Happy Monday, folks! Since it is a Monday, let’s start things off with some complaints about Movable Type. Phil Gyford wrote a detailed piece on some of the annoying things he’s dealt with in MT. The great thing about Phil’s post is that he doesn’t just complain about MT, he explains how he worked around its issues. Hopefully this post will help others that have dealt with the same things, and inspire new enhancements to MT.
Now, let’s see what else is new in the MT community.
Assetylene — Written by Brad Choate, Assetylene lets you customize the markup used to insert an asset into a post. If that sounds familiar to you, it should: Jay Allen wrote a similar plugin. Great minds think alike. If anybody’s tried both, let us know which you prefer and why.
Hybrid Pagination — Also from Brad, this plugin provides dynamic pagination, even for statically published templates. That sounds like the best of both worlds. Thanks, Brad!
ProCommunity — Beau Smith has combined three template sets — Community Blog, Community Forum, and Professional Website — into a single, unified theme. This will be much easier than setting up three separate blogs to do the same thing.
FastTagCloud — This plugin, written by Mixel Adm, offers a faster alternative to the standard tag cloud widget. If you try this, please let us know if you notice a difference in publishing time.
Interested in using one of those plugins, but confused by the install process? Byrne Reese has written the ultimate guide to installing Movable Type plugins. Byrne covers all the steps for installing your typical plugin, and helps you understand where different files go and why. He even provides a screencast of the process so you can see the steps first-hand. Thanks, Byrne!
Have you tried the Virtual MT appliance? I’ve found it very useful for testing. If you’ve tried it and wanted to customize it, Scott Boms has written a tutorial that will show you how. Scott shows how to configure VMT to serve from the root directory, rather than a subdirectory, but this procedure would let you make a variety of changes to the appliance.
Inspired by a question on the Six Apart Professional Network mailing list, I wrote a tutorial for Devlounge on print-friendly templates in MT. This was a fun one to do, and I hope it’s useful to people. If you have any feedback on it, I would love to hear it.
Finally, Smashing Magazine — known for their comprehensive link-gathering skills — have compiled the Movable Type Developer’s Toolbox. There is a lot of good information in that article, so be sure to bookmark it for future reference. When you’re stuck on an MT problem, there’s a very good chance what you need will be on that page.
What have you done with Movable Type lately? Let us know in the comments.
Billy Mabray is a web developer in the publishing industry. Over the years, he's written with and developed for just about every blogging platform there is. Blogging is in his blood, but the doctors think he can live a normal life anyway.