The Joomla Production leadership team has just announced the revised release schedule for Joomla 3.3 with a RC expected by 15th April & a stable release by the 22nd of April. But hey you don't have to wait that long to try Joomla 3.3 & get your hands dirty ! The first Beta will be available on April 1st ( April Fools day i know but it is actually true !)
If you cant wait & want to see what it offers right away, then you might as well help the community test this release & make it the most stable Joomla release ever ! Testing features & patches has been made super easy by the Patcher extension & you don't need to be a coder by far to help with testing. Testing, one thing it gives you a sneak peek into whats coming & at the same time helps the project ! Read this Blog to help test Joomla 3.3 . So Go ahead & help Do More testing !
Joomla 3.3 is All about Doing More !
Joomla 3.3 continues the tradition set by the Joomla 3X series of getting great backward compatible releases out with awesome new features that are rock stable. One of the great things about this releases is that a lot of these features were built as part of Google Summer of Code in 2013 ! Yay for the Community & three Cheers for the participating students !
So What are all these cool features in Joomla 3.3 ?
Microdata Library & implementation in the CMS
The history of micro data goes back a few years when major search engines including arch rivals - Google & Bing agreed to collaborate on a data format for handling semantic data on the web. As the content on the web grows by leaps & bounds, it gets harder to provide context to data. Microdata & semantics aims at letting you create webpages having semantic data in a structured format making it easy to provide context. To make it simple , when you say "Ratatouille" are you talking about the dish or the movie ? Microdata lets you tell that to search engines. Cool eh ? The current Joomla implementation of microdata follows the syntax given by http://schema.org/
This should quieten the critics who said Joomla's out of the box SEO sucked. The 3X series has added awesome SEO capabilities to Joomla & gone the extra mile with microdata !
Bye bye MooTools, Welcome jQuery
This has been a major debate on various Joomla forums & has been a pain for a while now. Joomla has been supporting Mootools in the core for a while now. However JQuery is much more popular with developers & it was common to see Mootools & JQuery conflicts on various levels on major sites. Resolving these was a major issue for developers. With Joomla natively supporting JQuery now, hopefully we will soon see all developers stop loading multiple copies of JS libraries & produce a cleaner & swifter Joomla !
Joomla is on Cloud 9 with Cloud Storage APIs
Joomla i think is easily the first CMS to provide Cloud storage capabilities out of the box for extension developers. Now for version 3.3 at least it doesn't look like the CMS itself will have a core plugin that will utilize the cloud APIs for any media or asset storage from the CMS. However the APIs will be available for developers to use in their own extensions. Hopefully future versions will see a native plugin in the CMS for this.
Improved Front end Editing !
Till Joomla 3.2 you were redirected to the backend to edit Modules. Joomla 3.3 brings it all to the frontend. Its now super easy to edit stuff on the frontend , saves a ton of time and mainly makes it so much more intuitive !
Taking Security to the next level
Joomla has taken center stage in being the market leader in pushing web application security to new levels. It was the first CMS to introduce 2 factor authentication for instance. In Joomla 3.3, we will see introduction of improved password hashing with Bcrytpt as well as an improved remember me functionality.
What Else ?
Well as you guessed, it doesn't stop there ! Designers are sure to love the new JLayouts improvements putting more power in their hands. Improved Router performance & tons of Bug fixes are sure to make this the Best & most stable Joomla release ever !
Jump on & Start the conversation !
What do you think of this Joomla release ? Whats the feature you love the most ? Where does this put the Joomla product in comparison with the other major CMS Products out there ?
Thanks to the Joomlart guys for the awesome Promo image !