Tag Archive: Blog

Do You Use Planet Lotus?

While speedsponsoring at IamLUG last week, we decided to ask attendees if they had heard of Planet Lotus, and if so, do they check it regularly.

Surprisingly, there were quite a few attendees that had never heard of Planet Lotus.  There were also a few that had heard of it, but never visit the site.  Now that wouldn’t surprise me as much as a conference like Connect, where a lot of people know about the conference via their IBM sales person, or IBM’s site.  It DOES surprise me at a LUG, where I think (I have no actual knowledge on this, it is just a gut feeling) most attendees learn of LUGs via speakers and sponsors, who they probably follow on their blogs or Twitter or Planet Lotus.

So not that the people who read my blog are representative of who would be at a LUG, but… how many of you do NOT know what Planet Lotus is?  Or if you do know, but never go there… please reply in the comments.  Thanks.

And just to explain, Planet Lotus is a blog aggregator for (at current count) 329 blogs that cover Lotus (IBM)-related content.  Sometimes some of us cover other stuff (like me), but that’s the basis for inclusion on the site.  http://planetlotus.org/  What that means for you is loads and loads of free content.  329 blogs-worth of people putting out free tips, how-tos, etc.

Challenge Accepted

Pretty much since I started writing articles for the Notes Dev Tips Newsletter, the amount of technical content I post here has declined.  For obvious reasons, I have to come up with tech content there, which means there is less content (and time) for me to post here.

Two of my co-workers have become blogging monsters: Brad Balassaitis and Marky Roden.  They have thrown down the gauntlet.  They’ve been posting loads of great technical content and I need to step up my game.

Firstly (and most easily), I will post excerpts from the articles I post for the Notes Dev Tips Newsletter (and links to the full articles, of course).  These are actually now just known as “Articles” on the  new site, socialbizug.org (formerly known as lotususergroup.org).

Secondly, challenge accepted.  I’m going to try my hardest to start putting additional content here as well.  I’ve been super busy at PSC Group (just hit my one year mark!) and learning TONS of new stuff, mostly XPages that I would like to share.

Promises, promises.  However, I will now accept public shaming if I don’t do it.  : – )

Looking Back

While cleaning up categories and tags here in the new blog space, I had a chance to go back through all of my old posts.  Year end also tends to be a time for reflecting.  You learn some interesting things looking back at a blog.  Here’s what I noticed:

  1. I talk a lot about running and Lotus Notes.  No surprises there.
  2. Some days I know a lot and some days I know very little.
  3. I attend a lot of conferences.
  4. I love attending conferences.
  5. I used to run a lot of races, and now I don’t so much.
  6. My running anniversary was eclipsed by my streak anniversary.
  7. The longer my streak gets, the less I talk about it.  Not in a superstitious way, but in a “this isn’t really news anymore” way.
  8. Sometimes I get things right, and even more rarely, I can be ahead of the curve.
  9. Sometimes I get things wrong.  And sometimes really wrong.
  10. Three years goes by in a flash.

Migrating from Blogsphere to WordPress

Although Mitch provided excellent instructions on an excellent tool provided by Matt White, I still had some issues moving my blog.  It’s me, not you.

The first issue was that all of my tags became categories, and only the first tag was pulled over.  Of course, I could have messed with the agent that Matt wrote, but instead I just cleaned up the posts after I moved them over.  It was actually better that way (if time-consuming) since it enabled me to be more consistent with my tags and categories.

A small problem was the slider.  It is supposed to show the title, a photo (if there is one) and an excerpt.  I never used the excerpt on my old blog, so I thought that was why none was showing.  (Hint:  I was wrong).

The big problem arose, however, when I went to check the feed of my blog and it wouldn’t validate.  I didn’t fully read the instructions on Mitch’s post (if I had I would have noticed that he mentioned an issue with excerpts) so I kept playing with the posts and eventually ended up exporting them, figuring all of my clean up would be exported, too.  Wrong.  For whatever reason, the export function on WordPress did not export tags and categories.  On 235 posts.

No matter at that moment, because I still had the pesky validation issue to deal with.  Mitch is an admin, so he had a little SQL command that he used to clean up his issue.  I being a developer attacked it differently.  I took the XML file from the export and replaced every instance of “<excerpt:encoded><![CDATA[<![CDATA[]]>]]></excerpt:encoded>” with “<excerpt:encoded><![CDATA[]]></excerpt:encoded>” and imported that file to WordPress.  Magically, my excerpts in my slider worked and my feed validated.

However, I still had to re-categorize and re-tag 235 posts.  Lesson of the story, I should have read Mitch’s post all the way through and when I had an issue with excerpts should have looked into that before fixing everything up.

So, if you use the “Mitch way” to migrate from Domino to WordPress, be sure and fix the excerpt issue, either his way or mine.  And if you want to preserve all of your tags, you’ll have to modify Matt’s agent to get all of them and potentially to write them to tags, rather than categories.  (Although there is a tool in WordPress that will make tags out of categories, if that’s what you want).

All in all, I am VERY happy with the switch and it went fairly smoothly.  Even with my glitches, it was easier than I thought it would be.

Thank you again to everyone that helped me.

Wordpress logo

Tap Tap Tap – Is this thing on?

And so, like several before me, I have moved my blog to WordPress.

Some of you may ask why.  I had a few reasons, the main one was spam.  I was tired of opening my blog up and finding hundreds of new spam comments and no easy way to keep them from being added.

Some of the other reasons were Shiny!  I love technology and gadgets and learning new stuff.  So learning WordPress seemed like a fun thing to do.  And all the widgets and just STUFF available to WordPress users was just too much to pass up.  (Example:  did you know there is a BlackBerry app that allows you to post to your blog from your BlackBerry?!).  Change is inevitable.  This is actually my third version of this blog.  I started out over on blogspot.com, then migrated to Blogsphere on Domino and now to WordPress.  Who knows where I’ll be in a few more years.

So here I am.  I did my best to clean up some hiccups, like tags and categories (still working on this, more on why later).  I am still working on images.  You’ll note recent images are working fine, but older ones are still in progress.  I could not have migrated without Curious Mitch’s awesome blog posts.  I could not have had my old blog without Declan’s awesome Blogsphere template.

Take a look around.  Let me know your thoughts…

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