Sunday, April 29, 2007
Sorry for the delay in posting, everyone. I just got back from vacation to find my basement was flooded. As you might imagine, this has caused me a few headaches, but things are getting back to normal now. Nothing like getting 8 inches of rain in two days, especially when it happens while you are away. As they say, timing is everything.
OK, so admittedly "preferences" aren't that exciting in an application. But I think that, in our case, it is worthy of a short blog post. Another one of the things that some of our users have asked for is a way to more effectively manage multiple accounts and blogs. This has been one of our priorities from the beginning, of course, but the ability to set different default publishing options for each blog is missing from 1.0. Raven will change that.
It all starts with the Application Settings dialog, which has a section that allows the user to set the default publishing options. At the time this screen shot was taken, only the general publishing options and the Ping Sites options were implemented. More may be added over time. This preference page allows the user to set some defaults for how blog posts are published.
In addition to global Application Publishing Settings, Raven also allows the user to configure publishing settings at the account and blog level. Simply right-clicking on an Account in the Navigator and choose "Settings...", or choose the Account Manager from the main menu will bring up the Account Manager dialog. The Account Manager will let the user change their Account settings, such as username/password, in addition to setting up default values for blog publishing. The user can optionally choose to override those settings found in the Global Publishing Settings, including Ping Sites and General Publishing settings. In addition, the Account Manager provides a way to change the Media Store settings for the Account.
All of the options for a given account will be applied when publishing to a Blog within that Account, unless the user overrides those settings at the Blog level. The Account Manager will let the user specify default General, Media Store, and Ping Sites settings. In addition, and although it is not yet implemented and thus not shown in the screen shot, the user will also be able to configure default Categories. All of these settings are optional, and if not set, then the values will be inherited from the Account settings (which, if not set, will get inherited from the Application Settings).
As you can see, we have created a hierarchical settings structure, which should provide enough flexibility for all of our users, while hopefully still being simple enough to be used by casual users.
We are closing in on a "alpha" release. Please keep an eye on our forums for any information on this. I wish we could get to it faster, but around here we really want to get things right, rather than fast. Once the application is in Beta (which will follow a hopefully short alpha cycle), updates should be quick.
Thanks for taking the time to read my ramblings. I will try to ramble more often.