Radiospecific: How I Solved My Category Problem

· Best Practices, Salon Bloggers, Weblog Concepts

I was having a hell of a time getting design changes to propagate out to my categories. It turned out that in the early days of this blog when I Was experimenting with many of the canned themes and giving each category its own design, these choices decoupled the categories from the home page in terms of templates. Literally this meant that each category had its own #template, #homeTemplate, etc.
What I finally figured out was that removing those files from the category folders forced the categories to resume using the master templates stored in the root /www/ folder.
If I do customize the categories in the future (such as giving the KM category a more business-like design or featuring different blogrolls specific to each category’s topic), then I’ll be back at trying to maintain multiple template files, but for now simplicity rules the realm.

New CMS Book from glasshaus

· Best Practices, Book News

A Frog in the Valley (a French weblog) links to a post about a new glasshaus book on content management systems:

Book Excerpt: Content Management Systems
The case in favor of Content Management is argued in this excerpt from the glasshaus title, “Content Management Systems.” Included are discussions defining what CMS is, why it is needed, and more importantly, why it can be so difficult to implement. [Via WebReference News]

I’ll have to look at this book. I’ve spent years evangelizing on this subject. Content management is frequently handled as an afterthought, folded in with site admin, designed like a boilerrooom or janitor’s closet. All the emphasis frequently goes on the “face” of the website: cool design, smart navigation, usability.
All very important. But a major “user” of any site is whoever has to update the content, and the user interface on the content admin site of most sites is abysmal. Six months after the launch when everyone realizes what a pain in the ass it is to get new content up in a timely manner, the CMS retrofit project finally begins.

Business 2.0 says 'Accountability Is Always in Style'

· Best Practices

In Business 2.0, Rafe Needleman writes about a “dashboard” product to help VCs monitor the status of their investments:

Dotcom flameout notwithstanding, the need for this product is greater than ever. Venture firms still have billions of dollars invested in technology startups, and there are a lot of people worrying about that money. The startup CEOs are struggling to survive with their part of it, the VCs are trying to help them and also are trying to figure out how to spend the remaining funds, and those who committed money to VC’s want to know if they’re ever going to see a return.

Naturally such a dashboard would be useful to the management of the specific companies in question as well.
This idea, a sort of convergence of the enterprise portal with business intelligence and a portfolio model, has been out there in various forms for some time. I know, for example, that VentureVortex had a product like this in the works a year ago. I’ve lost track of them since then.
It occurred to me the other day that there may have been a slow adoption of BI solutions during the crest of the boom. Aren’t we seeing now that some CEOs preferred plausible deniability over the transparency of the “instant close”?