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Many types of websites can be built and maintained more easily using a content management system (CMS). A CMS provides a web-based interface for creating and organizing content. The content is stored in a database, then consistently presented according to a set of templates and preferences, which eliminates the need to handcraft each page in HTML. Joomla! is a popular, easy-to-use, open-source CMS built in PHP. It has near-limitless functionality, thanks to its community of extension developers. In Joomla! 1.5 Essential Training, Joseph LeBlanc uses Joomla! to build a small-business website from scratch with no programming at all, from installation to launch. He demonstrates how to create and organize content; add menus, sidebars, and other features; change the look with templates; install plug-ins and extensions; and much more. Exercise files accompany the course.
Joomla keeps track of who writes articles and when they're written. All of this information can be changed to suit your needs. Let's go to the Article Manager and now let's pull up About Fresh and Local. Before we start editing things here let's go to the front end. You'll notice this says that this article was written by administrator. That actually is not true. John himself wrote this article and then we entered it into the database. Let's change this. Let's go back to the backend and then on Author Alias, type in John's name.
Then click Apply. Now let's go back to the front end and click Refresh. You'll notice now it says Written by John Callaghan instead of written by administrator. You'll also notice that it says Monday, May 5, 2008 as the creation date. Let's change this. John wrote this several years ago. Let's go back to backend. You'll notice that there's a box for Created Date and a icon for a calendar on the right. A pop-up calendar appears where you can pick any date in the past or future.
We're going to go to the past. Now click Apply. Let's go to the front end and click Refresh. You'll now notice that the date is Wednesday, May 5, 2004. There are other situations where you'll want to display an article for set period of time and then take it off on automatically. Joomla can handle a situation like this. So let's go to the backend.
First you'll notice there's a Start Publishing date. If you want to set this to date in the future and not see this article right away, you can do so here. At the moment it's set to a date in the past and the article on the front end is showing. If we wanted to finish publishing this article at a certain date, we can set that. Let's click the pop-up calendar and we'll set the date for yesterday and then click Apply. Now let's go to the front end. Click Refresh. You'll notice that now About Fresh and Local is no longer displaying because it's finished publishing.
We actually want this article to display so let's go back to the backend and clear the Finish Publishing date. Then click Apply. Now you'll notice in the front end when we refresh, that the article is back. When you have content you want to publish only at certain times, you can use Start Publishing and Finish Publishing to do so. Also, if you're entering content on someone's behalf, you can give them credit through the author alias.
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