MUniversity of Minnesota

January 29, 2004

Almost there

We're almost there. Bill is putting the finishing touches on the x.500 login system and then he will work on the community blog capabilities. For those of you that don't know what I mean by "x.500" it is the system we use here at the U of M to authenticate students, faculty, and staff as U of M affiliated. It is a single login solution, which means everyone at the U of M only needs to know one username (called an "Internet ID" here) and password. The system a person is trying to log into will then get the person's credentials and decide if he or she should have access to the system. By using the x.500 system we will automatically give our blog site potential connectivity to a slew of other university projects, including the U of M portal, and it will make the site easier to use and administer since we won't have to manage individual usernames and passwords.

Movable Type also comes with the capability of adding authors to specific blogs to make what are know as "community blogs" or blogs that have multiple authors. We would like to retain this capability, obviously, so that professors or TAs can made class weblogs, or groups of students can maintain weblogs together. Out of the box MT comes with an "add author" capability that is entirely too powerful for our uses. Anyone with this permission can add an author to any blog in the system, or delete any author for that matter. We are currently working on altering this system so that people can add authors to their own blog(s) only. If you are interested, you my check out some of our test pages people will use to create a new blog. Please note, these pages do not work! They are to look at only, no actually create a blog.

Finally, Seton Hill University has taken the plunge into the world of blogs. It appears that their informational page is a group blog called New Media Journalism @ Seton Hill University. Hopefully we'll be giving our own community this capability soon.

Posted by snackeru at January 29, 2004 03:01 PM