MUniversity of Minnesota

July 16, 2004

Plug-ins

One of the best things about Movable Type is the huge developer community built around it. New tools and plugins are constantly being created for Movable Type. What is a plugin? A plugin allows Movable Type to do something it wasn't orginally programmed to do. For example, two plugins have been added to UThink's version of Movable Type. One is Textile, which allows blog authors to use simple codes to format the text and links of their entries. For example, typing _emphasis_ with underscores will produce emphasis if the Textile option for formatting is chosen. If you are interested in using Textile check out this blog entry for more information.

The second plugin installed on UThink (so far) is IfEmpty. This plugin allows for some extra conditionals for you to try in your blog templates. Two new tags are available with this plugin: <MTIfEmpty> - tag used to test if a given Movable Type variable is empty/blank; and <MTIfNotEmpty> - tag used to test if a given Movable Type variable is not empty/blank. Why would you want to use this tag? The reason it was installed was to give blog authors the option of using their MT profile nickname rather than their Internet ID as the "posted by" name at the end of entries. This is useful for class blogs where the students have been attached to a particular blog but wish to remain somewhat anonymous. This feature is already being used on the class blog Rhetoric 3562W. If you would like to do the same thing, follow these relatively simple instructions.

If you have need of any other plugins, please let us know by emailing uthink@umn.edu.

Posted by snackeru at July 16, 2004 09:52 AM