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Matthew Philogene - Community Spotlight
Matthew Philogene from raramuridesign
Matthew Philogene is the founder and Director of raramuridesign. raramuridesign is a South African-based web strategy, development and design studio who use open-source tools to create functional and engaging websites for both the client and the user. Matthew is well known in the South African Joomla community as a prominent user and contributing organiser to Joomla Day events.

Matthew and his team have been using SEBLOD 5 years on sites such as Tralac Trade and Law Centre, Dogon Group Property, and the SEED initiative to promote sustainable development entrepreneurship. You can see more of their great work on their Portfolio page.

We caught up with Matthew to find out a little about his history with SEBLOD.

When did you start using SEBLOD?
We started using SEBLOD back in 2010 when it was still called “jSeblod”. We learned more about SEBLOD after a meeting with Sebastien at the JandBeyond Conference in Germany 2012. After this conversation we were instantly impressed and could see it’s immense potential for our projects.

What was the first site you build with SEBLOD?
The first site we build with SEBLOD was an accommodation listing site called chalets1066.com. SEBLOD allowed us to build a system where the client could post their accommodation listings, and then a website user could easily search accommodation items usings a SEBLOD List & Search type.

Did you try any other CCK components for Joomla, and why did you end up choosing SEBLOD?
Yes, we have tried and have worked with Fabrik, K2 and Zoo. We also try other CMS solutions too like Wordpress Types and Drupal’s CCK functionality.

For us, it’s about choosing the right tool for the job. The big drawcard of SEBLOD for us is that it allows us to define custom content entry points and control the layout for the client. This makes it extremely powerful for certain projects and it’s why we continue to work with SEBLOD often.

What is your favourite SEBLOD-powered website that you’ve built and why?
My favourite SEBLOD site that we’ve build is agoa.info. The site features some neat SEBLOD functionality including a custom slider, custom related articles by tag, custom search and custom document views. The quantity of content and organisation of this site was a challenge, but with the tools that SEBLOD provides we were able to come up with solutions that allowed us to effectively organise content, display data and information, and create a great user experience. For example, we have built in charting for data, which uses CSV uploads. Also, the document search searches across all database fields in the system, which makes it really powerful.

What advice would you give to new users looking to get started with SEBLOD?
SEBLOD takes time to learn and understand, but once you have this grasp, it is very powerful. Be patient - it’s worth it. When we started, the documentation was no where near the quality that it is now. Use the Manuals and Tutorials in the resources section of SEBLOD.com to your advantage.
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