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Labs

Published on Monday, 09 April 2007
The labs at Absalom Media are focussed on end user testing and usability of content management systems across the Net.

Speed testing

At the moment we are running a live stress and speed test of the Joomla! codebase in how it deals with forked material. The setup is fairly simple. It's one database, with 3 slightly different installs of Joomla! interfacing to it:
  • One standard Joomla! 1.0.12 install, for as the control test group.
  • One 1.0.12 install with template overrides in effect.
  • One 1.0.12 install with the same changes seen in the overrides now integrated.
Each edition of Joomla! within this stress and speed test has also had one minor template customisation, displaying the rendering time for the page as part of the design. This visual representation is based on Matthew Capewell's work.

This test remains a public evaluation of current and future design principles in the Joomla! project as both the 1.0.x and 1.5 codebase utilise the same architecture. This architecture is being touted by the Joomla! teams as the best path to deliver accessibility and usability.

Microformats

Absalom Media are also involved in developing a stable of microformatted components, modules and plugins for Joomla! 1.0.x, based partially on the Project Orange work delivered for Mambo,  Joomla 1.0.x, Wordpress and a few other content management systems. It aims to be a best of breed solution as it will be taking the best aspects of each system and unifying them into one product. It is primarily a generational endeavour (G1 signifies Generation 1, G2 signifies G2, et al.), with potential code to be shared as part of Joomla 2.0 and Mambo 4.7/5.

The development path is:
  • Alpha: Initial proof of concept with a8e .10 and Joomla 1.0.10 (Aug/Sep 2006)

  • Beta: Stable proof of concept with a8e .11 and Joomla 1.0.11 (Oct/Nov 2006)

  • G1: Standardised microformat spec based on a8e. (Code was closed 17th Dec 2006)

  • G2: Remove dependencies based on a8e specific code, Wordpress calendar / date switching, implemenation of the Joomla! page title hack, microformat of all frontend core (code closed 12th Jan 2006).  JoomlaMUG is a live example on this generation of code.

  • G3: Microformat of 3PD work. Manipulate content structures to display Wordpress style content maps (i.e date based archives and tag based archives instead of section/category dependencies seen in Joomla!), including a third party XML/AJAX thing (timeline as well as calendar of posts/events). XFN relationships get added to some core components. URI management changes start here (proof of concept integration into configuration area of J!). Code closed 16th  February 2007.

  • G4: ACL and versioning - alpha edition. Code closed 20th March 2007

  • G5: MicroID, Geocoding / mapping and OpenID integration for 3PDs and core. . Continuing.

  • G6: Using the StyleAMP semantic layout generator, switch all current microformat “core” and “3pd” work to the "amped" codebase, minimising server load as microformat design will just be a StyleAMP template. Sometime post-beta for StyleAMP.
Convergence

As 2007 seems to be the year of converging applications, these are the potential targets:
  • Akismet, Spam Karma and Bad Behaviour for Mambo
  • Drupal's Project Gutenberg for Wordpress, Mambo and Joomla!
  • Microformats for Mambo
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