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Software

Da die hier verwendete Software sicherlich auch für den einen oder anderen WordPress-User ausserhalb Deutschlands interessant ist, gibts die Beschreibung in Englisch.

This site uses a stock WordPress installation with several plugins and my own homebrewn theme to accomplish it’s goal. This goal was to provide a planet-style public aggregator for blogs and feeds related to privacy, data security, big-brotheresque activities and related stuff. Additionally it should provide an archive of posted content and a search engine to find content in feeds participating in this metablog.

The plugins I use:

FeedWordPress is at the heart of the activity of this blog. I use a patched 0.96 version. My patches only address problems with excerpting of full-content-feeds that only use the description-Tag and automatic resolving of charsets (this is needed because both utf-8 and iso-8859-1 are used as charsets). FeedWordPress feeds content from the participating blogs into this blogs posting table.

Search Reloaded is used to provide a bit more content relevancy to search results. If you search for stuff, you get the first 100 most relevant postings at max. Standard WordPress sorts by date, so you would only get the newest postings on something, not the most relevant.

Strip Calendar is a plugin I wrote that creates just a standard WordPress navigation calendar - but in form of a strip of days instead of the block of days in the standard calendar layout.

Related Posts is used to provide the list of possibly related postings on post cache pages. I only had to do a very minor fix to make it work nicely with FeedWordPress. This is due to the fact that FeedWordPress patches the get-permalink functionality in a way that breaks the normal related post list. The way I solved this is to write a small plugin (yet unpublished) that provides a get-internal-permalink function that copies the code from get-permalink but uses a different hook and so isn’t harmed by FeedWordPress.

Custom Query String is used to configure the number of results in searches, archive pages, index pages etc.

WP Cache 2.0 is used to provide adequate performace of the site - easy to install (if you don’t use PHP accelerator, that is) and maintain.

Some convenience plugins:

The following plugins are just used for convenience and not so much for functionality:

Timezone is quite handy if you don’t like to go to your blogs and switch the time zone every time the daylight saving time starts or ends.

NoNoFollow removes any rel="nofollow" stuff. Hey, this is a metablog, we do want to give google juice to our participating users!

Additionally I wrote two very simple plugins (not yet released) that make use of the pre_comment_approved hook to allways make trackbacks and pingbacks moderated. This is because we want to use trackbacks and pingbacks as an optional way for people to provide pointers to their postings - so trackbacks and pingbacks will eventually go to the front page and we don’t want to have texas holdem poker on there …

About the theme

The used theme is built on both the theme from my own personal blog and my picture blog. The first one has a theme that was some time ago Kubrick - but it morphed into something I call flexible Kubrick. The whole layout is changed from a pixel based layout to an em based one and so automatically adjusts if you make your font larger or smaller. The picture blog uses a Kubrick-related theme, too. But it’s still pixel oriented - but single column, no sidebar and with top navigation and strip calendar. The metaowl-theme is just the flexibl Kubrick in the single column layout with some things removed that don’t make much sense in a meta blog (like comments on the metablog - comments should take at the source pages).

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