Recently in site mods Category

I just finished installing Movable Type 4.0!

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Welcome to my new blog powered by Movable Type.

It you actually came to the blog
a) via something other than RSS
b) looking for the knitting feed
c) once in a blue moon
you'll notice that it looks a bit different. That's because there's a spankin new install of MT4 under the hood. There new database, new templates (hence the new database), new layout which IMO, is cramped and nowhere near as cute as my last layout, but MT oh so kindly put together a new layout format that I'd like to be forward compatible with. The knitting only feed will be back soon.

Poke around and let me know if stuff is broken, please. Thanks!

Say What? Knitting only?

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Yes yes, some of my readers would really like the knitting or craft related posts only (after today's eBay post, who can really blame you?)

There are now category feeds and the knitting/craft feed can be found here:
 Subscribe to the knits and crafts goodness

And just for your convenience:

Subscribe in Bloglines

Add to Google Reader or Homepage

Subscribe in NewsGator Online

So no more eBay or other weird widgets unless they're knitting or craft related. And no, I will not be discussing the "Is knitting a craft" thing. This is a pointy things category, under which many things fall, but it seems to be lots of yarn, some sewing, and my general happiness with pointed objects. This includes staples...

Everyone blogged but me

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I feel like everyone blogged but me this week. Even Eilen of Ei Knit who only posts ever so rarely (but fantastic knitting!).

Well, the Movable Type blog was exhibiting some odd keep on logging in behavior where I'd log in, click a link, have to log in, click another link, and repeat. The particular details were correct, the cookie was being set. I contacted the wonderful tech support and Sarah responded.1 We poked at a few things for about a week and she was able to figure it out for me, where the error was in a place where I should have guessed had I been troubleshooting this myself (du-uh!) and now the blog is all happy again! She ran a database repair because one of my movable type tables was marked in use (mt_session, double duh) and here's what she did to fix it:

> If you continue to see a login issue with your own
> username, I'd suggest you do try clearing cookies, and then
> login again - if it still occurs, do try running a CHECK
> and/or REPAIR command on the mt_session table of your
> database to see if this again corrects the problem.

Blog All Happy Again!

Thanks Sarah and Movable Type Support.

1 I have a license which includes support. My time was spent on other higher priority things than fixing the blog. Admit it, all 20 of you, that you didn't even notice my lack of posting. Bwahaha.

Movable Type 3.3

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Movable Type Version 3.3 is out.

- What's new in version 3.3? ( More here )
- What do I need to know BEFORE I upgrade?
- Where's the upgrade instructions? [pdf]
- I have a previous installation of Movable Type. Where do I download the free update?

My favorite new thing in 3.3?


The pretty "Create New Entry" editing screen. The "Upload File menu" has been revamped a bit, too. However, it is a bit less streamlined for those of us who use the "Set Upload Path" option.

Top Five New Features in Movable Type 3.3:

Tags: Describe your entries with tags so readers can easily find any content and subscribe to custom feeds.

Widgets: Arrange and manage your page just by dragging and dropping. Widgets can include your own content or content from other web services and feeds.

Activity Feeds: Reduce the burden of managing your blog by getting all the updates on comments and feedback on your blog, along with your blog's activity, delivered via a secure custom feed.

New Blog Styles: Customize the look of your site with just a few clicks, without editing any HTML. Choose from dozens of unique designs and layouts.

Powerful Templating Language: Movable Type's industry-leading template language is more powerful than ever, letting you choose exactly which content you want to display on your pages, as well as how it's presented. Customize your entire site without having to do any programming.

Now THAT's Service

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Jay Allen, one of the product managers at SixApart which produces Movable Type, left a comment on how to decipher the is-spam-not-spam logic ? Wow. I'm
a) flattered that such an awesome dude left me a comment
b) that SixApart looks for these entries (trust me, I know how many blog reads I get, and I soooo know that Six Apart doesn't read this blog, so they must be doing a really smart search for feedback on MT given specific factors that I do have an idea about) and
c) that Jay took the time to leave a comment to explain it to me so I can use MT 3.2 and the SpamLookup plugin more efficiently. Now I feel really important to them, indeed. Unsolicited comments and help. Wow.

This is what I call Proactive Customer Service. They're doing what many smart companies are doing nowadays - tracking what's being said about their product in blogland. Then they sent the genius who created all this lovely anti-spam (Which, btw Jay, really really works well. Much less spam after I started using SpamLookup instead of MT Blacklist.) to leave a comment. Or someone on his behalf, which is also cool.

I do feel like I should disclose that I'm a member of sixApart's ProNet professional network of developers. Even though I signed up more in a "keep my head in the loop" type of thing rather than an active developer, I still feel I should mention it. They gave me a Network Member License for free when I joined; the license entitles me to actual customer support from sixapart via trouble tickets. This is important because it really gives me a someone to talk to when I have a problem or see an area for possible improvement. Long ago I went with Movable Type because I knew they would probably go commercial- they were a tightly knit core of developers who literally had a real investment in making MT into a good product. BTW, this is in no way to say that I don't love the open source software communities and their efforts- I do and there are several products which I really love created by open source communities. Just saying that in the budding age of the internet, Ben and Mina made an effort to make money off of what they thought was a great idea and had to produce a great product so people would want to pay for it. It should come as no surprise that it can be pretty tough these days to create a product people are willing to pay for when something similar could be had for free. Some people prefer WordPress, especially when MT started restricting their free license with version 3.x. Personally, I prefer my world cut and dry- either give it to me for free without ads or ask me to pay for it. Don't do some tiny advertisement insertion on the bottom of your homepage where only browser bots can see it so you can avoid asking me to donate.

Many thanks to Jay and SixApart for following up on a question which wasn't even submitted to them, at least not by me. Go have a read about their Project Comet which aims to bring blogging into the mainstream. Privacy Settings, media rich, and easy to stay updated. I dig that.

I am all for telling someone thanks, you did an awesome job

Domain Transfer- Pardon if there's an outage

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All done :)

I'm transferring my domain since a) the existing one is a bit expensive and b) I want to add some privacy control to my DNS listing.

It should be over within a week, which is all good since I don't really have much to say this week. Life is being consumed by school, almost getting out of school, getting on the "give me a job, please, because I'm wonderful" wagon, and finishing up the baby cardigan.

Holy Comments Batman!

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I had 13, 13!!!!, valid comments in my "junk comments" category. Movable Type 3.2 changed the comment preview process and I never knew I needed to check the possible junk comments. Usually comments are e-mailed to me so I can approve them but the suspected junk comments aren't e-mailed.

So, be sure to check your "Junk Comments" section if you use MT 3.2. People may actually be commenting on your blog, never seeing your comments, and never ever ever commenting again (Please, I've learned my lesson. I love comments and please leave some). Sorry!

There were 13 comments and all 13 were not junk. Why MT thought one comment was junk and the other was not, given the same commentor, I don't know. Some of that delicious spamranking algorithm, I guess.

testing the new install


Well, the major remodel is over. Some smaller things and layouts will be tweaked here and there. The sidebars need to be brought up to speed.
Have a poke around. My favorite mod so far is the updated archive index

In case you'd like to update your MT archives to something similar, here's the pertinent code which you slot into your archive template:
<MTArchiveList archive_type="Monthly">
<th class="archive-list"><MTArchiveTitle></th>
<MTEntries> <tr> <td>- <a href="<MTEntryLink archive_type="Individual">"><MTEntryTitle></a></td><td><$MTEntryDate format="(%m/%d/%y)"$></td><td><MTEntryCategories glue=", "><a href="<$MTCategoryArchiveLink$>"><$MTCategoryLabel$></a></MTEntryCategories> </td></tr>

Please excuse the dust. MT 3.2 was such a major upgrade from the way I used former versions of MT, with all these localization features and abundance of new tags, that you can clearly see some changes here (and possibly not for the better. Sorry).

There seem to be a few things that aren't working. Like uhm. Listing the date. So the short and long is that I hope you read this via RSS/atom 'cause this site is going to be a bit less pretty for a while. There's a great little template generator written for the template, though I'm going to have to try this again after I get the %% kinks smoothed out and MT-Paginate installed.

Six Apart claims that all their styles released for 3.2 are updated for two column, left and right, and three column formats. Ah well, maybe on their internal servers. I found a few while surfing around and trying out new styles that no, certain things don't seem to have the two-column-right? implemented. I happen to like my sidebar on the right and think it is a good user-interface. If you disagree with me, please, leave a comment. The comment boxes are hideous right now. Ayee-yah.

In any case, the directory structure in this release has totally changed, which I'm okay with, except that my install was getting unweildy to maintain, so a "fresh" install of MT was due.

MT 3.2 out- oooooooh.

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It is finally an official release. Get your MT 3.2 upgrade

And check out the licensing discount, tons of new features, and the one thing I'm really jazzed about, standardized templating for all of six apart's blogging platforms. This mean we can now use typepad templates and they can use MT templates. Oooh.

And the backend? Oh gosh, big changes. I've been reading their blog and have been drumming my fingers in anticipation. They've really made it an integrated workspace in the backend. Nice to see them improving it after all this time.

avoid accidentally spamming others


I like to revise my entries after writing and publishing them. Perhaps it has something to do with seeing my actual post on the page and noticing the mistakes (so it would be smart to let me see this post in its entire context with styles in place rather than in easier to read previews)

And today I realized something baaaad about my habit. I accidentally trackback spam articles I link to because my site is set to autoresolve trackbacks from links I've included in my post. In short, that means my post appears many many times in the trackback section of another site. A well read site. Yes, this is embarassing.

So. I went and turned off my auto-resolve. It can be turned off in the WEBLOG CONFIG section > Preferences.
Scroll down until you find the trackback section and turn it off.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries in the site mods category.

sharp points is the previous category.

trips ahoy is the next category.

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