You have permission

The CETIS blogs had a requirement (from day zero) that all the contributors should be able to see each-others “private” posts. The idea behind this is that blogs can be used for internal reporting and chat within the organisation at the same time as being used for public work.

I had scratched my head and tried a whole range of plugins for wordpress-mu to try and achieve this however nothing quite did what I needed. The closest was the Role Manager plugin however it didn’t work with wordpress-mu… and after I had spent a quantity of time trying to get it working I realised that roles were assigned to users on a per-blog basis rather than globally. It’s a shame as a roles and capabilities based solution had sounded reasonably elegant.

Today I work up with the resolve that I should just take matters into my own hands and make a small plugin of my own design to force wordpress-mu into doing what I wanted. Well actually I started with a direct hack on the source and then thought better of it and wrote a plugin instead! It manipulates the main wordpress query (as found in “query.php”) force-bypassing the user capability check.

I also gave the plugin the option of showing private posts in un-authenticated outgoing news feeds – for the sake of sanity this is limited to post titles and urls. To do this you have to append ?showprivate=true to the feed url.

It even has a rough administrative interface allowing the private feeds and posts to be turned on and off.

Download the source code

CETIS Site Redevelopment: A proposal

CETIS (Custom PHP)
Mainly: A lightweight aggregation of the various blogs
Events aggregation

CETIS Blogs (WordPress-µ)
Individual (and group) blogs for all cetis staff members
Also includes general contact info for public use, staff profiles etc
Items may be public or internal-only or private
Items can be associated with the relevant Community and/or Team
Items may be elevated to front page status.

CETIS Communities (MediaWiki)
A big wiki for the SIGS – covering specs
Can be contributed to by sig participants

CETIS Events (Custom PHP??)
Events/calendaring – single click sign-up for registered users!
Covers Public Cetis events, registration
Private CETIS calendaring
Aggregated events from elsewhere

CETIS Intranet
Internal groupware – work planning, project management
TEAM views of what is going on – team blogs
Private wikis? (MediaWiki)
Staff management
Events/calendaring (again)
Control centre for it all…

Other requrements
Common authentication!


A blog, a wiki, a tracker, a subversion
TRAC and Subversion and WordPress?
Or they do it themselves

Based on my database??
Tracks all the projects and aggregates their blogs
can be contributed to by members
Tracks standards used
Full-on doap support

Implications for old sites

Move to new structure
Deal with old content –
redirections and THIS IS OLD messages

mostly archived
Framework moved into big e-framework
PROJECTS and so forth moved into hosted stacks
and/or project/software/standards directory

elearning Focus
Move to wordpress/wiki
old articles to be moved

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New cetis site mockups

I’ve been working with Scott on some mockups for the new cetis site as we see it. The general concept is to give everyone a blog using wordpress MU which in turn drives a very lightweight front page. This will not make full sense until combined with Scott’s set of diagrams – but hopefully the mockups will give you an idea of what we have in mind.

Front Page

Community (SIG) page

The Sig sites are served by a “CETIS Communities” wiki – shared between the sigs so for example discussion of a given spec will be all in one place. Provided by mediawiki.

Personal Blog

The missing piece of this at the moment is an events handling system. Ideally this would be integrated with the user-registration for one-click sign-up to meetings – how nifty would that be!