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Archive for January, 2007

WordPress Music Video: It’s Called WordPress

I recently saw a video done by Devin Reams where he sings about WordPress and let me just say, I am nearly speechless over the whole thing.

It is actually of pretty high quality, and rather enjoyable, despite not being my kind of music.

I’ve been quietly working on a silly project — they’re good to throw into the mix every now and again. It started in the 9rules member forum. A member, deus62, mentioned he was becoming a WordPress convert. I decided to offer my humble opinion and response in a light-hearted country tune. I do hope you enjoy…

Yes, I made a(nother) music video. It may not appear in your feed reader so you need to visit this post or click here to visit Viddler. If you enjoy it feel free to digg it.

Check it out on his site.

Categories: WordPress News

WordPress 2.0.7 Released

For those of you still having problems after WordPress 2.0.6, Mark Jaquith has just put up a post on the WordPress Development blog letting everyone know that WordPress 2.0.7 is now out.

Recently a bug in certain versions of PHP came to our attention that could cause a security vulnerability in your blog. We’re able to work around it fairly easily, so we’ve decided to release 2.0.7 to fix the PHP security problem and the Feedburner issue that was in 2.0.6. It is recommended that everyone running WordPress 2.0.6 or lower upgrade to this new version.

Because this is a much smaller update than previous versions, you do not have to update all of WordPress’ files if you’re upgrading from version 2.0.6. Here is the list of files that have changed since 2.0.6:

  • wp-admin/inline-uploading.php
  • wp-admin/post.php
  • wp-includes/classes.php
  • wp-includes/functions.php
  • wp-settings.php
  • wp-includes/version.php

We know it sucks to have a release only 10 days after our last one, but we think it’s important enough for your blog to be secure to do it, and hopefully only having to change a few files will make the upgrade easier than normal.

For those of you that are looking at getting into the WordPress 2.1 world as soon as it is released, if you hold off for around two weeks, it should be out, but by no means am I suggesting now upgrading your WordPress installs. I’d hate to see anyone have any problems with WordPress.

This update though reminds me once again why I want WordPress to build some sort of auto-update thing…

Categories: WordPress News

Owen, Habari and Developer Release Date Set

Owen Winkler, one of the head honchos of the Habari development has posted his insight on the project covering things from “what is Habari?” to “When will it be ready for me to try?”. Though he doesn’t answer the when question in his post, it is still a great listing of what made him decide it was time to move on from WordPress.

My favorite question he both asked and answered is the one about the technical specifications of Habari as the software will use PHP5, a MySQL or SQLite PDO, among other things.

Isn’t the high-tech requirement a bit steep for the common blogger?
Last year I started putting my Adsense money to good use, buying cheap hosting at a ton of hosting sites to see if you actually get what you pay for. That plan… It kind of fizzled. But as a result, I’ve got a few hosting plans at a few popular hosts and suddenly a good reason to do some “common man” testing.

As it turns out, Dreamhost, Site5, MediaTemple, and A Small Orange will all support Habari, with a single config line change. If your host isn’t on this short list, your host might even still be able to run Habari. The thought that PHP5 is not widespread enough to be mainstream is, well… about as old as PHP4.

New Post Screen Mock-up

Other than that, on the Developers list, Chris J. Davis let it be known that the core team really wants to get a developer preview release out the door by January 31st, which is only two weeks away. They have a fair bit of work to do before that point, as many people continually try to work on the design, marketing, and other things that certain people would like to have considered secondary goals.

I am interested to see if their developer release will include any documentation, but at this point, I don’t think the core group is too concerned about that.

Categories: Habari News

WordPress Podcast: Episode 17

Charles and I get together again for another edition of the WordPress podcast. We had a hard time getting together to do this one, but we hammered it out, and it went well. We have a new intro voice over, so have a listen.

This time we cover things like:

  • There’s discussion that there’ll be a 120 day turnaround between 2.1 and 2.2.
  • There’s also a rumor that when the employees of Automattic gather in San Francisco this month, they’ll decide on a date for WordCamp 2007.
  • Plug-In: DupPrevent helps you avoid being penalized by Google for duplicate content by inserting NOINDEX meta tag in pages that might trigger Google’s duplicate content filters. Also contains a robot.txt file to disallow spider access to files that need not be included in engine’s index.
  • Widget: Nike Plus displays statistics gathered from your Nike+ shoes such as total number of workouts, total distance run, time spent running and an estimate of total calories burned.
  • Plug-In: WP Movie Ratings v1.4 (Updated) allows you to share your movie reviews with your readers along with links to the Internet Movie Database with some nice features, as well..

The episode only runs 26 minutes this time, which means that it should be easy to set aside time for. We have episode 18 coming out soon.

Categories: WordPress News

WordPress.com: Snap Preview Live Anywhere, Everywhere

Against what I consider their better judgement, the folks over at WordPress.com have released the Snap Preview Live Anywhere plug-in into the general WordPress.com population.

I am not a fan of the plug-in. I think it degrades the user experience by not only adding what is basically extra javascript we don’t need, but I am the type of reader that highlights text as I go. I don’t want a bubble image of a website messing up my reading and distracting me.

If you think like me though, you have an option. Head on over to Presentation and then Extras, and just uncheck the box relating to this feature. Watch as your blog loads slightly faster, and you get a thumbs up from me.

Don’t get me wrong, I am all about having choice, and I understand that some people love the plug-in, but I hope more people turn it off, rather than keep it on. I hope to see more useful plug-ins added to WordPress.com over the next while.

Categories: WordPress News

WordPress Plugin: WordPress Ultimate Gamer’s Pack

If you are looking to show off your WordPress blog to all the people now browsing on smaller screens, you might want to check out the compilation made by David Harper who has added three plug-ins to one zip file for us all to use called the WordPress Ultimate Gamer’s Pack.

Those plug-ins include:

  • WordPress Wii Edition Plugin
  • WordPress DS-Lite Edition Plugin
  • WordPress PSP Edition Plugin

He also notes that he will be looking at adding an Apple iPhone plug-in to his list sometime soon, though not really a gaming client, it is another smaller screen that our blogs will have to be crammed into.

I look forward to seeing how this is all adopted by the community, and reminds us that while we want to continue designing for larger and larger screens, you also have to remember about the smaller resolution devices that are coming out everywhere.

Categories: WordPress Plugins

What the iPhone Means for Bloggers

Did you see the iPhone? Did you!? Well, if you read any blogs, you might have seen the story at least once. I subscribe to hundreds of blogs, and so I really couldn’t escape from the story. Everywhere I turned around, there was another post on the iPhone, and everyone has their opinion.

Some are blown away by the device, like I was, and others are being more practical, but what it all boils down to is that certain stories are very pervasive in the blogosphere.

It really makes me wonder how much mind share this and other products get from blog posts. With Technorati following another big spike in conversations about the iPhone, I wonder what it takes to really gain the attention of the blogosphere and get them to converge on certain topics.

Also, do you think the iPhone is getting too much press? Lastly, do you avoid talking about things on your blog after seeing them mentioned everywhere?

I know that sometimes I avoid talking about things, even if they are exciting or interesting because it seems that there are so many people out there sharing their opinions, and why add one more when just about everything has already been said by both the popular and less popular blogs.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

Categories: General

How To Find News For Your Blog

Tony, continuing to blog for Darren Rowse on Problogger.net has put up another great common sense post. This time talking about how to find news for your blog, something that many of us struggle with, especially on slower days.

He mentions feeds, services, and sites you can go to for finding the latest news, but misses one of my recent favorites: Original Signal. Original Signal is much like Popurls, and other sites that bring together all the “greatest” content fed from other sites. So if you are looking for technology news, or even world news, Original Signal is a good resource to add to your list.

Some news aggregators that Tony mentions include: Google News, Techmeme, Megite, Newsvine, and Topix. There are many such sites out there on the Internet, and even some for specific niches, so if you are blogging about technology, many of the above listed are great places to start.

Why are such sites so important? Well, Tony lists a few reasons in his post:

To get a birds eye view of news in a particular category (or many categories), such as the category that your blog occupies, you might wish to start frequenting news sites which use a mix of computer algorithms and human involvement to produce a list of the news. Google News is a great example of this. Many of them are updated every few minutes, and will balance and re-order the news based on how popular and worthy some news content is. The best part is that many of them will list their “sources”, whether they be mainstream news or bloggers. Using news aggregators is a great way of keeping on top of the big topics, and they are particularly useful if you’ve decided that its important for you to follow it for your blog (because your goal is to be a leader in your corner of the blogosphere with respect to that topic).

Check out the full post over at Problogger.net.

Categories: Blogging Tips

WordPress.org Adds Feedback Features

Have you ever wanted to have your say about WordPress? Well, the folks at Automattic have added two ways you can now have your say: Kvetch and Ideas. They have posted about the ideas on their development blog.

Ideas:

is a place where you can share your wildest WordPress wishes with the world, and also vote on other people’s ideas. This allows people outside our normal circle of developers to have a direct say in what goes into the next version of WordPress. For 2.2, which comes out in late April, we will include the top voted on features, so propose something, tell your friends about it, and link it from your blog.

I think this is an interesting one as it allows you to even vote on ideas that others propose. One person has already recommended something I think is important: automated update.

Kvetch:

This is a place where you can quickly and anonymously express whatever might disagree with you in the WordPress world. Let it all loose, but try to keep it PG rated, and we’ll show a random kvetch on the page once we get enough in the system.

Basically it amounts to anonymous complaining/criticisms, which I think might let people to say their honest feelings without worrying about too much reprisal in any form, and something I think is needed for continued growth and development of WordPress.

I also must note that both systems will probably be abused by certain people, and I hope that Matt gets some help in wading through all the garbage, or else he might just get sick of the whole idea and either pull the plug or just ignore it.

Good for Matt and team for putting these new systems in place. I can already see Ideas getting some great use, and I hope the developers are listening.

Categories: WordPress News

Habari: Growing Fast

I received a bit of flak from my first post on Habari, the new blogging software being created by some great designers, and developers because currently they don’t have even a 0.1 release yet. Some people say that Habari has nothing, which honestly isn’t true.

I have actually been able to download the current code via SVN and install it, and test it out. While many features are still missing and the interface can still use much more polish, the software already works both under MySQL and SQLite environments. The installation wasn’t all that different from WordPress’ current installation, nor was it really any more difficult.

Currently the installation comes with only one theme, a default blue and white version of Michael Heilemann’s K2.

With this installation I was able to create drafts and posts, as well as tag my entries. I could also change my user details, and log out. Pretty basic at this point, but with the mock-ups of the administration design already in effect, the administration panel actually looks quite good for this stage in the game.

Some New News on Habari

It looks like former Automattic team member, Bryan Veloso has decided to spend some time helping out with Habari. Not sure yet what his exact role will be, but expect a new website for Habari sometime soon. I am also not sure yet if he is totally putting his name in the project, but he noted that he still has tons of creative energy to throw around, and working with this group is nothing new to him.

Also, Scott Merrill has put up a post on Skippy.net letting the world know his involvement with Habari. He has plans to switch his site over to the tool sometime in the near future once it evolves a little more. He let me know that he will “switch as soon as the templating engine is functional”.

So it’s official: I’m leaving WordPress behind. I’m involved with the development of Habari, the next-generation blogging solution. One might wonder why we’re re-inventing the wheel. Someone recently quipped that we’re past the wheel, and are now working on the hovercar! Nonetheless, an explanation of what Habari offers should help explain why I’m involved.

He lists things like community, innovation and experimentation among other things, and goes into great detail about each area. So if you are looking to learn more about the motivations behind Habari, and why people are joining the project in droves, check out his post on Skippy.net.

Categories: Habari News

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