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plog-devel-20030729 released

Since I won't be working on pLog for the next two or three days, I have decided to release what I have now so that you can play with it and see how it feels. Please check the release notes and Changelog, but these are basically the changes since the plog-devel-20030725 version:
  • Added the summary page
  • Added a replacement for the glob() function, which is capable of detecting the php version we're using and either using the faster native version or the alternative version if php version is lower than 4.3
  • Added a "Plugin Center" to see a list of plugins available.
  • Possibility to enable or disable comments on a per blog basis.
  • Improvements in the interface to send trackback pings.
  • Changes in the structure of plugins.
As usual, please use the forums or the mailing list to report any problem with this release.
It is very important that you recreate the structure of the database, since there have been a couple of minor changes, otherwise unexpected things might happen. Please do not forget this.
Finally, the following things are badly missing before the final version:
  • Redesign of the administration interface, keeping the same options availble but making it look more attractive.
  • A script to convert blogs from the old version to the new one.
I hope to have everything ready very soon! I'll keep you updated :) UPDATE: I have fixed a very important bug in the code, which didn't properly return all the blogs to which a user can belong. I would not have worried too much about it but the bug is quite critical... I have re-uploaded the release but you can also find the file that has changed attached to this bug report. Sorry about that!

Weekend beta: plog-devel-20030725

I could not resist releasing another beta :) And there you, straight from the oven: plog-devel-20030725. Please consult the Changelog for more information on what has changed regarding the last beta, but to sum up, I'd say that it is very very close to becoming the major stable release. Oh, and support to send trackback pings ;)
Many thanks to Bradley Bliang for his registration script, that allows user to easily create new blogs in a server.

plog-devel-20030723 and plog-20030724 too!

I am proud to announce that the first beta of the development version of pLog has been released. It doesn't have a proper version number (by the way, what should it be when it comes out, 0.1? 1.0??) because it is not a final version but a really stable beta. There are few little features which I haven't had time to implement but they'll be there for the final version (automatically open the links in new windows, automatic translation of smileys into icons, etc) as soon as I have time to finish them.
Other than that, this version has been in use in the project page for the last couple weeks without a glitch. It has to be noted, though, that this version is completely incompatible with the older stable version, mainly because the structure of the database has changed a lot. I haven't had time yet to write a script to 'convert' information from the old database format into the new one but that will be there in the final version too.
The package comes with detailed installation instructions that can also be checked here and as a new feature, a four-step wizard that will guide you through the process of installation. The wizard could have hidden bugs but it has always worked fine in my tests. If everything fails, a couple of sql scripts are also provided so that you can at least try to set up everything manually.
Other things that are planned for the final version are a nicer default template (do you know XHTML+CSS and want to help? drop me a line!) and a nicer set of templates for the administration interface (you'll notice that now it feels kind of "raw" ;)) In the meantime, the old default style and two more styles borrowed from The Book of Styles are included in the package.
Happy blogging!
UPDATE: Due to a bug report, reporting that urls were not properly encoded, I have made another maintenance release of the stable branch, 20030724. It is not a critical update unless you really need to have usernames with non-alphanumeric characters (for instance, "you&me" will not work prior to this release) Please report any other bugs you find. Thanks!!

Changes and the beta version

Beta is getting closer and closer. At least I hope so!!! It is about time I released something and I would also like to get some feedback from users and see how it feels.
In the meantime, I have borrowed another template from the "Book of styles" and we'll be seeing it as the main template for the next few weeks until I get tired of it and find another one ;) Would be nice if somebody with good design skills would come up with something nice, XHTML 1.0 Strict-compliant and 100% CSS based, to be included in the main pLog package and if nice enough, to be used as the default template. But anyway, do you like the new style?

How about a beta?

We're getting close to having something that works, and I am thinking about releasing some kind of beta or pre version so that people who are interested can see what's coming and can also make feature requests or file new bugs if any ;) The code is still a bit rough on the edges but I would expect no major changes before the final version so I think it's a good moment to do it. Let's see if I can have something by the end of this week.

Weekend is here!

As the topic says, the weekend is here but we do not stop working :) Today I added several things to the development version, and I can say that now the administration interface is 97% complete, and that also means that a final stable public release of the development branch is getting closer and closer. Yeepee!! :) Another thing I added is htmlarea, a replacement for the 'textarea' tag in html.
I'll keep you updated. Have a nice weekend!

New version 20030718

Version 20030718 of the stable branch of pLog has just been released. It is mainly a maintenance release fixing a stupid bug in the code that generates the calendar, that made it not show the calenar correctly when using any other locale than English.
Other than that, it adds htmlarea, a replacement for the 'textarea' html tag. With htmlarea, instead of showing a plain empty box, htmlarea shows a real time preview of the text we're typing in a WYSIWYG maner. It also offers a toolbar with icons to change some of the text properties such as the font type, color, size, etc. Htmlarea only works with IE 5.5 or higher or Mozilla 1.3b or higher. If the browser is an unsupported one, we will still see the good old textarea. This feature comes enabled by default but it can be disabled in the configuration file.
Please leave a message in the project forums in case you have any problems! ;)

Another day is gone...

...and amongst other things developed today, the one that stands out the most is support for incoming Trackback requests. That is, if any trackback-enabled blogging platforms sends pLog a trackback request, pLog will be able to take it and keep it. If you don't know what Trackback is yet, it is basically a mean for a blog to say to another blog "hey, I am linking to you in my blog so I am sending you this notice, so that you know" (well, kind of ;)) Trackback then creates a web of relationships between blogs and it is useful to know who is linking to you and when (and it is also more reliable than relying solely on the http referer for this purpose) In the next few days I am planning to add support for sending trackback requests when adding new posts, but that'll take a little longer since it is a bit more difficult.
Other than that, we're getting closer to a final public release... The administrative interface is not finished yet but should be soon, while the new design for it is also on its way!!

We're doing fine (development status)

Today I committed to CVS support for previewing the post when adding a new one or when updating an already existing one. It is only a basic preview of the html text but it is enough to read if there are any mistakes or errors.
I've also committed support for managing the article categories: removal, edition and addition of new ones. So far during my tests everything seems to work fine, so the next few things I should concentrate on is adding a similar interface to handle all the links and the link categories we have defined. I am hoping to have that ready before the end of next week... Once that is done, and we have a nicer design for the administrative interface, I'll be happy :)

Development status

Today I committed to CVS support for links and link categories (I think that is also known as 'blogroll') It actually works as you can see on the column on the right side :)
We've been thinking about adding support for WYSIWYG text edition controls like ofhtmlarea or Spaw. HTML editing becomes much easier since everything's done in a graphical mode. My concern is that these things use Javascript (I don't really fancy Javascript) and require a pretty new version of browsers (IE 5.5+ and Mozilla 1.3b+ in the case of ofhtmlarea) What do you think? Do you think that it would be a nice feature? Please post your thoughts as comments.
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