New Theme – Whiippii!

I’ve moved into a new theme called Aqueous-Lite. Those of you reading my blog through my feed are welcome to check it out…

I felt kind of restricted in the old theme since it wasn’t fluid and it would be a shame not to use the full screen to show content, mainly for long posts (which I do have a tendency to write once in a while ;-) ).

Of course, this theme is widgets ready (like the previous one) so it’s nice to have the ability to switch themes without changing things too much on the widgets (mainly background colors and stuff).

I also moved the Google Ads to the right side (its inside a widget) so it won’t bother and take screen space at the top of the screen (it will probably hurt my CPC but it wasn’t that great to begin with :-) ).

If you have comments or anything else, comment here or contact me through my contact form.

WordPress Upgrade

I’ve just finished upgrading this blog to WordPress 2.1. This is my first post in 2.1 and if it goes well, it will mark the succesful upgrade of this blog to the new and fine WordPress version.

In the process I had the oppertunity to also verify that my MicroID Plugin for WordPress as well as my OpenID Delegation Plugin for WordPress works in version 2.1 as well as they did in WordPress 2.0.x.

If you do run into problems with these plugins on WordPress 2.1 ping me.

WordPress Full Text Feed

I, as many other WordPress users, have encountered a problem with Full Text Feeds not actually showing on FireFox Live Bookmarks (the thingy that shows you the feed in a nice way) as full text, but are rather cut.

It seems this is not a problem at all. This is a feature in FireFox’s Live Bookmarks which simply shortens the text only on display. If you’ll look at the page source (View -> Page Source) you’ll the see the XML file of the feed and that the <description> tag contains the full text.

It seems IE7 doesn’t do that and shows whatever it is it needs to show.

Don’t be alarmed by this, your WordPress blog DOES show full text feeds.

If you really want to test this, go to a full blown RSS reader and put your feed’s URL and see that it does contain the full text.

Another MicroID plugin for WordPress

A reader of this blog, Nate Olson, just informed me that there is another WordPress plugin for MicroID and is written by Richard K. Miller (Thanks Nate!).

Richard’s plugin adds microid on the homepage (it uses the admin’s Email for that), on each of the posts (according to the Email of the post’s creator) and on each of the comments (according to the supplied URL and Email of each of the commentators).

Well… It’s a lot more than I have done :-), but I specifically didn’t want to use the Admin’s Email as the MicroID of choice for the homepage, mainly because I, for example, administer n WordPress blog for my friend. My Email is listed on the Admin, but he is the actual owner of the blog.

I’m considering adding the following features:

  • Add the ability to choose from the list of users, the user from which the MicroID of the homepage will be generated
  • Add a MicroID to each post page by using the posting user’s Email
  • Add a MicroID to each comment by using the commentator’s Email and the current page’s URL (including the anchor to the comment). Note that the commentator must provide the Email.
  • Enabling and disabling each one of these features from the configuration.

The benefits of adding a MicroID to each post page is that if you have a blog with multiple contributors, each will be able to claim their own post by using a service like claimID.

Having a MicroID on a comment will allow a user to claim the comment, which I know some people might want to do.

Do you think when creating a MicroID on comments, should the user have differnet MicroIDs on each comment, allowing the user to claim a specific post, or should the user have only one MicroID for all of the user’s comment?

What do you think? Do you have any other suggestion as to what to add?

OpenID Delegate Plugin for WordPress

Continuing my WordPress plugin frenzy and after release the MicroID WordPress plugin, I’m releasing another plugin, this time for OpenID delegation.

The plugin is named “OpenID Delegate” and you can read all the details and download it from here.

Q: So what’s this OpenID I’ve been hearing about?
A: According to OpenID.net:

OpenID is an open, decentralized, free framework for user-centric digital identity.

OpenID starts with the concept that anyone can identify themselves on the Internet the same way websites do-with a URI (also called a URL or web address). Since URIs are at the very core of Web architecture, they provide a solid foundation for user-centric identity.

What does it mean? Well, basically it means that if you have an OpenID account on an OpenID server and you are accessing an OpenID supported site (see the list of them here) you can use a special URI that your OpenID provider provides you and the password you have chosen to sign-up (and afterwards sign-in) to these sites.
That’s right. You’ll use the same URI and password to sign-in and up for all OpenID supported sites. This is also referred to in the enterprise (and the rest of the world) as Single Sign On or SSO for short.

Q: “So, what’s your OpenID Delegate plugin got to do with it?”
A: It’s quite simple. Assuming you run your own WordPress blog, wouldn’t it be cool to use your blog’s URL and the password provided by your OpenID provider as your URI of choice for signing in and up to OpenID supported sites? Yes it will!

Q: “But you could have just modified your theme and added the necessary meta tags…”

A: Yeap, I know could, but it’s much easier having it as a plugin, allowing me to replace themes without remembering that I’ve added these values to the head tag.

Q: “Where do I get an OpenID account?”

A: Well… you have a couple of ways. First, you might already have an OpenID account if you have an account at either WikiTravel, LiveJournal, DeadJournal, Zooomr, Technorati, etc (see the rest of the list here. Not all of these sites are OpenID providers though).
If you don’t have an account you can open a free one at myOpenID – a free OpenID provider.

The 3rd option you’ve got is to run your own server (not for the faint hearted).

It’s time to own your identity, but if you can’t really own it (i.e. run your own server) at least delegate it and make others think you do!

MicroID Plugin for WordPress

MicroID as the web site says is:

MicroID is a lightweight identity layer for the web, invented by Jeremie Miller (creator of Jabber). MicroID enables anyone to claim verifiable ownership over content hosted anywhere on the web (social networking sites, discussion forums, blogs, etc.). MicroID is not an authentication or single-sign-on service, just a straightforward method for identifying content ownership that complements existing technologies such as OpenID and microformats. The technology is radically simple and enables developers to build new and unique meta services with minimal effort.

So after all of this technical mambo-jambo, what can MicroID do for you?

MicroID for you, minus techno mambo-jamo
MicroID enables you to claim content that you have produced. In most new web sites of the “current” age of the Internet YOU, the user, creates the content. Since we all have multiple identities and multiple user names in different web sites, would it be great to have one trusted and verifiable way of saying that this and that content from this and that site is really something we have created?

There are services such as claimID which provides you with a way of claiming what’s yours.

The perks
So, where does this plugin comes in?

  • If you have your own WordPress blog and you want to add MicroID to it without the hassle of editing PHP files and dealing with HTML – this plugin is for you.
  • If you like to switch your themes oh so often – this plugin is for you.
  • If you would like to claim your content and show everyone the stuff you really want to show them and be proud of creating – this plugin is for you.

So, how do I get it?
You can get the plugin and instructions on how to install it and configure it (which is dead simple) by clicking here!

If you have have comments, ideas, thoughts or anything else, don’t hesitate to leave a comment on this post.

Migrating from Blogger Beta (or the new version of Blogger) to WordPress

When I started to think about migrating from Blogger to my own WordPress blog running on my own server I started to look at migration options.

It seems that since I already migrated to the new blogger system (which is out of beta now), the current import options from Blogger available in the latest WordPress installation (2.0.5 when I was installing it ;-) ) didn’t work anymore.
The default blogger import can fail in two points:

  1. It fails to authenticate using the new Blogger authentication – Google Accounts (like the authentication for Gmail, Google Reader, etc)
  2. If you upgraded to the new templating scheme, I think it would be hard to use the current blogger importer which tell you to use a specific template format that it will know how to read and import

I didn’t have problem #2 since I didn’t upgrade to the new templating scheme, but I couldn’t authenticate and that’s why it didn’t work.

I searched around and found this script to migrate from Blogger Beta (also good for the new blogger which is now not in beta) written by Ady Romantika.

It’s currently in version 0.3 and doesn’t require you to publish your blog into some FTP (or SFTP) site. Instead, you need to enable full feeds on your blog and comments and it will utilize that to get all the information. The only thing it will have a bit of problems with is with importing images. Luckily I didn’t have much, so it wasn’t that big of a deal.

It also allows you to edit the Email and web site address of people who commented on your blog, making it a very clean and useful import that will give you all of your content as if you were always on blogger.

I’d like to thank Ady on a great script. I do hope it will be taken into the default WordPress installation help other Blogger users to migrate.