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Archive for the ‘Blog Software’ Category

SixApart Sells LiveJournal To A Russian Group

I always wondered what made SixApart interested in LiveJournal. I knew it made sense in one respect, as growing your company always does, but the user group of their other products, TypePad and MovableType, didn’t really fit in my mind with the user group of LiveJournal, and so it comes as no surprise to me that they sold the blog hosting service.

The strange part of this story to most people though is who they sold it to: a Russion group, SUP. So far, the terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

It looks as though SUP bought the license to operate LiveJournal in Russia in October of 2006, where the Russian community is second only to the U.S. in number of accounts.

Over on GigaOm there are details from Edward Shenderovich, Head of Strategic Development at SUP, on why they purchased LiveJournal. Here is the response they got:

We believe it’s a good business. In the world now dominated by social networks, the role of a “community platform” holds a very special place. We have some ideas about new functionality, new partnerships, and some interesting monetization opportunities. We are very excited about the progress we had made in Russia in the last 6 months and look forward to replicate some of our success worldwide.

I wonder what this will mean for LiveJournal, and SixApart, as they go their separate ways, and what users will think of yet another company taking over providing their service?

Categories: Blog Software

Expression Engine 1.6 Released

Expression Engine, a popular CMS, has got a new version out there which is supposed to be pretty slick. One of the features highlighted by many people is an add-on of sorts that allows for one Expression Engine install to manage multiple sites, called simply enough the Multiple Site Manager.

Something that you need to know about the add-on though is that it costs extra money. The Multiple Site Manager will set you back $199.95 for a commercial license and $79.95 for a non-commercial license and enables you to manage 3 sites. Adding additional sites can be purchased on a per-instance basis for $49.95 (commercial license) and $24.95 (personal license).

Veerle, whom I am a huge fan of, has written a post on the new version, and seems rather excited about the whole thing. Coming from the free and open source arena of things, I am a little underwhelmed at this point. I know Expression Engine is great, I just don’t see how the price is justified for personal projects.

Categories: Blog Software

TypePad Adds Pages

I found out the news that TypePad’ service had got an update, which included the ability to create pages, from an interesting source, one of its competitors, Matt Mullenweg.

If you’re a TypePad blogger, we know you’re serious about making a great blog. But what about the parts of your site that don’t fit into your blog? A detailed contact page listing all the ways someone can get in touch. What about a biography that explains just how you became such an expert on the topic you blog about? Or, maybe your business’s blog needs a good set of directions to your office, along with a map. A couple extra pages on your site would add a lot of power and flexibility to your blog.

With the new TypePad Pages, you can use all the power of TypePad’s posting tools to create as many individual web pages as you want.

Interesting since all the features TypePad has added have been part of WordPress for a while now. Probably why Matt was smiling wide when he published a link to the new updates.

Categories: Blog Software

A Closer Look at SimpleLog

Over on GarrettDimon.com there is a great post up about SimpleLog a Ruby on Rails based blogging application. With version 2.0 already out the door, it might be one to use if you are looking for an alternative to WordPress or Movable Type.

My first impression of the screenshots is that it is very minimalistic and shiney. You might like that, you might not.

SimpleLog is great, but it is intentionally missing some of the features common to blogging tools. So, before we get in too deep, I figured it’s only fair to address those ahead of time. SimpleLog is doesn’t allow for multiple blogs, formalized publishing workflow, or different privileges for different users. It simply focuses on writing and managing content.
A screenshot of the theme drop down in the SimpleLog preferences.Figure 2 Changing themes in SimpleLog is done by simply changing a value in a drop down.

One major aspect worth addressing is that SimpleLog doesn’t have a built-in templating system. To some, this is great because SimpleLog doesn’t reinvent the wheel. Instead, assuming that you’re comfortable with Ruby and Rails, you can create a theme by simply editing a small set of rhtml files. If you’re not comfortable with Rails, the files are still very editable and extremely readable and well-documented. However, having a good understanding of Ruby and Rails enables you to go much farther in customizing the code.

If you’re not interested in getting into the code, SimpleLog employs a fantastically simple system for themes. (Figure 2) Given it’s relative youth, you won’t find a plethora of themes out there, but once they exist, it’s a matter of copying a theme directory into the themes folder, and changing a drop down in the preferences setting.

If you are into Rails, and have a host that supports it, then check out SimpleLog, and of course Garrett’s article on the software.

Categories: Blog Software

Drupal 5.0 Released

A little more than a week ago, Drupal 5.0 was finally released. It is a pretty revolutionary release for the Drupal team, and it also marked their sixth birthday. With over 492 people submitting contributions to 5.0, they seem to still have a strong community behind them and continue to make waves in the content management world.

Two important changes include:

  • Web-based installer: added web-based installer that checks run-time requirements and that supports pre-made install profiles or distributions with better support for database table prefixes. It is also localizable.
  • Core theme: introduced a new default core theme, called Garland (and a fixed width version Minnelli). Garland uses the new color module to change the theme’s entire color scheme on the fly.

Garland has received much attention since people were able to get their first sneak peak of it. It actually found its way to WordPress.com quickly after Drupal mentioned its intentions to include it as their new default theme. Let’s just say the Drupal folks were not happy. You can still find articles referencing the craziness over their great new theme if you do some searching.

Check out Drupal 5.0, you might just be surprised at how far it has come.

Categories: Blog Software

Dynamic Titles in Expression Engine

Veerle has created a tutorial on how to implement dynamic titles for your Expression Engine blog or site including common pitfalls, and example code. A very cool tutorial, and one worth checking out.

I think all blog software should make dynamic titles easier.

Categories: Blog Software

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