RSS Clients

Tobias was asking about an RSS feed reader like NetNewsWire for Windows. I haven’t tested one myself, but there is a good list of available software for different platforms.

I have heard someone using FeedReader. I think I also saw some positive comments about Syndirella.

By the way: All our seminar sites offer their news feeds in RSS. Just add »/xml/rss.xml« to the homepage URL – that’s the standard link to the RSS feed in Manila. Managers could turn this off in a Manila site, so in rare cases it might not work.


Moteran Systems is a German Company that invented a way to route WLAN traffic within a dynamic auto-configuring net of WLAN clients. With this technology each client functions as a relay for clients that are out of reach of the base station. To circumvent privacy issues the traffic is two-way encrypted.

ZOE 0.41

There’s a new version of ZOE – that indexing E-Mail client – that supports RSS (including 2.0) as well as the Blogger APi and MetaWeblog API. I don’tyet fully understand what this means, but it sounds like I should consider ZOE once more.

hierarchyTemplates Plug-In 0.5b

I have been working on a new release of the hierarchyTemplates Plug-In – version 0.5. The two main new features are a) JavaScript objects and b) Theme compatibility (the settings of this Plug-In will be exported with a Manila theme).

I am looking for people who are willing to test this one. I used it without problems on our main server. Send an e-mail to me if you are interested.

Manila Plug-Ins stagnation

Now that Dave Winer found a reason to turn to Manila again for his Harvard Law School weblog server, I wonder if Userland will improve Manila some more. There hasn’t been much news about Frontier/Manila. There has been a lot of ideas from the community (even a Plug-Ins wish list).

I was wondering if I should look at some kind of Textism Plug-In that mimicks the ASCII-to-HTML conversion of a Movable Type Plug-In with than name. It seems it would make editing in a Textarea much easier – most people I know either don’t like the HTML formatting tool bar and also don’t want to buy Radio Userland to have a more convenient editing experience.

There was few movement in the Manila Plug-In area – and I think mostly the reason for that is that Frontier didn’t really take off when it went commercial in 1998. There were too many developers not working professionally with Frontier that contributed to the community – you couldn’t make a living from being a Frontier developer. Actually that is a pity because Frontier has set so many standards in the area of web application.

metaRenderer status

I was looking at my Manila plug-ins that haven’t changed much for a while. Internally I have some improved versions: the metaRender Plug-In has a complete OPML rendering framework that allows you to define HTML templates for conversion of OPML (screenshot). It does custom caching – so you can render OPML from different sources (Msg# or URL) in any number of messages or templates without having Manila rendering that HTML again and again. Currently it is not very newbie-resistant, because the rules are not validated.

And if not clear from the screenshot: you will be able to define seperate behaviors for each nodetype/attributes. In the “Add nodetype(s)” section you will also be able to add own nodetypes or teach your template nodetypes/attributes from a OPML source.

hieraryTemplates plug-in status

One of the next issues of the hierarchyTemplates plug-in is to make it compatible with the theme mechanism of Manila. To achieve this I’d need to store the plug-in data in a table that will be included in a theme. I did not yet look into that but I bet the hardest part of it is to make it bullet proof for those who upgrade.


Another completely new plug-in will be the meetingMaker plug-in. I have no idea when that will be finished – but the idea is to manage invitation to meetings where people actually answer a poll about which of the suggested meetings they probably attend. Here is a screenshot of the current prototype showing how to create an announcment (which is just the initial step before polling and actually inviting/cancelling). I think many people -especially at larger institutions- will like this plug-in.

Outliner with OPML-Export

NoteTaker 2003 v1.1 does OPML!

»NoteTaker 2003 is a very groovy outliner that does lots of cool things like publish to the web, voice annotation and all kinds of other things that I haven’t figured out yet. I griped about the fact that it didn’t do OPML, before when I tried the previous release. Maybe this will be the “missing link” in my personal information management struggle.« [Der Schockwellenreiter]