This is the first entry in my new weblog. I have set up this weblog to discuss and evaluate CALL activities. This weblog is run with Movable Type, which I haven’t used before. It seemed pretty easy to set up. I have tried to keep the interface as plain and simple as possible, though I can add a lot more functionality if needed.

Any suggestions about how this could be improved? Does it work OK for you? Leave a comment.

The rest of this message is technical.

I will be adding a better looking header with a menu bar. At the moment there is only one page, so there isn’t much for a menu bar to do. But I will shift things from the side bar to the top of the page, and add links to other content.

I have added a newsfeed, which took a lot of setting up but seems to work OK. I wanted to convert the newsfeed myself rather than depending on another site to do it for me. I tried a lot of different ways to do this and finally got it working with RSSMonkey. It took a lot of experimentation, but it does seem the easiest to use and it automatically caches the feeds to a file, which saves time. This is something that will be useful since I can use the same program to add newsfeeds to any of my web pages – something that I have been wanting to do for some time.

What I would really like to do is limit the newsbox to a limited selection of three stories from the feed, rather than include them all. In this way there would be space for news from more than one source. I have looked at the code but it is a little beyond my grasp – I know virtually nothing about perl. It doesn’t look too difficult, and I am sure it is possible, but it really helps if you have some idea about what you are doing, and I don’t.

I am not very happy with the comments pop-up and will probably change it so that the comments appear at the end of a page. If people have disabled pop-ups on their browser this might be a problem??? What would be nicest would be to have the comments entry page written dynamically within the page – in other words it appears when needed and then disappears.

A spell checker would also be a nice addition. I have the plug-in but haven’t got around to setting it up. If it is anything like the newsfeed, I will probably leave it for a while.

 

6 Responses to This is a new weblog

  1. mary in Okayama-ken, Japan says:

    Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows 98; FunWebProducts; .NET CLR 1.1.4322)

    Good start!

  2. Daf says:

    Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows 98; YComp 5.0.2.4)

    Hi Peter,

    Wow, congrants on the blog. It is sure nice to be in control of your blog :-)

    Daf

  3. Anne Davis says:

    Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; Q312461; .NET CLR 1.1.4322)

    Wow, Pete! What a good job you have done on this weblog! I like the look of it and the Newsfeed works fine. It has a clear and simple look, yet will be so very effective in the way it will focus on your content. I admire the talent and hard work it took for you to put this together. Great job!

    Anne

  4. Chris Jones says:

    Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows 98; H010818)

    Hi, Pete,

    I, too, am very impressed that you put this on your own server. It looks quite impressive. Some of the print in the middle of the blog is not showing up, but it could be a problem with my computer.

  5. Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; .NET CLR 1.1.4322)

    Pete! Good work man! I always strayed away from hosting a blog on my own server. I was always afraid of possible communication difficulties (given that my Japanese isn’t so great) if problems were to arise. Nice to see you’ve been able to do that. Good luck with this.

    Aaron

  6. Browser: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1)

    Great work Pete – do you mind if I link to you?

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