WordPress directions at #wordcampau

#wordcampau participants were lucky to catch up with advances in the popular, versatile blogging software, WordPress with a keynote address by Matt Mullenweg, the developer of WP. WordPress 2.7 will be available in December with loads more features. Matt alerted participants to a new WordPress template http://monotonedemo.wordpress.com/, where page colours and widths alter according to the colour and size photos which are added – could be a winner for a photography site. He tantalised the audience with a reference to the WordPress 2.6 Maxtrix Easter Egg.

The impending release of collaborative plugin BuddyPress was foreshadowed, an innovation set to energise and transform WordPressMU (the multi-user version of WordPress) with social interaction.

The beauty of WordPress is the user friendliness of its CMS (Content Management System), its extensibility with a wide choice of plugins, easy to read Help section and ready availability of templates. A collaborative networking facility will be the icing on the cake.

The online presentation was nifty, demonstrating the versatility of WordPress with integration of video streaming via Stickam, photos via Flickr and the inclusion of a Twitter stream using Monitter.

Other useful hints – collaborative tool ProjectPier, SlideShare, a site for sharing online slide presentations and of significant interest to businesses, the WordPress e-Commerce Plugin highlighted by developer Dan Milward.

Firefox 3.0 upgrade

Leaving a reasonable time for addons, extensions and themes to catch up, we’ve now installed Firefox 3.0.

Immediately, an anomaly appeared on the front page of the Sibagraphics site – a bottom scroll bar. This turned out to be from the top flash animations, one of which was floated right and the other left from id css instructions within the objects themselves.

This was simply solved by removing the ids and putting them in divs around the objects!

The site validates and is similar in all browsers, even the annoying and insecure IE6 which 24% of viewers worldwide still apparently use. Many of these would be corporate users who have unique company software reliant on that dodgy old M$ version.

Rather than use the M$ Virtual PC software in order to run two versions of IE, we found the very handy free Tredisoft solution, which will install standalone versions of IE from IE3 – IE6 if desired. Works a treat and naturally is not bulky and cumbersome!