Archive for March, 2008

On April 4 and 5 you will be able to find us at the Dutch Joomladays in Utrecht, The Netherlands.

This is already the third Joomladay organized by the Dutch community and it’s likely to become the biggest Joomladay yet. The organizers are expecting not less then 500 attendees. That’s 3 times more then the first one which had 180 people showing up.

The theme for this year is ‘Building bridges’. Three quarters of all sessions will deal with Joomla!, the other quarter will focus on other open source projects such as Drupal, Typo3, SugarCRM, Eclipse, …

Both Laurens and myself will be giving a talk. Laurens’ talk will be on the Community Day (Saturday) and mine on the Professional Day (Friday)

Laurens talk will be about ‘Using Eclipse as a Development Environment for Joomla!. He will also talk a bit about his recent nomination as an Eclipse committer and the project he is working on.

My talk will cover the ‘Joomla! 1.5 Framework Application Layer’. Quite a mouth full isn’t it? The application layer is likely one of the most hidden gems in Joomla! 1.5. It allows developers to build complete new web applications on top of the Joomla! Framework.

I will be showing how this layer can be used to bridge Joomla! 1.5 with other applications. One of the applications I’ll demonstrate is RokBridge, a bridge for phpBB3.

Oh and I also have a little surprise for those who will be attending my talk… Hint : it involves RokBridge ;)

See you all at the Joomladays ! For those of you staying at home, we will be blogging live from the event.

Joomlatools has released DOCman 1.4.0 RC3. This new version is mainly a bug fix release, but it also has two new important improvements.


DOCman now sports a shiny new Help button. The cool thing about it, is that the you will always get the most up to date information. The button takes you straight to the FAQ section, which has almost a hundred entries. Even cooler is that you can help updating the information in the FAQ submissions forum.

Performance Improvements

DOCman now has much better support for large userbases. When you (plan to) have more than a thousand users, make sure you turn off ‘Allow Individual User Permissions’ in the configuration screen. Some further improvements are still on the todo list.

The DOCman Community

It has always been our intention to make the DOCman 1.4 series a community project. It’s great to see that this is happening, step by step:

  • There are about 30 official translations available
  • Community member-turned-moderator Krisstoffer (better known as X-Ception) will hit 1000 posts on the forum in the next few days. He’s been unstoppable in helping out users, and all voluntarily. So make sure you let him know you appreciate it!
  • Harri (aka Tassu), has also agreed to help out as a DOCman moderator. Welcome to the team, Harri!
  • A bunch of people, most notably Chris (aka cjcj01), have submitted patches, either for the DOCman core, or hacks for people who need specific changes.
  • A lot of other people have helped with submitting bug reports, answering questions on the forum, or simply by spreading the love for DOCman. Thanks!

As we’re working towards the stable release, we can still use your help. Check the FAQ if you want to help out but you don’t know how.

Download DOCman 1.4.0 RC3

Do these screenshots look like Joomla! to you? Well, they are! They’re not from the Joomla! CMS though, they’re from a Joomla! application, based on the Joomla! Framework, and running in a terminal window. Betcha you didn’t know that was possible!

Joomla! without Joomla!

JApplications work on a completely different level than extensions. They’re more or less standalone web application, based on the Joomla! Framework, in the same way a Ruby on Rails application is a standalone web app based on the RoR framework. When you install Joomla! CMS on your site, you’re actually installing four applications, along with the framework.

  • JSite (the front-end of your site)
  • JAdministrator (the back end)
  • JInstallation (the installer, which you are supposed to delete when you’ve finished installing J!)
  • JXMLRPC (for the XML-RPC protocol, but that’s a subject for a different post).

As far as I know, no third party Joomla! applications available at the moment, except for one: RokBridge, a bridge for J! and PhpBB3, which Johan built for RocketWerx. It is possible to create applications that are truly standalone as well. You could for example create a CRM web app, that uses the framework, but that is totally independant of the CMS. Instead of starting from scratch, you could use some of the features of the framework, such as authentication, plugin support, MVC, … to build you own solution. And, as you can see from the screenshots, you can even use it outside of the web or the browser, to make a command line application, that runs in a terminal.

Unit Testing

Writing unit tests for a Joomla! extension, requires that you can mimick the environment in which the extension runs. It also requires that you can run the tests from the command line, so you can execute them from inside an IDE, from a Phing or Ant script, etc. So that’s how I got the idea to write a Joomla! application that has the single purpose of recreating a Joomla! environment in which the tests run. The actual tests are then passed on to PHPUnit. It only took me a couple of hours to build. All I did was basically copy the JSite application, remove everything I didn’t need, and add PHPUnit to the mix. Easy! The biggest task now is of course to write more tests, so when we show Nooku to the world, we know it’s working.