It's time for a preview release. We'll call this one LnBlog 0.8.0-pre1. I don't really want to call it a beta release, because that would imply that the feature set is at least close to finalized. I'm actually still not sure if I want to release after a little more testing or add a few more features and call it version 1.0.0.
Since this is a testing release, I of course recommend keeping a backup copy of the previous version around. No blog upgrades are required, so just upload the new version and rename it after your old installation. Note a few old plugins are now redundant and have been removed and a file has been added in the userdata folder, so I the recommended starting with the fresh installation directory and copying over your old userdata folder rather than trying to upload the new files into your existing directory.
This is going to be a major feature addition release. The big one in this release is support for sending and receiving Pingbacks. If you're not already aware, Pingbacks are very similar to TrackBacks, in that they are used to send a notification to another blog that you've linked to them. The main differences are that 1) Pingbacks are significantly more complicated to implement and 2) Pingbacks don't suffer from the same spam problems as TrackBacks, due to the fact that the server, rather than the client, determines what data goes into them.
The second bigish feature is support for enclosures. Basically, this means podcasting support. An enclosure is just a hint to an RSS reader that a post is related to a particular file so that it can be downloaded in the background. All you need to do is enter the URL of the file in the box and, provided it's on the same server, LnBlog will calculate the MIME type and file size to insert into the RSS feed. I also added a default profile.ini file that allows you to enter a "contact me" URL. Basically, you enter the HTML for the link you want and this will be displayed in your profile instead of your e-mail address. You can use that in ContactForm plugin.
There's a bunch of smaller stuff in this release too. Check the change log for the details. For starters, I did some cleanup to various plugins. For example, I added a "ban and delete" option to the IPBan plugin, added the "new standard" RSS icons to the sidebar, made the calendar look slightly less crappy, added a stylesheet to the RSS 2 feeds (so they look like something in a browser), and created RSS feeds for comments even when there are no comments yet.
There are also a number of small bug fixes. For example, TrackBacks finally work regardless of whether or not you have CURL. I also found a bug with receiving the response code when sending TrackBacks. I also fixed a few small display issues that were weird or didn't make sense.
Last, there's a bit of code cleanup and consolidation. For instance, the TrackbackNotifier and CommentNotifier plugins are now gone, replaced by a generic ReplyNotifier plugin that handles comments, TrackBacks, and Pingbacks. I also consolidated some functions in the utility library and a few things in the entry subclasses.
I'm debating whether to hold off on the next release, add some features, and go straight to version 1.0. Before that, I want to at least add a simple theme editor. My plan is to do something very simple and hacky: a stylesheet editor. Basically, just a GUI to automatically generate a stylesheet based on settings entered by the user. The idea is that this stylesheet will just be inserted into the page last, thus overriding the default settings for the theme.
Other possibile features include more granular security, support for draft entries, and Atom feeds, among other cleanup. If I'm going to go straight to version 1.0, then I'll probably try to do some of these first. Anyone have any thoughts on other features for 1.0 or opinions on the release schedule?
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