Although in the open-source content management system (CMS) world WordPress still maintains a significant lead with 19% of all websites running it, number two ranked Joomla! at 9% is striving to offer advancements that may well help them close the gap. After all 9% still represents 45 million downloads and installs of a well respected open source system.
Although many Joomla developers have been creating responsive websites one of the primary draws for 3.0 is the fact that it is designed to be inherently “responsive”. Responsive websites are built to be device agnostic as it relates to the size of the interface. Unlike natively programmed applications designed to run on specific mobile phones, a responsive website adjusts its look, size and, with some, how navigation operates. It scales the website to fit the device.
Increasingly, companies are recognizing the need to have webs that cater to mobile devices but most don’t want to have multiple websites to meet that need. With Joomla 3.0 and properly designed templates, companies can meet the critical need to be mobile friendly and only maintain a single website.
The release of 3.2 brings over 600 improvements, bug fixes and new features including the incorporation of Twitter Bootstrap, LESS CSS, IcoMoon (a library of retina-optimized icons) and a fuller use of JQuery and Mootools. This will give developers all the tools needed to build fully functioning, mobile device ready websites and simpler, shorter development timeframes.
According to Joomla’s sponsoring organization Open Source Matters president Paul Orwig, “Joomla is growing at a furious pace, with more than 45 million downloads to date — and a broader audience means it’s more important than ever that the latest version be as simple, stable and straightforward as possible,”
Some highlights from the 600 plus changes are:
– Version Control – Enables a Joomla administrator to revert to an older version of content on a website and compare side-by-side to see what changes have been made.
– Rapid Application Development (RAD) – RAD simplifies the process for a developer to write their own Joomla extensions; apps that enhance a Joomla site like calendars, videos or polls.
– Extension Finder – This simplifies the process of searching for and installing Joomla extensions by allowing users to do all that directly from within their admin view with just a few clicks. The previous processes included separate steps to first search for and download extensions to a desktop, and then log in to the Joomla admin view and install those extensions.
– Bcrypt – A strong encryption method that scrambles passwords stored in a Joomla website’s database.
– Two-factor Authentication – In order for a change to be made to a Joomla website, there can be an optional requirement for a user to fill out another form of authentication (other than a username/password). Two-factor authentication can be anything like entering an auto-generated code that is texted to a person’s mobile phone.
– User Interface Improvements – The new Joomla 3.2 administration interface is more streamlined and task-focused.
Other important new Joomla 3.2 features include but are not limited to an improved template manager, multi-lingual site installer, improved WYSIWYG editor, AJAX interface, micro-data semantics library, and HTML form fields and attributes.
Firms wishing to take advantage of the power this new platform provides will find that a development company that has a long track record with Joomla! is your best bet for moving or building your next web effort. Having developed and deployed multiple generations of the platform for previous clients has given them the necessary preparation to take full advantage of the advancements 3.2 brings to the table.
Several offshore development teams are available, generally work at a lower cost per hour, and have been developing open source platforms like Joomla for years. Their deep familiarity with both the platform and the open source development communities that generate these content management systems, make them an affordable and expert resource for your next project.