Europe, here I come!

May 26, 2007 at 8:45 am

Tomorrow I’m off to Europe for three weeks. As usual, it’s a combined business/pleasure trip. My tentative itinerary is:

Yes, this trip is a continuation of the ongoing Plone4Artists roadshow with talks at LinuxTag, DZUG and possibly an impromptu talk at Podcamp Europe. The purpose of these talks is to promote the Plone platform as a viable tool for building online communities and managing and publishing multimedia content such as audio and video. My particular interest is to build artist communities and to facilitate networking and the exchange of ideas among a highly niche audience.

I would have liked to go to the Reboot conference in Copenhagen, but by the time I found out about it, the tickets were already sold out, and I had already booked my ticket to Berlin. While visiting the OLPC headquarters in Cambridge, I also found out about the iCommons Summit which is taking place in the beautiful seaside town of Dubrovnik in Croatia the last weekend that I’m in Europe.

Anyways, it would probably have been too much to try to do all of this in 3 weeks. I want to have some downtime to hang out with friends and just enjoy the delightful Danish summer. It’s been two years since I was last in Copenhagen, and I’m really looking forward to visit again.

I’ve got my Plazes profile setup, so you can now track my whereabouts. It’s not GPS but almost as good!

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Integration Proclamation

January 9, 2007 at 9:48 am

I just signed the Integration Proclamation, a first step towards encouraging funders, software developers and those of us who work with them to invest resources in making tools that play together better.

Ever since I heard Alan Runyan, co-founder of Plone give a talk “Integration, not Isolation” (video) at the Plone Symposium 2006, this has been something I’ve been thinking about a lot.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that your CMS can do-it-all, and solve all technology problems. But the fact is, that no one piece of software can do everything equally well, and the sooner we accept this and look at how to integrate our software with other best-of-breed systems, the better off we will be.

There are already steps being taken to integrate Plone with Salesforce, Democracy in Action, What Counts, and Get Active.

If you want to make tools play together better, sign the proclamation. It only takes 15 seconds to fill out the form. Do it now!

Plone Conference enters Second Life

October 25, 2006 at 1:20 am

I’m on my way to the annual Plone Conference which is in Seattle for the first time. I went to college in Seattle and it’s been a long time since I’ve been back to visit. I’m really looking forward to stay right down in Pioneer Square / Pikes Place market, and see friends who I haven’t seen in awhile.

I will be giving a talk entitled Multimedia and Podcasting with Plone, sitting on the Plone for Enterprises panel, giving a lightning talk about Plone4ArtistsCalendar, leading a birds-of-a-feature (BoF) about multimedia, and coordinating the after conference sprint! Not to mention catching up with all the other Plonistas who I’ve gotten to know at various Plone events and on the #plone IRC channel. Whew – it’s going to be a busy week!

One of the interesting developments this year is the creation of a virtual Plone Conference area in Second Life, the massively multiplayer online world, boasting 1 million “residents” and growing. See more photos on Flickr.

In the virtual conference area, there are viewing stations where you can actually watch live streaming of the conference sessions. So even if you can’t make it to the physical conference you can still participate, and interact with the other people who are visiting.

Created by Christian Scholtz (aka MrTopf), the Plone Conference in Second Life is free to attend, and all you need to do is download Second Life and create a character. See Christian’s blog post for screenshots and read the press release. If you decide to teleport in, look for me – my character is Fergut Huskerdu.

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Content licensing in Plone

July 13, 2006 at 12:09 pm

At the recent Big Apple Sprint, we had one conference call (using iSight) with Brent Lambert from The College of Education and Human Services at Utah State University, to discuss the idea of a content licensing tool for Plone, as described in PLIP #136.

Jonah and I suggested that Brent look at Alec Mitchell’s contentratings product for an example of how to use Zope 3 annotations to add metadata to an object. By the following day, Brent already had a working example of adding a license to a piece of content via the Properties tab.


In the attached screenshots, you can see that there is a content licensing selector in the Properties tab, and when you click on the ‘Choose’ link, the Creative Commons popup box appears where you can select a license.

200607131406-1After you select a license, your choice is fed back to the Plone edit form. So it’s a 3 click process, and has the advantage of using the up-to-date forms on, so they don’t have to be maintained within the Plone product.

I think the rapid turnaround of this product is testament to the ease with which one can utilize Zope 3 technology to build truly useful tools in a componentized way.

You can browse the code in their subversion repository, and Brent assures me that this will soon be moved over to the collective subversion repository.

What’s next

The tool is currently only selecting the license, but not showing it anywhere on the view page. The tool should also embed a link to the RDF on the view page. It would be great if the tool could also include the CC license in RSS 1.0 and 2.0 feeds. The Creative Commons Web Integration Guide gives some examples for how to display the license information.

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Listening for messages using listen

June 10, 2006 at 4:03 pm