Weblog Unleashed - Mother of Perl | WebReference

Weblog Unleashed - Mother of Perl

Weblog Unleashed

Weblog Overview

This is the first public version of the Weblog. There have been many imitations over the years. Some claiming to be THE Weblog or just like A Weblog, but do not mistake these fakes from the only, the original, Weblog. This tutorial describes what a Weblog is, the features of the Weblog, and how to install the Weblog.

What's a Weblog?

I don't really know where the term Weblog came from. Frankly, I don't really like the label. When I talk about a Weblog, most people think I'm talking about the log file for my Web server. While a Web server log could be considered a Weblog, most people "in the know" know that a Weblog is a person or group's version of a Web server log. Or so they say. I REALLY wish someone had come up with a better name. Oh well, to achieve maximum confusion, I hereby dub my Perl Weblog, Weblog.

So, a Weblog is a place where a person, place, or thing, rants about whatever they want to talk about. My favorite Weblog is Slashdot, News for Nerds, started by CmdrTaco and Hemos. My second favorite Weblog, that I love to hate, is scripting.com run by Dave Winer. I also like use.perl.org, run by my friend Chris Nandor.

What does Weblog do?

From now on, Weblog and Weblog will be synonymous, so as to keep you a bit perplexed. The Weblog is a mutation of the Channel Manager. I wrote the Channel Manager a few months ago to make it easy for people to edit their RSS channels. The idea seemed to catch on, so I decided to update the code a bit to also output WML for WAP phones, HTML for Web browser, and simple HTML for Palm Pilots and PDAs. Several sites started using the Weblog, WebReference being one of them, to not only maintain their RSS channel, but also their home page. I've also toyed with voice synthesized output via Festival. I haven't gotten that far yet, but Kevin Lenzo and Alan Black are helping me along those lines. Weblog supports RSS 0.9, 0.91, and 1.0.

Why Weblog is Useful

The Weblog provides you with a structured way to maintain information, whether it happens to be your homepage, news items, or what's new page. Probably the main practical benefit of the Weblog is the ability to manage content that's published to multiple formats. This is especially important these days as more and more formats and devices are added to the mix. To support all of these devices and formats by hand doesn't make much sense. But why not support all of them if you have a tool that supports them? And, as new formats are released, they'll be added to Weblog, which future-proofs your existing content.

Where to get Weblog

We're releasing the first public version of Weblog right here. Weblog will continue to be maintained by XIF Communications (xif.com), the company I work for. Weblog is being released under the GNU license. This means you can use the product for free (of course). We plan on adding many more features and would like to get your feedback (and patronage).

Future Support

As I mentioned previously, we're working with Kevin and Alan to output high-quality synthesized audio versions of RSS channels. We don't have a date set as of yet for that release. We're also planning on adding VoiceXML support for browsers that support it, and voice portals such as BeFree.com and TellMe.com. We also plan on integrating Weblog with Xhoo, to enable the Weblog to add new entries to a Web directory. An installation script for *nix and NT is also planned. We also plan on adding a JavaScript output format to enable your affiliates to include your channel on their Web site with one line of HTML code. We also hope to add a newsletter, a command-line version, support for DocBook articles, and an XML-RPC and SOAP interface. We may also tie it into an RSS aggregator we're working on.


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Produced by Jonathan Eisenzopf
All Rights Reserved. Legal Notices.
Created: December 7, 2000
Revised: December 11, 2000

URL: http://www.webreference.com/perl/tutorial/17/