Interview with Daniel from Ninjoomla - Part Two.
Was there a particular reason you chose Joomla? Have you played with any other content management Systems?
Luck of the draw? As I said above, I used to be a database developer, but I got completely tired of corporate life, and even though I was a contractor and working for myself I had reached my limit. An opportunity arose to get out and I took it, then spent the next couple of years teaching English in Japan and Working a bar. It was a nice break.
I started to get back into online stuff and was keen to find a way to make money online. I met a guy who had basically retired from setting up a lot of small Wordpress and joomla sites with advertising on them, and spent his days traveling around Asia working out of hotel lobbies, or sitting on the beach.
I was enthralled by this and started looking into WP and J!. And the rest is history!
I am not actually dedicated to Joomla for it's own sake. But like Open Source, it seems to be the best choice for me currently business wise.
As for other CMSes, I also was a member of the Mambo Board of Directors for a while, and we support it with most of our extensions.
We have plans in the future to expand to a few other CMSes, but nothing concrete just yet.
You are going to get bored with this response, but Mootools was a purely business decision and not technical. Many (most??) of the template clubs use it, and now J1.5 does too.
We could use Jquery in compatibility mode, but it isn't 100% compatible with everything. Plus I am not keen on the idea of filling all our client's sites with 2 libraries, as that will make a big difference to the speed of their site.
If I was to make a technical choice, it would be either JQuery or maybe Yui for it's convenience.
So what is your favourite Ninjoomla extension and why?
My favorite of our released extensions is Tatami, which we have only just released. Not many people realize how powerful this little guy is and we have even bigger plans ahead for him. The goal of tatami was initially to remove the need to edit your template file manually. Similar to the parameters used in J1.5. But we have gone a lot further and even integrated favicon and logo management into it, two very common problems newcomers face.
As well, we have a color picker parameter type, something a lot of templates will make good use of. You can set up presets, which will change all your parameters to a certain set of values, which can then be selectively edited. Another exciting feature is the ability to include custom JS, CSS and PHP files into the parameter form. This allows developers to provide ajax features, validation, custom styling and dynamic parameter lists in their parameter form.
So joomla now has a template parameter editor more advanced than anything seen before. The Joomla 1.5 version should be out by the end of next week we hope.
We are also planning in the future to expand it to allow people control over component templates as well. Many components don't have a template manager, or even a template! Just a css file. Well we have a system coming to allow these once unmanageable layouts (except by digging into code) to become manageable from a component interface.
It will be almost as, if not more powerful for template developers than the template overrides in J1.5. Template devs can make up a css file replacement for any (well written) extension, and an xml file with the info for Tatami in it, then customers install it and viola, new design for an old extension.
Template devs can write entire site templates quickly and easily, and site owners can finally get all their components to match quickly and easily. This is a first for not just Joomla but any CMS with 3rd party extensions.