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Joomla! Explained: Your StepbyStep Guide (Joomla! Press) Paperback – 27 Jun 2011
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From the Back Cover
Master Joomla! hands-on, step-by-step, through easy, practical examples!
Joomla! now powers tens of millions of websites of every size and type. But many beginners find it confusing, and most Joomla! books are too complex to help. Joomla! Explained is the solution. Top Joomla! trainer Stephen Burge teaches everything beginners need to know--and nothing they don’t need to know!
Joomla! Explained requires absolutely no experience with Joomla! content management, website construction, programming, scripting, or even HTML. Stephen Burge has taught thousands of beginners--and thousands more who’ve experimented with Joomla! but haven’t mastered it yet. Nobody knows more about guiding Joomla! users up the learning curve--from confusion to results!
You’ll master Joomla! one easy step at a time, through a complete hands-on case study. Burge presents crystal-clear visuals, explanations, and analogies--all extensively tested with real Joomla! beginners. This book’s quick, easy coverage includes
• Understanding what Joomla! does and how it works
• Installing the latest version of Joomla
• Navigating your site’s visitor and administrator areas
• Mastering workflows that make site creation easy
• Adding text, images, links, and formatting
• Creating efficient, usable navigation
• Providing contact forms, ad banners, and link directories
• Using modules to enable site registration and search
• Adding voting and other smaller “plug-in” features
• Quickly changing site designs with Joomla! templates
• Finding, choosing, installing, and using extensions
• Building both business and personal sites, step by step
• Giving customized access to different types of users
• Managing site versions in multiple languages
• Efficiently administering, backing up, and updating sites
About the Author
Stephen Burge has split his career equally between teaching and web development. In 2007 he merged the two by teaching web development with Joomla!. His company Open Source Training teaches Joomla! classes around the world and online. Stephen travels widely, helping people learn and thrive with Joomla!. He has been involved with many aspects of the Joomla! community, most recently as board member of Open Source Matters, which provides Joomla! with financial and legal support.
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This book is a very good step-by-step guide which you follow in creating a site for a fictitious town, Joomlaville. It gets you into the simple 3-step process of adding content to the site, and follows this through to the end, so if you complete the example website you should be very familiar with this process and hopefully continue to use for future sites you develop.
One minor criticism raised previously is that the book covers version 1.6, whereas the current version (July 2012) is 2.5. There are no real significant differences - at least for a newcomer to Joomla - so don't let this put you off.
One thing I missed, which is a real pity. I was on the last section of the book and happened to read the back cover. There it tells you that you can access the "Free Online Edition" of the book. This is for 45 days only, but should be sufficient for you to build the Joomlaville site. If you have an iPad or other tablet, as I do, then you can read this by the side of your computer whilst building the site. Such a big help.
Another thing to be aware of - there are a few typos and other errors in the book, which is probably on par for most books. So DO check the Joomla Explained Errata and mark up your book BEFORE you start the course.
Important issues covered, and suggested links, are for downloading templates (both free and commercial) and the most useful extensions, including the very important ones such as backup and security. The number of extensions for Joomla is enormous (nearly 10,000) and the author guides you through how to choose the most suitable ones for you.
If you go through the book step by step, you should become reasonably confident to work on your own sites and continually improve your knowledge of Joomla. Because of the complexity of Joomla itself, the learning curve is quite steep, and it does need a lot of perseverence to become reasonably adept at the whole process.
This book is different, it takes you gently by the hand, and teaches you the basics, whilst walking you through a number of real world examples.
I'm an experienced IT professional, but still found Joomla daunting to start with. The structure can be awkward to get your head around.
Having read this book, I feel much more confident and able to move on to produce sites.
The only negative, is that the book covers the 1.6 edition so it is not the most up to date.
I think the book is useful for the beginner or intermediate user and that you will learn a great deal from it.
This book, which is based on 1.6, explains how all the 'bits' work and certainly helped me understand some concepts and notions that were totally new to me but the mis-match between versions does sometimes mean you have to engage brain rather than follow the steps laid down.
The book is well written and very clear although a glossary of 'Joomla terms' would have been helpful because some words take on very specific meanings which are not necessarily obvious to novices like me.
Overall, a good place to start but, solely because of the constant program updates, it is now likely to be of declining use.
I would recommend to anyone setting up their first Joomla site