October 7, 2005

The Zen of Textpattern

Just when I think I couldn’t love Textpattern any more, it gets better. I spent some time this week implementing the newly created live comment preview plugin by Nils Herrmann. This in itself is an important milestone: I now have a perfectly hack-free Textpattern install, that’s doing everything I’ve been able to throw at it with the help of a few mighty plugins. While I was in there messing with the comments, I also shamelessly ripped off Jon Hicks and used a plugin to remove some of the fields from the comment form for folks who have commented previously and chosen to store a cookie. No need to clutter up the comment form with the Author, Email, and Url information if Textpattern already knows it, is there? And since getting rid of my comment hacks actually allowed the cookies to start working again, everything is golden. Playing around with this new setup, I started to focus on a feature of textpattern comments I never really thought about before: the Forget check box. And I started really liking the idea that by using Textpattern comments I can just check a box, submit, and forget things. See Figure 1 for an illustration of this magical feature. Figure 1: Textpattern lets me forget. Screenshot of a part of my comment form with the Forget checkbox indicated. I have big plans for this, let me tell you. I mean, who doesn’t have things they would like to forget with a simple check and click? Freshmen year of high school? Forget. The time I spilled wine on Brian’s department chair’s wife? Forget. The time I spilled coffee all over the entire Oceanography department in one meeting? Forget. The fact that there is a disturbing pattern here of me spilling things on people? Forget. The fact that I bought a bag of Cheetos from the vending machine this afternoon, ate them all, and enjoyed it? Definitely forget. You are welcome to use this as well— it’s right over there in my comment form →. If you haven’t commented or stored a cookie before, you will have to make an initial comment checking Remember”. Make sure you think about something good when you do this— your fist kiss, that one time you were able to dunk a basketball, the time you didn’t spill anything on anyone… Once you do this, you will get the Forget” button. Have fun, and don’t forget to check out Textpattern.

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The Big and the Small This week has been an interesting one for animalia and the Arbogast family. Brian achieved 15 minutes of fame, since a dead 70-foot fin whale washed
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The Punchline to a Really Geeky Joke This title was supplied by Brian, who very patiently listened to me go on about how my feeds were broken and I had no idea why. When I told him I