Joomla recently released version 1.7 of their self-titled software which has been redesigned to support functions outside the scope of traditional web content management. Developers and website administrators will now be able to use the software as a framework for other types of web applications.
New Development Lifecycle
The updated version is also the beginning of a new development lifecycle for open-source software in general. This variant allows for quick updates and long-term support for corporations. The two primary goals for the software were to release an on-time, complete platform.
The Joomla team plans to release a new version every six months; in January and July. Also, every third release will carry the designation of a long-term release (LTS) which will offer support for 18 months complete with security upgrades and bug fixes. The next version of the software, which is due in January, will be LTS. However, the current version will provide support for the next seven months.
The release of this new schedule should force specific benchmarks for the development cycle. In the past, new versions of Joomla were only released when all new features were completely developed. Under this type of scheduling it took Joomla 1.6 three years to be released.
Two User Preferences
The development team is faced with two types of user preferences. The first is that many users demand to have access to the most recent advancements immediately. The second is many large websites utilize Joomla so it is difficult for them to update their software every six months.
However, the new development timeline will allow the best of both worlds. Users who need long-term releases will be supported while users that want the latest and greatest can upgrade every six months.
Joomla Company Information
First released in 2005, Joomla is one of the most widely-used open source content management systems. Major clients include McDonald’s, Sony, Citibank, eBay and General Electric. Since 2007, the software has been downloaded over 24 million times and growing. Contributing developers have created over 8,000 extensions, most of which are available for free.
The new timetable for releases should greatly improve the efficiency and performance of Joomla. The nice aspect is if a small website does not like the new versions, they only have to wait six months for an update. At the same time, major websites will have support for almost two years. Sounds like this is a rare win-win situation.