From LifeType to WordPress – 2 Days Later

Some initial thoughts / comments –

  • WordPress:
    • It is easy to use and the administration panel is sleek and great.
    • There are hundreds of plugins to use, but it will take you ages to find the right one.
    • Still have problems with the video plugin.
    • The AJAX effect in administration panel is great as long as you have a big monitor to see all the fancy actions in the other part of your page.
  • LifeType
    • It is a lot more developer friendly, easy to customize.
    • In essence, you can play around with it a lot.
    • 99% of feature is built in, and you don’t need to hunt around for good plugins.
    • The support of YouTube, Google, MetaCafe video is simply great.

From LifeType to WordPress

It’s not easy … there’s a lot of works to do the move and I really like LifeType a lot. Anyway, I suppose it’s time to move on after the crash. So here is a what I did to make the move (without any use of migration scripts).

  • Install the Zoundry zBlogWriter, set up the blog and xmlrpc.php configuration to connect to the old blog. Download all the old blog posts to your PC.
  • Install the WordPress in a new directory in your server. For example, http://www.xxx.com/wordpress/
  • Within the new WordPress installation – create the same set of categories, set up the same Permalink format you had from the old blog engine. And if you prefer, find and install a good-looking theme.
  • This step is very tedious … be patience. From within the zBlogWriter, set up the new blog configuration. And now edit the blog posts from the old blog, and republish the post to the new WordPress blog one by one. Make sure you select the same categories and use the “reset” function to set the same old blog time.

    • One of the LifeType features is you store all your photos in its “Resource”. So the next step is to create a new directory in your server (I name it “blogphotos”) and move/copy all the photos from the “Resource” (in Lifetype, those files are stored in a directory /blog/gallery/) to the new directory.
    • The above steps will not migrate the comments (!). So the next step is to find the right post in the new engine and then recreate the comments one by one (by referencing to the old engine). But since the comment time are wrong, so go to the WordPress admin, edit the comments and enter the correct time (again, by referencing to the old engine).
    • After all these steps, you will have two working blogs – your old http://www.xxx.com/blog/ (the LifeType) and the new http://www.xxx.com/wordpress/ (the WordPress one). Now rename the old blog directory to something like /blog_lifetype/ and your new blog to /blog/.
    • You now have the new blog working … but the second last step is find out all the posts that with missing pictures – since your new blog don’t have a LifeType’s resource directory. Now re-edit all these posts, and point the photos to the new directory you created before – i.e. the /blogphotos/ (smart, isn’t it?)
    • And what’s the last step ? That is … publish this post !!

      Hope it helps.

      From Beetle Juice to Pedro Almodovar

      Of course the movie Beetle Juice was not directed by the great modern-day Spanish director Pedro Almodovar, but this post is about how the Internet bring them together. Believe it or not …

      Beetle Juice, a typical Tim Burton’s strange movie, is one of my favorites. I particularly like the scene with the whole family dancing and singing a song with lots of “Day-O”… But the movie was filmed almost 20 years ago, so how could I find this song or even MV again ?

      Obviously, I surfed to Youtube to search for the MV. Type in “Beetle Juice” in the search box and I found a long list of videos about Beetle Juice. Couple of clicks and some viewings, I found this one already.

      The story continues …

      Then I scrolled down, checked the comments … hoping that someone would ask for the name of that song and some would provide an answer. Ah ha, just what I expected and the answer is The Banana Boat Song by Harry Belafonte.

      Another search, then I found the famous MV “Harry Belafonte & Muppet Show – The Banana Boat Song”.

      A few more clicks I found that Belafonte was one great Jamaican musician and his famous songs (may be cover versions) included “Jamaica Farewell”, “Try to Remember”. More information from Wikipedia.Couple of more page hoppings in Youtube, I found a video named “Harry Belafonte Tribute”. And the song in this video is … Cucurucucu Paloma.

      Of course, it’s the same beautiful song in the movie Talk To Her by Pedro Almodovar.

      Cucucrucucu … dove, Cucucrucucu … don’t cry … (that’s the lyrics) … You see, with Internet, things all link together. I hope you like the videos.

      The Definitive Drucker – Chapter 3

      Chapter 3 in The Definitive Druckeris about Innovation and Abandonment. Why “abandonment” ? It’s from the four basic questions about innovation by Peter:

      1. What do you have to abandon to create room for innovation ?
      2. Do you systematically seek opportunities ?
      3. Do you use a disciplined process for converting ideas into practical solutions ?
      4. Does your innovation strategy work well with your business strategy ?

      Another heavy weight question in this chapter is: “If you weren’t already in the business, would you enter it today ? And, if the answer is no, what are you going to do about it ?”

      Google Saves The Site

      It’s really scary … I forgot how many times I upgraded my blog engine (you know from version 0.32 years ago to now version 1.2.1) but this time the installation procedure or myself screwed up. After upgrading the engine to the latest version last night, and ran the so-called “installation wizard”, all my blog posts were gone !! All disappeared … A dead website.

      And because the upgrade is a minor one (from version 1.2.0 to 1.2.1), I did not backup the blog database before the upgrade … stupid me I suppose. All I got is a database backup in end March, even before the version 1.2.0. What could I do ?

      • Install back the old version (version 1.1.6);
      • Import the old data;
      • Search the latest blog post in Google;
      • From the result page, click the “Cached” link;
      • Found the web page cached image (with the latest blog posts’ text and pictures), and
      • Recreated all the blog posts from end March to mid April … one by one, from the Google image to the blog engine.

      Now as you can see the site is back online … and Google saves the site.