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No Blogging Solution for this Yet

In addition to the Text Factory issue (see the previous entry), I've got a big problem with the number of ways in which MovableType and ecto are both not helpful in transitioning an existing, static site into blog entries. Today I'm going to move three pages (one for each of three months) into MovableType. The pages each feature about 30-40 pictures (of varying sizes) and ten to fifteen entries.

Using the Web (MT) interface, I can download all of these images and then, one by one, click the "Upload File" thing-a-ma-jig, click "Show me the HTML," copy and paste the HTML, edit the HTML (some images need borders), and then click "Upload another." Using Ecto, I can place images directly, and I eliminate a few steps from the process, but it still takes a long time.

MovableType should offer a way to browse the images directory in addition to "Upload Image." Ecto should offer the ability to, given a URL for an image, fetch the height, width, and fill in an "alt" tag for me.

As it stands, I'm alternating between the two methods above. Neither works particularly well and I switch when one becomes too tedious or repetitive. This little project - a fairly straightforward copying of a static site into broken up blog entries - will consume eight hours of my time today. And I ain't slow.

5 Responses to "No Blogging Solution for this Yet"

  1. Update: It took two hours. I hacked around with AppleScripts, some of the built-in stuff in the Finder, and glommed together a solution. It was worth the 30 minutes I spent creating all of this stuff because I had such a large project to do.

    It would not be worth it for an individual effort here and there, so the above two points, I feel, are still valid.

  2. I'd just write a perl or php script leveraging the internal CMSs own functions to migrate stuff. As for images, I'd just regex replace the prefix domain or whatnot and re-upload them by hand.

  3. As Kevin wrote, next time you need to stuff something into blog entries, try using perl, php, or even shell scripting to scrape the static files and generate a Movable Type "import" file ( http://www.movabletype.org/docs/mtimport.html )

    I did that to scrape my oldest blog archives (pre-blogger hand-coded HTML) and pipe them into a WordPress archive. It's not too bad.

    Of course, the AppleScript solution can be just as handy. I had tried that for the same task but I'm a lousy AppleScripter.

  4. I've always wondered, why doesn't this site use wordPress? Is there a limitation that it has I have yet to run into? Is it that you've got one solution that's set up and there is no need to fix what's not broke?

  5. It doesn't use WordPress because I despise the UI and dislike its feature set. Same reasons I might not use software of any kind.


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