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Installing Joomla in learning environments - In this article, I describe the benefits of Joomla learning environments, list the software packages you'll need to build your own, and provide step-by-step instructions on installing the software on local computers and USB thumb drives.
Saturday, 01 March 2014 00:00

Building Joomla! Web-Help Systems - Part 2

Installing Joomla in production environments - in this article I start with a basic, high-level explanation of how Apache's document root works, which I hope will give you a clear understanding of how you can easily install multiple instances of Joomla under a single domain. Next, I list some of the benefits of creating separate web-help sites for individual products. And, finally, I cover the options available for installing Joomla in your production environments.
This is the first in a short series of articles intended to help technical writers and instructional designers learn how to build Joomla web-help systems. However, if you’re not a professional writer, you may still have an interest in the topic. For example, maybe you’re a one-person development shop, or you work for a small company without technical writers, and you want to write and publish your own software documentation. If you fall into the latter category, you will find these articles are geared toward beginners, as most writers will have less experience with Joomla. But, I hope they will give you a few ideas on how you might build your own publishing platform.
Wednesday, 01 January 2014 00:00

Using Joomla! as a Help Development Tool

In my first article, I posed the idea that Joomla! could be the next "killer app" for professional writers. In this article, I compare Joomla to commercial help development tools and, hopefully, provide writers with a compelling case for switching to Joomla. I think Joomla offers the best path forward in the evolution of help development.
As a technical writer, I think Opensource Matters is missing an important marketing opportunity by not targeting Joomla! at the professional writing community. By "professional writing community," I don't mean novelists, poets, or publishing company editors (though, Joomla! would be great for them too) - I mean professional writers in the corporate world: technical writers, instructional designers, and marketing personnel. While the professional writing community is a smaller, more-niche market than the corporate CMS market and the software development community, I have thought for some time that Joomla! could be the next "killer app" for professional writers.