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Using Joomla!

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 3:51 am
by KenD
Objectively... why would I choose Joomla over let's say... Websitebaker or drupal?

Re: Using Joomla!

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:16 am
by Toni Marie
I'm not familiar with websitebaker, but I personally chose my CMS based on the number of extensions available, strength of community and ease of use for the end-user.

Drupal is slightly more appropriate for the "techie" end-user, less so when Joomla 1.5 becomes the standard (it was rewritten to be more technically sound).

There are far more extensions for Joomla than any other CMS I researched, and that database is growing.  It also helps that the JED is here, free, and easy to use.  Even for a similar CMS like Mambo... finding a good list of extensions is difficult.

I find the templating for Joomla to be easier than most php "frameworks" like OSCommerce, and other PHP type applications, CMS or not.

Those are just my humble opinions, but if you're more clear about your website-building needs, I bet you'll get better answers about whether or not Joomla is appropriate for you.  It might surprise you, but the community here is rather honest about whether Joomla is the best thing for any given application.

Good luck!

Re: Using Joomla!

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:28 am
by KenD
Thanks alot.. I've developed and modified a site with Joomla and being a software engineer, I am adverse to reading any instructions or tutorials.  So I found a few of the features not as intuitive as I thought it would be.  However, after playing with it for a while, I'm getting the hang of it.  I'm more of a backend websevice developer.

At any rate.. thanks for the info.  Maybe I'll try a few tests with some other CMS packages and get a better feel.  I am also impressed by the strength of the community out there so that is good.

Re: Using Joomla!

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:36 am
by Toni Marie
I think there's a CMS test drive site... where it lets you install a demo of every CMS out there, man I forget the link for that.  Like or something.  Probably not that.

I, like you, don't read tutorials.  So I struggled through my first few installations/developments of Joomla sites.  Now, though, a year and a half later, I wouldn't be without it.  I'm experienced enough to get around any weaknesses, but IMO the strengths make up for them anyway.

For instance, if I have a client who wants a flash slideshow for a header... bang, someone already made it for Joomla.  There are several calendars, one for almost every possible look and feel you want.  Restaurant reviews? Jreviews got a whole site running in an afternoon (commercial license was reasonably priced, too).

I think the non-intuitive interface you're experiencing is lessened with J 1.5, but rumor has it that J 2.0 will be even better.

When I see a cool effect on "regular" websites, I can almost always expect a Joomla extension to fill in the gap very soon after.  The most recent thing I have embraced is the sIFR font, which is magically facilitated without hand-coding using a Joomla extension (there are a few choices available).  The page peel banner is also a superfast addition that integrates seamlessly with Joomla, and I love the effect.

Re: Using Joomla!

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:51 am
by KenD
Thanks alot pal. 

I'll keep playing with it.

One simple question though, I just wanted to replace the image above the top menu and I could see where to do it in the administrator control panel.  I just went onto the site and dropped my jpg in and renamed it to the one being displayed.  Would think I should be able to do that from the control panel.

Re: Using Joomla!

Posted: Mon Dec 03, 2007 5:11 am
by Toni Marie
Technically you can if you install joomla xplorer, the Joomla file manager.  But since templates can be made by everyone, and all are different, it would be impossible to actually administer the templates directly through the admin.

A lot of the templates are REALLY complex too.

You can edit the html or css files from the template admin though, because all templates must have those files so it's pretty easy to administer.