WordPress and LinkedIn

A nice little application at LinkedIn by WordPress has been added that will show your recent posts.

It’s simple to use, and easy to set up, taking well under a minute after logging into your LinkedIn account.

The are few settings to address.  The first is your WordPress blog address, which will then draw the title into your LinkedIn application window header; the second, choosing all recent posts, or only posts tagged with “LinkedIn”.  Be careful here, read below for my experiences.

This seems like a great idea, but there also seems to be some issues.  When testing the show posts option (using this actual post), changing settings to show all or only the tagged posts appears to be ignored after the application has been initialized on the LinkedIn account. It appears if you want to change the show posts option you also have to change to another valid WordPress blog URL, then change back to your preferred WordPress blog URL.

I still think this is a nice little application at LinkedIn, but I am also thinking they might want to consider appending beta to it.

IE6 Is Still Out There

Sure, it is an older browser version but it is still being used by many people and organizations.  Do you worry about making sure your web designs and graphics appear correctly in this older browser iteration? Perhaps, perhaps not.  The choice is one of aesthetics and target viewing groups.

Personally I would much prefer to ignore it, but given recent review of server logs there are still a fair number of hits being made by people using Internet Explorer 6.  Of course the majority of Internet Explorer users have IE7 installed, with a small sampling of Internet Explorer 8 (beta) users starting to show up.

Although I have several computers at my disposal I went in search of an “IE6 emulator” to load onto either my primary computer or secondary computer. After several days, I quickly came to the conclusion I did not like any of the emulator solutions I was coming across.

Upon further searching and a bit more general approach I did come up with a solution that appears to work just fine, and believe it or not, it is a Microsoft solution, as in the application and concept are available from Microsoft!

Here are a set of simplified steps for a basic Internet Explorer 6 solution (There are more possibilities that can be found with the following links.):

  1. Download the Virtual PC 2007 via this link
  2. Download the Virtual Hard Drive (VHD) image via this link
  3. Install the Virtual PC 2007 (works with XP or Vista)
  4. Expand the VHD downloaded files
  5. Create a default virtual machine
  6. Point the new virtual machine to the expanded VHD file
  7. Start your new Virtual PC and open Internet Explorer 6
  8. Surf to the URL of your choice and enjoy your time machine.

Of course Microsoft still has to maintain their controlling nature, so there is an expiration date on these installations but fortunately they can be updated with new VHD files in the future.

This is just a basic overview, a more detailed explanation of each of the above steps would be an exhaustive entry in comparison to this one.

Tutorials Project

We have recently come to the realization there are quite a number of people that have never heard of WordPress; and even more that do not know (intuitively) how to use it. It’s a little embarrassing on our part, but something easily fixed, at least we hope it will be for our WordPress MU installations.

Our immediate solution is to start writing basic WordPress tutorials; and, as a way to keep up-to-date and on track we will be publishing a public EverNote notebook called Tutorials here:

http://www.evernote.com/pub/JellyBeen/Tutorials

We will also be using this as a reference for part of our EverNote public notebook review.

Windows Live Writer

A first look impression …

This is being written in “Windows Live Writer” (Writer).  A bit of a trial, rather than writing at our blog directly, I am giving this a test run.  Writer is a free download from Microsoft.

Writer hooks into the Internet Explorer toolbar for an easy “Blog This” icon to click when reading something that interests you.

Adding your weblog is made simple by using an easy to follow wizard.  You can add several weblogs to Writer; and, change between them with just a few clicks of your mouse.

The interface does a decent job of matching your blog style and automatically changes the look of your draft if you change to another blog mid-way through writing to another blog.

You can easily save drafts of new posts for review or publishing later. I can see this as a great benefit to mobile blogging, especially when there is no functional means of immediately publishing.  This would also benefit those individuals using dial-up access to the Internet.

The built-in dynamic spell checker is quite nice and as intuitive and any other standard type of spell checking function.

The default “Save Draft” function works very well. It gives an entry in the right menu panel to easily pick from in a future writing session.

The “Post Draft to Weblog” function is quick and very smooth, leaving your draft written in Writer ready to be edited on your blog. Writer nicely updates your existing draft if you use the Post Draft to Weblog function again.

There is a little awkwardness when using the “Post Draft and Edit Online” giving what could easily become an annoying message about secure content issues.

The “Publish to Weblog” function is very smooth and cleans up related drafts very well.

There are a lot more bells and whistles to be used with Writer.

In my humble opinion, this first look warrants at least a second, or third.

RatChatter Blogs Opens

One of our projects, the RatChatter Blogs officially went live October 1, 2008.  This is a WordPress MU installation we volunteered to install and help maintain for the RatChatter community.

We will be maintaining a small, informational blog there ourselves to help with some basic WordPress functions as well as continuing with adapting single blog themes to function more correctly within a WordPress MU setting. Visit us there under the blog Design by JellyBeen.

We will be looking at developing new site specific themes for the RatChatter Blogs, as well as making additional modifications to existing themes to add some pet rat styling to them.