Suggestion to “Response to MrTopf”

Since today seems to be about writing blog posts about blog software, I want to pass on some idea that’s been in the back of my mind for about a month.

I’ve installed Windows Live Writer and noticed that it is quite extensible. In fact, all of it’s extensibility features are documented on MSDN.

The really nice feature that got me hooked is the support for editing ‘inside the theme’ (for the lack of a better description). The way this works is, there’s a small contract between Windows Live Writer and the blog, where the blog can provide views that Windows Live Writer fetches for editing.

So a nice suggestion for those working with blog support for Plone: please implement Windows Live Writer’s Provider Customization API.

And then, there’s another great feature that Plone can exploit, but this one I would like to implement myself. Windows Live Writer supports Content Source Plugins, which basically allow you to pop up a form for some user interaction and then spit out some HTML to be inserted at cursor location in the blog entry.

Now, if you stop and think just for a second, we already have a concept of “Content Source” in Plone: Kupu’s Image and Link Libraries. It already has a well-defined XML format. It can be customized through the Plone UI. And to top it off there are examples of writing Content Source Plugins that read data from an XML source. It should be a piece of cake to implement a “Kupu drawer”-like Content Source Plugin for Windows Live Writer that reuses the data from Kupu.

So, that was it. Hopefully someone will take those ideas to the next level and implement something soon. Unfortunately I’m a little busy with graduation and all that at the moment, so I can only provide ideas. But maybe next year. :)

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