Dave Johnson on open web technologies, social software and Java
My blogging has really dropped off in September. I'm working on too many things at once and things that I can't blog about yet, but that doesn't mean I'm neglecting Roller. In fact, the opposite is true and I've got a big new edition of Roller Strong to prove it. So let's get started.
First up is some good news on the Powered by Roller front. Popular travel guide publisher Lonely Planet launched its blog site http://www.lonelyplanet.com/blogs last week and it's powered by Roller. You can see from the site that they've done a lot of work on creating a nice theme and are making good use of categories and tags. Thanks to Lonely Planet's Leon Messerschmidt who has been helping out on the Roller mailing lists and contributing the the Roller Wiki.
I finished a big round of bug fixes and AtomPub updates last week and over the weekend I wrapped up my own site changes and tests. Today I made the Apache Roller 4.0 RC2 files available for testing. Thanks to bug reporters and patch submitters who helped out in particular Jian Liu, Boris Milikik and Jens Dorr. You can get the files via the links below if you'd like to help out with testing:
UPDATE: RC3 is now available here: http://people.apache.org/~snoopdave/apache-roller-4.0-rc3/
Themes and plugins have also been updated, including the slick new set from rollerthemes.com, but I haven't had a chance to upload the new theme packages to the Roller Support project. By the way, I just updated the theme on the Project Roller blog/planet to use the new rollerthemes.com Integral theme.
Despite all of the 4.0 work, we've been making progress on Roller 4.1. So far, my work on 4.1 has focused on extensibility and APIs. I have implemented almost all of the Externalize User Management proposal, which will make it possible for sites to plugin their own user/permissions management systems (i.e. and not use Roller's internal 'rolleruser' and 'userrole' tables).
I also added a Tag Data API, which is a Servlet that returns tag statistics data in Atom Categories format and will be useful for folks who want to create a combined tag cloud for multiple Roller servers or any servers that support the API. This week I'll be adding OpenSearch API support to complement Roller's existing search feeds. I also intend to propose adding support for comments to Roller's AtomPub implementation
Download and page view stats for Apache Roller are now available, thanks to Vadim Gritsenko's software. Vadim has added Roller to the chart generator and I've added a page to the Roller Wiki to display those charts. You can see from the summary chart that Roller gets between 1000 and 2000 downloads on an average day.
We haven't been doing a great job of tracking the sites that are powered by Roller, so I started tracking them in my del.icio.us account with the tag poweredbyroller. I did some searching last weekend and came up with about 20 interesting looking Roller sites. Here are some of the designs that caught my eye.
I'm always on the lookout for new Roller sites, so please let me know if you've got one that's not on my Powered by Roller list. That's it for another edition of Roller Strong. See you next time.