Starting August 8, 2002
Happy Birthday Jonathan!, Why Johnny can't program, Salon book reviews, More cell towers, More about Trellix blogging features, Blogging and small business, Trellix announces native blogging
Wednesday, August 21, 2002 
Happy Birthday Jonathan! [link]
Today's my brother's birthday. While I can't be there to celebrate it with him, at least I can use this blog to mark it for me and others. (With the mention in the "faux blog" with the Newsweek article, my readership is up, too, so his birthday gets extra exposure.) It's nice how you can use your blog (if you keep doing it long enough) as a diary with recurring themes. Here is a recent picture of the two of us. (He's the handsome one on the right, and yes, he can -- and does -- program.) For much older pictures of the two of us, see my post for his birthday last year.

Dan with beard and Jonathan with just a smile
Me and by brother at a family reunion this summer

Thursday, August 15, 2002 
Why Johnny can't program [link]
As a result of the Trellix blogging announcement I've been involved in a flurry of discussions with people about blogging, about various tools and features, and about differentiating the various blogging systems. Most of the blogging products let you do all the website-related things we do through the Trellix authoring interface, but they often require HTML coding, Perl or some other language programming, etc. One thing that came up in a discussion with Amy Wohl, as a follow up to her article about the Trellix offering, was this question: "How do you explain that function accessible through programming and function designed for consumers is not exactly the same thing?" I've put some of my thoughts down in an essay (with a little help from some friends whom I quote).

Tuesday, August 13, 2002 
Salon book reviews [link]
Salon has just published "The media titans still don't get it", an interesting double book review by Scott Rosenberg. He uses a book about Big Media (like AOL Time Warner) and David Weinberger's Small Pieces Loosely Joined (that I reviewed last May) to make his point (about them not getting it). I really liked what Scott said and how he says it. Read it. To help understand the "dot com bubble", put all this together with the lies and greed of many Internet players (Enron with its "new media to the apartment complex" inflated "income", WorldCom, Wall Street analysts in cahoots with investment bankers and their clients, etc.) who made it look like the Big Media vision of the Internet was working when it wasn't .
More cell towers [link]
For years, one of the most popular pages on my web site has been a discussion of cellular telephone transmission towers, with pictures of some unusual ones, including those disguised as trees. Periodically, I add new pictures. For a few days on my commute to and from work I got to watch the construction of a new tower disguised as a flag pole. Yesterday I took a picture of the completed antenna, complete with patriotic American flag. Here are some pictures:

Pole against the blue sky with crane at bottom  Antennas around pole top  White flagpole with American flag
Cell tower being built, disguised as a flagpole
I've added these and a few others to my "More Cell Towers" page in a paragraph titled "Seeing a new one go up".
More about Trellix blogging features [link]
The post above, "More cell towers", is an example of two of the areas we decided to address with the Trellix blogging offering: Easy addition of images to posts, and integrating regular web site authoring with blogging. Images really add to the story. It's hard for most people to adequately describe in words the top of a tower or how "real" the final thing looks. In addition, the essay about cell towers is better done as a standalone essay, updated with additions over the years (additional pictures, replacement pictures, growing list of manufacturers, etc.) all on one or two pages indexed by the search engines. Doing this as just disjoint postings, even with back-links, would make for poor reading and searching. That's why it's usually helpful for a blog to be part of a web site with more traditional pages for essays, an "About Me" page, a "Contact" page, etc.

Monday, August 12, 2002 
Blogging and small business [link]
After the recent Trellix blogging announcement was made, it was interesting to see the difference in coverage in the press vs. on weblogs. Webloggers were interested in the integration story and the fact that there is a new player to give more options in the market. The non-blogging press on the other hand, especially in their questions during interviews, was very interested in the idea that blogs could be useful to small and other businesses. You can read some of what I told them in "Small Business Blogging".

Also, late last week I updated the Trellix blogging screenshots to have one that included using images. The ability to easily insert (optionally resized) images from the image gallery while doing rich text editing just got into the alpha code at that time. As regular readers of this weblog know, I am a strong believer in the value of images in a blog.

Edit Post screen with two pictures already added to a post side by side.
Example of including images while writing a blog post

Thursday, August 8, 2002 
Trellix announces native blogging [link]
This morning Trellix is announcing that it will be providing blogging as a native part of its private-label web publishing tools and platform. It will be available through the Trellix licensees that choose to provide it.

This product is special because it integrates a very complete web site authoring tool, blogging, and hosting all in one system aimed at regular users who will never learn HTML. All you need is a common browser -- there is nothing to install or download. This is not just ease of first setting up, but also ease of getting all the way that most people need and want. It is all new code added to the standard Trellix system. It does not use the Blogger code, though it does stem from our relationship with Pyra.

I've written up more details and some of my thoughts about this product. Read "Trellix and Blogging, Part 2".

Rants from Dan sample blog being edited showing lots of Edit buttons, a toolbar, and a Post to blog button
Screenshot based on alpha code showing editing and how you can customize the look of the web site

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