More Grand Rapids WiFi News

This month’s round of developments at Grand Rapids Wifi was the first to be completed since I started using the combination of subversion and trac to manage the site, and I have to say that I’m fast becoming a firm fan of that pairing. While at the moment I’m keeping access to them restricted (until I finish reworking the configuration storage) it’s been a massive aid in keeping track of work to do.

The key development from a user perspective this month has been the addition of news comments and internal navigation for the news section. Both of those are still fairly rudimentary, but they’ve needed attention for some time so it’s good to have them done. Adding the extra features has reminded me of how much the site needs a redesign, but I’m probably going to hold off on that for a few months while I get a few more features in place.

I’ve added a couple of new sidebars on the front page. These are now selected at random by a factory from a selection of polymorphic classes, making it much easier to add more in future. Behind the scenes, I’ve also switched to the PEAR trackback module to handle trackbacks, which has made things more stable and saves me from worrying about working on that functionality.

From a coding point of view, I’m more satisfied to now have content negotiation in place. That means that a user agent which says it prefers RDF will get RDF, those who prefer ‘application/xml+xhtml’ over plain html will get that, and everyone else will get plain old text/html. I ran into a few problems getting that working (and getting the old numerical URLs back in place) which took some time to track down.

Eventually, with the help of textdrive‘s excellent support team, the problem was narrowed down to the fact that MultiViews was enabled on the server which was obstructing some of my rewrite rules. With that switched off, everything seems to be ticking over nicely.

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