Bluetrait (Program)
                IBM N2200 8363

Mon, 08 Oct 2007 10:00 PM

Commenting is back.

Michael Dale
I've re-enabled commenting as I've written in spam filtering. There might be a few issues, but we'll see how it goes.

Thu, 04 Oct 2007 11:28 PM

Site Upgrade

Michael Dale
This site has just been upgraded to Bluetrait 2. I expect that there will be a few errors. I may need to disable comments as I haven't written any spam filtering yet! RSS feeds should be better as they now use the pubDate tag (meaning you shouldn't be seeing the same post over and over again in your rss reader). Categories should work too, plus you can append /rss/ to the end of a category link and it should display just the posts for that category. And there is a little bit of jquery used for the "Click for comments help." section. If you find any bugs please send me an email via the contact link.

Sun, 23 Sep 2007 1:16 PM

Bluetrait 2 development update

Michael Dale

Just a quick development update.

The following is a list of the major changes that have happened since Code Example 1:

  • Commenting Support
  • Future Posting Support (via cron)
  • Cron Support
  • Basic Adding Post Support (with Categories)
  • RSS Comments on Posts (with user detail support)
  • Database Session Support (all sessions are stored in the database)
  • Jquery
  • SQLite database support now mostly works
  • Contact Form (will be a default plugin) + Mailer Class
  • Improvements to custom content

There are a couple of things that need doing before I can upgrade this site to Bluetrait 2:

  • Spam Filtering
  • Search
  • Content Support (for my projects page etc)
  • Admin Page (yes I haven't started on it yet!)
  • Migration Script (to upgrade database)

The cron support is pretty cool and really easy to use. It will be used in future to handle update notifications, session garbage collection and "monthly database maintenance".

On another note this site is now accessible via IPv6 (2001:388:c021::20), which has already seen traffic!


Sat, 21 Jul 2007 2:08 PM

Bluetrait 2 development update

Michael Dale

I've been doing a fair bit of Bluetrait 2 coding since my last post about it, so I thought I'd post an update of where I am up to.

Category support is now working. Which is awesome, because it includes full breadcrumb support:

Bluetrait 2 categories support

I will expand this to include browsing through the full breadcrumb. This will improve navigation throughout the site.

Other features that I have been working on include:

  • Full 404 handling support with custom styles
  • Plugin support that can add custom content types
  • Customizable peramlink formats
  • Overriding site details with a settings file (i.e. domain name etc)
  • Pluggable functions
  • MySQL and SQLite support
  • RSS support
  • Templating Tags
  • UTF-8 support
  • Theme support
  • Graceful error handling (i.e on database failure generate an email to the site admin)
  • Event Logging

So there is a stack of stuff that has been done. I can't wait until enough has been done so that I can upgrade this site!

Subversion access can be found here (please note it isn't ready to be used on any website yet).

Thu, 24 May 2007 6:17 PM

Bluetrait 2

Michael Dale

I've decided to rewrite Bluetrait.

It's had a good run.

Getnews (the blog script that I wrote before Bluetrait) was aimed at providing a very basic blog with commenting support. It did this well, but a lot of it was hardcoded to my domain/style so it wasn't really useful for anyone else.

I wrote Bluetrait 1 as to allow others to easily use/install it. It had/has a very basic template type system. Over the revisions it has been slowly upgraded and now includes:

  • Good spam filtering. I think I'll finally got to a stage where I'm happy with it.
  • Awesome looking admin panel thanks to Stuart.
  • Event Viewer (which I really like having)
  • Basic RSS support
  • User management.

It has worked well on my site for almost 3 years! But it has some limitations that are starting to annoy me. The biggest problem I currently have with it is the way the CMS side works.

There is no way to categories pages and as my project page grows it is becoming an issue.

So I'm going to take what I've learnt with Bluetrait 1 and rewrite it.

I'm aiming to make Bluetrait 2 able to cope with all kinds of content for example:

  • RSS
  • Atom
  • Content/CMS
  • Blog

The idea is that the core of Bluetrait will have a section that allows people to design their own plugins which allows the system to handle any kind of data output.

Bluetrait 2 will also require PHP 5 as I'm using the PDO database class to allow for almost any kind of database (mysql, sql lite etc).

So the coding has started. Plugin support is almost done. I don't expect to have anything finished this year, hopefully early next year.

Mon, 14 May 2007 2:52 PM

What data is being sent to Akismet?

Michael Dale

I just read an interesting post here about what data is sent to the Akismet servers. A surprising amount, including the whole $_SERVER array!

I wouldn't be too happy with that myself. Bluetrait's implementation of the Akismet client sends the following information:

Comment Author
Comment Author Email Address
Comment Author Website Address
Content of Comment
Author's IP Address
Type of Comment (i.e Trackback, Comment etc)

Bluetrait's implementation sends the following information:

Comment Author
Comment Author Email Address
Comment Author Website Address
Content of Comment
Author's IP Address
Type of Comment (i.e Trackback, Comment etc)

Plus the $_SERVER array with the following information removed:


Unfortunately this is more than I first stated, I'm going to review the data being sent. It shouldn't contain any extra data that is personal.

EDIT: Some more info here. Looks like Akismet sends the all cookies that are from that domain. i.e anything the client (the person posting the comment) is logged into. The post is a bit old (2005) so this behavior may have changed.

EDIT2: I just checked the source code from WordPress 2.1.2 it looks like cookies are no longer sent, everything else still is.

Thu, 18 Jan 2007 6:37 PM


Michael Dale
Argh. Too much spam is getting through again; even with Akismet. So I'm in the process of writing a new spam class. The aim is to build a comment score (similar to email spam filtering programs) based on the following:
  • Email Address/Name/Website
  • Comment Body (number of links etc)
  • If the user is registered
  • If the user has successfully posted a comment before
  • white and black lists
  • response from akismet
  • how old and how many comments a post has
So hopefully I can cut down the spam.

Sat, 13 Jan 2007 11:41 PM

Bluetrait Blog or Software?

Michael Dale
I suspect trying to have both a blog called Bluetrait and a piece of blog software called Bluetrait is a bad idea...

Wed, 03 Jan 2007 3:33 PM

Bluetrait Wish List

Michael Dale
Things I'd like to add:
  • gettext
  • better plugin support (add_task, update checker, bluetrait version checking)
  • categories
  • upgrades to event management
  • upgrades to spam system
  • full UTF-8
  • per-user time zone support
  • caching
  • faster/smaller