Joomla! Super Sprint 2017

 
Diverse teams of talented volunteers from 15 countries across the world came together in London for the Joomla! Super Sprint. January 2017.

 

37 Joomla! developers, integrators, marketers, & designers put in 950 hours of work in London to shape the future of the Joomla! project

The Joomla! Project is an all-volunteer organisation with contributors from across the globe who collaborate to improve the Joomla! Open Source digital platform.

37 talented and diverse volunteers met up during the weekend of 21-22 January in London for the Joomla! Super Sprint. 950 hours of collaborative volunteer work went into the event, bringing people together to cover the various aspects of the Joomla! project.

It was a weekend focused on progress as well as community. Because the volunteers work online from all over the world, it is a rare opportunity to meet in person and utilize the collective energy to move things forward. To share ideas and interact with members from the different teams in order to outline the ongoing development possibilities for 2017.

This Sprint marked a new beginning for the Joomla! volunteer teams, featuring a larger number of participants than ever before, with a renewed focus on coming up with new ways to collaborate. The different teams were united with the common goal of making Joomla! better than ever.

Britta

Britta, redWEB’s Lead Digital Art Director, was one of the individuals invited to participate in the Joomla! Super Sprint. Britta is part of the Joomla! User Experience team, who work towards making Joomla! more user friendly and accessible to a wider audience.

“A lot of exciting things are happening, new people are joining and sharing fresh ideas. The overall mood is very positive and invigorating, and it feels like we are moving into a new era of inspiring possibilities,” says Britta.

In this article, you can read more about what happened at the event, as well as the plans, changes, and additions that the various Joomla! teams will implement in 2017.

You can also find the various teams’ reports from the Joomla! Super Sprint at the volunteer Joomla! portal here.

  

Table of contents:

1) What's going on with Joomla!?
2) User Experience (UX) team
3) Marketing team
4) Joomla! 3.8 Media Manager
5) Joomla! Extensions Directory (JED) team
6) SEO team (AKA the Joomla! Optimisation Team)
7) Joomla! 4.0: Features & Improvements
8) Certification team
9) Do you want to volunteer for the Joomla! project?

  

What’s going on with Joomla!?

Joomla! 3.7

A new version of Joomla! is on the way!

The Joomla! marketing team has been working out the final details of the release, which is expected to be completed in April. Meanwhile, our developers are fixing the last bits and pieces in order to prepare the new version for release.

3.7 will include around 700 enhancements and 37 new features. Here are a few notable ones:

  • Custom fields
  • Multilingual association manager
  • Custom admin menu manager
  • Cleaner and shorter URLs using the new router

The Alpha version was released on January 19.
You can read more about the various features and learn how to help out with testing here.


joomla image

         

User Experience (UX) team

The primary focus of the UX team during the Sprint was to refine the UX process. The team met up with the new Media Manager team as well as the Joomla! 4 team to discuss upcoming opinion surveys, design mockups, and to identify the areas where the UX team can provide the most assistance. Upcoming UI improvements include:

  • Custom fields (3.7)
  • Media Manager (3.8)
  • The backend template (4.0)
  • The control panel / dashboard (4.0)
  • The article list and edit interface (4.0)
  • The toolbar (4.0)

Special guestsmeeting image

The JUX and marketing teams had the pleasure of meeting up with two local experts during the Sprint: Martin Janes, who is a User Experience Consultant, and Renata Douglas-Smith, a User Journey Expert.

They reviewed the teams' proposed process for integrating UX strategies into the Joomla! project and provided them with suggestions and feedback for improvements.

The UX team presented their finalized process to the other teams, and they will release an article describing the planned procedures and recommendations in February 2017.

martin janesrenata

Special guests:

Martin Janes, User Experience Consultant and Renata Douglas-Smith, User Journey Expert.

     

Marketing team

The marketing team has been working on increasing Joomla!’s market share by identifying potential end users with the goal of launching more targeted ad campaigns. The team outlined where Joomla! is positioned in the current market, as well as their thoughts regarding potential high return markets. The ensuing discussion led to a larger agreement on how Joomla! can evolve and grow in the future.

Joomla.org restructuring plan

A redesign of the Joomla.org website was created last year. The rollout and implementation into all community websites is currently underway.

  • The new website design will be rolled out over the following weeks
  • Each page will be tackled individually
  • The marketing and SEO team will improve the contents as wellmarketing
  •  

        

Joomla! 3.8: Media Manager

The focus of the Media Manager team is to transform the Media Manager into a document management system. The team is restructuring the code base in order to improve the UI and to prepare for a new database in Joomla! 4.0, which will allow for a wide variety of new features to be added.

3.8 features:

  • Drag and drop uploads
  • Drag and drop files and folders in the folder tree
  • Show meta information in the preview
  • Basic image editing: Crop, resize, and rotate
  • Improved grid and list views

A survey from the UX team will be sent out shortly to showcase the different solutions they have come up with thus far, and ongoing development plans will be based on feedback collected from the Joomla! Community. The Media Manager team has also collected a list of proposed features for 4.0.

The full roadmap for the Joomla! 3.8 Media Manager can be found here.

          

Joomla! Extensions Directory (JED) team

The JED team is working on improvements to the JED homepage. These include simplifying the appearance of the search options and a better way to display subcategories, as well as general accessibility tweaks and cross-browser optimisations.

You can view the new design here.

 JED img

        

SEO team (AKA the Joomla! Optimisation Team)

The SEO team kicked off the Sprint with a high level overview discussion designed to identify potential tasks and prioritise them. Working with the JED team became the main focus. Here are some of the results:

  • Reviewing and improving the advertisement revenue streams
  • 40% of visitors still use ad blockers
  • Search engine listings and the overall user experience will be improved

The SEO team will start reviewing other Joomla! subsites and they will report their findings and suggestions for improvements to the respective webmasters.

         

Joomla! 4.0: Features & Improvements

The Production Leadership Team gathered some of the developers working on the Joomla! 4.0 project, and here are some of their planned improvements that will be applied to the UI of the admin template:

  • Drag and drop modules for the dashboard
  • Simplification of the article options and global configurations
  • Cleaner and simpler toolbar
  • An improved main menu / submenu
  • A simplified installation process

The 4.0 team met with the UX team on the first day of the Sprint, and laid out their plans for how to implement research and usability testing in order to achieve the best possible results.

4.0 img
  
  
Joomla! 4.0 sneak peek

    

        

Certification team

The Joomla! Certification Program is designed to establish a certain standard and to develop a qualified workforce of Joomla! Professionals all over the world. It provides a documented assessment of knowledge and ensures the qualifications of these certified professionals.

The Joomla! Certification Program is still fairly new. The first exam was held during the 2016 Malaysian Joomla!Day on August 13, 2016. Since then, 63 Joomlers have passed the exam - over 60% of all candidates. The team is still testing and fine tuning the exam.

  • Foreign language translations are being worked on. French is the next to arrive
  • Certified users will be able to embed a clickable badge and certificate on their website
  • 4 Joomlers passed their exams this weekend. Congratulations!

Want to get certified? Read more about the process here.

       

Do you want to volunteer for the Joomla! project?

By volunteering for the Joomla! project, you join a community filled with diverse, skilled people of many backgrounds who work together to empower users and companies to be more competitive on the web. You can make a difference, even with just a few hours a week. Everyone has a skill, and the Joomla! project would love to discover it!

Read more about volunteering at the Joomla! volunteer portal.

“I volunteer because I find it incredibly satisfying to give something back to the Joomla! project. Meeting with such an international and diverse group of passionate individuals changes you. You feel energized, inspired and able to overcome anything.”

- Britta Jonasson Stender, Lead Digital Art Director, redWEB

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