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December 14, 2009

Movable Type Monday: MT5 Delayed, Media Manager, Page Listing Hack, and More

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Happy Monday, folks! Disappointing news for those of us waiting for the official Movable Type 5 release: It’s been postponed till January 5. In the announcement, Six Apart only says that there are issues to resolve so they’re waiting till after the holidays to release. I believe this is the third official release date we’ve had, let’s hope it’s the last one.

Byrne Reese has announced a new version of the Media Manager plugin. The previous version was broken by a change to Amazon’s API. Rather than patch the problem, Byrne did a major rewrite of the software to take advantage of an existing Amazon API library. As a result, folks upgrading from a previous version will likely need to update their templates. read more

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November 30, 2009

Movable Type Monday: MT5, Resetting Passwords, and Asset Gallery

Happy Monday, folks! Good news if you’re in Japan: You’ve already got the official release of Movable Type 5. The rest of us have to wait till December 8. Apparently there was briefly a Release Candidate 3, but it and all the other RCs were pulled when MT5 went gold in Japan. The list of changes in RC3 is short, which bodes well for the final release.

While Japan enjoys MT5, everyone can try Asset Gallery 1.2 from Endevver. Asset Gallery lets you embed slideshows in entries, user profiles, or pages. And it includes lots of options for customizing the look of your slideshows. Better still, Endevver is releasing it as an open source project.

Finally, Dax from GuruLabs posted instructions for resetting MT passwords using SQL. Dax includes instructions for both MySQL and PostgreSQL. If you just need to reset one password, it’s probably easier to do it from the MT admin. But if you needed to update several users at once, this would be much faster.

What have you done with MT lately? Let us know in the comments.

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November 23, 2009

Movable Type Monday: MT5 RC2, Melody, StumbleUpon, and More

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Happy Monday, folks! This week, Six Apart put out the second release candidate for Movable Type 5. They mention a few highlights in the announcement, so let’s look at those here:

  • A lot of work to get the dynamic publishing in sync with the static publishing.
  • Updates to the Professional blog templates
  • Unbundling of Motion and Action Streams
  • The Entry/Page “previous” and “next” container tags now account for entries/pages with the same date-time, rather than skipping them.

The item on that list that catches my eye is the “unbundling” of Motion and the Action Streams plugin. This is the first I’ve heard of this. If you download the release candidate you’ll see that, sure enough, the Motion template set and the Action Streams plugin are gone. One has to wonder if this is the end of Motion or if it will be back as a separate plugin. If anybody’s heard more about this, let us know in the comments. read more

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October 26, 2009

Movable Type Monday: MT 5 Beta 4, SmartTrim, TweetMeme, and More

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Happy Monday, folks! This week, Six Apart released what should be the final beta of Movable Type 5. Beta 4 is, for the most part, a bug-fix release. The one big new thing is the “Professional Website Theme” that is now included.

Last week I told you about the first release of SmartTrim, a plugin by François Nonnenmacher that is a replacement for the default text trimmer in MT. A few days later he released an update. This version changes the argument syntax to match that used in MT. It also auto-closes any HTML tags in your text.

François also wrote about moving from Drupal to MT. He includes a script that will generate a MT import file, along with tips on redirecting links. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone do this before, so it’s nice to have the process documented.

We also have a tip from “The Aardvark” on Adding TweetMeme to your MT blog. Not complicated at all, but good practice for anybody learning how to customize their templates.

Finally, Byrne Reese has been working on MT/Melody documentation for designers. Byrne has posted the documentation as a Github repository, so you can contribute to the project.

What have you done with MT lately? Let us know in the comments.

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October 5, 2009

Movable Type Monday: Zemanta, TypePad Platform, Comment Styling, and More

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Happy Monday, folks! Lots to cover this week, so let’s start with the release of Movable Type 4.32. This is a fairly minor release — no security issues, just a handful of changes. What’s remarkable about this release is the inclusion of the Zemanta plugin. If you’re not familiar with Zemanta, they help you find content on the web related to what you’re writing that you can include in your blog post. The Zemanta plugin has been around for a while, but now it’s being distributed with MT. I can’t recall Six Apart ever bundling a third-party plugin with MT before. Several times they’ve bought popular third-party plugins and made them part of the core — not really an option when the plugin is tied to a web service.

Clearly, this is the product of some kind of partnership between 6A and Zemanta. Since the plugin is open source, 6A can include it in MTOS with no licensing issues. Still, some users have complained. Since it’s tied to a commercial service it smells non-free, even though the plugin is GPL and it functions for free. There are those that feel this plugin should have been limited to the commercial verson of MT, rather than included in MTOS. So far, 6A shows no signs of changing things based on these complaints. read more

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September 28, 2009

Movable Type Monday: New MT5 Beta, Single Sign-On, Easy Install Video, and Theme Tips

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Happy Monday, folks! Movable Type Monday took a break for a couple of weeks, but now we’re back with the latest from the MT community.

First off, there’s a new MT5 beta. Lots of improvements and bug fixes over the previous beta. But, if you haven’t installed it yet, you might just want to wait: I’ve heard that beta 3 is supposed to be released in the next day or two.

Next, Byrne Reese has a new plugin that implements OpenSSO. This allows you to use an OpenSSO server as a single sign-on solution for your MT installation. For more on OpenSSO, see the documentation from Sun.

Need help installing MT?, Sahas Katta has created a video to walk you through the process. His process includes a shell script that does most of the work for you. Thanks, Sahas!

Finally, Tom McGee wrote a post with several tips for customizing MT blogs. Tom’s tips focus on creating custom themes and modifying banner images in default themes. Good information for those less familiar with MT’s current theme system.

What have you done with MT lately? Let us know in the comments.

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August 3, 2009

Movable Type Monday: 4.3 Release, Sharing Your Posts, and More New Features

Happy Monday, folks! Well, it’s here: Movable Type 4.3. Lots of new features and performance enhancements, so you’ll probably want to upgrade to this one. Here’s a summary of what’s new, taken from the official announcement:

  • Performance for all publishing is faster than ever.
  • Your readers can now find content by author or date range (something Google’s site search doesn’t do) with the powerful new search feature.
  • You can create a new site based on an existing one in just a few clicks with smarter blog cloning.
  • Page views can increase by more than 50% with the new flexible pagination for comments and entries (based on the testing of one of our clients.)
  • It’s faster to insert and re-use photos in your posts, and simple to create slide shows, with the most powerful asset manager ever.
  • Documentation is more comprehensive and easy to access than ever before.

Some impressive claims there. I hope after people have had time to kick the tires they’ll let us know how it really performs. read more

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July 20, 2009

Movable Type Monday: Version Announcement, Twitter Comments, Custom Styles, and More

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Happy Monday, folks! Sorry for the lack of updates last week — I was out of town and didn’t make it back in time for Movable Type Monday. Which was a shame, since we got a couple of pieces of really exciting news. First, the beta for MT 4.3 has begun. A few of the new features include:

  • Entry Pagination via MT-Search
  • Clone a Blog’s Structure Without the Content
  • Comment Pagination
  • Per Entry Asset Management

Plus lots of bug fixes. The new asset management is what interests me the most — it means the end of the awful form tags currently used to associate an image with an entry. If you’re the beta type, download and try it today. read more

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June 22, 2009

Movable Type Monday: New Version and New Plugin

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Happy Monday, folks. Only a couple of items on the agenda for this week. First, Movable Type 4.261 was released. This is a very minor update, mainly to fix the schema upgrade issue we told you about last time. If you upgraded to 4.26 and you’re not having any problems you can safely hold off on this update.

Finally, Dan Wolfgang released a new plugin for Action Streams. Dan’s Delicious Tags plugin lets you pull any Delicious tag results into your Action Stream. It’s particularly handy if you’re tracking search terms related to your industry.

What have you done with MT lately? Let us know in the comments.

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March 2, 2009

Movable Type Monday: Food Blogs, Custom Fields, and Movable Type 4.24

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Happy Monday, folks! The big news this week is the release of Movable Type 4.24. Both a security and a feature release, this version is considered a mandatory upgrade. Here are a few details you should know, straight from the official announcement:

  • Release Type: Security Release. This update fixes a serious potential vulnerability which has not yet been exploited in the wild.
  • Mandatory? Yes, this is a mandatory security upgrade.
  • Performance Implications: None.
  • Plugins Affected: None. Your current plugins should continue to work as expected.
  • Templates Affected: None.
  • System Requirements: This release has no new or additional system requirements.
  • Licensing considerations: None. MT 4.24 is a free update for users of any version of MT 4.x.
  • Upgrade Fatigue: No further mandatory updates are planned for Movable Type 4.2.

read more

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