Elin Waring Blog
In our book we suggest CiviCRM for non profits and schools. It is a extremely powerful application that sometimes doesn't follow the "Joomla! Way" making it sometimes seem hard to take advantage of its highly customizable API. With the recent release of CiviCRM 3.4/CiviCRM 4.0 (3.4 supporting Joomla! 1.5 and 4.0 supporting Joomla! 1.6) this has become much easier. This is mainly thanks to the inclusion of a helper in the front end and a lot of work that has been done to simplify and standardize the CiviCRM API.
Four recent posts on Civicrm.org highlight this.
Speleo recently posted about a 1.6 compatible membership authentication plugin that assigns access level based on membership status and let's you redirect to a renewal page if a membership is expired.
I recently posted about using the API to easily make standard Joomla! modules containing CiviCRM data.
I also wrote about how the helper allows you to use plugins to take advantage of CiviCRM's built in hooks.
There was also a recent post by Charles Campbell about what sounds like an amazing Joomla! 1.5+CiviCRM implementation for crisis response.
There is also a Make it Happen (fundraiser) going on to finance continuing support of Joomla! 1.5 through December (which matches up fairly closely with the next long term support release of Joomla!).
As someone in the CiviCRM IRC put it recently: Lots of action on the Joomla! side of things lately.