Joomla is a free, award-winning content management system written in PHP which allows users to easily publish their content on the world wide web and intranet's. Joomla is created as an open-source project where individuals and teams contribute their skills to its development as well as its supporting systems.
While Joomla is packed with features, its greatest quality is that it is extremely extensible. Because of its extensible structure, there aren't many things you cannot do with Joomla. A short list of some important features of Joomla are the following:
- Page Caching
- Web Indexing
- RSS Feeds
- Printable Page Versions
- Website Searching
- Language Internationalization
What's in a name?
The name Joomla is a phonetic spelling for the Swahili word "Jumla", which means "all together" or "as a whole".
Project Site: http://www.joomla.org
Demo Site: http://demo.joomla.org [from here you can see the front end (the users view) as well as the back end (administrators view)]
End-User Documentation: http://help.joomla.org
Developer Network: http://developer.joomla.org/
Extension Directory: http://extensions.joomla.org
Content above taken directly from: www.opensourcematters.org
How does Joomla! work?
With traditional website design, there is a bottleneck whereby the webmaster must enter all the content into the site. In a large organization, it's possible to have designated contributors each with web editing software like FrontPage or Dreamweaver, but the costs add up, and each person must be trained to work with HTML. The larger the group of contributors, the higher the cost. Speaking from experience, a couple of incorrect keystrokes can ruin a website. One poorly trained contributor can make a huge mess.
With Joomla! a template is set up by the developer, the owner/administrator can give permission to others who would simply need internet access to log in and enter content on their own schedule. There are tools built in to the back end to customize the look and feel of the page, much like you would use in creating a Word document. The administrator can allow others to publish directly, or have it approved first.
See it in action
You can view the Joomla! demo here. This is the front end, which is what the user sees on the web. Now take a look at the back end via the Joomla! demo. To log in, use "admin" for the user name and password.
It's possible to have multiple templates, so that the end user can choose the style they prefer. This is possible because the content is contained in a PHP database, unlike this static HTML based website.
There are hundreds of Joomla! templates available, many that are free, most cost under $60. I can create a website using a template and then customize it to suit the needs of the organization.
Is Joomla right for you or your organization?
Joomla is a content management system, with the key word being content. If you can't come up with the content, your Joomla based website is going to look empty. For me, the big attraction to using Joomla is that the burden of publishing content can be distributed to those that create it. For many, it's enough just to create a Word document that looks good, they just want to hand it off to someone else who will publish it on the web. As appealing as it sounds, you have to be sure that your contributors are willing and able to take the extra steps needed to get it on the web. Don't get me wrong, it's not that hard to publish your work once the site is set up, but for some it might be the straw that breaks the camels back!
Who uses Joomla?
Here is a list of interesting Joomla! websites.
Is Joomla easy to set up?
Yes and no! With our cloud based VPS hosting account, it takes just a few clicks to install Joomla via your cPanel site manager. But once you get your Joomla website up and running, it's completely generic looking, and for the most part lacks any content.
Your next task is finding the templates and extensions that fit your needs. You'll spend countless hours combing through thousands of extensions (3,963 as of 11/31/08) and when your done installing them you'll need to figure out how they integrate with each other.
Now comes the hard part, figuring out how to manage your data via the Joomla interface. If your like me, you'll spend hours/days sorting through message forums, you'll buy books, and subscribe to online videos.
Finally you get it up and running and Joomla announces an important version change. You now have to back everything up and hope that your extensions will still work properly.
What start's out as a free download quickly adds up to a significant investment of time, not to mention the money spent on hosting fees, templates, extensions, backup devises, books, seminars, videos, etc.
Quite frankly, it's not something that a novice can keep up with. But that's all about to change.
Now Offering Simplweb Instant Websites!
With over 20 million websites. powered by Joomla on the web, there is no doubt that it's by far the best open source Content Management System (CMS) available, but many have struggled to create their website.
- They couldn't set up the server
- They couldn't figure out how to organize the content
- They just needed to ask someone a simple question.
- You could create a Joomla website instantly, no complex server involved,
- You never had to worry about keeping versions up to date
- You had access to extensive educational resources
- You had someone there to ask for help.
The service is called Simplweb, and it provides instant Joomla sites, already set up with content, templates and extensions. When you get a Simplweb site you also get education and support to help you build a successful site.
No complicated plans here. Everything you need for your website for one simpl price
Visit some website builder services and there are all sorts of added extras and set up fees.
- No start up fees!
- One month FREE TRIAL!
- After you have kicked the tires with your free trial, the cost per month is just $24.95 a month.
Tom Rogers Web Design has been selected as a few Preferred Partner by Simplweb.
Simplweb's primary goal is to help build successful Joomla based websites. To that end, they provide excellent tutorials, an active message forum and quick replies to your support related issues.
Although it's pretty easy to set up a Simplweb site, sometimes you need more help than can provided by Simplweb.
- Do you have a current site elsewhere that you would like to bring to Simplweb?
- Do you have a complex site that you are having difficulty with?
- Or perhaps your time is limited?
To help you meet all of your goals, Simplweb has created the SimplWeb Professional Partner Program.
Need more details?Visit SimplWeb Information, or go directly to SimplWeb.
Sample Joomla! websites
These sites are just a few that I found (not sites I worked on!), some of which came from a list I found at the Joomla website.
a Health Stop (Online Store)
Arts Council of Rock Hill and York County (Arts Organization)
Aston Juniors Football Club (Sports)
Bob Kingsley's Country Top 40 (Media)
Capture New Zealand Photography Tours (Travel)
Citibank (Financial institution intranet) - Not publicly accessible
Freekick Temple (Sports Related Articles)
The Green Maven (Eco-resources)
Harvard University Graduate School of Arts & Sciences (Educational)
IHOP (Restaurant chain)
L.A. Weekly (Media)
MTV Networks Quizilla (Social networking)
Oklahoma State University - Stillwater (Educational)
Outdoor Photographer (Magazine)
Senso Interiors (Furniture design)
United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe (Government Organization)
UrthTV Creating the Future (Media)