On the 16th of September the world welcomed Joomla!, the latest in innovation of CMSs. What could initially have been branded as simply a rendition considering its roots in the established Mambo Project, the Joomla! Project took on a life of its own as it grew to quickly eclipse its predecessor, and become one of the world's dominant Content Management Systems.
From its opening bars the Joomla! Symphony was unique. It embraced the Open Source ideals in developing a global community of volunteers working together. It revolutionized Content Management with a solution that was as useful to developers as it was accessible to the average user. It remained unique in its constant push forward powered solely by its community - no corporate backing, no investment capital.
As with any symphony though (or any community-based project for that matter), Joomla! hasn't always been the well orchestrated performance you might think. Despite being far from perfect, Joomla! continues to amaze even as it moves through community and code related struggles, often emerging stronger, crescendoing to greater success.
Today's Joomla! Performers have an important task laid out. While Joomla! still remains a world class software, and has the potential to grow exponentially, the risk of becoming a "forgotten symphony" (like Dvorak's Symphony No. 1) still looms. Whether it is a stagnation of innovation and development from not attracting a fresh base of contributors and community leaders, or fallout from community disputes and disagreements, the risk is there, and entirely possible.
Having come this far, successfully navigating through many challenges, and demonstrating great success so far, the future story of Joomla! has yet to be written. The good news is that that story is written by you! As a part of the Joomla! community, your hand is crucial in composing and conducting the future movements of this symphony. With recent innovations and enormous progress being made within the project and the software itself, the future certainly looks bright for this masterpiece. But that can quickly change to clashing tones and transform into a dissonant jumble of competing instruments.
In this Joomla! Symphony, every performer, every community member is equally important. Without that community, Joomla! is nothing! While everyone might agree that conflict will arise (it's inevitable, we're all unique people with our own opinions), escalating those with personal attacks, or running feuds only serves to drive a discordant wedge into what is definitely a bright future. The success or failure of this rather unique "social experiment" we call Joomla! rests on the ability of each member of the orchestra being able to successfully work through any differences, and continue to play in sync.
With a community that is constantly working together to move the project forward, "Joomla!: The Symphony" will continue to be a unique masterpiece, constantly evolving, powered by a passionate community, a source of inspiration for future community projects, and always ready to tackle greater things.
Make a difference today! Here's some great resources to help you get involved in the Joomla! Project and Community. "The Joomla! project wants you - September 2011" by Paul Orwig, and "Community involvement: 10 ideas about how you can help in the Joomla! community (part 1 of 2)" by Peter Martin