Recently in MT Tips Category

On certain sites, you may want to allow your users a little more freedom with their comments, or if you're using the community templates in MovableType, then you may want to improve the "Create Entry" screens to allow rich text.

I managed to squeeze the YUI RTE into a stock forum template set, then just haven't got round to writing it up yet. �You can see it in action here, and below the jump is the write-up, it's surprisingly easy!

I've also put it on here, for registered commenters, something else that needs a write-up really!
The next logical step from displaying a thumbnail of your posted or favourite videos is to actually enable playing of the video in your own webpage.  Thankfully, this is simple with youtube's embed code and your Action Stream.  I've now added this to my video calendar page and i think it looks good and works rather well.  It may be a little to much to add it to the home page, plus we don't want that to slow down any, it's already having to grab resources from all over the place anyway, so adding 9 embedded videos may be a little too much!

Code after the jump..


Please Note: This is for version 2.0 of the Action Streams plugin, for the 1.0 list see this post.

Differences and additions between v1 and v2 are highlighted in yellow.

Additionally, v2 has not yet been officially launched, as such this list may change between now and launch and I will only be highlighting differences from v1 to v2, not from now to v2.

The following is a description of all the fields found in the default plugin (without any additional profile plugins) in the following format:

  • service_type
    • stream_type
      • MTStreamActionVar name="xx"
One important difference to note is that between "stream_type" and "service_type". The difference is a stream type gathers together similar feeds, i.e. the photos stream_type will be all services where you post photos to, whereas a service_type of �flickr� will just be all actions based on flickr (including favourites etc).

Action Stream field list

The Action Stream plugin provides a lot of information about your profiles which isn't accessed by default.  With a little playing (as described in my previous posts) you can really start making your action streams work for you and provide a "lifestream" to your own blog.

The following is a description of all the fields found in the default plugin (without any additional profile plugins) in the following format:

  • service_type
    • stream_type
      • MTStreamActionVar name="xx"
I will try to keep this up to date as new streams are added to the plugin.  One important difference to note is that between "stream_type" and "service_type". The difference is a stream type gathers together similar feeds, i.e. the photos stream_type will be all services where you post photos to, whereas a service_type of �flickr� will just be all actions based on flickr (including favourites etc).

Yves Luther has come up with another great idea for action streams, however his solution didn't quite fit with what I expected it to do, plus it doesn't "strap on" to the default action stream templates very well.

The problem is when you use feeds that are updated frequently, Last.FM listened to tracks and uploading whole sets of photos, it floods your action stream with so many entries that other things can get lost in the noise.  Now if you're like me and listen to music all day every day, then you would normally just turn off something like the last.fm feeds.

However, wouldn't it be nice to capture and show that information in a way that doesn't compromise the importance of other items in your action stream?
Following on from my last post about combining Action Stream data with entries (which has been superceded by an offical MT post and plugin from one of their devs), the next thing to do with Action Streams is to change their appearence based on their content/source.

The mechanisms to do this are all included in the plugin, but require a little tender love and care to get the desired effect.  Here is how I did it.
First off, credit where credit is due; this method is entirely the property of Yves Luther, I am merely providing it in English in an instructional capacity.

So, you can see on my home page that my blog posts are nicely mixed in with my action stream entries, which for blogs with infrequent updates or personal sites, means you have a collection that summarises (most of) your activity on the web as a whole.  The beuty of Yves solution is it's simplicity and flexibility.  Once set up, the choice of exactly how to display your home page is completely up to you.

Also on my home page are variations on styling and content based on the service providing the action, this is something I will detail in a later post.