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Sakai Blog Tool

Lead(s): Adrian Fish (Lancaster,UK)
Committers: Nuno Fernandes (UVP)

Description:

The Blog is a tool that allows you to post blog entries that are available to other users of your Sakai worksite. The primary three use cases that the Blog tool supports are these:

  • A research group wants to record their ideas, conclusions and reflections somewhere that their fellow researchers can easily access.
  • Individual students want to use the blog tool to store their course notes.
  • Tutors want their students to record their reflections in a one shot 'Learning Log' and these reflections become a persistent glimpse of a student's understanding of the subject matter.

Here are some screenshots of the post creation process.

Of course, these three cases are a vast oversimplification and the Blog tool can be used in many ways due to it's flexibility. It is a tool that facilitates the management of knowledge. With the Blog you can store links to other web pages, files and pictures; it also provides a search mechanism which makes it easy to track and find any published information within the worksite. The Blog also promotes collaborative editing of Blog posts, not just comments. Depending on the permissions you set, all your peers in a worksite will be able to work on the contents of your Blog posts.

The Blog is currently maintained against versions 2.4.x and 2.5.x of Sakai although the most advanced version is available in a subversion branch here. The older branches, 2.4.x and 2.5.x will continue to be maintained but will not receive new development. post_2-5, currently developed and tested under Sakai 2.5.x, will become the version of choice for 2.6 and onwards.

How to install

1. Check out the relevant version from svn and build it as with any other Sakai tool
2. Change your JVM startup configuration adding this option: java.awt.headless=true This is necessary for the JPEG conversor built in the blogger

About the authors

This tool has been developed by Miguel Gonzalez Losa and Adrian Fish who are members of Centre for e-Science, Lancaster University, United Kingdom

Notes

  • We are expecting feedback from users in order to improve and add new features to this tool. If you have ideas and suggestion, please, contact us.
  • If you are using apache in front of tomcat is needed to use mod_jk, so you just have to add a map to /sakai-blogger-tool in mod_jk config file.

For the latest news on bugs and feature requests, use Sakai's JIRA:

http://bugs.sakaiproject.org/jira/secure/IssueNavigator.jspa?reset=true&mode=hide&pid=10010&sorter/order=DESC&sorter/field=priority&resolution=-1&component=10471

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19 Comments

  1. I am getting this error in catalina.out:
    ERROR: Exception sending context initialized event to listener instance of class com.sun.faces.config.ConfigureListener (2006-02-07 12:02:38,166 main_org.apache.catalina.core.ContainerBase.Catalina.localhost./blogger)
    java.lang.UnsupportedClassVersionError: uk/ac/lancs/e_science/jsf/components/blogger/renderer/RichTextEditArea (Unsupported major.minor version 49.0)

    1. OK, Comments are re-formatting in odd ways. Let me try that again with some markup:

      ERROR: Exception sending context initialized event to listener instance of 
      class com.sun.faces.config.ConfigureListener 
      (2006-02-07 12:02:38,166 main_org.apache.catalina.core.ContainerBase.[Catalina].[localhost].[/blogger])
      java.lang.UnsupportedClassVersionError: 
      uk/ac/lancs/e_science/jsf/components/blogger/renderer/RichTextEditArea 
      (Unsupported major.minor version 49.0)
      
    2. If I were a developer, I would know that meant to double-check my JVM before posting this (smile)

  2. Sorry, I forget to put in the documentation that the version 1.5 is needed to run the Blogger

  3. I tried the install in 2.1.1, get the following errors upon restarting tomcat:

    ERROR: uk.ac.lancs.e_science.jsf.components.blogger.UIEditPost (2006-02-08 13:19:30,051 main_org.apache.catalina.core.ContainerBase.Catalina.localhost.
    /blogger)
    javax.faces.FacesException: Can't instantiate class: 'uk.ac.lancs.e_science.jsf.components.blogger.UIEditPost'.

    Similar for UIOutputPost and UIPostListing

    any ideas?

    1. actually, it is a pre-2.1.1: 2.1.1_002 to be precise (smile)

      1. Actually we are going to update the blogger to sakai 2.1.1. I hope these problems will be solve soon.

  4. A quick install note. The 0703 .zip now uses /tmp rather than C:\TEMP as its default in web.xml, so if you're searching for that string, you'll need to use that instead.

    I'm also still having trouble with Java 1.4. The rich text editor, in particular:

    ERROR: Exception sending context initialized event to listener instance of class com.sun.faces.config.ConfigureListener (2006-03-01 11:05:29,879 main_org.apache.catalina.core.ContainerBase.[Catalina].[localhost].[/blogger])
    java.lang.UnsupportedClassVersionError: uk/ac/lancs/e_science/jsf/components/blogger/renderer/RichTextEditArea (Unsupported major.minor version 49.0)
  5. Why not include the source code in the distribution? No-one expects it to be perfect...

    1. I am agree that not body expects it to be perfect, and it is not perfect, of course. Now we are making some testing and we want to release the source code on 20th of april (aprox).

  6. Miguel, Do you have a timeline for placing this tool in "contrib" for Sakai? Perhaps for the Sakai 2.2 release? Thanks.

  7. We are looking for the requirements to put the tool in "contrib" for Sakai. We expect to do that on 20th of April

  8. If you have this error
    ...
    Error setting property 'image' in bean of type uk.ac.lancs.e_science.sakai.tools.blogger.PostCreateController:

    java.lang.InternalError: Can't connect to X11 window server using ':0.0'

    as the value of the DISPLAY variable.
    ...

    Then you have to change your JVM startup configuration adding this option: java.awt.headless=true This is necessary for the JPEG conversor built in the blogger

  9. I apologize if this has been covered before, but I wonder if this project should be renamed? "Blogger" is a commercial productand even if Google doesn't mind the use of their trademark, I think potential users might be confused about what this tool's relationship to Blogger(tm) is. I, personally, thought it was some kind of Blogger(tm) integration package instead of an entirely separate piece of blogging software until I found this page. Just a thought.

    1. The project can be renamed and we are open to suggestions.

  10. The blogger has been renamed as "Blog"

  11. Are there plans to add an RSS feed to the blog tool?

  12. We're interested in a blog, but most of our applications require public access. My ideal design would publish a URL for public read, and require someone to join the site in order to comment (assuming that comments are permitted).

  13. Many users have requested this feature and it will be the next one that we are going to implement once we fix the bugs that some people have reported in JIRA. I expect we can implement this in january