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Weblog System Features Compared 269

Posted by simoniker
from the immovable-weblog-object dept.
prostoalex writes "The question of the best weblogging system out there arises quite often, especially after the new licensing scheme introduced by MovableType. Here's a rather detailed breakdown of currently popular blogging and content management systems. Out of 11 software packages, 10 run on any server with variations of Perl/PHP and MySQL/PostgresSQL, and one requires Windows and .NET Framework. 4 are licensed under GPL, 3 are under BSD. Mark Pilgrim explains why licensing is suddenly important."
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Weblog System Features Compared

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  • Great site & Favs (Score:5, Informative)

    by netfool (623800) * on Monday May 24, 2004 @03:49PM (#9241524) Homepage
    Though it's aimed more at CMS's rather than blogs, it's definatley a great place to try out multiple CMS's before installing them.

    Check it out - OpenSourceCMS [opensourcecms.com]

    My current favorites:
    Mambo [mamboserver.com]
    Wordpress [wordpress.org]
    E107 [e107.org]
    and last but not least Geeklog [geeklog.net]
  • by ScurvyDawg (98220) * on Monday May 24, 2004 @03:50PM (#9241530) Homepage

    GeekLog [geeklog.net] is the best and most secure PHP CMS out there.
    On top of this it is easy to use and setup.

    How you missed GeekLog I will never know.
  • CityDesk (Score:5, Interesting)

    by tomblackwell (6196) on Monday May 24, 2004 @03:52PM (#9241555) Homepage
    You can also manage a site quite nicely with CityDesk [fogcreek.com], by Fog Creek. The owner, Joel Spolsky, is an interesting guy who has been the subject of some debate on Slashdot over the years.

    Whatever your opinion of him, he makes good software.
  • my own? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ferrocene (203243) on Monday May 24, 2004 @03:55PM (#9241597) Journal
    Seriously, have any other /.'ers created their own system? Sure, mine sucks as I just used it to learn php, but it's still cool to programmatically create tables from a flat text file somewhere and append a date.

    • Re:my own? (Score:5, Funny)

      by DrEldarion (114072) on Monday May 24, 2004 @03:59PM (#9241636)
      Why, when I was your age, we wrote static HTML pages! None of this fancy-schmancy dynamic drek! When we wanted to update our weblog we would open up the HTML file and put the text right in there! And we liked it!
      • That's nothing. Back in my day we didn't have them fancy modem thingies. We sent the site raw binary data through the telegraph. Sure it took awhile to get anything worth reading, but damn, weren't we were satisfied just knowing we'd accomplished something . . .

      • Re:my own? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by kfg (145172) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:46PM (#9242085)
        And some of us ( who might have a certain infamy for not having a weblog ) are having a bit of trouble understanding why we wouldn't like doing it that way now.

        Could someone please edify me (and consequently the rest of the viewing audience who might not yet have weblogs) why we might find it desirable to use dynamic methods to update and display a plain text journal?

        And for us old time teletype jockeys who are jacks of all trades but masters of only vi who have never figured out what an IDE might possibly be good for, how do the benefits of weblog packages offset the disadvantages that are the raison d'etre of this Slashdot article, vis a vis, licensing issues (not to mention their attendant prices).

        KFG
        • Re:my own? (Score:4, Informative)

          by TwinkieStix (571736) on Monday May 24, 2004 @05:15PM (#9242329) Homepage
          Simply put, it's more organized. It's got categories, user permissions, a web editing interface, RSS feeds, and a search engine. The search engine alone is enough when you have hundreds of entries or more and you don't want a GIANT bandwidth sucking page or you don't know the order of the words or phrases you are searching for.
          • Re:my own? (Score:2, Insightful)

            by crayz (1056)
            Yeah, I ran a semi-blog type thing from my site, back before I knew what a blog was. I just added text into a file, coded the formatting myself, and at the end of each month renamed the file for an archive and started a new one.

            MoveableType is a radically better experience. The Luddites who are trying to say otherwise are simply wrong
        • Re:my own? (Score:3, Funny)

          by nacturation (646836)
          how do the benefits of weblog packages offset the disadvantages that are the raison d'etre of this Slashdot article, vis a vis, licensing issues (not to mention their attendant prices).

          Wow, it sounds like you pulled that straight out of a Dilbert strip. Try and work in "synergistic" and "best practices" next time. :)
        • Re:my own? (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Salamander (33735)

          Could someone please edify me (and consequently the rest of the viewing audience who might not yet have weblogs) why we might find it desirable to use dynamic methods to update and display a plain text journal?

          Simple: because it's not just a plain text journal. A weblog system gives you multiple views of your entries - last N, last N in a category, everything in a certain month, RSS/ATOM views, etc. A weblog lets you post when you only have web access and not FTP, which might be the case when you're tr

      • Re:my own? (Score:3, Funny)

        by Tin Foil Hat (705308)
        And boy howdy! What could possibly beat the zen-like process of updating hundreds of files by hand to change one menu item?
      • Re:my own? (Score:2, Informative)

        by gravygraphics (548287)
        See blosxom... Same thing. Edit a text file and it is "published."
      • Which is why I now open up an XML file and put the text right in there. It gets served by Cocoon using XSLT so no-one is any the wiser. And I wrote it all myself, and it's GPL'd.
    • Re:my own? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Simon (S2) (600188)
      Seriously, have any other /.'ers created their own system?

      Yes, I did. A si [4k1r4.ath.cx]mple gallery script I took from somewhere on the net and modified it to fit my needs. There is a cron job launching a perl script that downloads mails from a mailbox and puts the attachments on the gallery and the body of the mail under the image on the web page.
      Very simple, but allows me to blog from my mobile phone.
      • wow, that's very cool. I'm jealous! I have some work to do now!

        Phone updates...*shakes head*, why didn't I think of that.

      • Damn why didn't I think of that?

        Seriously, I was considering to put together a system like this (mobile image blogging) but it allways annoyed me that sending data from a standard phone (over the telephone operators networks) is such a big bother. Furthermore I hear that many operators will perform multiple convertions of images in order to compensate for their broken software systems. (For MMS and similar services that is.)

        I had even considered doing a Java program in order to transfer the data from the
    • Re:my own? (Score:4, Informative)

      by AJWM (19027) on Monday May 24, 2004 @09:22PM (#9243943) Homepage
      Seriously, have any other /.'ers created their own system?

      Yeah, twenty years ago, in C [sf.net]. Some of the original [conferencing.co.uk] sites [mix.ne.jp] have updated the software a bit, but the "classic" software is still in use. [nlzero.com] (I have done some work [webcosy.com] on modernizing the technology, but that got put on the back burner -- I may start it up again.)

      (Some might argue that CoSy wasn't really blogging software. Well, aside from the obvious agreement that the web didn't exist then, so by definition it couldn't have been, there were several Big Names who used Byte Magazine's site (BIX) as just such -- Jerry Pournelle, for example.)
  • by L. VeGas (580015) on Monday May 24, 2004 @03:56PM (#9241607) Homepage Journal
    "The best weblogging system is one that doesn't let lame people talk about themselves. Search enginges should ignore them too."

    "Hey don't be so stuck up. I blog for fun. If you don't want to read it, don't. Besides, lots of people like reading about me massaging my mom's feet."
  • Site Mirror (Score:2, Informative)

    by karmatic (776420)
    Although there aren't any big images, here is a mirror in case something should happen to the site:

    Mirror [t28.net].

    Persionally, I like Serendipity - the BSD License is about as permissive as you can get.
  • by Anthony Boyd (242971) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:00PM (#9241651) Homepage

    If you run a phpBB forum, you can grab my add-on phpBB Blog [outshine.com] to turn a forum into a blog. Also, I have a beta [outshine.com] available of the next release. I'd love input.

    Also, since this is the Open Source world where cooperation is welcomed, I thought I'd mention that phpBB Fetch All [sourceforge.net] is a blog system that I didn't know about when I made phpBB Blog. phpBB Fetch All is superior to my system, although it is also bigger and more complicated. But it sure looks good.

  • Where's e107? (Score:3, Informative)

    by bofkentucky (555107) <bofkentucky&gmail,com> on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:02PM (#9241674) Homepage Journal
    Easy to use/set-up, GPL license, and good (not perfect) XHTML strict compliance. Check it out [e107.org] if you have access to php/mysql
    • Re:Where's e107? (Score:3, Informative)

      by eyeye (653962)
      You either are compliant with XHTML strict or you aren't, you cant be a bit compliant with it.

      It doesnt validate, and it's not just comments that fail validation (which I could half understand) but the actual page structure in places.
  • by Octagon Most (522688) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:02PM (#9241677)
    This "rather detailed breakdown" is a nice comparison of features, but hardly answers the question of which package is the best. The chart itself says that it "displays attributes of different user-installed blog software packages side-by-side for comparison." There's nothing about usability or other subjective criteria. It is a comprehensive collection of information though. I guess that's good for some people but I bet plenty want a comparison of how easy/flexible they are to use and maintain. Personally I would also like to see a comparison to the hosted services like Blogger.

    As I've said before, if accumulation of features were all that mattered, we'd all love Microsoft Office [microsoft.com].
  • LiveJournal (Score:5, Informative)

    by lostchicken (226656) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:02PM (#9241680)
    The code that runs LiveJournal [livejournal.org] is open source. It's not that much of a pain to deploy, and when it's working, it's the most powerful I've seen. Many stand alone clients for posting, all kinds of things. Set one up, use it as your own weblog, host your friends' weblogs.
    • Re:LiveJournal (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      LiveJournal is probably the easiest of all because it only takes 2 lines of code to get it embedded into your website.

      Everything else is taken care of by the LJ servers.

      And the interface is so much easier to use.
      • Re:LiveJournal (Score:3, Informative)

        by lostchicken (226656)
        Yes, you can use the LJ servers, but what I did was actually be the LJ servers. My weblog runs the same software as they do, but I'm not tied to them in any way. Yes, it's total overkill, but I'm crazy like that.
    • Re:LiveJournal (Score:4, Interesting)

      by moosesocks (264553) on Monday May 24, 2004 @05:06PM (#9242257) Homepage
      Even better...

      Use the LiveJournal servers, but syndicate the RSS feed into your own blog.

      This way, you can get the best of both worlds, allowing you to intergrate the blog into your own site while using all of LJ's kickass features such as the huge array of WYSIWIG clients availible. It cannot be beaten.
    • Re:LiveJournal (Score:2, Interesting)

      by abartlett_219 (600259)
      LJ is one of the most powerful blogging systems out there. Fairly painless to set up (i got it working with gentoo in under an hour, debian is just apt-getting the packages and perl modules). If it can handle a 2 million+ user system (some closed source stuff, but most of that is not needed for your daily blog). And they are making tons of progress with FotoBilder, their open source photohosting service. Brad and co. has made a heck of a system Plus the LJ ethics are pretty good too (in the LJ social c
    • Re:LiveJournal (Score:3, Interesting)

      by rmarll (161697)
      Which is kind of strange since it didn't even make it into the first 10 systems reviewed.
  • WordPress.org (Score:2, Informative)

    by saxmatt (320581)
    Sorry about the WordPress.org site guys, I'm doing my best to bring it up ASAP.
  • .. so I wrote my own ;)
  • Good timing (Score:4, Informative)

    by image (13487) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:10PM (#9241745) Homepage
    Just this weekend I decided to move my own personal site [unto.net] over to a CMS/Blog system to make updating it even easier. I spent a while doing similar research, and ultimately ended up chosing Bloxsom [blosxom.com] as the right tool for my needs [unto.net]. It took me only 15 minutes to set everything up, and only a few more hours to write my first plug-in [unto.net]. Blosxom probably isn't the right tool for most applications, but for a personal site it met my needs precisely. In fact, I even migrated another site off of Moveable Type that same weekend.

    Again, I documented the (rather brief) decision making process here [unto.net].
  • Some of the ones I've looked into (like phpNuke and Geeklog) have download sections, but none are typically oriented towards this.

    Are there any like this? I'm thinking basic (.htpasswd) type authentication and a simple file layout.
    • A nice google search should find you what you want.
      Try:

      "d00d, l337 WaR3z" + download

      ah yes, learn from the masters at exchanging large files
      • No, I'm actually thinking more of in a business setting. So many email systems limit the size and content that can be transferred that way. FTP works well enough otherwise, but lacks a user interface and is a kind of ugly protocol to deal with from a firewall/security standpoint.

        Thusfar we've gotten by kind of merging FTP and Apache with directory listings enabled, with custom host names for each "server". It's stone-axe simple to set up, but lacks reasonable authentication and that "branding" experienc
        • Thusfar we've gotten by kind of merging FTP and Apache with directory listings enabled, with custom host names for each "server". It's stone-axe simple to set up, but lacks reasonable authentication and that "branding" experience the suits are looking for, and FTP for uploads bites.

          I think you are looking for ssh server and SFTP. It uses one TCP port (22) and goes right through NAT walls. Filezilla [sourceforge.net] is a good windows "interface" for sftp. If your running Linux or OSX, it's already installed. Just set

  • Why just blog? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gmuslera (3436) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:14PM (#9241779) Homepage Journal
    There are more kind of things one could want to publish, even from the personal point of view, that don't fit very well in the blog approach. You have wiki pages, discussion forums, tabular information, file or image galleries, and a lot more ways to store and manage "content" in very different ways.

    Maybe is not yet perfect, but i like TikiWiki [tikiwiki.org] because it have all in one single package (enabling some sort of integration between features, unified security, etc).

    • Re:Why just blog? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by ichimunki (194887)
      Yep. Wiki is my preference, although I use a somewhat modified UseMod [usemod.com] Wiki (I have tried TWiki in the past and found it a bit too much-- plus, IIRC, it has kinda goofy markup compared to what you see most places).

      The biggest thing I found lacking in UseMod was the ability to have a little "front page" blurb about recent changes, so I hacked one up. This allows the front page to contain links to my journal entries and keep visitors up to speed on the important stuff that's new since last visit. I have some
  • by Landaras (159892) <neil@weh[ ]an.com ['nem' in gap]> on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:14PM (#9241783) Homepage
    Is anyone aware of CMS's designed specifically for writers (or adaptable to them)? Or perhaps what I envision a Content Management System doing is different from what others are doing.

    Specifically what I am in the process of coding (poorly) is a system that will allow me to manage and elegantly present information about the various writing I've done. This information would be metadata such as Date Written, Themes, Similar Pieces, Inspiration, etc...

    What I have now on my personal site is pretty rudimentary. (example [fallinggrace.com])

    I just have the texts themselves as individual HTML files in a separate directory, while the metadata is in a MySQL database that is queried through PHP.

    Thoughts, links, direction, or experiences to share?

    - Neil Wehneman
    • by kbahey (102895)

      Take a look at Drupal [drupal.org].

      It has two features that could be helpful to you:

      • Book nodes: which provide automatic navigation to chapters/pages of a book.
      • Flex node module: which allows you to define custom nodes with custom fields (so you could add date written, blah)

      It is a very capable CMS system, and I highly recommend it.

      • Also:
        - it's customizable and extensible in a big way
        - the community around it is very active
        - seems to be designed by people who know how to write software (which sadly is not true when you look at the PHPNuke family)
        - very feature-rich
        It just rocks. I took some time trying out various solutions, and once i've found Drupal there was no looking back.
        I'm still very surprised the article mentioned in the newspiece ignores Drupal.
  • The best one I had (Score:2, Interesting)

    by jb.hl.com (782137)
    ...I wrote myself.

    Two PHP scripts, plus an additional, .htpasswd protected one to post stuff. It worked a charm, had multiple categories, allowed comment posting...it took me about two hours to do, and even better it allowed me to have the site exactly the way I wanted it, and not the way it would fit around the CMS. It's also a great way to learn how to code. It was fast and reliable. However, I'm just using raw HTML now: only one author, and I'm sitting at the server, so why not? And if it's good enough
  • slashdot's journal (Score:3, Informative)

    by cheese_wallet (88279) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:18PM (#9241820) Journal
    I don't use it myself, but it seems that slashot's journal is essentially a free blog.
  • That's odd, since Drupal [drupal.org] is a strong contender in the arena of blogger software. Technically it's more than just a blogger, but it's still a full-featured blogging software.
    • Drupal is great of course, but it is not only a weblog.

      It is a full fledged CMS application. It is also an extensible framework for web applications as well (someone wrote an e-commerce package for it).

      Labelling it as a weblog system is too restrictive, though it handles that part pretty well too.
      • Yeah, sorry, i put the wrong emphasis.
        It's just me that i'm using it strictly as a blogger: i disabled all non-blog-relevant modules in the admin interface and that was it.

        But yes, it's a capable CMS framework.
  • by telbij (465356) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:19PM (#9241825)
    All these Movable Type bloggers whining about the new licensing scheme is getting a little old. Sure I agree that the new licensing move is stupid (considering the quality of the product), but they have every right to go and shoot themselves in the foot if they want.

    As far as the individual blogger is concerned, the lesson is this: use a tool that will allow you to migrate your data. Tools will continue to advance, and you can always redesign, but your archives the only irreplaceable part of the whole equation. In the case of Movable Type, you are already ahead of the game because every other blogging tool in existence imports MT data.

    Why you migrate is a non-issue. You could just as easily be forced to abandon a GPLed package because it is no longer being upgraded and you need the latest features. Even if you write your own CMS, you still run the risk of not having time to add the features you need! Paying a license fee is just one of many considerations you need to make when picking a CMS.
  • about to switch (Score:2, Insightful)

    by trippin_efnet (713714)
    i currently use movable type, and while i like it, and think its fairly easy to use.. i have to agree with earlier posters here, its kind of silly to use any kind of cms that is not open source.

    ive been looking around for a while now and it seems that wordpress is the most complete package with a good community behind it. the community behind it is important because if you ever run into any kinds of problems, the more people supporting it the better. i guess it is just as important as it is to have a goo
  • GPL misconception (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Pretzalzz (577309) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:20PM (#9241834)
    Mark Pilgrim:
    Regardless, GPL software has the restrictions that it has, but it can never become more restrictive. An upgrade can't take away freedoms that I enjoyed with an older version.
    This is simply not true. Any license can be changed with the consent of all the copyright holders. With GPL software like the kernel, this is simply infeasible due to the large number of contributors. But if all of the copyright is controlled by a single company, this is trivial. The community can always fork from the last GPL release, but the community could also continue to use Movable Type pre3.0 plus [increasingly complex] patches. If they can't than they never had any freedom in the first place, regardless an upgrade didn't take away freedoms[except as could also happen if the software were GPL].
    • It is true - you cannot take away that freedom.

      As soon as I download a GPL'd release, I can fork from that day on, regardless of any changes you choose to make.

      MT pre-3 didn't allow you the same rights the GPL does, so no, its not the same either. :)
    • Re:GPL misconception (Score:4, Informative)

      by exhilaration (587191) on Monday May 24, 2004 @05:26PM (#9242412)
      What the guy above is trying to say is that you can't RETROACTIVELY change the license to GPL'ed software. If version 1.0 was GPL, you can make version 2.0 non-GPL. But anybody can take version 1.0 and continue working on it, forking it into a new product, and there's nothing you can do about it. That's because the license to 1.0 can never be changed - that "permanence" is in the GPL.
  • by WombatControl (74685) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:20PM (#9241836)

    I've had a site running on MT for the past two years, with nearly a year's worth of Blogger entries before that. About 4,000 individual entries and over 6,000 comments dating back over three years. One would think that migrating a site of that size would be a royal pain in the ass.

    WordPress imported the whole thing in a matter of minutes. It's easier to upgrade from MT2.6 to WordPress than it is from MT 2.6 to MT 3.0.

    WordPress is fortunate to have hit its stride just as the MT licensing brewhaha was hitting. WP 1.2 has all the features of MT, runs faster, and is completely open source and GPL licensed. It's a bit of a paradigm shift from MT - you have to get used to a dynamically-run system rather than static templates, but once you grasp the power it brings it offers a lot of new potential for blog development. Plus, there are a lot of talented hackers who have been turned off by MT licensing and will be developing WP plugins instead. WP even has features that MT doesn't - for instance automated link management. That alone makes it worth the upgrade.

    Plus, future versions will support multiple blogs under one interface, some more commenting controls, and other features. I'd expect as WordPress captures marketshare the development of new core features and plugins will increase as well.

    That's a big selling point - even if the WP developers wanted to pull the rug out under free users like Six Apart did, they couldn't. WordPress is GPL software, meaning freedom is but a fork away. Mark Pilgrim's piece does an excellent job of detailing why that freedom is so important. It's another reminder of why open source software is better than proprietary software in terms of flexibility and licensing.

    • by Jordy (440) * <jordan&snocap,com> on Monday May 24, 2004 @09:12PM (#9243867) Homepage
      I'm sticking with MT myself.

      I don't really want to run MySQL. I don't really want to maintain it. It is just not something I want to deal with. MT lets me use a little local database.

      I really really don't want dynamic pages. I just don't need it. I have had zdnet link to my blog which caused a trillion avantgo clients to hit it. I just don't need queries to MySQL and PHP being run all the time. Actually PHP by itself wouldn't be so bad if it cached everything in a local file the first time the page required it as long as it supported if-modified-since and ranges correctly.

      I actually kind of like the idea of TypeKey. Of course nothing prevents you from implementing TypeKey support in WordPress.

      I simply don't care about silly licensing issues. I mean, for a single non-commercial blog, nothing has changed.

      I have an upgrade path. Sooner or later WordPress will probably integrate a local databse and real caching. When that happens if it is better than MT, I'll migrate. I just don't see the point in migrating right now.
  • Which ones have rpm and deb files generally available?
  • Scoop? Slashcode? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MAXOMENOS (9802) <maxomai&gmail,com> on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:29PM (#9241908) Homepage
    I'm a little surprised that Scoop and Slashcode aren't being considered for blogging software. They're a little complex maybe, but they've been used for blogging pretty successfully. For example: DailyKos [dailykos.com] is a pretty successful 'blog, and it does very well on Scoop [kuro5hin.org] (which runs Kuro5hin [kuro5hin.org]). Beastbay used to run Slashcode.
    • Re:Scoop? Slashcode? (Score:4, Informative)

      by jalefkowit (101585) <jasonNO@SPAMjasonlefkowitz.net> on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:53PM (#9242161) Homepage

      They're not considered because for personal blogs they are probably more trouble than they're worth. I manage The Oceana Network [oceana.org], a group blog on global efforts to defend the oceans, for my employer, Oceana [oceana.org]. (Disclaimer: the opinions expressed here are mine alone and not those of Oceana, yadda yadda.) The Network is based on Scoop [kuro5hin.org].

      For a blog like ours, that handles posts from a large group of authors and that needs to be able to support very long discussions, Scoop is fantastic. Give it an inexpensive Linux/BSD box all to itself and it is a very, very nice and flexible online community platform.

      However, if you fit the profile of the typical single-author blog author, installing Scoop probably isn't for you. It's a tricky process, requiring "now edit your httpd.conf"-type steps that are just not realistic to expect from someone on a virtual hosting setup. (Not to say that it can't be done -- just that it's not realistic to expect many people to do it.)

      And Scoop's primary benefit -- its very nice moderated comment system -- is wasted on a personal blog, where no post will ever get more than a few comments. (I know that ours doesn't have that many yet either, but we've only been up and running for a couple of weeks... give us time :-) )

      For those users, MT, WordPress, etc. are much better solutions -- easier installs, and just enough features to be useful without overcomplicating things.

      If your blogging ambitions are grander than a simple personal site, though, Scoop is great -- definitely check it out if you haven't already.

    • Scoop is a pain in the ass to set up compared to other blogging software. It's also a bit of overkill for blogging.
  • Pivot (Score:4, Informative)

    by verloren (523497) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:30PM (#9241926)
    Switched from Blogger to Pivot last week, and so far it's working well. The key attractions for me were greater control and the minimal server requirements (PHP is about it). It works great, there are some really nice touches in there, and it's being actively developed.

    Cheers, Paul

  • Is Slash CMS or blogging software?
  • Perfect Timing (Score:5, Informative)

    by Salamander (33735) <jeff.pl@atyp@us> on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:32PM (#9241946) Homepage Journal

    Wouldn't you know it? I just spent much of the weekend converting my site from my own homegrown weblog codebase to pMachine. Here's the new version [pl.atyp.us] (with an entry about the change), and the old version [pl.atyp.us] for comparison. According to the table, b2evolution and WordPress would be equally good fits, perhaps even slightly better because they support assigning an entry to multiple categories like my old code but unlike pMachine Free, but when I tried them all out at opensourceCMS [opensourcecms.com] that really wasn't the case. I strongly recommend that you check out candidates there, because a lot of the small things make a difference. Here are some examples:

    • What kinds of markup is allowed in posts? In comments? Is it plain HTML, or a stripped-down square-bracketed subset like bbCode, or both, or neither? Which are you comfortable with? How about your users who leave comments? If it's real HTML, how are various cross-site scripting and other exploits prevented?
    • Are commenters allowed to register so they can have persistent profiles? Are they forced to register? Either/or?
    • Does the post entry format allow things like saving drafts, posting to the future, setting expiration dates?
    • Does the system have things like time offsets (between where you are and where your site is hosted)? Are the paths that it uses configurable, so you can make it work with different directory structures? How "tunable" are things in general? This can be a huge headache if you get halfway into your transition and you find something that just won't work properly in your environment without hacking the code.
    • Do you really like the way the templating system works? You really won't know until you try some customization, so fiddle a bit with the layout. Move stuff around, add links to other parts of your site, etc.
    • If you're converting from another system, are there automatic conversion tools? How well do they really work? Again, you have to try to see, and not just on opensourcecms either. If there are no converters, how hard would it be to write one? Does the database schema (and/or file layout) make sense to you? Is it similar conceptually to what you have now? Does it require complex relationships between tables/fields that would be hard to maintain as you suck in your old content? Is there any information in your old content that there's no place for?

    These sorts of things, none of which are covered in a mere checklist, really matter when you actually take the plunge. Trying stuff out on opensourcecms is a great first step, but then you should actually download the real thing and really try to run a test version of your own site on it for at least an hour or so, to see if you can truly tweak it to your liking. Only then will you be able to make a decision that will really satisfy you.

  • by chrysalis (50680) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:37PM (#9241996) Homepage
    The most popular weblog site in french is Skyblog [skyblog.com] .

    It has almost no feature listed in this article. People can just write text, and add an optional picture to every text. The comment system is also extremely basic, with even no threading support.

    So why is it so popular, moreover there are plenty of featureful competitors?

    Probably because it's minimal, so it's trivial to understand. Weblogs are for people who don't want to learn anything, just publish.

    And even Blogger is way too complicated for the average user IMHO.

    Also, with a weblog, you just write the text and some script will automagically create the code. So why not make the weblogs produce correct, accessible documents ?

    The usual complain of web site designers when you talk them about accessibility is "oh, well... too complicated to implement, I prefer Dreamweaver-made HTML".

    With a weblog engine, once templates are properly designed, making the documents accessibles to blind users could be trivial. This is, IMHO, the main point of weblogs, CMS, etc.

    But out of every weblog software compared in this document, I can see only once that produces accessible, XHTML-conformant pages : bBlog.

    Why? Useless features are fun, but it would be nice to also focus on what a weblog could really bring over traditional sites.
  • by SethJohnson (112166) on Monday May 24, 2004 @04:50PM (#9242127) Homepage Journal


    Not that it's expressly a weblog system... it's frequently used as such, though.


    I just wanted to drop in a slam on phpNuke because of all the security problems I've had with it. The modules created by third-parties frequently haven't had rigorous security testing and are prone to exploits. If you want to increase your chances of your server being hacked, publish using phpNuke and a few modules. The brazillian script kiddies rabidly chase servers running phpNuke everytime a new exploit is found.
  • Here's a break down of the two options of Livejournal. I'm a permenant member [livejournal.com], so there's that bias, but I'm not a developer...

    Current Version: 1.1?
    Home URL: http://livejournal.org/
    Trial URL: http://www.livejournal.com/
    License: GPL
    Cost(US$): Free
    Minimum Server Requestments: Perl 5.6.1, MySQL 3.23.57, Apache 1.3.28, mod_perl 1.28 [livejournal.com]
    Localization: Almost all, I think!
    Multilingual: Yes
    Data Storage: Database
    Max Weblogs: Unlimited
    Multiple Sites: Yes
    Post Ordering: Descending, Ascending
    categories: Yes (

  • Anyone have experience with jsp wiki's weblog feature?

    I used jsp wiki and was considering an upgrade to a get 'cheap' blog up but have no idea if it's any good or not.

    http://www.jspwiki.org

    http://www.jspwiki.org/Wiki.jsp?page=FAQWeblog

    I have no affiliation... just wondering.

  • I've been looking for a piece of blogging software that doesn't require a SQL server. I've been using MovableType, storing its data in a BerkleyDB file. However, I'd like to move away from MovableType (for licensing issues, as well as usability issues).

    Any suggestions for this case? And please don't say "change hosting providers" because I'm doing this for a University program and it needs to be hosted in University webspace. Hence no SQL server.
    • I've been looking for a piece of blogging software that doesn't require a SQL server. I've been using MovableType, storing its data in a BerkleyDB file. However, I'd like to move away from MovableType (for licensing issues, as well as usability issues)

      Bloxsom [blosxom.com] and Blojsom [sourceforge.net] both use the filesystem to store blog entries, and require no database.

  • Wow. Here we have a bunch of blogging software being reported about, and there is one being overlooked. [slashcode.com]

    Hmm...
  • snipsnap (Score:3, Informative)

    by bblfish (683646) on Monday May 24, 2004 @05:19PM (#9242352) Homepage
    They are missing SnipSnap, an fantastically easy to install java GPLd blog/wiki server. Try it out at snipsnap.org [snipsnap.org].
    • They are missing SnipSnap, an fantastically easy to install java GPLd blog/wiki server. Try it out at snipsnap.org.

      While you're plugging Java based blogging software, don't forget the Roller Weblogger [rollerweblogger.org], which runs JRoller [jroller.com] and, since the article includes blosxom [blosxom.com], people should also be aware of blojsom [blojsom.com], which is a Java based clone of blosxom. Naturally, there are others out there too.

      P.S. Since the original post didn't provide a direct link, here's one for the home page of SnipSnap [snipsnap.org].

  • All the listed Weblogs are server side. That is missing out on a very useful category of Weblog editors: client side only editors. This is really useful for those of you who have a web server that does not have enough space to put up php or other server side magic: check out James Gosling [java.net]'s BlogEd [java.net]. The nice thing about BlogEd is you can write and manage your blog whithout being connected to the web. It produces simple html which is the ftp-ed to the server at minimal cost. There is still a lot of ways it
  • That chart is very interesting, gotta remember it. I'm making blogging software myself (mostly because I'm bored).
  • by X-Nc (34250) <nilrin@nospam.gmail.com> on Monday May 24, 2004 @06:06PM (#9242719) Homepage Journal
    I've been using iBlog for a while and it's not bad. It only works on a Mac OS X system and with a .Mac account so it's very "propriatery" but it's fairly decent as blogs go.

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