Moved to Domino

Finaly moved. It took some time to migrate my blog to other place, especially because I changed platform as well. Now I’m running this blog using IBM Blog template on Lotus Domino server hosted by Prominic.NET. And this move was quite hard and I got a lot of experience with this amazing blogging environment.

I must admit, that Steve Castledine did really a great job writing this template; however, it doesn’t mean that it is perfect. In fact, sometimes I needed a lot of coffee to continue this movement. For normal publishing it isn’t probably big deal, but if you want to migrate something existing (and don’t know internal structure of the new system), leave existing design as is and use some extra non-standard things, you could have a few problems.

IBM Blog template

Several things I really like. Probably most I like the page designing. You could setup several „template“ documents with special keywords (yes, there probably isn’t any list of them) and in these documents use blocks of codes, which are shared across templates. And than you have configuration document, where you specify some text and amount of information which should be published by using keywords. Nice and really easy to use (after a while), much better than BlogSphere, which I tried as well. And you can also specify more of these templates and use different sets for different pages, so I can easily change the layout for each page or even for each category and have different design for them. Shame that all of them have to share the same links as I’m not able to specify which link should appear on which template. But anyway, I can specify links in each template, it is just a little bit more work.

I’m starting to like the complexity of this database. After all, almost anything could be setup by user and no designer touch is needed. And you can use it for podcast publishing, add attachments, highlight some articles and a lot of other useful staff I’m probably will not use. On the other hand, there isn’t any help and just part of it is documented on Steve’s pages or in IBM Knowledge Base.

But after this pleasant lines I have to write several things I don’t like at all. Especially the fact, that the template isn’t prepared completely to run in different language. You can translate 98% of text as a user, but if you want to translate the „month navigation“ you have to go into design. Grr, it is just few more fields in setup and it should work. Also a lot of texts in setup are shared for several things, which maybe make sense in English but not in other Czech. And I didn’t find any way how to translate search results – sorry Czech guys.

Also forms are refreshing continuously and for me it looks that without any reason. But you can get used to it. With forms I can also connect the design of forms, especially the main one for writting articles. I really don’t understand why categories (which everybody use for every article) and tags (a lot of people use them as well) are on second tab and I must to switch there. Yes, I know, you should just click down arrow when you finish writing your article and it will switch you to categories, but if you want to double check the category, you have to click there yourself. It should be also fine to be able to select more categories as well, but it is just minor problem.

The page name is also possible to calculate automatically from article’s subject, but it doesn’t strip Czech characters. I don’t say that it is problem, believe that it works in these days, it just looks weird. Never mind, just one small change in design.

One thing is interesting with categories – you can put links into categories (yes, the links on right side) and specify order of categories and order of links (notice that they aren’t in alphabetic order), BUT you can’t define order of content categories. Why??

I found two main things which doesn’t work from my point of view – the grouping of content into days (yes, you can specify that content from the same day will be shown just under one headline with date, but when you select this just the last article will appear and all others just disappear (yes, the others from other days as well). And when you specify that details for authenticated users should be prefilled (in comments), the subject of comment isn’t filled in automatically and you have to fill it in manually.

One point from the „security“ point of view – default access must be author to enable people write comments. It is probably somehow solved inside code, but I dislike Anonymous users with Author access in my databases 🙁

Autosave – surprise, this template came with version 7.0.2 and forms aren’t Autosave enabled.

And last point, which I learned from my migration – there is amazing amount of fields, most of them share the same information and I really don’t know, why there is this amount of them. But, who really care about it in these days 🙂

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