Editing your web site on the go was perhaps not a big issue a year ago. Today, the picture is much different. With iPhones, and particularly iPads and similar tablets, the ability to edit Joomla web sites anywhere is something more and more users are looking for.
However, the current Joomla interface and core extensions do not make this an easy task. To streamline the experience, you need to install some third-party extensions and templates.
This post is based on an email I got from a JoomlaBlogger reader called Lynne from Prescott, Arizona, U.S.
Lynne runs a news website called Prescott Enews, and she does a lot of live updates to the site. She tells me she wanted to be able to manage the site from her iPad. Rather than the laptop, which, although beautiful as she says, is more cumbersome.
She tried a few solutions for making Joomla mobile, but they couldn't help her as her site was made with Joomla and K2. What she wanted was to simply log in, and edit it like normal. Couldn't be that hard, could it?
The first problem she ran into when trying this, was the fact that JavScript WYSIWYG editors like JCE and CKeditor doesn't show up on the iPad. The reason for this is that the iOS 4.3 version of the Safari browser lacks support for contentEditable. This is what turns a textarea in the browser into an editable area. It's still not known if contentEditable will be included in iOS5. It sort of works on the iOS, but there are issues with the cursor position (caret).
In the TinyMCE source, there are some comments about this:
// Is a iPad/iPhone, then skip initialization. We need to sniff here since the
// browser says it has contentEditable support but there is no visible caret
// We will remove this check ones Apple implements full contentEditable support
The solution Lynne came up with was the following:
- Go to the AdminPraise web site
- Download the Simple Content Editor for Mobile Devices and the My Editor extensions (they're free.)
- She decided to also download the AdminPad (on sale now for $28) and says: "I'm not sure this was absolutely necessary, but it does make it easier."
Here's a bit more about each of the extensions:
AdminPad is an admin template made specifically for the Apple iPad. AdminPad comes with 5 themes that have a similar look and feel as iPad apps.
You could also check out the amazing AdminPraise 3 template, which is a fully fledged Joomla admin template that will adapt to the screen size you're using.
Simple Content Editor
SimpleCE is similar to a BBcode editor, in which you can view the html code and easily add tags to content.
Other alternatives are MarkItUp from JoomlaShack and RokPad from RocketTheme. These extensions have similar functionality as SimpleCE.
Of course, these extensions require that you know some basic HTML, but that's something you should know anyway when working on Joomla sites.
My Editor is a tiny plugin that allows you to quickly change or turn off your editor.
A huge timesaver and very convenient when switching between an iPad and a laptop or other device.
Lynne also writes: "I also chose to use the Apple Wireless Keyboard, it just makes it easier. With that I can change the editor much more easily on the fly, and edit on the iPad."
I could add that there is an excellent keyboard / iPad stand combo out there which is even smoother in use than the wireles keyboard: The ZAGGmate Aluminum iPad 1G Case and Bluetooth Keyboard. I have used the wireless keyboard with the iPad, and I found it a bit hard to use on the train etc (balancing the iPad and the keyboard...). I hear a lot of good things about the ZAGGmate.
Thanks Lynne, for sharing these tips with us!