Richard P Grant and his BioLOG (biolog); the wee blog, weblog, or web blog; things not necessarily biology related. The anti-blogger.

BioLOG
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22 July 2010

Où sont les science blogs d’ antan?

So, just as an intellectual exercise, if I were to set up a community of like-minded bloggers, how to best go about it?

I envisage something like

http://example.com/ – aggregation page for blogs, recent content from fora
http://example.com/forum
http://example.com/blogger1
http://example.com/blogger2

etc.

OR

http://forum.example.com
http://blogger1.example.com
http://blogger2.example.com

Will the multiple user thing that WordPress do that? Or would I need separate WP installs, or Drupal, or what?

Let’s assume I can get chunky hosting (a reseller account, in fact) for this. All thoughts gratefully received.

Other considerations: each blogger to take responsibility for own blog w.r.t. design and plugins, but some subtle branding to be applied across all to identify it as part of the community.

Filed under: stuff — rpg @ 20:10

15 Comments »

  1. I have never tried multiple user thing for WordPress. My initial impulse would be to use something like Drupal. But I’m looking at that myself.

    Getting a domain is easy, then even if people are maintaining own blogs on a variety of platforms, you get redirects off your domain so that

    http://forum.example.com

    http://blogger1.example.com

    http://blogger2.example.com

    …will send people to appropriate places. This is not only easy, it’s not that expensive to buy domain redirect services.

    Comment by Luna_the_cat — 22 July 2010 @ 10:23

  2. Re. the Sb debacle, email me at luna_northcat “at” yahoo.co.uk. I have a domain you might like, and can help with the IT side of it.

    Comment by Luna_the_cat — 22 July 2010 @ 10:23

  3. Design suggestion: Everyone the same typeface and main shape of design (same wordpress template) but can vary widgets in sidebar and header and options. But the typeface (and size of letters, spacing of paragraphs etc) is an important branding thing to look “same” and yet isn’t very intrusive to people.

    Comment by Eva — 22 July 2010 @ 10:29

  4. Here are relevant WordPress links:
    Multisite forum: http://wordpress.org/support/topic/420384
    How to set up a blog network using WordPress: http://codex.wordpress.org/Create_A_Network

    Comment by Eva — 22 July 2010 @ 10:45

  5. Worth asking this guy for help?

    Comment by Bob O'H — 22 July 2010 @ 11:17

  6. My first comment disappeared into the ether. I was going to say, I’ve never tried the multiple users at WordPress thing, but Drupal is a possibility. And, with one domain (which is dead easy to get and set up), you can set up redirects to multiple different places and platforms (if necessary) so that

    http://forum.example.com
    http://blogger1.example.com
    etc.

    …will all go to the correct places. Not difficult or expensive.

    Stylistically, I agree with Eva, there should be some unity. That takes more planning and cooperation amongst bloggers, if you are setting up an aggregate of blogs running in different places. CAN be done.

    Comment by Luna_the_cat — 22 July 2010 @ 12:09

  7. My first comment disappeared into the ether. I was going to say, I’ve never tried the multiple users at WordPress thing, but Drupal is a possibility. And, with one domain (which is dead easy to get and set up), you can set up redirects to multiple different places and platforms (if necessary) so that your second example, with [things].domain.com will all go to the correct places. Not difficult or expensive.

    Stylistically, I agree with Eva, there should be some unity. That takes more planning and cooperation amongst bloggers, if you are setting up an aggregate of blogs running in different places. CAN be done.

    Comment by Luna_the_cat — 22 July 2010 @ 12:10

  8. I agree with Eva – rare when I don’t – but I prefer the first to the second scenario. Much easier to remember a single site like that. At worst, if you’ve forgotten a blogger’s name, you end up on the main splash page. The aggregation page is to aggregate the community’s posts, right? The idea of aggregating other posts of interest to the local bloggers, eg. through the links in local posts, is not a bad one, but they should be in a separate area of the front page. Like “of interest to our readers” – and it could include links that people put in comments IF they have been approved by the bloggers who received those comments.

    Comment by Heather — 22 July 2010 @ 15:15

  9. I don’t know how to make it happen on WP, but I like both URL options, with a slight preference for the second format, although I couldn’t tell you why, I just like it better.

    I also like Eva’s suggestions re: same template and fonts, but individual control over sidebar and header. So white comic sans on a red background, yeah?

    Nested comment threads if at all possible :)

    Comment by Cath@VWXYNot? — 22 July 2010 @ 22:49

  10. everybody, thanks for comments. Sorry, I’m not getting notifications for some reason but should be OK now.

    Comment by rpg — 24 July 2010 @ 21:54

  11. My $0.02 worth – I don’t like http://forum.example.com as a landing page, much better to have a “standard” top level domain name like http://www.example.com IMHO, and each blog as a sub http://www.example.com/superduperblog. Then all traffic, even casual entrants, see the aggregation/home page and it’s easy for new visitors to find or guess at the landing page. Think of the SAB – my (ex-your) blog is at products.scienceboard.net, difficult to remember or think of, much better http://www.scienceboard.net/productblog or something like that.

    /inarticulate, sorry, grant writing

    Comment by ricardipus — 27 July 2010 @ 17:44

  12. Hm, I commented but it never appeared…

    Comment by ricardipus — 28 July 2010 @ 15:49

  13. How odd, that comment worked. My previous one (maybe too many URLs in it?) was to the effect that using http://www.example.com as a top-level entry page and then subpages /blogger1, /blogger2, etc. might be better. Stronger branding for the domain, easier for new visitors to find. Think of the SAB where individual blogs are like http://products.scienceboard.net, etc. – difficult to remember or find. I’m not a fan of http://forum.example.com as a forum site for the same reason, much better /forum.

    Just my $0.02 worth ($0.015 US).

    Comment by ricardipus — 28 July 2010 @ 15:53

  14. Yeah, too many links and you got spam-trapped, sorry.

    Comment by rpg — 28 July 2010 @ 21:35

  15. …and now I *look* like a spammer, same coment twice. Bah humbug, &c.

    Comment by ricardipus — 29 July 2010 @ 2:41

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