Today we released Matukio 2.2.2 - Primary a big maintenance update, but because I was very busy when we released Matukio 2.2 some weeks ago, in this blog post I'm going to explain all changes the current version offers in comparison to the latest 2.1 version 2.1.10. In fact 2.2 brought so many changes that we thought about calling it 3.0, but we'll save it for the next for the next Joomla LTS Version (3.5), where we will also have a complete rewritten backend (100% Bootstrap, even in the "old" areas). To see Matukio 2.2 live in action take a look at the demo page, hundreds of screenshots (both backend or frontend) are waiting for you in here.The template systemOne of the most desired and biggest changes is the new Template System for E-Mails, Export lists (like signature, participants list and csv) and certificate templates. You now can easily customize these to your need with the Joomla editor, field data can be easily inserted by using MAT_BOOKING_FIELDNAME (for example MAT_BOOKING_CITY will be replaced through the users booking value in the field city) or MAT_EVENT_FIELD for the events details. Along side you could also support multi-language through language keys. The booking E-Mail and the Certificate can also be customized / overwritten in the event edit / create dialog.New eventlist templateFitting to the new modern event template which was introduced in 2.1, we now have also a new modern eventlist template. The new template is also completely table less and optimized for an optimal events experience. Fitting to the new modern layout (which you can customize through many paramenters in the backend) you can now have hot and top events (with different css classes and some more nice promotion visuals). The template is also optimized for webinars and events with a location (you can now view the location map directly from the eventlist by clicking on the icon) - if you are using organizer pages you can also access them directly though it.Payment PluginsIn 2.2 we moved to the Joomla payments API which offers a standardized way of implementing new payment methods. Currently Matukio supports the following payment methods: Cash, Banktransfer, PayPal (both normal PayPal and PayPal Pro), PayU, Pay by check, Pay by PO, Amazon, Authorize Net, CCAvenue and some more. You can customize, enable and disable plugins in the Joomla -> Extension Manager. If you disable all, the payment processing will be completely shut off. Optimized Booking formThe new booking form has been improved many ways, starting from a better and complete summary on page 3 (now including payment details), which now complies with the european / german laws and many other small additions and bugfixes making bookings much more user friendly.Organizer pagesYou can now have custom organizer pages presenting your organizer to your visitor. You can use any HTML-Code you want for that and the pages are deeply integrated into the whole event system.New modules2.2 also brings four new different modules to you (you can still use the old one):- Calendar module offers you a nice, AJAX driven view of the next events. - Upcoming events- Booking module- Upcoming events slideshow Import events and bookings from SeminarYou can now easily import your old event data from Joomla 1.5 Seminar. All event details, all bookings and the categories are imported into your Joomla 2.5 / 3 page with one click. Various Bugfixes and smaller improvmentsBeside the explained changes / updates you can find many other updates and improvements in Matukio, like better support for access levels, improved webinar support, hundreds of new tooltips in the backend which explain all features and options and so much more. In conclusion we like to thank you the community for your continuous bug reporting, feature requests and ideas - without you Matukio wouldn't be what it is today! Thank you!
After the feature full 3.4 release last month, it was time to top that by releasing Hotspots 3.5 . This version should excite a lot of you who were waiting for "latest hotspots" module and the ability to disable certain categories for frontend marker submission. In addition to this we've added the long awaited AlphaUserPoints integration. If you have a community website you'll be happy to know that the name of the user who submitted a location can now be linked to his Jomsocial or Community Builder profile.
A lot of people also wanted to set the map center depending on the user's location. This is now also possible and you can see it in action on our demo page. The user centering is a complex beast. We first match the IP of the user and try to find out his position(which is not always correct) and we set the map to center there. After that if you decide to turn on HTML5 geolocation the user will be asked for his location. If he decides to share it, then we will - re-center the map to that location. You can learn more about that in our documentation.
Today I've released CTransifex 1.5. It fixes all reported problem since the last release (problems with the installation of the language packs) and also introduces a new language view, that will give your users more information about the status of the translation:
The "Contribute now" button will lead users directly to the language editor in transifex.
A less known feature of the Google Maps API is that it provides support for different kind of layers. With Hotspots 3.4 with just 1 click you can enable support for the Weather, Traffic, Transit, Bicycle & Panoramio layers (please note not all layers are available in all parts of the world).
If you wonder why layers are so cool, here are few examples:
Hotspots 3.3 is a maintenance release. We've fixed quite a few bugs since the last release :) But a thing that really excites me is the support for the Styled Maps feature in the Google Maps API.
Ever since I saw a demo of it I wanted to add it to Hotspots. Now it is here! You can check it in action over here. Now you can create a map that closely matches the style of your site. If you have a dark template you can generate a dark map with just a few clicks. Use the Google Maps API Styled Maps Wizard & then just copy and past the JSON string in the Hotspots configuration. That is all!
It's been nearly 2 years since we released the last CComment update. Unfortunately there is always a moment in the life of a software product when adding a new feature means breaking 10 others. The first version of CComment was developed in 2005 (originally !joomlacomment) following the best programming conventions back then. But as it happens -> what was really great 8 years ago is outdated & unmaintainable today. CComment was feature full, but extremely hard to support. That is why in the end of 2011 we've set on the task of rewriting it, but before we've started with any code we've laid out some of the most important areas that needed improvement:
If you’ve been following the news in the Joomla world for the last couple of months you might be already aware of the Joomla Humble Bundle. If you don't know what I'm talking about, then read this blog post from Joomlart:http://www.joomlart.com/blog/news-updates/joomla-humble-bundle-join-hands-to-raise-1m-funds-for-joomlaorg-purchase-for-a-good-cause
Basically the Joomla Humble Bundle is an initiative to raise one Million US-Dollar for the Joomla project. Currently we are far away from this goal, but it is better to make a small step, than to do nothing right? And the best part is that in the last 3 months we were able to get awesome products at an awesome price!
A year ago I was helping a friend to make his homepage with Joomla. We needed a facebook fan page module. Actually we didn't needed it, but I was too lazy to add the facebook fan page code myself as I had to edit the template (to do it the HTML5 way...). So instead of doing it myself - I went on a hunt for a good Facebook page module. After a short look at the JED I found my module - it had the best reviews... I tested it - it worked! Hurray!
Unfortunately the other day the facebook fan box was not displayed by the module anymore. So today I decided to have a look at the actual HTML code that was generated & I was shocked to discover a hidden link. The link was pointing to a shop for flowers, so at least it is not a malware site... I immediately thought that the site was hacked and I went to look at the PHP code of the module. It turns out the website was not hacked & the link is generated by the module code. So I downloaded the last version of the module and had a look at the code again - well, this time there was again a hidden link, but it was pointing to another site. (you know what that means right?)
Apparently I've spent too much time with the Mandrill service. So much time, that I really love it, but people around me just don't get it. That is why before I introduce to your our new extension, I'll spent few minutes explaining what transactional emails are, why they matter and why Mandrill is so awesome!
So what is a transactional email? Basically it is an email sent to an individual based on an action. It could be:
- an action they took directly
- an action they were the target of
- even an inaction (such as a reminder mail telling your users to log on to your website)
For example - if you register on compojoom.com, first you'll get a mail asking you to confirm your registration. This mail is a transactional email (it was sent due to an action) & it is extremely important that it lands in your inbox. If it doesn't, then you cannot complete the registration process.
Well, as it usually happens something that needs 10mins of work turns out to be a whole day worth of work... CUpdater was originally developed for Joomla 2.5 so the update to 3.0 shouldn't have been that big of deal. Unfortunately a small change in the Joomla API can lead to serious issues. This is going to get a little technical, so if you are not in the mood you can just go to the download section :)
On Joomla 3 the findUpdate function was updated to use the JHttp get method instead of fopen. Which is of course great, however when you have an update url that is not returning what we expect things get nasty. Whenever I was trying to check for updates I was getting "No HTTP response received.". So I turned xdebug and started going through the code line for line. First were the joomla update urls -> they all were resolved just fine. Then came a compojoom update url. And voila I got the error. Copy pasting the url in the browser was returning the correct xml format expected from Joomla . So after watching the screen and scratching my head I decided to debug further. It turns out that the JHttpTransportCurl class cannot handle https urls (or at least it cannot handle them on my server). So the getResponse method in the class throws an UnexpectedValueException because curl couldn't fetch the content.Now if I'm in the backend and I manually click on the find updates button and I get an ugly error message on the screen I might get confused & annoyed, but I've caused it by clicking on the button & I'm the only one who sees it, so it is not that big of a deal. But if you have a plugin that randomly checks for updates when normal users are on the site things can confusing.