Yesterday I promised I'd say more about the new software I was testing out. I've added a few features lately that you probably (hopefully?) haven't noticed. The first is that the home-page no longer has much in the way of content at all. Until you ask for it. See, I'm building the files up directly in the archives, and then they just get included into the main page.
That means that I've got per-day archives in place, and it's just a small matter of programming to provide permalinks, better archive indices and all sort of other spiffy things that make running Dave's Picks easier.
I've also been adding a sort of macro system that started with a few well-defined macros. The first was <includefile>filename</includefile> which is what pulls in the daily archives to make the front page. Second was <isbn>number</isbn> which builds a link to point at a book. And from those two, I've started to make a general system for handling macros. The floodgates have opened, and I've thought of all sorts of things that would be handy. Most of which I originally implemented in Frontier. Luckily converting from UserTalk to PHP isn't that tough.
And all of this brings me to equivalence with some pretty darned early versions of Manila. But it's a system running on a more reliable server, and using all open source bits. When something pisses me off about it, I can choose to fix the problem myself, rather than having to wait for someone else to fix it.
As an added bonus, since I actually learned quite a bit about Frontier and Manila when I was working with them, I can steal some of Dave's better ideas, while leaving some of the ones I don't like behind. I get to learn from others and make myself happy. It's pretty hard to argue with that combination.
Anyway, that's the update on the software. You probably don't care, but it's making this all a lot simpler for me, which will be a big deal if I get busy with work. I won't have time to write cool stuff then, so I'd better do it now.