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Friday, December 16th, 2005

Me and My Big Mouth

Aren’t search engines truly amazing? Somebody noticed my old WordPress User Online plugin gripe, and not only asked me how I got the original plugin working, but how to implement some of the things I was describing I wanted to do. So by popular demand (yes, one person, especially if he claims to be representing others as well, is enough to constitute “popular demand” in my tiny little stake on the Web), I am pulled back into the plugin programming business. About time. I’ve been too caught up in relatively inconsequential tweaking and need to get back to hardcore coding to achieve my goal of truly learning PHP.

Vincent, I am very interested to developing a plugin along the lines I laid out earlier, and would welcome feedback on where to take it. But first, let’s figure out how I got the old usersonline plugin to work and how I get it in the sidebar, so we can at least have that. I don’t remember how I did it off the top of my head but I’m sure I can figure it out. Unfortunately, it’s a pretty busy time of year, so bear with me.

First, to answer my own old question, I had figured out why the plugin recognized me from one place but not at another. It relied on the comment_author_ cookie, which records the name I gave when I wrote a comment, and I hadn’t used the computer at the second place to write any comments – it hadn’t taken me too long to realize that commenting on my own posts was silly.

To answer your question, I installed the WP-UserOnline (WP-UO) by GaMerZ back when I was using WordPress version and found a few problems with it. I started reporting the issues I found on the author’s forums but managed to beat anyone else to the workarounds, so I reported those too. Or something like that. I was pretty frustrated because the author’s style and methodology was so completely different than mine, and he hadn’t followed the plugin guidelines at the Codex.

One of the thing that might stop the whole plugin from working at all when you upgraded to WP 1.5 or higher is that the original plugin relied on hacks that would have been eliminated with file replacement during an upgrade. I ended up upgrading to 1.5.2 less than two weeks after I started with WP-UO, and had to re-hack certain files. Thankfully, I have learned to keep good documentation on any hacks, and have a record of what I did. I also see from earlier posts (unfortunately, I didn’t document everything I did to tweak this plugin) that I was only able to go to the WP-UO page from the root directory of my blog because of a problem handling permalinks, but somehow I solved that.

I’m going to pull all my WP-UO files off my site and run a compare to the originals. When I get back we’ll take a look at the differences, but I just wanted to let you know that I was on it.

Posted by Greg in My Website, Programming


This entry was posted on Friday, December 16th, 2005 at 06:01 PST and is filed under My Website, Programming. You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

3 Responses to “Me and My Big Mouth”

  1. Vincent says:

    Greg that is great!

    Knowing which members or the amount of members that are currently online and how many guest is a basic necessity for building a community around your weblog. That is why I was so astonished that WordPress does not have this service.

    In the end it would be nice to see who is currently on the weblog and if you are a member you should be able to view a members page where you can see who is also a member, Nickname based off course, and on which articles each individual member commented.

  2. Uncle Salty says:

    I was thinking about this just this afternoon, when Vincent pointed me to this post. And I still can’t believe this functionallity isný available jet. So, if you really are willing to spend some time and effort into this, I will worship you forever.

  3. Tijs says:

    Good stuff Greg, i’ll help beta test it for you as soon as you get the first version out the door.