Full Speed

[ May 17, 2004 ]

MT 3.0?

John Gruber:

“The current versions of both of my MT plug-ins — SmartyPants and Markdown — are fully compatible with MT 3.0.”

OK, that was going to be the biggest obstacle for the MT3 upgrade. With that out of the way, there are only a few remaining plugins that need confirmation: Optional-Redirect, Regex Plugin, SQL Plugin, and SimpleComments. I don’t think I’m actually even using the SQL plugin. I may or may not be using the Regex plugin. Not having either of those wouldn’t totally destroy the site. SimpleComments is one that my archive templates are currently depending on, however. I’m going to need to verify that one will work before any upgrading commences.

I remember examining the code for the Optional-Redirect plugin when it first was released. It was short and simple. I should easily be able to build my own version of this plugin if it doesn’t work out of the box with MT3.

In the mean time, I fired up a new blog on the free version of MT3 this afternoon. My initial reaction is that MT3 looks a lot like TypePad. The colors are the same. I haven’t ever used the CMS interface of TypePad, but I would be willing to wager that it is very similar. And the name has changed, too. Instead of being a “Personal Publishing System”, it’s now “Movable Type Publishing Platform”. I suppose that goes well with the pricing structure that so many are upset about.

[ May 14, 2004 ]

Alternatives and Comment Previews

With the recent announcement of the Movable Type 3.0 Developer Edition, the blog world is buzzing with all kinds of recommendations for switching away from MT. I’m not sure whether this site will remain on MT 2.661, upgrade to the 3.0 “Personal Edition” for $49.95, or switch to one of the alternatives. But what I do know is that many of the preferred alternatives are lacking a major feature that MT has gotten right from the start (for me, at least).

That feature is comment previews. Textpattern and WordPress both seem to be excellent blog management systems. Perhaps either would even be qualified to be described as a full-blown CMS. But none of the sites I’ve visited that use these wares have preview functionality for their comments.

We all make mistakes. That’s why we have spell checkers. MS Word has had that feature for well over ten years now. A blog without comment preview is like a word processor without a spell checker. The result is that comments get posted to the site with errors. Or that quick bit of typing doesn’t read properly once you see it posted. Preview, when used properly, eliminates a lot of these errors. It also eliminates the followup “oops” posts.

Now I’m sure that there are ten free blog packages out there that offer this functionality, but all of the MT haters today seem to be mentioning WordPress and Textpattern. Personally, I’d rather spend my $50 than use a package that is missing such essential functionality.

There is, however, one more thing that I should mention: Jon Hicks’ excellent Live Comment Previews. Visit a recent post on Jon’s site to see this in action. It’s very slick. Perhaps Dean or Matt would be interested in adopting something such as this in their default comment templates?

Update: It turns out that Textpattern has preview already. I’m not sure why I thought it was missing. And WordPress 1.2 was just released with a new preview feature. It’s good to see more people paying attention to previews.

[ May 5, 2004 ]

Navigation Matrix

SuperfluousBanter has a sweet CSS-based navbar concept up. This is the best image-based navbar I’ve seen yet. See the example here. [Via Stylish Scripting]

Update: Navigation Matrix Reloaded fixes some bugs in the first version. This thing is looking rock solid.

© 2014 Scott Johnson (info)
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