Arguably the world’s most popular open-source content management system (CMS), seems to have finally settled in a cozy nook with the release of Joomla 3.5 features. After the sporadic revisions to the earlier versions, with the upgrade to Joomla 2.5 and then to 3.0, the revised Joomla 3.5 emphasizes more regular and smaller releases. This newly released platform is a big step towards CMS stabilization. Armed with a reduced core package, feature upgrades, and the aim to keep each new release compatible with the earlier versions, there have been some nice additions to the CMS, including the Joomla 3.5 tutorial. It can only get better going forward.
How do the new Joomla 3.5 features stack up? Let’s find out.
#1 Customize CSS in the Protostar template
Protostar is the workhorse of Joomla 3.5 templates; it’s fast, no-frills, and functional for developers who are just starting to work independently sans the bells and whistles. However, most Joomla 3.5 model users sought some customization in the same. This extra degree of customizability was only available earlier through plugins, or could only be availed by modifying an index file. It was often risky, especially when the index.php was modified while updating the website theme. Joomla 3.5 offers a simple fix. It allows custom CSS through the Protostar template. The Joomla 3.5 templates will automatically check the custom.css file or Protostar. Upon finding one, it’ll be loaded. If no files are found, the default settings will be loaded.
#2 Updated email plugin and bug fixes
A major Joomla 3.5 module is likely to take some time to prepare in its entirety. For now, it only includes a couple of releases each year. But that does not mean that all those people contributing to Joomla’s development would just stop in their tracks whenever a new release is introduced. The stream of updates would continue to flow along with the fixes that’ll help smoothen out the experience and make the CMS more secure, notwithstanding whether they are upgrading security or correcting bugs. It should be a priority for website admins to update Joomla installation as early as possible because of scammers, hackers and other tricksters prowling across the web, waiting to pounce on unsuspecting developers. The Joomla 3.5 email plugin helps in ensuring that all new updates are tracked and documented, thereby sending notifications to users about the same.
Whenever a new Joomla update is introduced, the only way to track it is through the message which appears in the admin section after logging in. You may get to know about the updates if you are a frequent visitor to Joomla 3.5 templates website, or know about the release from one of your sources. But this is unlikely to happen when you’re busy with your own work. However, with the new plugin, each Joomla 3.5 installation will dispatch an email in this regard to all Super Users, informing about the availability of the update. The plugin also comes with a link to take you to the update screen, once you have logged in to the Joomla 3.5 features backend.
#3 TinyMCE drag and drop images
This is perhaps the biggest addition to the Joomla 3.5 features; a user-friendly way for adding images directly into the articles. Well, adding images and pictures wasn’t much of a chore anyhow. Using the simple upload function of the standard media manager, available with the editor, any images could be uploaded onto the media library of your website. But the content development process, with this new feature, has been further streamlined by lending the capability to drag and drop the image to the TinyMCE content area. The added image is automatically uploaded to the server and placed inside the content, along with the required optimization.
#4 Inserting modules in articles
Well, inserting modules in the article content is not entirely a new feature. The functionality was added to Joomla 1.5 for the first time and that was ages ago. However, it wasn’t easy for the beginners or those who were not really familiar with the syntax. Joomla 3.5 component development is much more simplified with just a single addition.
While editing text content with the TinyMCE editor, you can see a new button called “module” that has been added to the toolbar. Once you click this button, a list of available modules comes up. Just click on the one that you wish to insert and it will add the correct syntax to your article.
So, what are you waiting for? A brave new world awaits on Joomla 3.5 with numerous new functionalities and customization capabilities. The only thing stopping you now is yourself!