✔ WHAT IS K2?
K2 provides an out-of-the box integrated solution featuring rich content forms for items (think of Joomla! articles with additional fields for article images, videos, image galleries and attachments), nested-level categories, tags, comments, a system to extend the item base form with additional fields (similar to CCK for those acquainted with Drupal), a powerful plugin API to extend item, category and user forms, ACL, frontend editing, sub-templates & a lot more!
Using K2, you can transform your Joomla! website to a news/magazine site with author blogs, product catalogs, work portfolio, knowledge base, download/document manager, directory listing, event listing & more, all this bundled under one package!
Give K2 a try & you'll instantly love it! It's easy to use and fun to develop websites with! If you need any help or want to contribute to the project, join us at the K2 community.
Since K2 is extensible with additional fields to its base item form, you can easily create category-specific content types, e.g. article, blog post, product page, directory listing.
K2 offers as standard:
- nested-level categories (no section/category restrictions)
- commenting, integrated with Google's reCaptcha & Akismet
- item image (useful for articles/catalogs)
- image galleries
- user pages (author blogs/user profiles)
- smart ACL for frontend editing
- unique plugin system to extend item, category & user forms
- ajax-based frontend editing
- ajax-based comments moderation
- Google AJAX Search integration
- Rest-like JSON/JSONP content output
- Native advanced SEF options (added in K2 v2.6.4+)
K2 fully supports the Joomla! API, which means all Joomla! plugins will function properly within the K2 component & modules, either in the frontend or backend.
✔ AMAZING PERFORMANCE
ImpactWrestling.com, NewsBomb.gr, Gorillaz.com, Groupama Transport, Harvard, the High Court of Australia, MTV Greece, Jaguar Greece are just some of the thousand "big sites" around the world, fully powered by K2.
✔ DEPENDENCIES & LICENSE
To utilize the built-in video & gallery features you need to install AllVideos (free) & Simple Image Gallery Pro, both provided by JoomlaWorks.
K2 is developed by JoomlaWorks & licensed under the GNU/GPL license.
✔ WHAT NEXT?
Try K2! Install it, hit the "import" button to bring your Joomla! articles inside K2, start playing with the component to see the flexibility it provides first-hand. Moreover? You no longer need a dozen of components & even more modules to do things like run a news site or a blog. Drupal & Wordpress have certainly met their match now!
Visit the K2 website & community: http://getk2.org
There are a few features that would be nice, but they seem to be coming in the next version which is already in beta.
Overall this is a great piece of software and one that I use on virtually all of the sites I build.
I'm very happy with the templating ability. The CSS is well written and commented and once you set up your own K2 style it's easy to get in and customize extensively.
Extra fields are a nice feature and combined with some CSS edits for the front end can make for very convenient data entry for your front end authors.
Tagging feature is also great and helps a lot for intelligent searches.
So far the ONLY really issue I have is that unlike systems such as VirtueMart, you CANNOT have the same item (product, article, etc.) in multiple categories. This is a big problem for catalog sites that want to reference the same piece of information in multiple locations for ease/method of search.
I really hope this feature can be added soon!
The support from the developers its also great (considering its a FREE and Open Source component) and the community behind is creating new plugins each day.
Im really glad that someone comitted to create such a wonderfull extension for the Joomla Community.
Thanks a lot guys!
One more thing. Someone mentioned below that you will "probably" have to buy add-on products for videos and photo galleries. That's only half true. You will need add-ons, but they are totally free and open source.
But If you whant to use images, video, etc... You will probably have to pay for one of Joomla Works compenents to do that...
I tought this was ready out of the box. But if you whant it with all it's functions you will have to buy other plugins...
But the thing which dissapointed me most was the fact that they do not have a "decent" search module. If you need some sort of serach module to fiulter results by specific extra fields... Just forget this.
I had to pay more that 100 euros to a joomla programer just to do that. At the end of the day I got it working and I would give it an excelent. But not before I've spent more that 150 euros between freelance programars and extra joomworks plugins...
It is unbeleivable such a "modern" cck does not have at least a decent search module!!! I feel it so unforgivable that I give K2 a "Average" Rating.
I just hope the new ZOO, wich will also be free, has a decent search module, so I can substitute my K2...
***Editors Note***: K2 Does have a built in search module as standard.
One of the reasons I wanted to have this extension was for my members being able to use the K2 interface on the frontend, but if you are using Joomfish this is not an option.
The coming 2.3 version will enable frontend editing functionality with Joom!Fish on. Those with access to our SVN server can grab a 2.3 SVN release now and take advantage of these changes.
If you are a Mac user, you can download a friendly Mac application we created to ease the process of downloading the latest SVN release of K2 right on your Mac. This version can be downloaded here:
My favourite features are
- server side resizing of images
- ability to develop multiple sections, subsections, and easily assign different modules to each section (this is a great way to land advertisers who may only want to advertise in certain sections)
- the fact that the initial template for the article page adheres to many current trends
- ability to add extra fields (such as extra title lines, extra information)
Now, to be fair I noticed one comment below that I agree with. The code does not render the web-page in IE the same way it does in Firefox. The difference is usually extra white space in IE. This can be a pain to account for when you are developing the site.
Other than this I'm really happy with this plugin and would recommend it to anyone looking to develop a newspaper/magazine website.
The best in that it is an obviously well developed product, with oodles of features and functionality and a devoted user community.
The worst in that it has (as is all too common) next to no documentation. The sole piece of documentation, a "quick step-by-step guide", tells you in 12 rote steps "what" to do to get K2 basically-kinda'-sorta' up and running, without touching on whys. OK, I've got extra field groups and extra fields. That's nice. What are they for?
I know that they say that this product is not for Joomla beginners (which I'm not); but more honestly, it should say that the product is not for anyone who does not have 6 to 12 hours to spare mucking about and kicking the wheels to figure out the workings of the system. Judging by the mostly positive reviews here, there are a lot of such users who are willing to do so, and more power to you. I’m not one of them. I resent having to re-invent the wheel, 'cause it's so inefficient and unnecessary, and a waste of my time.
Deleting K2 from my system for now, which is a pity, 'cause it does seem good; I'll check back in a six months or so to see if anyone has documented anything yet.
In terms of funcionality the product stacks up pretty well albeit that you are pretty much on your own as to working out how to use and integrate it into your site. The article look better than core Joomla and for blogs and community sites work well. For a magazine based site, or for vertical sites such as property / rental management the look is less useful and for the life of me I can't get the articles to carry the global settings across (of which there are hundreds - this is both good and bad) and therefore I often ended up spending ages changing the article settings to remove all the bloggy user related stuff.
I also feel that their could be more layouts provided and that the core look of an article is pretty close to that provided by Joomla anyway. Sure it is nice to have the integrated gallery (I have never got this to work mind you) and the other bits and bobs but I would relly like to choose 1, 2 or 3 columns on an article by article basis as well as have some CSS options for article styling. Maybe I have missed this and this is all there - a manual might help here.
My biggest problem though is the system plugin which doesn't seeme to sit well with some applications and in chrome and IE8 cause the page to only part load. This makes the component pretty useless for me and perhaps others. I am not blaming the K2 plugin - it just doesn't seem to sit nice with some important core components.
Overall, if you have a simple blog site or community, want someting better than core joomla styled articles and can live with (or get round) some plugin conflicts then this is defo the product for you. If however you have some complex stuff going on and want more control over how articles are presented then you might still be looking.
What you can't fault of course is that it is free and for that it is to be applauded.
K2 DOES have frontend editing. You just need to enable it in the component's parameters and then make sure that users have the right permissions to do so. If they do, when they are logged in the will see add/edit links. Additionally, if you publish mod_k2_login it will add a nice "user toolbar" with more functionality, like frontend comment editing. ;)