[ABD] The Blog Mod

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[ABD] The Blog Mod

Post by hyperion »

The Blog Mod (old mod Forum Weblogs Mod)
(Current Version - 0.2.3, Released May 18, 2005)

The Blog Mod is a fully featured weblog system designed to integrate with a phpBB forum and thus allow all its members the opportunity to create a weblog and share their thoughts to the rest of the forum in the form of a online journal/diary. The overall purpose of this mod is to keep communities closer together (rather than joining a humongous community just for a weblog (i.e. livejournal, xanga, etc.) and as a method of grouping weblogs together by community (unlike other systems such as blogger, moveable type)

The features so far
  • Weblogs can be created by any member of the board, but only in simple mode (where only basic, basic options can be chosen).
  • Fully Customizable weblogs for those approved by an administrator.
  • Show/Hide certain blocks (in simple mode)
  • Full posting system with unlimited comments.
  • Calendar and/or a simple Previous/Forward link to view past entries
  • Selectable styles for simple mode, and as a base for the advanced mode.
  • 4 Levels of authentication to allow certain people to view their weblog (All viewers, Registered Only, Friends Only, or Weblog Owner)
  • 4 Levels of authentication for each individual entry (same levels as above).
  • Mood, and Action Icons per entry to specify the mood that the owner is feeling and what he/she is currently doing.
  • RSS script for rss feeds.
  • HTML, BBCode, and Smilies can be used just like how phpbb uses them.
  • Fully functional friends list, that allows you to add a friend and then you'll be able to see all your friend's latest post all on one page.
  • Also in the friends page, it will also show who has listed you as a friend ("Friend of...").
  • Blocked List
  • Entire weblog structure is mostly independant from the phpbb forum system, which means less hassle when installing and much less conflicts.
  • Option for admins to disable weblog face plates in the weblog index and instead use a default, small (one line) faceplate; useful for boards with large webloggers.
  • Administrators can choose whether or not to censor weblogs and their entries
  • In the entry viewing page, the actual entry is seperated completely and styleized from the replies.
  • When a user chooses to delete the weblog, it is marked for deletion and will not be visible in the weblog index. The weblog may be undeleted as long as an Administrator has not purged all weblogs that were marked for deletion.
  • Automatically tries to CHMOD files in order to access them. If it is unable to (i.e. no file there) the script will inform the user of the exact file it was looking for.
  • Weblog pages will show the "RSS" icon in the bottom right of the window for those using Firefox 1.0PR (for the Live Bookmarks!)
  • In easy mode, you can edit the look and feel of your weblog very, very easily! Over 30 options that can be changed! This allows styles to be used as a base, where colors and fonts can be changed.
  • Mood sets
  • Customizable simple mode (i.e. choose background colors, add music/background image, etc.)
  • Recently updated blogs (by user or by weblog name) on the index.
  • Clicking on "Post your comment" on a weblog's main page will open another window, completely styled like the weblog is.
  • Personal shoutbox for each weblog! Allows smileys, bbcode and limited html (as per forum settings)
  • Permalink for each entry
  • Trackback support, for sending/receiving trackback pings.
  • Picture Uploading - Users can upload pictures (with restrictions on size/height/width), and then they can be placed whereever they want using the BBCode that is generated
Planned for the next major release (0.3.0):
  • Weblog Entry Categories - The ability to group entries into categories. Should the categories be defined by the admin or users? or both?
  • Automatic First Entry - An intial entry posted to a newly created blog, where the message is changeable via the Admin CP.
  • Multiple Blogs per user - To allow users to also create additional blogs so that they may be used for contribution based weblogs.
  • Use Forum Template - Use the forum based template so that forum headers/footers are used instead.
  • XML-RPC Capability to ping some sites - Probably will have a page in the Admin CP that lets you add the ability to ping sites like weblogs.com or technorati.com
  • Ascending/Descending display of entries.
  • Option to enable/disable the ability for Administrators to view private entries. When enabled, a message will be displayed while posting stating this fact, as well as in the Blog CP
  • Entries marked as Events. These special entries will have a star next to them, and may or may not be specially highlighted in the calendar if a particular day has an event.
  • Ability to import smilies from phpBB as moods.
  • Ability to move blocks up and down in easy mode.
  • Option in the ACP to disable all shoutboxes entirely.
  • Additional Blocks:
    • Entries, marked as Events
    • Memorable Entries
    • Most Popular Entries
    • Links
    • Friends's Blogs
    Advanced mode will only have the basic blocks, however documentation will be provided so that the owner of the advanced blogs can add them himself/herself.
  • Ability to limit number of blogs that a user can "own".
  • Ability to export all entries from a particular weblog into a text file that the weblog's owner(s) can download themselves.
  • Email on reply to an entry (specific for each entry).
December 22, 2004
The Blog Mod version 0.1.0 released!

January 23, 2005
The Blog Mod version 0.2.0 released!

March 10, 2005
The Blog Mod version 0.2.1 released!

May 6, 2005
The Blog Mod version 0.2.2 released!

May 18, 2005
The Blog Mod 0.2.3 has been released!

This version contains a number of fixes as well as small enhancements plus a brand new template!

Bug Fixes
  • Fixed usernames not being showed for latest post link when viewing all entries
  • Fixed Contributors not being able to edit/add a new entry
  • Fixed friends and blocked pages not being able to block or add users (while letting Admin be able to do so)
  • Fixed "Friends Only" authentication problem introduced in 0.2.2
  • Lastest Unread Entries now works properly now (showing an orange "latest post" icon when appropriate in weblogs.php)
  • Contributors now get same access as Admins - all entries viewable and editable except for weblog owner only entries.
  • Changed orangeBlue faceplate so that it also uses BlogCP settings

Brand New Template: Infinity (View Example)


:arrow: a 99% semantically correct, css based template that has been tested in IE5.5, IE6, Mozilla, Firefox, and Opera. Mozilla/Firefox users get get a special treat - client-side rounded borders.

:arrow: has a javascript style switcher included that let's you switch between 4 color schemes. It will remember your settings via a cookie.

:arrow: only partially editable - font size, background images/colors should work.

Please keep reading if you are new to this mod

:arrow: A quick installation script (db_update.php) is provided, so that you can make the database changes. If you have the old Forum Weblogs Mod you must wait until I have an upgrade script readily available. (Don't know when though)

:arrow: Also, be careful who you grant permission to for the fully customizable weblogs ("advanced mode") IF you have the eXtreme Styles mod. That mod allows php execution in templates, so this could lead to some serious problems. On the other hand, it could also enrich the blog with extra content!

:arrow: Don't forget to install a weblog template! To do this, unzip the contents of a template's zip file (two templates are included in the package) to the weblogs/templates/ folder. One template is already done for you. Each template should have their own folder (like phpbb's template system). Then go to the Administration Control Panel => Weblog Templates => Add New Template.

:arrow: The Private Templates feature is kinda useless right now, there's no facility to change a weblog's template to use a private template. If you're confortable with manual database handling you can figure out how to switch the template of a weblog

Some things you should know:
  • If you had the Forum Weblogs Mod previously installed, you must reverse the changes from the original. Here are the changes. Be sure to do them manually!


    After you finish this, remove the database changes by running uninstall_forum_weblogs.php. Note, this is NOT an uninstall for The Blog Mod. They are seperate mods.

    When installing, run the database installation script (db_update.php), rather than doing it yourself through EasyMod. EasyMod doesn't seem to like primary keys with two fields. It will output:

    Code: Select all

    No SQL alterations will be performed. However, you may skip SQL processing, continue installing the MOD, and deal with the SQL manually. 
    The following error occured: 
    FATAL ERROR: Unable to parse SQL statement; malformed type length in field near [KEY (owner_id ] 
    SQL Line: 
    CREATE TABLE phpbb_weblog_blocked ( owner_id MEDIUMINT(8) UNSIGNED NOT NULL DEFAULT '0', blocked_id MEDIUMINT(8) UNSIGNED NOT NULL DEFAULT '0', PRIMARY KEY (owner_id, blocked_id) )
    The SQL will run fine using db_update.php. (Tested on mysql 4). Just upload to your forum root directory and access it using your web browser. Delete it after the sql is done.
  • Ensure that the following have the appropriate permissions:
    weblogs/ - 755
    weblogs/upload/ - 755
    weblogs/templates/ - 755
    weblogs/templates/(any template folder) - 755
    any .htm and .cfg file that comes in the zip file - 755
    all else - 644
  • If a directory doesn't have the correct permissions, the script won't be able to create a files in weblogs/ in Advanced Mode. Then, you'll get errors saying file not found. If that happens, create a blank file with the name of the missing file (as shown in weblog_config.php or by clicking on "Bloc CP") in the directory weblogs/ and the go to the Blog CP and choose "Reload Template". Make sure that weblogs/ is CHMOD 755
  • EasyMod may also choke on the COPY section. If this happens, you should just do this manually (just upload all the files, keeping the same directory structure, to your forum root directory.
  • Do NOT forget to install a weblog template! If you go to the Administration Panel and try to select a directory, it will not work (the preview image will be broken - an indication that the template isn't there). Just open up either or both of the zip files included within the first zip file (simpleGray.zip or ljDigitalMultiplex) and extract them to their own folder under the weblogs/templates/ directory. Then go to the Admin Control Panel -> Weblog Templates, and add the template there.
  • For those of you who are having problems with the permissions, here are the changes you should make (even if you don't you may also want to do these anyway):
  • If you get the error "Table WEBLOG_CONFIG_TABLE doesn't exist" or something similar, ensure that you made the changes to constants.php correctly. "WEBLOG_CONFIG_TABLE" is a constant referring to the actual table, plus your forum prefix.
Here is the mod:

(Updating from 0.2.2 to 0.2.3 requires only that you replace the old files with the new files)

The Blog Mod version 0.2.3

Demo Site
(username: test password: test)

It's preferred if you create a new account, and then create a new weblog. This is so that I can test the mod with large numbers of weblogs.
(I'm still offering some support for the old mod, although I'm leaning heavily towards this mod ;-))

mod edit: marked as abandoned
Last edited by hyperion on Wed May 18, 2005 5:34 am, edited 13 times in total.
The Blog Mod: ( Dev Topic | Demo )
The Blog Mod version 0.2.3 - Released May 18, 2005

Forum Weblogs Mod: (discontinued)
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Post by tm6tech »

wow 8O looks awesome!

Great work Hyperion... I have a different phpbb - blog plugin installed but I am tempted to ditch it and try yours instead.
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Post by Shof515 »

wow....this gotta be the best blog program ever
Whos missing up my sig?
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Post by Mayan Obsidian »

You're really going all out with this version hyperion :) I have a few users who are hardcore bloggers that will love this new version - especially with the trackback ability whenever you get that working 8) .
It's better to fail at doing something then to excel at doing nothing.
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Post by webmedic »

Ok I'm a little impressed. It looks very good. Does it use css very much or is it not like that.

Have you thought about having them be able to upload their own themes for the mod. I'm not sure exactly how well that would work but I'm curious.
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Post by retiredat44 »

Will this Blogger work in PNphpBB2 ( www.pnphpbb.com/ ) ? which is a module in PostNUke ( www.postnuke.com )?

For that matter, will this blogger work in the places I described?


update, maybe I should just ask in those forums....
but thought I would ask here too..
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Post by beggers »


We're all looking forward to this new version. This looks like the first good blog for phpBB.
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Post by Schwpz »

I was just about to install your previous blog version befor coming across this topic - it looks simply awesome!! :D

Do you reccomand me to just install the old one and upgrade when the new version is released in December or to sit patiently and wait for the new version to come out? I don't want to lose the blog entries if I have to upgrade, but the again it's hard to wait installing anything since also the older version seems really neat! ^^
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Post by justbishop »

Actually, that reminds me of a good question: will users of the current version I have lose their blogs and entries when I install the upgrade?

Aaaaand...thought I'd bring this over here:
hyperion wrote: justbishop: There isn't any "watch topic" option right now, perhaps I might make one in the future. The option to be notified of comments to your own blog sounds like a good idea. I'll see what I can do.

Actually, if you wanted to take it a step further in emulating LJ, you could make an option to have ALL replies to any activity of yours sent to you via email (meaning comments on your posts, as well as replies to your comments on others posts.)

I mean, I know there's the "Always notify me of replies" option on everyone's profile, but I really wouldn't want replies to all of the actual forum topics I've posted in to be sent, just the bloggy ones ;)
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Post by artbatista »

I am trying to get it to install with easymod. I have fixed a number of typos in the install file but I am puzzled with this one:

ALTER TABLE phpbb_users ADD weblog_post_comment_name VARCHAR(255) DEFAULT '(Post your comment)';

As far as I can tell, there is nothing wrong with this, yet I get this result:

FATAL ERROR: Unable to parse SQL statement; missing DEFAULT value in field near ['(Post]

SQL Line:
ALTER TABLE phpbb_users ADD weblog_post_comment_name VARCHAR(255)NOT NULL DEFAULT '(Post your comment)'

Any ideas?

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Post by MIS-ONE »

Hyperion- excited for the community for this mod! Great work, I know it's going to be awesome.
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Post by Mc ToM »

Make these changes to any phpBB file that has "prepare_post(" and "submit_post(" (only if you have other mods installed)

what???? all the files? baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
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Post by Zugg »

Hey Hyperion. Nice work on the rewrite. I'm using your previous MOD already and something that is more modular will be really nice.

But I'm curious...I don't see a lot of difference in feature set between the old MOD and the new one. What's the main reason to use the new one if you already have the old MOD installed (like me)?

Also, one of the *huge* features that is missing from your Blog Log is the ability to have categories (and subcategories) and let users select what category of blog entries to display. See the b2evolution blog software for examples of how this works.

Seriously, when you get a blog with hundreds of entries, some sort of categorization feature is a must. Since this is something I desperately need, I'll probably end up hacking it into the old mod for now, but if you could build something like that into the new mod, I'd switch in an instant.
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Post by Mc ToM »

you mod is see so good! but i have a problem in the mod...
i installed the mod.. i finish, no problems anyway...
but in my forum the users can't to see the blog CP and My Blog...
and I too don't see...
this is my forum
in hebrew.. i want to try that in hebrew I translates...
what i need to do? thank you
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Post by hyperion »

webmedic: It (usually) depends on what the weblog template author decides, however the weblog customizations in simple mode (the ones that you see on the website) are all using CSS.

retiredat44: It won't work right away, until someone takes the time and effort to port the mod over. I don't use those kind of extensions for phpbb, so I wouldn't be able to port the mod.

Schwpz: It's better to wait for the new version to be released, it's coded better than the old version. If you really want the weblog capability right now, you can still install the old version. I'm making upgrade scripts, however you'll still have to do a bit of work to upgrade to the new version.

justbishop: I think it's a good idea if weblog owners can get an email sent to them about comments to their entry. About getting emails notifying of comments to comments, it's possible, but I think it's not really necessary right now.

artbatista wrote: ALTER TABLE phpbb_users ADD weblog_post_comment_name VARCHAR(255)NOT NULL DEFAULT '(Post your comment)'

Is that exactly what easymod said? (i.e. No space between "VARCHAR(255)" and "NOT"?)

Zugg: It's really much better coded (internally) than the old version. Also, most of the mod is seperate from the phpbb forum system (thus avoiding many of the problems that plagued the old mod).

As for the categories I don't consider it as a missing feature. Weblogs are meant to store entries (in chronologic order), similar to diaries/journals and not like newspapers or magazines that have categorised articles.

To be honest, I consider categories for entries as another unnecessary feature found in feature-bloated software (similar to features such as multiple authors, and to some extent multiple weblogs).

If you really want categories, I'll code one as an addon to the new mod (it isn't too hard to do so), and not as a standard feature.

P.S. Zugg from zuggsoft, creator of zmud? cool!

Mc ToM: Remember, you should set up a usergroup, and then designate that usergroup as a weblog usergroup (all via the Admin CP). Then, all the members of that weblog usergroup will be see those options at the top and will be allowed to create a weblog
Make these changes to any phpBB file that has "prepare_post(" and "submit_post(" (only if you have other mods installed)

what???? all the files? baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

It only applies if you have mods that use the submit_post() and prepare_post() function. Most often, you can ignore this. However, if you receive "missing argument on line xx" errors, then you'll have to open the line indicated, and make the same changes from the installation file to the php file that the error came from.

@ everyone else: Thank you for the comments! They are most appreciated!
The Blog Mod: ( Dev Topic | Demo )
The Blog Mod version 0.2.3 - Released May 18, 2005

Forum Weblogs Mod: (discontinued)

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