UFO website: Joomla help?

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posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 06:27 PM
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Hi,

I've got to the point that I need help with a couple of issues relating to Joomla (and, to a lessor extent, Javascript) so that I can make more of my UFO notes available for free on the Internet.

After hesitating for the last few years, I've finally decided to set up a website or two to share some of my material relating to UFO and - to a much smaller extent - some of my other interests (particularly 9/11 and possibly also poker...).

As some of you may know, I've posted quite a bit about UFOs on ATS so far - and plan on continuing to do. But (provided I can sole a couple of issues) rather than simply post material when time permits in relevant threads on ATS, I'll now be able to put online some of the hundreds of pages of research notes I've made.

Members of ATS (and others) can then use that material for their own research if they wish, free of charge. The relevant notes cover references for numerous UFO incidents plus information about various infamous UFO videos and photos of "aliens" (including revealing details behind a few significant hoaxes...).

But I need help.

I have time over the Christmas holiday to copy hundreds of pages of my notes (already typed) on to websites I've set up. Unfortunately, quite a bit of my holiday time has been wasted getting to grips with Joomla! (a flexible Content Management System).

In particular, to enable some of the functions I want, I've needed to up-load several Joomla extensions and plugins plus uploaded a few Javascript routines. While I've read a book on Joomla and looked at numerous Joomla websites in recent weeks, I've come across a few problems and am now wasting time trying to find solutions rather than simply getting my notes on to the website.

I'm sure some of my problems would be straightforward to someone that isn't as new to Joomla and Javascript as me (i.e. a few days of experience).

I'll post details below of the first problem I need to resolve (to enable the sorting of tables ).

So, can I get some help from someone on the ATS aliens & UFO forum?

All the best,

Isaac

[edit on 22-12-2008 by IsaacKoi]




posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 06:28 PM
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PROBLEM 1 : Enabling sorting of tables of data

Some of the material I want to put on my website comprises tables of references. On my computer, using Microsoft Word, I can sort the tables of references I created by name of author, date, or length of discussion. Each of these can be quite useful. I’d like the tables I put on the Internet to be sortable as well.

Ok, after a bit of searching I found a set of Javascript routines which apparently enable this and are very easy to install.

(Ease of installation is important to me, as I’ve never looked at Javascript before the last few weeks. I’m just a lawyer…).

Details of the relevant “Standardista” table sorting _javascripts (including instructions on their use) can be found HERE and the _javascript itself downloaded HERE.

This is where I started getting lost....

First, I wasn’t sure how to upload the relevant files or where to.

Second, and more importantly, the instructions at the first link above say to “include the .js files in the HEAD of your webpage”. Well, it seems Joomla doesn’t easily allow you to insert commands in the HEAD section of a webpage. Fortunately, after wasting quite a bit more time, I was able to find a Joomla plugin that allows you to insert commands into the HEAD section of a webpage by enabling the plugin and then putting the relevant commands inside tags.

So, I installed the plugin and put the relevant commands which should (I think) call the relevant _javascript routines inside the tags.

Unfortunately, the table of references still doesn’t sort...

I now have no idea why not.

Did I do something wrong in relation to the Standardista table sorting Javascript? E.g. there were one or two bits and pieces within the zip file I downloaded which I didn’t know what to do with – I just uploaded the 3 specific files which are named in the subsequent commands, i.e. common.js, css.js, standardista-table-sorting.js. Or perhaps I simply put those _javascript files in the wrong place?

Or perhaps the problem is with my use of the tags? Or perhaps the _javascript files I need aren’t compatible with the plugin?

Or perhaps there is some option within Joomla which needs to be enabled or ticked or turned off?

Or perhaps I’ve simply put a comma where I should have put a full stop or something else equally basic.

Heck, I don’t know what error messages (if any) I’d get with each possible error so as to eliminate possibilities.

In short, I’ve had enough of stumbling around in the dark.

I’ve put a sample table of references on this webpage (in relation to Kenneth Arnold’s first UFO sighting in 1947, which has the longest table of references in my notes).

(I haven’t changed most of the standard Joomla sample content that is installed automatically – unless I can overcome this table sorting problem then there isn’t any point making either website I’m creating look pretty).

If anyone thinks they can help but needs to have administrator access to the backend then I’m prepared to create a relevant administrator account.

Oh well, no one ever said that life within ufology was easy…

All the best,

Isaac

[edit on 22-12-2008 by IsaacKoi]



posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 06:58 PM
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I'm not a Joomla expert but I'll offer...

You can alter the header information if you can locate the header tags. I'd try the location that looks something like this (Linux server): /public_html/(site folder)/templates/(template folder)/index.php

Also, unless your telling your template where to find the script, place the java scripts in the same location as your template file that's calling up the script (script_name.js)

I could be completely wrong so remember any changes you make just in case you need to undo them. I do this by copying and pasting the unedited _programs into text files.

Your best bet to get help with this will be Joomla's main website or the plug-in's support page.

[edit on 22/12/08 by Rapacity]



posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 07:18 PM
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Originally posted by Rapacity
I'm not a Joomla expert but I believe the obviously issue might be to do with the template your using - is it a default template or one you've added?

The reason I say this is that (like with SMF and other CMS's and bulletin boards) plugins don't always install off-the-shelf. If you're using a non-default template then you might need to make alterations to it that the plug-in's installation package might make to the default template but not the user installed template. Hope that makes sense. To resolve this type of issue, visit your plug-ins support page.


Many thanks for the comments.

I'm just using the default template at the moment - I'm leaving the look of the site until after I'm sure I can use Joomla for the things I want to do.




You can alter the header information bits between here easily if you can locate it. I'd try the location that looks something like this (Linux server): /public_html/(site folder)/templates/(template folder)/index.php
[/url]


I may resort to this, but I don't want to alter the header for every page and I'm not exactly confident with html (let alone a combination of html, _javascript and Joomla).



Also, unless your telling your template where to find the script, place the java scripts in the same location as your template file that's calling up the script (script_name.js)


I've told the template which sub-directory to look in for the scripts - or at least I think I have...



Your best bet to get help with this will be Joomla's main website or the plug-ins support page.


Mmm. I'll give it a day or two on ATS first and see how far I get - I've seen some posts on Joomla's main forum result in lots of help but I've also seen quite a few requests for assistance that got no response at all.


Thanks again for your comments. I may well have a go at editing the header section of the template, so that I can at least try to narrow down the problem.

All the best,

Isaac

[edit on 22-12-2008 by IsaacKoi]



posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 07:41 PM
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Joomla writes content dynamically - if you alter your template then every page that Joomla writes will carry that change. The header tag will look like this:



< head >

< /head >


When you look at index.php, find the tag < /head > and insert the reference to the script above it:



< head >

(currently present lines will already be here!)

< script type='text/_javascript' src='standardista-table-sorting.js' >< /script >
< /head >


Upload the script to the same folder where your edited template resides.

I'm not sure whether the script will work, though, because you'll be calling it from an article. You have to be able to include the tag that invokes the script in the article with your table.

Note: I've added a space between each occurance of this "" and the tag to enable me to post it here.

[edit on 22/12/08 by Rapacity]



posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 07:57 PM
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That script your using is quite old so might be out of date (Java has changed quite a lot over the last few years). I'm not a Java scripter so I can't check it however, a good page for you to look at is here, Table Sorting, a much easier one can be found here Table Sorting, and, if like me, you like a 3rd description, then you can find a brief one here Table Sort.

I'll keep looking for you (hope you don't suffer paranoia).

If you want some easy read guides to (x)html, then I can point you in the right direction. It doesn't take long to learn a little that will go a long way.

[edit on 22/12/08 by Rapacity]



posted on Dec, 22 2008 @ 09:08 PM
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Originally posted by Rapacity
That script your using is quite old so might be out of date (Java has changed quite a lot over the last few years).


Well, I've now tried editing the HEAD part of the relevant template's index.php file and it doesn't enable sorting of the relevant table on the sample webpage (nor does it cause any error message) - so perhaps the problem is with the _javascript code rather than with Joomla or calling the Javascript.

After a bit of sleep (it's now after 3am here...), I'll have a proper look at some of the more recent code on the webpages that you helpfully mentioned in your latest post.



I'll keep looking for you (hope you don't suffer paranoia).


No paranoia here! I appreciate all your help and suggestions.

I can't shake the feeling that I've been missing something obvious and it helps to have your more informed opinion...



If you want some easy read guides to (x)html, then I can point you in the right direction. It doesn't take long to learn a little that will go a long way.


I'm happy to look at anything you think might be helpful.

All the best,

Isaac



posted on Dec, 23 2008 @ 08:03 AM
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Originally posted by Rapacity
and, if like me, you like a 3rd description, then you can find a brief one here Table Sort.


Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah! All praise the mighty Rapacity!

The newer sorttable routine works and does exactly what I wanted.

Following the various suggesitons you made, I uploaded the newer sorttable script to replace the Standardista one that didn't seem to work and at first the newer sorttable routine didn't seem to do anything.

However, after going through the instructions on each of the links you kindly provided as guides to the newer sorttable script, I was able to fix a couple of minor problems I'd introduced - the final step that got the newer sorttable script working was a simple typo. (The _javascript file has to be referred to as "sorttable" - two "t"s - but the table has to be defined as having the class "sortable" - one "t"). So, I needed the instructions on at least two of the pages you provided to sort out the various problems I initially had, including the third and final link you gave. Third time's a charm...

I'll leave the relevant example table on this temporary webpage while I start the mass up-loading of the various tables of references I want online.

Many, many thanks Rapacity!

All the best,

Isaac


[edit on 23-12-2008 by IsaacKoi]



posted on Dec, 23 2008 @ 11:44 AM
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I'm really glad I helped, it brought a smile to my day. It works fine in Firefox 3 on Linux 64.

Below are links to those helpful guides I offered in my earlier post. Please don't be off-put by their number or perceived complexity. They're really not that frightening once you have a go at writing a webpage.

Guides,

Web Page Development - Best Practices It's written my an Apple fan but don't worry about that, I use Linux on a regular PC, web design is web design. Cater for the popular browsers not the PC's and operating systems.

Learn HTML and CSS. This guide along with the above are probably one of the most useful combinations for learning the basics of HTML and CSS.

HTML Beginner Tutorial. More involved than the above two but will help with consolidation and revision.

Reference Manuals,

XHTML, HTML and CSS Reference Book. I use this one a lot because it doesn't do any more than it says - no clutter.

CSS Tutorial. The link leads directly to the CSS reference part.

HTML Meta Tags. Many useful bits of information go into a page's header section. This is a guide to some of it.

Advanced Web Reference. Bit of a misnomer, this guide really details the tags that work/don't work with different web browsers. Some tags/elements work peculiarly with MS Internet Explorer.

Penultimately, because I know you might need some more scripts, here's a site with loads of Dynamic Drive.

Lasty, check how your page displays in various browsers using BrowserShots but be weary that your sites stats will reflect visits for every shot taken of the pages you request.

Using those guides I was able to build some of my own sites (like this one), within a couple of days. I do have more guides bookmarked so if you need to use them or just want advice/help then send me a U2U of where you've opened your thread.

When you build a webpage, get it working in Firefox first then work on getting it to work in IE. If you use Firefox, install Webdeveloper and Firebug.

Good luck with your site.

[edit on 23/12/08 by Rapacity]



posted on Jan, 23 2009 @ 08:19 PM
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Are you using 1.5?

I have encountered several probems with Joomla myself, so let me know...



posted on Jan, 24 2009 @ 02:34 AM
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Originally posted by Time=Now
Are you using 1.5?


Yes. It's been quite a steep learning curve for me, partly because the underlying concepts are so different to those that were relevant when I used Frontpage to create a small website a few years ago (e.g. Joomla's use of dynamic webpages with templates etc).

Things are starting to come together, so I should soon be able to stop focusing on the mechanics and start focusing on uploading content from my hard drive.

The key for me was the encouragement to have a go at amending the header in the template - this opened up a few possibilities and was much easier than I'd thought it would be. I've since go as far as editing a Javascript file which didn't quite work properly when downloaded...

All the best,

Isaac



posted on Apr, 22 2009 @ 04:01 AM
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If you're still having problems with your site you can reach me @ my personal website DavidAllenNeron.com

That way you can give me the most updated error messages and everything I have a section on my site where you can reach me immediately via an MSN chat window that you can log into anonymously.

I've had quite a few problems with Joomla! that I've been able to fix successfully myself, so hopefully we can get your site working, if you still need the help.





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