In fact, it needs some more developement and the five stars are also including the road-map, so the "planned" features.
Besides lots of important stuff, I now focus on the stuff, that is "important for me". I pronounced it a lot of times in the iJoomla-forums and I think it is a valuable information for those who think about buying this extension.
-> Gradual release of lessons
This, for my opinion, is the most important and unique feature of guru. A user has not "all lessons at once", he has to start with the first lesson and he will get new lessons from time to time. No other LMS offers this feature as far as I know, and for my opinion it is essential for teachers.
But ... unfortunately it is very limited in the moment. You only can decide "one lesson a day", "one lesson a week" or "one lesson a month". Quizzes count as "one lesson", so you can´t add a quiz "after a lesson": If you have a weekly schedule, one week will contain ONLY the Quiz.
Also you can´t adress dependencies yet. Stuff like "publish the lesson 5 days after the last lesson was completed" or "publish the lesson after a quiz was completet" will not work yet.
As far as I understand, this features are focused on "Advanced gradual release" in the Roadmap.
-> Articles as Lessons
iJoomla decidet to create an own layout for lessons. This brings up benefits for sharing courses (downloading it on one website and installing the same course on another website), but the problem is, that most of the layout-benefits that Joomla already has can´t be used.
Actually there is a way to use an Article as a lesson, but it´s far away from being usefull.
The one point is, that it´s difficult to use plugins, div-containers and stuff like that. Some divs work, some don´t. Sometimes the typography looks totally different in the article or in the lesson (which is the article).
In addition to that, to use an article as a lesson, you can´t directly coose the article while creating the lesson. You have to create a new "Guru-Media", choose the article that is used in the Guru-Media-File, then create a lesson and choose the Guru-Media-File. The workflow would be MUCH more easy, if you could directly choose the article in the Lesson without the need of creating a guru-media first.
Also other benefits of Joomla can´t be used. For example, using K2 for designing the lessons would be great. By re-inventing basic stuff the benefit is the export-capability, but the lack is that you will loose lots of the Joomla-benefits.
iJoomla decidet some time ago to publish a roadmap, and many things improved. The Article-Layout of a lesson is MUCH better in the Joomla 3 integration.
So the 5-Star-Rating is accrediting the improvement that is done AND the roadmap, which promises some stuff.
For me (personally): If the Article-Integration would work smoothly and the gradual release will get more flexible, five stars would not be enough for Guru.
But be aware that it´s not yet.
All the best, Julian!
PS: The new Admin-Interface is very nice and a great improvement compared to the older version.
PPS: Yeah, sure, with my review I also want to motivate iJoomla to keep on focussing on the gradual release and the Article Layout. :D
Thanks Julian! Now that 8 months of work converting to Joomla 3, responsive design and new backend are done, we can focus on adding new features much faster. All your points will be taken under consideration. Thanks!
the extension is great and neccecary for good Virtuemart-Marketing. Most of you already pointed out the quality of the extension, so I want to focus on something different: The responsiveness of the company. This is great also.
I was missing one little thing in the Plugin: I was able to put a coupon-Code inside a follow-up-mailing, which is very, very clever. My plan was to sent out a gift-coupon 14 Days after an order, the coupon should have a value of 15% of the original order.
This is a good way to motivate somebody for "a next buy". And all is working right "out of the box", this is what the plugin is developed for. There was just one little thing missing:
I was not able to use a variable to show the amount of the coupon. Meaning: I could use the variable for the order-total, I could show the coupon-code, but I could not show the coupon-value (15% of order-total). Sending this in as a Freature-Request directly was answsered and solved, this is great developement!
I love it to work together with not only great extensions, but also great developers who are open to suggestions as long as they are benefit to all, so I really enjoy it to use that extension(s).
All the best, julian!
The whole thing ... it is phantastic !!!
People are atracted by pictures, that´s in nature. This extension not only is one of the nicest slide-shows, with the Ken Burns Effect, which simply moves still pictures slowly to "put live" into still pictures, it has effects like a little flash-film on the webpage.
It is charged for 35 Dollars, and in my case, where I need to catch users into seminars, this is the very best thing I ever found to get users "into the feeling".
Have a look: Watch and compare the module, which is placed in the content-section with another module, compare the images from the module with the still image on the top.
The whole site is german, but you mustn´t care for the content. Just take a note, how it affects you emotionally. This is waht the plugin is so great for: Affecting people emotionally with originally still pictures.
There is just one more feature, that would be great in addition:
In the moment it is a module, which can be very nice placed. With help from a plugin the module can be placed into content, and I am still looking how I can place text "beside" the module. Like in an article: The slider is on the right with the size "140x180" and the text is "flowing around" this module.
But however, the module is worth every of the five stars just for the effects. If it would support the free placement of the slideshow inside of content, just like a jpg with "allign=xx" and so on, I would need a sixth star to rate it. ;-)
I paied some extensions, sometimes they where greate and sometimes they where bullshit. In this case the 30 Dollars seem a lot compared with the features, because it is "nothing more" then a gallery. But what the hell ... this is the nicest gallery I´ve ever seen and for my opinion it´s worth every little cent!
Best wishes, Julian!
First of all, the Features, they are great:
- Creating different Events with about all functionality that I could dream about.
- You can set up different "forms" to register, and each event can be connected to one form. But the forms can be used in different Events also. So there is no need to built up a new form for each event, but if one event "differs" to much you can simply create a new form and assign it to the event.
- The "Tickets" are great: Each Event can have different pricing-options, like "executive seating" and "normal seating", or to have "including lunch" or "excluding lunch". The registrant can choose the options while signing in.
- The categorys of events are nice. You can set up differnet categorys and they will be sorted togehter. Nice!
- Non-Users (guests) can sign in for an event. Or not, as you choose. Nice!
- Each event has it´s own confirmation-page. In the confirmation-page you can use the variables from the site before. Nice!
- Same with the eMails, you can sent confirmation-eMails to the registrants, you can freely built up a new one for each event. Nice!
- The module beside it, showing the "newest Events", nice.
There are many more features. I hope you see, my hope is on that component to get the basic stuff done also, because in that part it leaks in the moment. The limits are obvious:
- There is NO way to manage the registrants in the backend. You can´t change the name, the eMail, you can´t add a registrant manually in the backend, you can´t even correct a typo without directly changing it in the database.
- You only get a single Mail with "Firstname, Lastname registered to the Event XX" when somebody registeres. There is not other information in the Admin-eMail. When you go to the backend you can watch the list with all registrants but only the built-in fields (Firstname, Lastname, eMail), you cannot see other fields like "street adress" or "age" or whatever. The onliest way to get this informaition is ... the next point.
- Only the complete-registrants-list shows all data of a registrant. There you can´t change it, it is a simple html-popup with all registrants and theire data inside.
This leads into an absurd registration-process, if you for example like to write an Invoice. Each time a registrant signs in, you get the admin-eMail. Then you print out the complete participants-list (any other list hasn´t all needet data) and take the data from the one new registrant. You can imagine, when you are having an event with 100 participants, that sucks!
- The online-payment (paypal) is nice, but there is no way to let the user choose his way of payment. When you set paypal on, users ONLY can pay with paypal. When you set offline-payment, only offline-payment is possible. The one you choose in the backend will be the one and onliest, for all users, for all events.
- By not being able to insert a participant manualy there is no real way for me to start with that component. Í have some events where participants already registered, so where to switch to registration PRO? Import directly into the mysql-database? Uh ... I don´t feel save in doing that!
- The ticketing is a little weired. You remember the options "including lunch" or "Executive seating"? The weired thing is, that this are all AND-Options. So a user can choose all options togehter.
That would make sense, when this only would be "add-ons", but they aren´t. There is no "Basic-price" for the event, the price is only (!) saved in the tickets.
When I put in "Normal Seating" for 100 Dollars and "Executive Seating" for 150 Dollars, then the user can check bouth of the options, the system charges 250 Dollars. But for what? He doesn´t need two seats of different categorys with just one name of the participant.
On the other hand let´s put in "LUnch" and "Dinner" als options. Lunch for 30 Dollars, Dinner for 25 Dollars. Now the user is still forced to choose at least one option and the event has no "basic price". So it doesn´t seem logical for me.
The solution would be simple: Just change the checkboxes to the OR-Option. If the user can Choose:
- Normal seating without Dinner for 100 Dollars
- Executive seating without Dinner for 150 Dollars
- Normal seating with Dinner for 125 Dollars
- Executive seating with Dinner for 175 Dollars
... this would make sense, when the registrant can choose ONLY ONE OPTION! Simple change, but IMHO very necessery!
- The module shows the "newest Events". Well ... for a new user who wants to see the events it makes more sense to have the Events sortet by "upcomming Events".
- The Events-Overwiew shows the maximum occupancy, but it doesn´t show how many free places are left. This is a really, really bad point. It makes much more sense for me to show the information like "Free places: 17 of 80". In fact, in this component it only says "maximum occupancy: 100". No information, if it is "nearly sold out" or "all free" at the moment. Uh ... it doesn´t make sense to me, because it would be so unbelivable easy to change that!
Hopfefully you see, the Component has the potential to get something really great, but there is definitely work needet at the base. Let me simply bring out a little wishlist:
- Changing the ticketing-option to "OR"-Options, so that a registrant can only choose one of the options.
- Putting the complete registration-data into the admin-mail, so whe have one mail for each single participant with all needet data in it.
- The module-option to show "upcomming events" instead of "new events".
- Showing "free places left" instead of "maximum occupancy" in the overview.
- Having some kind of "registrants-management" in the backend.
The first three points of the wishlist are easy and quick. The fourth I guess is a big one. For my opinion that points are definitely needet, in the moment I cannot really use the component in a productive system. However, I hope that the developement continues and will get more and more stable. I also think ... a little to weak for the price. Well, I don´t care too much about the price, but I would like a little more logic in a commercial license.
I contacted the coder also and the reactions where the following:
- Real Bugs where solved in 24 hours! Great! Well ... I did mention the "refund-policy", so there was a need for him to react on the real bugs. ;-)
- Most other things where answered with "We will work on that". No deadline, no more comments on that. Now I am courious what is going to happen in the next weeks.
I will keep you informed about any updates in the software. And I will delete any critical point in this review as soon as it is solved. Possibly this motivates the coder to check on some of them. ;-)
In the meanwhile I saw another Component named DT Register. From the first view it seems to me like not that complex, not that many features, but more stable in the basic-needs, half of the price (35$). I would prefear to have a good woring Registration-PRO, but I will also have a look at DT-Register and let´s see how it continues.
Best wishes, Julian!