Not Only WordPress But Even WordPress.com

WordPress family now has a full bouquet of products. But its not only the tool, the WordPress.com is now offering all the services for hosting your blog. You can now have your own domain name for WordPress.com blog along with the CSS Upgrade feature. You can choose the VIP hosting if you expect high traffic on your blog. Full marks to the Automattic team which works behind the scenes on all this.

Six Apart and Google now have to face the competition on multiple fronts – the blogging tool as well as the blogging service.

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Copyright Abhijit Nadgouda.

Random Quote WordPress Widget

I wanted to use the excellent WP-Quotes plugin for random quotes on my main blog. However it did not have a widget, so I made one. Note that it will require WP-Quotes to be installed.

I believe Dustin is planning to release the 2.0 version of the plugin which might include a plugin, so keep a tab on it. Till then feel free to use my version.

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Blog Anonymously

Ethan Zuckerman has setup a guide for blogging anonymously (via Lorelle On WordPress). The suggestions include using the free yet fantastic WordPress.com platform and Tor for anonymity. I think howmuchever a technology is good, there will always be technology that will break it. Probably the best way to blog anonymously is to blog from different places.

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Moved

I have put down my experience of moving from WordPress.com to my new home. Overall it was not very difficult, at most irritating sometimes. The WordPress exporters and importers do most of the work, you have to follow it up with some cleaning.

I am going to keep writing on this blog, less frequently though. I will also change the sidebar content a bit to reflect fresh content from my new blog. If you have sill not update all your bookmarks using this information. I am still not getting used to not seeing WordPress.com top posts in the dashboard. I will try and see if I can hack it to do it. I realise the importance of being part of a community!

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Copyright Abhijit Nadgouda.

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Moved, But Still Unpacking

So this blog has found its new home! It is hosted on BlueHost, selected out of three that I was considering.

Basic setup of the blog is done – posts, pages and comments imported, and functional theme is set. However, it is just that – functional right now. I still have to import links. I will need some more time to fix some things and make sure that the CSS is not bulky or bundled up. I will write a detailed post on things I had to do to move things from here.

That being said, you can take a look at the blog today and see if you like it. Feel free to throw brickbats or if you feel, bouquets at it.

Please update your bookmarks, blogrolls and feeds to the following addresses:

Blog address: http://ifacethoughts.net/
Blog posts feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/ifacethoughts/entries
Blog comments feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/ifacethoughts/comments

I know it is too much trouble to update these thing and I sincerely wish that I could automate this for you. But it is not happening, please take the trouble of updating the information. I will writing at the new blog. I plan to keep writing on this blog to write specifically about wordpress.com, and keep using the excellent and first-to-be-updated blog system here.

I will do one more post when the new home is completely setup and will include a reminder in that. Thanks for reading.

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Copyright Abhijit Nadgouda.

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To Move Or Not To Move

I am contemplating moving to a self-hosted blog. Not because WordPress.com falls short of anything, just that I have become greedier. I want to control more and want to experiment more.

I will definitely continue with WordPress. It has achieved the privileged milestone of one million downloads and is coming up with some dynamic features. WordPress.com too has seen massive growth, it hosts 310 thousand blogs on its first birthday. WordPress.com has time and again shown that it is one of the highest quality blogging sites, with lot of high traffic and slashdottable blogs.

I want to dig deeper now, get more control and start some experiments. The new avataar will also host some projects and some personal stuff. After some research I have narrowed down to bluehost.com, dreamhost.com and mediatemple.net for hosting with a bias towards bluehost. Feel free to suggest if you have any information regarding this. I am looking at PHP, Ruby and Python support. Any kind of guidance will be appreciated.

I am trying to evaluate the costs of moving, some are apparent and I am sure some will raise their head later. Right now though, none of the disadvantages are heavy enough to outweigh the basic advantage of being able to do more with self-hosted WordPress for me.

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Copyright Abhijit Nadgouda.

Solutions Through Open Source Is The Solution For Open Source

Eric Raymond, who re-invented, or rather founded the open source movement, warned the community against open source losing its users. Participating in a panel at LinuxWorld, ESR called for compromising to appeal and be useful to the newer generation. He used Linux, the pioneer in open source world, to exemplify where open source was lagging.

Raymond, a champion of all things open, said it is vital to the future uptake of Linux that the community compromise to win the new generation of non-technical users aged younger than 30. This group is more interested in having Linux “just work” on their iPod or MP3 player and “don’t care about our notions of doctrinal purity”,

“We have a serious problem. Whenever I try to pitch Linux to anyone under 30, the question I get is: ‘Will it work with my iPod?,” he said. “We are not yet as a community making the painful compromises need to achieve widespread desktop market share. Until we do, we will get locked out of more hardware.”

Using proprietary and closed source binary drivers has been a controversial topic for Linux. These binaries, without their source code, fall in the opposition party and are immediately rejected. However, it cannot be ignored that they provide value today to the users. To be able to useful to these users, who want their computers to work with different gadgets, Linux should make a compromise and include them. He calls them necessary evil.

Users require Solutions

I think this compromise is just a small hurdle in the path. To be able to be accepted by the common man, especially the newer generation, open source should offer solutions to them. Open source has mostly been the object of fascination for the geeks and the object of ideology for the believers. However, now it has to move out of this and enter the realm of everyday use of the common man.

The challenge is that requirements of the common man will keep changing. A decade back he wanted a decent browser, today he wants the computer to work with other gadgets, tomorrow it can be used even in trivial tasks. For this open source has to do two things:

  • Provide solutions rather than open source flagship products
  • Talk to the common man

To be able to do this open source movement should graduate from just competing with the proprietary counterparts to actually identify and solve the user’s problems. Unless this is done it is not going to be popular, it will be seen only on the desks of geeks. To address problems and issues of the users open source has to provide direct value and use their language. It should not be used only to scratch the technical itch any more, it should satisfy the wants of the non-technical. And on the way, the open source movement might have to do compromises. Linus Torvalds, the creator of Linux, thinks software patents and legalities are harmful to the open source movement. It definitely is, but I think identifying and delivering value to the user is more challenging and imminent. What I understand from Eric’s message is that open source can neither postpone nor slow down being useful and reaching the common man. It is time, or else it might get locked out!

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Copyright Abhijit Nadgouda.

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