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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for beginners
No book on a system as flexible as Joomla! can help everyone.
The authors followed their own advice and determined who
would benefit most from this book and wrote it for those
people.

This book is, in my opinion, targeted at the person in an organization
who needs to understand what Joomla! can do but is not technically
inclined or...
Published on March 7, 2011 by Loren Woirhaye

versus
68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good "concepts" book for getting familiar with the basics, but not for developers
Advertised as a "comprehensive Joomla! reference for every administrator, developer, designer, and content manager", I expected a lot more from this book. As a PHP developer who has worked extensively with Wordpress writing custom code and templates, I'm very disappointed by the misleading product description. While good for getting acquainted with CMS concepts and...
Published on March 16, 2011 by BBP


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68 of 72 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good "concepts" book for getting familiar with the basics, but not for developers, March 16, 2011
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Advertised as a "comprehensive Joomla! reference for every administrator, developer, designer, and content manager", I expected a lot more from this book. As a PHP developer who has worked extensively with Wordpress writing custom code and templates, I'm very disappointed by the misleading product description. While good for getting acquainted with CMS concepts and getting your feet wet with Joomla for project manager types, this book is not for programmers looking for a O'Reilly-styled reference manual on coding Joomla modules or creating your own templates. There isn't a single block of PHP code anywhere in this entire book.

It leans heavily towards the non-technical aspects of Joomla and web management principles in general and seems to be written for a tech-savvy, but non-programmer lay audience. In the beginning is a chapter of non-Joomla fluff like branding (choosing a memorable logo), identifying your target audience, how to register a domain name, color schemes, search engine optimization, and choosing a hosting provider. This is all well and good for a web development principles "For Dummies" book, but for a book that's already thin at 300 pages and billed as a comprehensive reference book, this feels like an attempt at length padding. The next few chapters are about how to use the Joomla menu system itself to do things like navigate the site, upload files, and add new content, then moves onto a few examples of Joomla as used for business, schools, and non-profits, followed by useful plugins and a chapter of interviews from Joomla users, ending with an appendix of links and a glossary.

For experienced developers looking for actual technical material on how to write your own extensions and modules, you won't find it here. Discussion of CSS, the most fundamental and powerful way of changing the entire look of your site without any programming, is discussed here in a scant few pages and scattered mentions. After looking through this book, I am no closer to understanding how to work with Joomla's API and create my own templates from scratch. The jdoc statement, for example, is briefly explained in a paltry 2 pages.

In short, this is a good book for getting to know the basics of content management systems and core Joomla admin/content-creation capabilities, but for users looking to actually write code to extend Joomla's functionality, you'll find very little of use here. This book tries to be all things to all people, but it doesn't work. In the installation chapter at the beginning, for example, the book assumes your hosting provider has Cpanel and phpMyAdmin (administrators), yet the remainder of the book is very non-technical (content-managers). Somewhere, they forgot the developer. The interviews chapter takes up 38 pages and is almost completely useless to most people and reads like a product testimonial commercial. The participants are all asked many of the same questions (what attracted you to Joomla, do you use open-source software). Another nit is that the book is all black and white, minus the cover. Lastly, you get a free online version of the book, but for only 45 days.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for beginners, March 7, 2011
By 
Loren Woirhaye (Los Angeles, California) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
No book on a system as flexible as Joomla! can help everyone.
The authors followed their own advice and determined who
would benefit most from this book and wrote it for those
people.

This book is, in my opinion, targeted at the person in an organization
who needs to understand what Joomla! can do but is not technically
inclined or familiar with content management systems. If that
person were familiar, he or she would probably be capable of
researching Joomla! options online and wouldn't need a book.

There is some good information on color schemes, branding,
clarifying your objectives for your site. Planning what a
site is for and identifying potential user needs is an
important step for the developer who doesn't want to waste
a lot of energy pursuing dead ends. This book wisely addresses
these issues.

In terms of technical explanation of how to do stuff with
Joomla! the book sticks to the basics. There's not a lot
of code in it.

A useful introduction to Joomla! for the person who perhaps
needs to assess whether Joomla! is the right choice for the
project or not.

The authors know their stuff and the book is well-organized
and clearly written. It makes no attempt to be encyclopedic
at 332 pages but nor is it intimidating or heavy.

A good book to have around for people beginning the process
of working with Joomla! but seasoned developers will probably
be unimpressed.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent coverage but no color screenshots!, January 27, 2011
By 
C. Fischer (Bloomington, IN United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is basically the official Joomla guidebook and has extensive coverage of all things Joomla, including installation and configuration, customizing templates and using extensions. The book is very wordy which can be a good thing for those needing a lot of detail, but somewhat of a detriment to those who learn more visually. In addition, the screenshots are in grayscale, not color. The book's strongest points are the three chapters dealing with practical applications (Chapters 8-10) which are specifically geared to Business (8), Groups, Clubs, and Organizations (9), and Education (10). If you have decided on Joomla (vs Wordpress or Drupal) this is a must-buy and will definitely save you many hours (days? weeks?) of trying to go it alone.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a book that gives complete familiarization of Joomla from a users perspective., February 12, 2011
I've read several books on joomla of varying topics and points of view. I have been a Joomla user since its inception, and yet there were still things that this book FINALLY put into perspective for me.
The authors don't just give you a "cookie cutter" solution like most help books on the market do, instead they give you recipes. And then teach you how you might apply those techniques in different ways so that you can create a different "recipe". When making pies, there are basics that are universal, with fillings too numerous to mention. This book teaches you how to make your pie, and even how to change it into various "shapes" and textures even while ( if you wish ) not changing the ingredients of the pie itself.

They address each common type of website, what it might be used for, supply a outline to guide you in creating the recipe you will use as you endeavor to create your site, and then provide instructions on how that recipe can transmute into a functional website, including suggested extensions that would help you accomplish this more easily.

This book is NOT a programmers book. In fact it takes great strides to not be that way, it is instead a comprehensive book on what is Joomla. Once you are done with this book you will be familiar with what Joomla is, and you will be able to create your website rapidly and confidently. As this book states, a website is a ever evolving presence. You must feed and nurture it as it develops over time. You can feel confident that by the end of this book you will have all the tools and knowledge necessary to accomplish that mission.

I cannot commend the authors enough on a very well rounded book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Overview on Using Joomla for Beginners to Intermediate Site Admin, April 4, 2011
By 
P.A. Ges (Cincinnati, OH United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The Official Joomla!{book} provides an introduction to Joomla, an awarding-winning open-source content management system, for first time users with clear and concise examples of how to set up a professional, content-rich website.

The book covers three levels of websites:
1. A basic brochure/blog site
2. An e-commerce site with a basic shopping cart
3. A full-featured K-12 school website

In the process it shows you very useful third-party components, modules and plug-ins, which add functionality to your website.

My husband has used Joomla since 2003 and found this book very useful in explaining to clients how to manage their websites.

This book is for Joomla site administrators, not for programmers.
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Joomla Starting Point, January 26, 2011
Wow, the book is very well written. Despite the fact I am veteran of Joomla, I was still finding useful tidbits I am share with my clients. It is going on the list of books I recommend to people starting Joomla.
Besides for the usual fare, the book delves into creating good content, organizing your site and speaks on some of the more popular components.

Each chapter guides you through another phase of site development. Elin Waring has used her years of teaching students to clearly communicate to the reader.

I highly recommend this book.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A guidepost to the world of Joomla!, February 9, 2011
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Official Joomla! Book (Joomla! Press) (Kindle Edition)
As a very new user to Joomla! I went in search of something to get me well grounded and moving in the right direction before I started blundering about in a whole world I knew nothing about. After about 10 hours of tinkering with Joomla! on a local VM LAMP server I decided to start looking for tutorials and documentation to get me started. I stumbled upon this book in the Joomla! forum and started to investigate further. I was not sure how well a text like this would work on Kindle so I tried to find some information about how well it works and was unsuccessful. As such I will include my experience with the Kindle Edition along with my general experience with the book. I chose the Kindle Edition initially because I did not have a good way to receive the physical copy where I live right now. After trying it out for a while, the Kindle Edition has proven to be immensely useful.

I just finished reading this book cover-cover, so to speak, (using the Kindle Edition). It left me feeling like I had a great general starting point for building my first Joomla! website. After finishing the book I have started to dig in again and now things just seem to fit together better. I would undoubtedly recommend this book to anyone even trying to decide between the several good CMS options out there and certainly before they really get started with Joomla!. That said, the book also provided a huge wealth of information for me to build on and flesh out. It gives a good feel of how the Joomla! community functions and some great landmarks to get oriented in the Joomlasphere. The focus of the book does seem to be on how to be a good, all around, Joomla! user rather than trying to give a full explanation of how to build a site. Ultimately for something as large and expandable as Joomla! one book could never cover every aspect but it will guide new users to the wealth of information in the Joomla! documentation and forum. It also gives great guidelines on being an effective member of the Joomla! community which in turn will help new and advanced users continue to improve their own skills.

When dealing specifically with the Kindle Edition there are some truly great features that need to be pointed out. First: chapter names, figure names and several key words have been established as internal links guiding you to more information about those items. This was immensely helpful with the Kindle and also comes in handy on Kindle for PC. Second: Kindle for PC (or Mac and even iPad) adds even greater functionality as all the URLs listed in the books have been made actual web links. Third: Searching text is always useful in reference materials. Ultimately, there are some problems with the many diagrams included in this book but they are all available on officialjoomlabook.com. All readers, including hard copies, will also want to visit this website for additional information and updates.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wish I could give it six stars!, May 18, 2011
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Even though I should be an expert by now, my age-addled brain tends to forget things. Even things I've done a few times.
Joomla is my favorite CMS. Even with the stupid name. I've got just about every mainline book on the subject, so I should know it all. But I don't. And Joomla keeps changing. 1.6 is the latest version and most of the changes are covered here.
Very well written and simple to find the newest pieces. Made getting back into the swing of things much easier. With a subscription to Lynda, this is all you need.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well Laid Out And Informative, May 12, 2011
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
When I first saw the Joomla Book, I was not sure what to expect. Although the book has no color photos or illustrations, the book is very well laid out.

There is great history, a chapter that helps you outline your purpose for using Joomla, how to install and set up Joomla, use templates, SEOs, search engine optimization, navigation, how to use Joomla for business, how to call attention to your site, using Joomla for education, non-profit, and schools. There is information to streamline sites and control what people can do and see on your site.

The glossary and index are well laid out and set up and easy to use.

Although I have not used the book extensively yet, I found it to be very helpful and interesting for basic web site construction, but it is always useful to have some knowledge of web site construction and internet, which I do. I am not sure if this book would be as easy to use for someone who does not have internet experience or web building.

I like this book and plan to use it more in the future.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Overview, April 6, 2011
By 
Labarum (Philadelphia, PA United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Joomla has become an increasingly popular open source platform for websites. Known for its versatility, it allows more individual creativity than some more restricted systems, but such versatility can also be the cause of confusion as managing the various features (or even knowing they exist) can get lost in the shuffle. Jennifer Marriott and Elin Waring give an excellent overview of the subject and walk the user through the installation, configuration, basics, and more advanced features of the platform.

Naturally, any book that seeks to cover the topic has to make choices between the novice and advanced users. Here there seems to be a middle ground by giving a solid though not overbearing walk through the essentials and then branches off into more advanced features. Naturally some might wish other subjects may have been covered in more detail, but given the constraints of any "generalist" book, their method seems an ideal compromise. With a little prior experience on web platforms, the lessons given here should have you up and running a site on Joomla.
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