In the spirit of beating dead horses (making things better), I’ve continued my wish list for MT changes:
Real Power-editing: Marie from disarranging.com mentioned in the previous article that the power editing mode should allow for assigning multiple categories. I personally think the power editing mode could use even more oomph than that. How about being able to customize just exactly which fields can be edited in that batch mode? I have personally found myself wanting Flickr like managability where I can edit entries, titles and categories en masse just by clicking.
Messy Input: Mark griped that MT allows for “bad characters” in an entry, but I would go further to add that MT’s input processing needs a bit of a kick-in-the-pants. This has reared it’s ugly head during The Style Contest and numerous times on ProNet. Technically the W3 calls for <p> tags to go inside of <blockquote> tags. However, MT’s ‘Convert Line Breaks” function will either a) nest paragraph tags improperly or b) simply place <blockquote> tags without <p> tags, depending on how you break your lines. Not to mention it’s fickle handling of all other block level HTML tags. Certainly this would take some thinking through because what we want is for the program to figure out what the heck a user is trying to do based on what is entered. But no matter how the user enters text, the program should output valid code (and characters).
More Little Things: Often it’s the little things that make the difference between love and hate. You know the options at the bottom of an entry? Imagine a checkbox beneath them marked: “Do this for all entries”. Yeah you can change that in the overall settings, but why not put it here while people are thinking about it? For that matter, why not apply that principle across the app? Almost all the great applications give users multiple ways to accomplish the same thing. The program wraps around your style instead of forcing you to think like the programmer who created it.
Tidyness/File Management: One thing that has annoyed me beyond compare is how messy MT is. MT loves to create files, but never seems to get rid of them when changes occur. So you can literally have scores of directories no longer used by MT that are just sitting there taking up your precious disk space. Yes, I realize all the complexities behind fixing this problem. I also realize that this happens only with static publishing, and that’s a debate I’ll leave to people far more qualified than myself. Perhaps we can kill two birds with one stone and add some simple file management tools. This would certainly help alleviate the upload file issue I complained about last article. This one certainly deserves some more discussion.
Ajaxify: Now, I avoid buzzwords at all costs; but with a recent surge in websites that look more like desktop apps, we really need to hop on that train. I’m not talking about overusing throbbers *coughArvindcough*. I’m talking about throwing the click-wait-click-wait experience out on it’s head for something that’ll do for blogging what del.icio.us did for social bookmarking and Google Maps did for going places.
Please, keep the comments coming. I think this is a great discussion, and the more we can get out in the open, the greater the chance for change.