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July 9, 2003 » 8:42 am

Blosxom Installed!

Welcome to my blog, courtesy of Rael Dornfest‘s blosxom 2.0rc5. After examining the available blog tools and following the blosxom mailing list for some time, I finally decided to bite the bullet and install blosxom. Configuration and customization took a few days of mucking around, most of which consisted of experimenting with look-and-feel and determining which plugins I wanted to install. I found Eric Costello’s site on Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) invaluable in helping me hack together the look-and-feel I wanted in a mostly standards-compliant fashion. The resulting flavour files are available for your perusal.    (1)

I’m using the following standard plugins:    (2)

I’m also using a plugin I wrote — blosxom_purple — that will eventually make it to Rael’s plugin registry. The reason it’s not there already is that it relies on PurpleWiki v0.9, which has not yet been released. I’ll announce and discuss the plugin here when it’s finally available.    (8)

As I researched blogging tools, my choices quickly narrowed to blosxom and Movable Type. I think that Movable Type is an outstanding tool, but I decided to go with blosxom for the following reasons:    (9)

  • It’s open source.    (A)
  • It’s ridiculously compact and extensible. It doesn’t try to do too much itself, but it makes additional functionality possible with its support for flavours and plugins. In other words, it reeks of The Unix Way, of which I’m a big fan.    (B)
  • Chris Dent, my business partner at Blue Oxen Associates, runs Movable Type.    (C)

This last reason is important because it doubles the number of blogging tools with which we collectively have direct, deep experience, and because it doubles the number of tools we plan on actively coevolving. Why coevolve our tools? First, because we use and rely on them ourselves, and coevolution is a natural way of improving them. Second, it’s the most effective way to spread the ideas we have about collaborative tools. As the hacker community is fond of saying, we want to eat our own dogfood.    (D)

Two of these ideas are purple numbers and Wiki/blog integration. Chris has been doing a lot of cool things in these areas with Movable Type, and now, I’m making the same things available in blosxom. We’d like to see these ideas spread and improve, so if you have questions or comments, don’t hesitate to contact me. Better yet, blog your comments, and link here!    (E)

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