"If you ever fall off the Sears Tower, just go real limp, because maybe you'll look like a dummy and people will try to catch you because, hey, free dummy."

- Jack Handy, Deep Thoughts
Bloo version 1.00.a.003 released

The third alpha build of Bloo has just been released! There are a number of features and bugfixes in this release (checkout the release notes for more information) but the biggest feature in this release is the addition of dynamic overlays. An overlay is anything controlling the look of the blog (for instance, the format of the post you're looking at right now is built from the Post overlays). A dynamic overlay is an overlay that the blog administrator can change on the fly. So a Bloo administrative user can now very easily change the look and feel of their blog. And the changes are non-destructive, meaning that the original, released version of the overlay does not get destroyed if it is overlayed by the blog administrator.

For instance, one change I just made on the fly is the appearance of the permalinks. in the release the time (i.e., "@ 9:18 pm" in this post) is the permalink. But I just created a custom overlay and switched the permalink to be on the post title.

Another big change: overlays are no longer stored in the proprietary format cooked up in the .OVL files. They now live in standard XML files. Much better . . .

Also, three extensions were added to the growing stable of Bloo extensions. They are the ThemeSelector (which is activated on this blog as the Select Theme dropdown in the right sidebar), the ReadingList extension, which will allow a blogger to show a list of books they are currently reading, and the PopularPosts extension, which will show the top ten most commented posts. I might actually think about using this one if I ever get anyone commenting here :-). These joined the original extension released with the first version of bloe, the Bloo Quote overlay, from whence comes the Jack Handy rotating quote above.

One other change of note: there is a new Theme called "Lintefiniel". It's lifted from the theme utilized by our friend Jen in her blog Lintefiniel Musing. I liked the color scheme and so created a Bloo version of it. You can see it by selecting "Lintefiniel" from the list of themes in the ThemeSelector dropdown in the right navbar.

In the next release some more important functionality will be added, such as (finally!) some decent spam control (probably just a kaptcha for starters) and the ability to upload pics to a blog post.

I also plan on contacting the author of SpamKarma and getting his permission to try and port SpamKarma to Bloo. That would rock.

Watch me for the changes . . .


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