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Magic Fields - King Rat
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gkr
Magic Fields

I haven’t posted on my goals in a while. Still actually working on them, though not as hard. This is an update to my goal of getting my blog moved to the new domain with new features by January’s end. It didn’t happen.

I did get the author reading event list moved over to it’s new web site. What that entailed was:

  • figuring out which event listing plugin to use. I ended up sticking with Events Manager. Marcus Sykes has taken over development for David Benini and done some good work with it. He appears to have fixed some of the problems with the old plugin. I’d had to hack around them and upgrading the plugin meant losing my hacks. Looks like I won’t need the hacks anymore.
  • Moving the events listing to the main page of the site. That part was pretty easy.
  • Create a new page for displaying blog posts there. If you don’t have it on the home page, you gotta have it somewhere else (or not have it). It wasn’t hard, but it does require a bit of code hacking. The problem will be if I change my theme. I will lose the code hack I did. I don’t know why there isn’t a built in way to do that.
  • Create an event submission page. The old page just listed an email address. The submission page lets me add fields like “event start time” and “location” that some omitted when they emailed me.
  • Add events. Have to do this normally. No big deal.
  • Write the first blog posts. Basically this is just a weekly post of the upcoming week’s events so anyone who wants to get new events can read them via RSS rather than having to remember to visit the site.

After taking that live, I decided to let everything sit for a bit. See how it worked out. I didn’t want to be in the middle of moving the rest of the site to its domain and have the readings site go south. I have a few ideas for additional items for the readings site that may or may not happen. Stuff like email subscriptions, reviews of readings, recordings of readings, ads, promotional author stuff (interviews, guest blogs, etc.), and a few other smaller technical items. But they will all wait to see how it goes and definitely won’t happen until after I get the rest of the book site to its new domain.

Everything seems stable enough so I’m actively working on that. Hence the title. My current task is to figure out how to integrate meta-information about the books and other stuff I read.

before, I’ve just posted it in the text of the review. That has some drawbacks though, such as being unable to extract it in a meaningful way (index of authors, put it in the sidebar), and also requires that I have post templates to cut and paste from. The latter is a problem, because the best plugin for that hasn’t been updated in a while. The author decided to go commercial with the plugin, and his commercial sense isn’t so great. I paid for the commercial version even, but if he’s since done new versions he hasn’t notified me and his site forums are now filled with spam. And some more minor features of it stopped working with WordPress 3.0.

Supposedly WordPress 3.0 has support for custom post types (i.e., things like reviews), but it doesn’t have any UI for them. You are supposed to use a plugin for it. Which there are a billiondy of, and none of them seem to be very well documented. I’m currently testing out one called Magic Fields, which doesn’t even appear to use custom post types. It might do what I want though. I have to hack the theme though to display the meta-information. I’d rather not do that, though since I’m using Carrington Framework, I only have to write overrides for very small parts of the theme.

Anyway, WordPress as a CMS has a lot of work left to do in its usability and documentation.

crossposted from King Rat.

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