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Archive for February, 2007

Nearthwort Podcast Interviews Matt Mullenweg

With over thirty minutes of Matt’s time, the Nearthwort podcast has some great questions answered by Matt Mullenweg.

An interview with Matt Mullenweg, founder and lead developer of the WordPress blogging software which powers the Nearthwort website and perhaps as many as 1,000,000 others. Topics range from WordPress and the importance of open-source licensing, to the multidimensional internet. Also, some very interesting comments on the role of karma in Matt’s life.

One thing of note, Matt plans on putting out three open source projects out this year. I am looking forward to see what he comes out with.

Definitely worth checking out.

Categories: WordPress News

WordPress Theme: Gray Wolf

A simple looking two column theme for WordPress comes from

Gray Wolf is a simple yet powerful theme for WordPress. It supports gravatar and widgets. And it’s valid xhtml 1.0 strict

If you need a theme that is xhtml 1.0 strict and easy on the eyes, Gray Wolf might fill that niche for you.

Categories: WordPress Themes

Adding to the Conversation

Darren Rowse has posted up his thoughts on getting out of the echo chamber, and while it can be a bit complex sometimes, it is possible and I think it can be summed up in one sentence that he put near the end of his article, “It’s About Time and Attitude”.

2. Conversations are not Competitions – the best conversations result in both parties coming away from them better people. They are about two people treating each other as equals – wanting to share what they know but learn and be impacted by the other.

True conversations are not about one proving that they are better or know more about something than the other.

Perhaps this is where some blogging interactions fall a part.

Bloggers have always had their egos – but one of the things I first loved about blogging was the way that there was a ‘vibe’ of generosity, giving, sharing and community. At times I still see this as a feature of the blogosphere – but on other occasions I see competitiveness rising it’s head.

Check out the full article where Darren takes you through many more steps. A great article for those looking at finding ways to be unique in the blogosphere.

Categories: Blogging Tips

WordPress 2.2 Feature: Plugin Sandboxing

Mark Jaquith has noted a cool new feature for WordPress 2.2 that some plugin and theme creators are going to love.

So the feature I’ve put into WordPress 2.2 is what I call plugin sandboxing. Before a plugin is activated or a plugin is edited, it is tested in a temporary fashion (that is, without being permanently activated). If it passes the test, it is activated for real. If it doesn’t pass the test (it’s throwing a fatal error that would normally take down your WordPress install), it is deactivated, and you get a nice error message telling you what went wrong. If the fatal error was caused because you edited an active plugin, the “Update File” button changes to “Update File and Attempt to Reactivate,” so that once you correct your typo, the plugin will go back to being activated, without requiring you to go back and manually activate it.

If you never activate a flawed plugin or never make a typo when editing your plugins, you’ll never know this functionality is there. But some day you just might slip up, and now WordPress will cover for you.

This sounds like a really smart feature that is very “why wasn’t this done before!?”

A brilliant move in my mind by the Automattic team.

Note: It wasn’t from the Automattic team, though I guess I just assume that Mark should be…

Categories: WordPress News

WordPress 2.1.1 and 2.0.9 Released

So we have some new security releases for WordPress out. I wondered how quickly new releases for 2.1 and 2.0 would be handled as Automattic quickly moves towards WordPress 2.2, which comes out later this spring.

They list some details on their development blog:

We’ve got a new bugfix and security release for both of our actively maintained branches of WordPress. Version 2.1.1 includes about 30 bug fixes, mostly minor things around encoding, XML-RPC, the object cache, and HTML code. It’s available for immediate download on our download page.

Version 2.0.9 only includes the security update, which was around the code we use to prevent XSS. You can download it from our release archive. As a reminder, we’ve committed to proving security updates to 2.0 through 2010, but all new features and development are going into the newer branch, which is at this time 2.1.

This is a low-to-medium priority update recommended for all WordPress users.

It is nice to see that they are staying true to their promise of supporting the old WordPress 2.0.x branch, and I hope they continue to make the new releases public.

I am kicking myself in the butt though, as I knew about this release yesterday before it was announced thanks to Abe and his Yugatech blog.

Categories: WordPress News

Northern Voice and MooseCamp

This week I will be heading to beautiful British Columbia (Canada) to attend the Northern Voice and MooseCamp events. I am really looking forward to it, and I hope to see some Blogging Pro readers there.

What is Northern Voice?

In 2005, the organizers of Canada’s first weblogging conference put on an event that was inexpensive, informal, and accessible to techies and newbies alike. From those humble beginnings Northern Voice has been transformed into… well, actually it’s still cheap, friendly and open to all.

Without question, the event has grown due to the overwhelming community response. It’s added a second self-organizing day known as Moose Camp. We expect a few more attendees this year, in part because our space is larger. But the core values remain the same — we have held the line on costs (fifty Canadian bucks get you the full two days), we try to make the event family-friendly by offering space for parents to establish cooperative child-minding, and we do the main event on Saturday so non-professionals can attend.

And although it is a weblog conference, the range of topics may involve anything that webloggers are interested in… that is, just about anything. Previous years have had plenty of geekery mixed with panels on how blogging interacts with family life, education, travel, photography, community building and establishing professional profiles. Speakers range from the big names at the top of the Technorati rankings to first-time presenters with a passion to share.

I look forward to reporting back on the event, and again, please let me know if you’ll be there.

Categories: General

Technosailor Sale: Lessons Learned

Aaron Brazell has posted about his attempted Technosailor sale. He didn’t end up selling his blog, but he learned many valuable lessons worth passing on.

Here are a few:

  • Perceived value is in the eye of the beholder. More specifically, no one values any site more than the owner. This is natural as the owner puts “blood, sweat and tears” into a site and sees value that maybe is not there. Do not think that depth of archives necessarily translates to value.
  • Private is always better than public. Maybe my biggest mistake in this process was posting the auction at SitePoint. I recieved derision and ridicule by onlookers not interested in bidding, but interested in making sure everyone else knew how they felt. This was numerous people and it probably contributed to the anger mentioned in bullet point 3. The private discussions held with two particular parties, however, was quite good and open and honest. Though the sale did not develop as I had hoped, I definitely have a respect for the parties and would be interested in doing business in the future.
  • Value is found in the blogger and this was an eye opener to me. I expected to sell Technosailor and be happy, but the interested parties were more interested in me. Though I was flattered, sometimes business gets in the way of business and no one wins.

Check out Technosailor for the rest.

Categories: Advertising, Blogging Sense

Adsense Tips from LifeSpy

Over on one of our sister blogs, LifeSpy, there is a post up about getting your Adsense revenue going. It is not all encompassing, but it is a great starter post for people trying to get the first few pennies rolling in.

Now there’s a lot of guidelines out there on how to maximize. But here are my top three considerations on dealing Adsense and increasing revenue potential.

  • Layout
  • Write Quality Unique Content
  • Promote and Get Found

If you are just getting started with Adsense, you might want to read the reasoning behind each point.

Categories: Advertising

Math on

If you love complex math formulas, then has you covered now. They have added LaTeX support for blogs, allowing you to add some advanced math formulas to your blog.

From the blog:

Odd as it may sound, I miss all the equations from my days in grad school, so I decided that what needed most was a hot, niche feature that maybe 17 people would use regularly: LaTeX.

For those that don’t know, LaTeX is a typesetting system particularly well suited for documents of a mathematical persuasion. It’s used almost exclusively by many technical, scientific and mathematical disciplines both in academia and industry. It also looks really good; I, among many, consider Donald E. Knuth a personal hero.

Check it out if you are interested.

Categories: WordPress News

Automattic is Hiring

The Automattic team are looking for two new people to join their ranks with a position open for both a Code Wrangler and Systems Wrangler.

Code Wrangler

We currently have 4 engineers at Automattic. As a developer here you’re responsible for Making Stuff Go. The job is tough to describe because it’s so broad, but historically it has included new product development from conception to implementation, high-volume and high-concurrency programming, and a MacGyver-like dedication to squashing bugs.

Systems Wrangler

In 2006 our systems grew 20-30x in nearly every measurable way, we’re gearing up for a similarly exciting 2007. We’re committed to providing the fastest and most reliable web experience out there, which means eliminating as many single points of failure as possible. We currently support 150+ machines in multiple datacenters. If the goal of this role had to be described in one sentence, it would be to remove all friction from developers’ minds.

So if you think you have the skills, you have until the 28th to put in your resume.

Categories: WordPress News