Joomla

Comparing Joomla! and Windows

There’s quite a few Joomla! developers that don’t like Windows much.  Most of them prefer Mac OSX, but what they don’t realize is that their favorite CMS has a lot in common with Windows (the operating system).  That’s especially true when you start to compare the versions of Joomla! with the different versions of Windows.  Prepare yourself for a shocking comparison.

Joomla 1.0 = Windows 2000

Joomla 1.0 and Windows 2000 have one thing in common:  they’re both dead.  While both played their roles in history, they were successfully replaced by the other, newest version.  If you’re using either one of these versions, you’re using unsupported software.  Good luck with that.

Joomla 1.5 = Windows XP

You can say about (any) Windows (OS) what you want, but Windows XP pretty much dominated the market.  It was widely accepted by businesses.  It was installed on plenty of home computers.  People were pretty pleased with Windows XP.  It did everything they wanted, and it did it well.  There were plenty of applications to choose from, people easily found their way in Windows XP, everyone knew how to develop fully functioning programs for the OS, and the hardware vendors could rely on a “stable” OS.

Much like Windows XP, Joomla 1.5 became very popular.  It was adapted by most of the people (except a few nut jobs who are still running on 1.0) and there are tons of applications available for Joomla 1.5.  Business know they can rely on Joomla! 1.5 because it’s pretty stable, so they build their websites with Joomla! 1.5.  Or they have people build websites for them.  Either way, it’s commonly accepted that Joomla 1.5 is a solid product.

And then came Vista / 1.6

While people were happily working with Joomla 1.5 or Windows XP, the well-paid developers were working on the next, hotter version.  There was only one problem.  It was taking longer than they expected.  Tests indicated that the “newest and greatest” wasn’t quite stable yet.  Experts said it might not be a good idea to push the software on the market.  Beta testers said they didn’t quite trust this new version yet.

And yet, both the people in charge of building Windows Vista and Joomla 1.6 decided that they couldn’t wait anymore.  They decided to launch their software anyway, despite obvious problems that would rise.

Needless to say, that didn’t turn out well.  Windows Vista was a disaster.  Building applications had become unneccesarely difficult, because of backwards compatibility issues with Windows XP.  Which happened to be the most popular OS at that time.The ACL was a joke, which no-one fully understood – so most people just turned it off.    Business users weren’t too eager to adapt Windows Vista – they weren’t deaf for the problems surrounding the latest and greatest.

We’re seeing the same disappointment right now with Joomla! 1.6.  People are hesitant to adopt the latest and greatest, because they keep hearing about problems.  And because they’re attached to their extensions that used to work just fine, but which are now often simply not available.  Because the developers are still trying to figure out how to tackle the problems 1.6 brought with it.

It’s no surprise to see that the businesses (this could be people in the market for a website, or people building websites) are very hesitant to roll out Joomla! 1.6.  Most of them just don’t consider it to be stable enough.

Joomla 1.7 = Windows 7

This comparison might not be completely fair, because Joomla! 1.7 has always been planned.  What they do have in common, is that they’re a “bridge” between two versions.  An additional step, which is hard to explain to many people.

Why was Windows 7 launched?  Because Windows Vista was a disaster.  It was damage control by Microsoft, and it seems to have worked.  They managed to save some souls, while preparing for the next “real” version of Windows, which for now is referred to as Windows 8.

I’m not saying that Joomla! 1.7 is about “damage control”.  But, like Windows 7, it’s not the “real” next Joomla.  It’s an “in-between version.” One that the masses might skip, knowing that the “real” next OS is around the corner.  Windows 8 or Joomla! 1.8

Joomla 1.8 = Windows 8

Little is known about these two, but they’ve already got one thing in common.  They’re the next, full-fledged version of their software.  The ones you’ll want to build your business around.  The version which, hopefully, the masses will embrace.  Which they’ll accept for their business.  Which they’ll recommend to others, which they’ll build their business around.

Only one thing is certain:  if the XP generation / Joomla 1.5 crew doesn’t make the step to either one of the “8’s” they might be lost for Microsoft / Joomla! forever.

Comments are always welcome.  This post was written on WordPress, which is the Mac OSX of all CMS’es:  easy to use and good looking, but it doesn’t quite have all the apps that Windows / Joomla! does Knipogende emoticon

Edit: As @nonumber_nl pointed out, that does mean Drupal = Linux

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Categories: Joomla

16 replies »

  1. Awesome article! I actually touched on this comparison a while back in a post I made about Failed MVC teachings: http://johnux.com/2009/10/why-is-education-so-misleading/ My post isn’t comparing the versions like yours but mentions the similarity in function. Interesting to see someone with a similar take on this. But anyways, great article, I loved it! I think you pegged the Vista/1.6 Comparison completely!

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  2. Having spent a great deal of time in the Joomla! 1.6 core code, I think it’s fair to say this release will not be remembered as the project’s strongest technical statement.

    Advancements towards nooku like MVC abstraction started to take hold but in a very disorganized fashion with several layers of inheritance that most developers are finding confusing as they get started.

    But even so, it’s immediately perplexing to see how the ACL was implemented using it’s own set of cryptic codes so that gains that were made in abstraction are lost as access control calls are hard-wired into Models, VIews, and Controllers, buttons, filters, grid sorting, and so on.

    The benefits of JForm over JParameter are not clear. Further, it’s not clear what the intension is for filtering, validating, rendering, and generating selection objects is between JForm, JHtml, JTable, JParameter. XML Parameters that used to be shared at least between the backend and frontend of a component must be repeated for ever use — and more code is more bugs.

    Overall, the carefully planned architecture from 1.5 now has a lack of clarity. Kill the messenger or accept the realities of the situation so that we can advance the project.

    Molajo is not a fork unless the project forks us by rejecting our advancements. We want the framework to advance. Frankly, many of us are tired of Drupal (who I love) kicking our ass all the time. We get a lot of guidance from Johan Janssens who is undeniably Joomla!’s leading architect.

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  3. Steven:
    I really do appreciate your creative thinking here – and I did not mean to imply that Molajo is a fork in the ‘true” sense of the word. It does seem to nudge the platform in a useful direction.
    Keep up the good work!

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  4. Perhaps there is a core lesson for platform developers about teamwork and overall project management (cf. well-known stories about Vista’s mishaps and rivalries). But how far can one push parallels between MS and any open-source project? Where the analogy breaks down is on the question of community responses. Joomla extensions and forks like K2 and Molajo bring to mind the way Linux distros keep evolving as different user groups mobilize around new objectives. You probably won’t find that happening in Redmond, at least officially…

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    • Alan,

      I agree that maybe my analogy is a bit far fetched. But sometimes, I just go for it (a blog post) and see where I end 😉

      One remark: neither K2 or Molajo are forks of Joomla. Molajo is a distribution of Joomla (I wrote a post about that some time ago). K2 is an extension for Joomla (both 1.5 and 1.6).

      Personally, I think Joomla’s got a lot of potential. But I do like to stir the pot from time to time, like with this post.

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  5. Blah, blah, blah. Almost nobody transitioned to 1.5 in the first six months either. Same old, same old.

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    • But if I wait 6 months, 1.7 will be there. Wait, I better wait for a while to adapt that right? Let’s say, 6 months? Where does that leave me?

      Oh, right… I’ll be adapting 1.8!

      It’s a bit hard to take your serious, when you’re replying with a bogus e-mail adress, Joe. If that’s your real name 😉

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  6. I never thought of looking at it that way. 1.6 has had it’s share of issues. I found one that turned into a patch, now should be fixed. I’m sticking with 1.5 until 1.8.

    I also hear that 1.8 will have a migrator. 🙂

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    • There’s also a migrator for 1.6. But I, and some other people with Joomla! business are like you: we’re waiting for 1.8 to come out. Let’s be honest: two migrations in a year would be a bit too much (1.6 -> 1.7 -> 1.8) 😉

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  7. P.D.: Yep, WP doesn’t have all the apps that Joomla has, but I actually think that (at least for the user) Joomla and WP have different ‘aims’. That is, as I said, I have some knowledge on Joomla, but, when deciding about creating a small and personal webpage/blog WP became -just- the solution. 🙂

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  8. Great article! I’ve been working with Joomla for some years, and actually loved 1.5, and still do. The last site I created, 2 months ago, was under 1.5.

    I’m currently trying WP, just for the shake of trying something new 😀

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