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Review: Building Websites with Mambo
updated by rck, 2005-10-24

Building Websites with Mambo is already the third book I'm reviewing from Packt Publishing. Mambo is the CMS that has won three awards in 2005 alone: Best Open Source Solution twice and Best of Show once.

Should you decide to give Mambo a go you might be interesting in having a printed manual for it. Building Websites with Mambo could be just the thing for you.
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A quick introduction to Mambo

You might know the dance mambo. It got famous in through the movie Dirty Dancing back in the 1980ies. Patrick Swazey and Jennifer Grey had “their time of their life”. Actually, I'm doin' the Mambo every Saturnday with a gorgeous partner. It's fun.

The book Building Websites with Mambo isn't about dancing at all. But it shares at least one feature of the dance. It's rather sexy. The Open Source CMS Mambo has already won three awards, it is a very popular piece of software. Personally, I'd describe it as a community portal solution for business oriented websites. It should fit very well for small and medium sized companies.

I'm not so sure about larger companies, as it seems to be lacking decent workflow configuration like for example Plone has. On the other hand, it's not as complicated as Typo3 or, well, Plone. And there's a “Mambo light” as well (called Limbo) which doesn't even need a database.

Who will like the book?

I do, for a start. The subtitle “A step by step tutorial” says it all. This is a hands-on guide for people who like creating CMSes by themselves. You should be able to work with Folders, URLs and a web browser. Maybe even some kind of imaging solution (Photoshop, etc.).

The book is written to the point, with a lot of screenshots. It seems to have just the right amount of text for my liking.

So, to sum it up: This book is for authors and administrators of Mambo sites.

Who will be disappointed?

The usual suspects. You are a decision-maker? A manager? Then, this book is not for you. Also, if you aren't computer-literate at all, you'll get a certain problem. The book is not very hard to understand but can be challenging, if you haven't worked with web applications yet.

You should also know about CSS, graphics and HTML if you are thinking about customizing the looks of your site. This book alone won't be enough.
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A quick introduction to Mambo
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