The Joomla! Community Magazine™

Ruth Cheesley

Ruth Cheesley

Ruth Cheesley is CEO and Co-Founder of Virya Group and has worked with Joomla! since the fork from Mambo.  She specialises in Joomla! - in particular Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) - and is interested in exploring how open source technology can be implemented in business and education.  Virya means a driving force or energy to do good for the benefit of others, which is the central ethos behind the business.

She's also a field hockey goal keeper, training for ordination in the Triratna Buddhist Order and runs the popular Joomla! User Group Suffolk, as well as being part of the Joomla!Day UK organising team.  Ruth joined the Joomla! Community Leadership Team in 2013.

Sunday, 01 February 2015 00:00

Notable Technical Women Card Decks

Last October, Sarah Watz and I represented Joomla at the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing at Phoenix, Arizona.  A few booths down from our position was Duke University, which was launching a Kickstarter campaign to create a card deck and poster showcasing notable women in computing throughout the ages, it was fully funded within days, eventually closing at $15,010, 500% of its target. The card decks were also sent out to over 500 educators from around the world - people backing the project could opt for a 'get one, give one' option which sent a pack to an educator in additon to them receiving their own pack - and the project has continued to grow, now including daughter projects featuring upcoming leaders in the Middle East & Africa.
One of the hidden gems which appeared with the 1.6 version of Joomla is the Redirect Manager - a simple system which allows you to identify and fix broken links. Before the Redirect Manager was introduced, the only way to find and fix broken URLs was to use a third party extension, an SEO scraper such as Screaming Frog, or looking in your server logs. Now it's possible to identify and manage broken links within the administrator panel of your Joomla website.
Monday, 01 September 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - August 2014

With 175 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Monday, 01 September 2014 00:00

Joomla! on Lanyrd

Organising an event can be quite a difficult process – finding a venue, getting listed on events.joomla.org, organising sponsors and more. The Joomla! project has made one step that little bit easier – finding and inviting speakers from within the Joomla Leadership Teams to attend your events – with their new Lanyrd Team.
Friday, 01 August 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - July 2014

With 175 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Tuesday, 01 July 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - June 2014

With 172 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Sunday, 01 June 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - May 2014

With 169 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Building on the great success of the collaborative approach at CMS Africa, Ben van t'Ende – Community Manager at Typo3 – set about organising a European Community Leadership Summit to bring together community leaders and managers from all kinds of projects around Europe to share knowledge, ideas and inspiration.
Thursday, 01 May 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - April 2014

With 168 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed athttp://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
So, if you followed my tips in Part 1 of this series, you’ve hopefully carefully planned out your migration strategy, identified all the links you need to migrate, created your redirects, and at some point, you’re ready to push the button and migrate your site. Before you do this, and for a period of time after the new site launches, you’ll need to make sure you monitor your website traffic in case you missed anything, or ended up with problems such as redirect loops or drops in conversion rate. This article will focus on how you can ensure you are monitoring your website appropriately using Joomla and other tools so that you quickly pick up on developing problems in the few weeks and months following a migration.
Tuesday, 01 April 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - March 2014

With 162 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
We’ve all done it – worked for months on a migration, put in all the finishing touches, uploaded it to our server and closed our eyes (and probably crossed our fingers) while turning our shining new website live to the world. I expect many of us have also done this without thinking about the changes we might have made in the process, and particularly without considering any impact this might have on our position in search engines. I hope that this series of articles will give you some ‘top tips’ of things you must do before, during and after your migration to maintain your hard-earned search engine optimisation and avoid incurring penalties post-migration.
Saturday, 01 February 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - January 2014

With 160 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email atThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed athttp://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html). 
Wednesday, 01 January 2014 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - December 2013

With 159 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html). 
Sunday, 01 December 2013 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - November 2013

With 159 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community! This is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please send me an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You must be writing from a registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Friday, 01 November 2013 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - October 2013

With 157 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community - this is a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - you must be writing from a Registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Tuesday, 01 October 2013 00:00

Roundup from JUG Corner - September 2013

With 163 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community - and I hope to produce a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - you must be writing from a Registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
Sunday, 01 September 2013 00:00

Joomla!Day Kenya 2013 - Asante Kenya!

Seeing how are open source technologies can make a real difference in someone's life is something quite special, but see how it can help a nation to develop into the central hub for technology is just inspiring. Joomla!Day Kenya was my first visit to Africa, and I really didn't know what to expect. I had heard there was a lot of suport for Open Source technologies in Kenya and Africa as a whole, with there already being several Joomla! user groups in existence across Africa, but none in Kenya ... yet.
Sunday, 01 September 2013 00:00

Roundup From JUG Corner - August 2013

With 164 user groups around the world, there is always something exciting and interesting happening in the Joomla! Community - and I hope to produce a monthly round-up highlighting new Joomla! User Groups, events, and reviews of JUG meetings. If you have anything you would like me to feature from your Joomla User Group please email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - you must be writing from a Registered Joomla! User Group (i.e. listed at http://community.joomla.org/user-groups.html).
We've all seen the social sharing icons which appear at the bottom of many websites encouraging people to like and share your content, but what if you could have the message that your visitors are pushing out to their social streams become more interactive? Google+ has just introduced 'interactive Posts' which help your shared posts stand out from the crowd - this could be a real game changer for many websites and an interesting way to develop social interaction with your visitors' networks.
Choosing the URL to use for your business can be a difficult decision - so many factors to consider!  Will customers remember it?  Does it say what you do?  How well will it optimise in search engines?
Keeping up with changes from Google can be rather challenging at the best of times, and some of the more recent changes and advanced features added to their popular analytics platform have gone largely unnoticed by many people. This series of articles will take you through some of the more recent additions, and also highlight some useful features that you may not have previously explored.
Tuesday, 01 January 2013 00:00

How Secure is Your Joomla! Website?

Joomla! is fast becoming one of the most popular content management systems in the world, powering almost 3% of the web and exceeding 30 million downloads - the chances are during your day you probably browse at least one website using Joomla!. Many businesses rely on Joomla! for their web presence, but often business owners are not empowered to ensure that their website is being managed properly, or is up to date with the latest security patches.  This article gives Joomla! website owners some simple tips to ensure that your website is up to date, and some tools to make that process easier!
You may have noticed recently that extra bits of information have started appearing in search results, perhaps photos of the author, reviews of a product, maps showing the location of a store or links which allow you to jump to a certain location within a page. 
Google has been tweaking its algorithms (the systems it uses to identify how relevant it's links are to the search terms entered) over the years, with a view to improving the user experience, and promoting results which are more relevant and abide by their recommended guidelines relating to search engine optimisation. Two updates were released in recent history which have hit some sites particularly hard. This article will cover the Google update first seen in February 2011 and later rolled out internationally in August 2011 known as 'Panda' or 'Farmer', and the more recent Penguin update.
Saturday, 01 September 2012 00:00

Why You Should be Paying Attention to Google+

With the abundance of social networks that spring up on an almost daily basis, you would be forgiven for emitting a dramatic sigh to hear that you need to start paying attention to another social network. But this time, really, you do!
In the summer of 2011, Virya Technologies had reached a point where the company needed to expand due to the volume of work, but also wanted to invest in the community and provide an opportunity for a young person to gain employment, training, and involvement in Open Source technologies.