Joomla is a leader in a new wave of tools that are putting advanced web 2.0 functionality into the hands of people with little or no programming skills. Technically speaking, Joomla is a content management system (CMS) which enables non-geeky people, like end users, to make updates and manage the site. But it's actually much more than that. It's a framework that provides a whole lot of functionality for doing a lot of neat stuff like ecommerce, blogging, social networking, etc., that previously would have taken advanced coding skill and A LOT of time.
As for the look and feel? If you want to create an original site, anything is possible and you'll have as much flexibility as a normal site. For this reason, Joomla is an excellent choice for a designer who wishes to offer interactive web 2.0 functionality for their sites. Dreamweaver or other similar programs don't even scratch the surface when it comes to a dynamic site. To create a design with Joomla, you will need to learn html/css, but there are no other requirements.
For those on a budget, in need of getting up and running quickly, or without a web design background, there is a large selection of attractive templates available which install fast and seamlessly.
For these reasons, it's not just beginners who are using Joomla but the pros as well. Best of all Joomla is open source, meaning free to download and use, even commercially.
Joomla! Training (version 1.5 or 2.5)
As a professional web designer with many years of web development experience, including more than 3 years working with Joomla on a daily basis and writing A Rough Guide to Joomla 1.5, I have an in-depth knowledge to share. If you are just getting started or feel you have some gaps in your knowledge, I will help you with the fundamentals and help you round off your skills. We can go through Joomla A-Z, and/or build some example sites based on templates or custom designs. If you already know what you need, I will help answer your questions and get you past your hurdles.
Topics can include but aren't limited to:
- Beginner to Advanced
- Installing Joomla locally using WAMP (PC) or MAMP (Mac)
- Installing and configuring Joomla on a live host
- Understanding Joomla terminology like modules, module positions, components and plugins.
- Learning the back end
- Publishing pages and articles
- Setting up a blog
- Adding images, Flash, audio, video, Youtube, etc.
- Creating and editing menus
- Working with modules
- Working with built-in components like contacts, rotating ad banners, rss feeds, links etc.
- Changing the layout in the back end
- Installing templates and learning where to find attractive templates
- Installing extensions, learning which are valuable and what the options are
- Installing a Comments add-on
- Ecommerce addons
- Jom Social or Community Builder for social networking
- Seblod or Flexicontent CCK for building custom forms, views, user filtered searches and web apps
- Setting up an events calendar
- Adding a versioning system
- Many other extensions
- Learn how to design a template from scratch, or modify an existing one
- Take a design from Photoshop, Illustrator or Fireworks into Joomla
- Theme any component or module
- Working with Firebug (a Firefox extension) to visually make Joomla adjustments
- HTML/CSS and PHP for Joomla
- How to get great SEO (search engine optimization) with Joomla
- Backing up, performance and Security
- Much more!
For pricing and more information, see Lessons and Training.