps Joomla includes the largest resources of extension that makes it one of the Mighty CMS in the cyberspace. All these extensions can be management directly from the Joomla backend. The main objective behind the rise of Joomla extension is to facilities its member (Joomla webmaster) to customize the Joomla website as per the end user requirement. Moreover many free and premium templates are also available, which can be used to increase the overall outlook of a Joomla website and to really give visitors a different experience. Examples of some of the common features of Joomla are :-

Examples

  • Main Menu: Allows creating menus in Joomla.
  • Login Form: Provided a login form in Joomla front end.
  • Related items: Display related items/ articles in the Joomla front end.
  • Wrapper: Enable us to display anything inside frames.
  • News flash: Displays news or articles headlines in the Joomla front-end.
  • Who’s Online: Displays the number of users currently online.

Components Examples

  • Banner : The Banner Manager is where you can edit existing Banners and create new ones
  • Contacts: This component is used to create contact us and feedback pages.
  • News Feed: The News Feed Manager screen allows you to add News Feeds from other sites to your Joomla! site
  • Poll: As the name indicates it allows us to create polls in the website.
  • Web Links: The Web Links Manager allows you to add links to other web sites at your Joomla! web site

Plugins Examples

  • Editor- TinyMCE 2.0: Is a simple yet powerful article editor.
  • System Legacy: Allows the extension developed for old version of Joomla to work smoothly in the present version of Joomla.
  • System Cache: Enables website caching.
  • Content Page Navigation: Allow us to add the Next and Previous function to an article.

Templates Examples

Some of the fantastic Joomla template can be downloaded from the below websites:

The global configuration parameter in Joomla allows us to set the parameters globally but simultaneously every page has its own setting for individual parameters that allow us to customize individual pages as per our requirement. To sum up, Joomla probably include all in all features that enables any webmaster to design, to develop and to deploy his dream website with reasonable efforts and intelligence.

What a Joomla website can do?

Joomla is universal in nature and can be used to design, develop, deploy and manage website of any nature and size. It can be use to create simple website, web Blogs, news website, video website, ecommerce websites, communities, corporate website, entertainment portals, educational portals and government website etc.

Example of some high traffic website developed in Joomla. (Who uses Joomla

Why webmaster prefers Joomla for developing websites for their clients?

Joomla is a free award winning web based software and is released under the GPL license. It is very easy to install and can be operated by anyone having reasonable technical knowledge. Many templates and extensions are available for customizing the Joomla website as per the client requirement. Some of the basic features of an average website such as polling, newsflash, guestbook, photo gallery, video gallery, feedback etc can be easy created with Joomla. Once the website gets complete, username and password may be given to the client so that they can manage their website by themselves. Using Joomla both the webmaster and his clients can play the game in safe and if any problem occurs, the same can be eradicated by posting the problem on Official Joomla forum. With positive and quick support to its members the might CMS Joomla is nowadays preferred by a greater percentage of webmasters.

Does Joomla can survive in Future?

Joomla is an award wining open sources content management system. It has a huge community of more that 300,000 active member (Joomla users) and above 4000 extension. It is itself the future of the web 2.0 revolution and The Mighty Joomla Empire will live for eternity.

What are some advance ways to use Joomla?

Sometime expectations and requirement goes beyond the reach of the basic package of Joomla. So what to do? Not to worry! Because the robust application frame work of Joomla makes it easy for developers to create add-ons as per their own requirement.

The Joomla framework can be customized to build:

  • Interactive Reporting system.
  • Third party application bridges.
  • Customized templates.
  • Reservation systems.
  • Communication tools
  • And many more features.

Joomla Society


Joomla society is otherwise also known as Joomla community. Joomla society is a group of like minded individuals and energetic Joomla lovers who believe in sharing their experience and experiment with Joomla without a desire to get any reward in return. This helps the newbie to learn from the experienced users and enables the experienced users to learn from the newbie’s because sometimes commonsense really matters more than experience. Virtually Joomla societies are present in almost all corners of the planet ‘Earth’. By the beginning of 2008, the official Joomla forum had crossed more that 300,000 threads and over 1.3 million post by more that 200,000 registered members in 40 different languages. Further many unofficial societies of Joomla also play active part in making Joomla a better content management system to work with.

An unknown author has rightly quoted as “the success of any content management system cannot be evaluated only by acknowledging its features rather it is the support, integrity, responsibility and relationship of the provider of the CMS that counts more”. Joomla is the best content management system of the world because it has the golden society of wonderful members whose contribution, emotions and love towards Joomla that cannot be measured in money terms.

Criticism


Nothing can be absolute, and so does Joomla! Joomla may be regarded as the mighty and best content management system of the world but it is a true fact that Joomla is also not free from criticism. The developers of Joomla always welcome each and every reasonable criticism and are try to eradicate them as quick as possible. Some of the issues on which Joomla is highly criticized are

  • It lacks security. Many Joomla webmasters becomes easy victims of hackers and complains regularly in Joomla forums that their website has been hacked.
  • The default section and category features of Joomla admin backend are very limited. For example, Joomla doesn’t support creation of sub sections or sub categories.
  • Each website requires a separate Joomla installation. For example for developing a huge portal website many webmaster have to do multi installation of Joomla.
  • Most of the extensions for Joomla are developed by third party website or organizations and thus question are raised on the future existences and compatibility of these extension.
  • The continuous release of new version and extension of Joomla creates unnecessary complexity and confusion in the life of an innocent webmaster.

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