Before starting to go more in depth as to why I’m deciding to no longer recommend a CMS, I just want to remind everybody that this is just my personal opinion – what works for me may not necessarily work for you and vice versa.
I’ve recommended WordPress for years to users with varying level of technical abilities. Mostly to people that just wanted to start a blog or have a small website but also to folks that needed a CMS for more complex projects – online zines, corporate sites and others. An it was good advice, I thought. The system did everything they needed it to do. That may still be the case for many people but here’s the thing:
Before WordPress came along, Joomla was, at least for me, the best CMS around. It was far from perfect and I have my fair share of grey hairs from trying to make it behave and still it was far better than anything else available at the time. Then WordPress cam along, grew exponentially and eventually became a full blown CMS, not just a blogging platform, effectively blowing Joomla out of the water.
Since then things have been moving forward and both WP and Joomla are now different products but at least now it’s a lot easier to find good hosting for Joomla (http://www.alotspace.com/app-installer-php-scripts/joomla-web-hosting/) It’s not like WordPress isn’t good anymore – it is, but the good ol’ Joomla is back with a vengeance with it’s new version 3! In its previous incarnation it was a bit too much for the regular user to get into easily. But now it’s a completely different animal and it’s awesome. They’ve revamped the administration area and now it actually makes sense to normal humans which for me is enough reason to recommend it to people when they ask what CMS to use for a project.
If you’ve been a Joomla user you know all the things that made it cool ever since it started out – the modules system, etc. Well, of course the Joomla team kept all of this intact (imagine if they didn’t) and made it even better by combining it with a user interface that’s intuitive, easy to understand and doesn’t get in the way of your work. Now not only can I start using my favorite CMS again because it actually works well, but I can wholeheartedly say to people ‘You know what why don’t you try Joomla instead’.
They’ve used the Bootstrap framework for the admin area which makes it fully responsive, looks great on any device and is very usable. It’s basically redesigned from scratch and if you’re a Joomla power user it will definetely improve your workflow.
You might say ‘I’m a developer and I don’t have time to muck about with new and weird interfaces that I’ll have to learn in order to get things done.’ I hear ya, but you’d be wrong to assume you’d be struggling to get things going at a reasonable pace. Joomla now has LESS, CSS and jQuery integration which means you don’t have to write as much code as before. Even more awesome – you can take advantage of the Icomoon font icon library! Thousands of retina-optimized icons for your designs available at your fingertips.
Need I go on? Joomla is now a perfectly mature product that can be easily used for anything and by anybody which makes it my CMS of choice for the foreseeable future.