11 February 2001
Although it looks the same for the most part, the journal has undergone a radical transformation over the weekend. Previously, a daily journal update required that I update no fewer than four files (the current entry, the permanent archive of the current entry, the previous entry, and the index). Needless to say, a fair amount of time was wasted with technical matters rather than writing considering that I update daily. GreyMatter is a wonderful server-resident program that takes care of all of that nonsense for the user after it is set up properly.
In addition, GreyMatter is AMAZINGLY customizable and flexible, adds a number of cool features including the ability to tie comments to the entry (an inline message board, which I've implemented) and the ability to generate feedback on particular entries (which I've not implemented), and is easy to install on the server. I can even designate one entry to "stay at the top" (this one, for a few days, so people will know what's up). It's easy to get up and running, though it takes a bit of time to customize the templates (just because there are SO many features). The best part? The program is free, which is a bit of a shock given its quality. I may actually make a donation to the author if this experiment is permanent (and there's no reason to think it won't be).
So that's been much of my weekend. Time well spent, I hope! Astute readers will note that I have structured the journal more like a weblog (the main page will scroll the past seven days' entries). A couple of reasons for this: 1) GreyMatter lends itself more easily to that format (although if you hit the "link" hyperlink you will see archived entries that are more like my old format) and 2) I have not yet implemented the archives feature and don't want to fool with it tonight (along with a few other tweaks that need to be done)! Now I just need some feedback (especially if I've screwed something up and you have problems).
Finally, for those who want to get to yesterday's entry without having to go through the frames, click here. (Who says we don't aim to please around here?!)
[Posted @ 10:00 PM CST]
What a cool addition! Nothing like a little self-congratulation to test out the comments feature!
[Posted by Kev on 11 February 2001, 10:04 PM CST]
Kudo's to Mr. Whited for yet another in a string of well-considered and implemented site upgrades!
ps.....The Band bets one dinner at Floyd's that not one single certified authorized ADMIN professional licensed techie-type person was involved.......(*smirk*)........
[Posted by Rune on 12 February 2001, 08:27 AM CST]
>> The program is free, which is a bit of a shock given its quality
Welcome to the world of Open Source, where that's the normal order of affairs! Most open source/free software is actually quite a bit more advanced, quality-wise, than commercial alternatives...
Nice job on the journal, and geek points for actually getting your feet wet with Perl/CGI!
[Posted by Atlee on 12 February 2001, 11:45 AM CST]
now to make you a dhtml navigation bar for over there. i've been meaning to. :) ~mwah~ and i've set this nifty program up for a friend. it was simple to set up, but did take a bit of work to implement and customize. ok, done rambling.
[Posted by jonelin on 12 February 2001, 10:15 PM CST]