MediaGoblin 0.3.1: A Whole New Look

MediaGoblin 0.3.1: A Whole New Look banner

Welcome to “A Whole New Look!” I know what you were told as a kid, that looks don’t matter. And when it comes to figuring out who your friends are or taking the SAT’s that’s absolutely correct. But I’m here to tell you that when it comes to software, looks count! Really! So let’s take a look at 0.3.1, shall we?

The most exciting news is that we’re supporting theming now, which means you can make your MediaGoblin instance look any way you want. The dark theme is still default, but we now also package mediagoblin with this lovely light theme called “airy”:

The airy theme in a user gallery

The airy theme focused on a single image

Or you could even build your own! DIY all the way. For example, Chimo has this for his MediaGoblin instance (which you can use or borrow from!):

Chimo's theme, gallery

Chimo's theme, individual image

We can’t wait to see what you come up with! Whether you’re looking to build a new theme or build your own, you should check out our theming documentation!

Also, right up there on the list of exciting new features is the fact that we’re now supporting plugins. Whoo! Plugins! This has been our summer project. Some folks watch birds or bake pies; we built a plugin system. (Some of us might’ve also baked pies, come to think of it…) Anyway, the first order of business is to switch some of our existing internal stuff to plugin form. (We have quite a few things we’d like to get switched over to plugins, such as openstreetmap support… if you’re interested in helping, please do contact us!)

For practice, we’ve already written a flatpages plugin. If you want an about page or a Terms of Service page without any media, you can easily build one to match your chosen theme.

Example use of flatpages with a custom page

Some plugins we think it would be cool to see built; spam detection for comments (maybe via captchas or a hook-up to Spamicity/ActivitySpam), support for various types of authentication like OpenID, and user quotas to keep the traffic at a manageable level on your instance. Or blow our minds and write something we never even thought of. Want to get started right now? Plugin docs are here.

We are all about communication. We know you like to know what’s up, so we’ve added email notifications for comments, improved the documentation for installing different media types: http://docs.mediagoblin.org/siteadmin/media-types.html and made it easier for you to tell how far along your media is in the processing phase, aka “are we there yet?”

Processsing panel showing off uploads done and in progress

We also fixed a bunch of bugs, improved testing and fixed some temporary space problems. Users will be seeing fewer errors and if you’re writing code for us, you’ve got lovely new unit tests making it easier than ever to vet your new code.

Thanks to everyone who gave us their time this summer: Aleksej Serdjukov, Brett Smith, Christopher Allan Webber, Deb Nicholson, Derek Moore, Elrond of Samba TNG, Jakob Kramer, Jef van Schendel, Joar Wandborg, Jorge Araya Navarro, Will Kahn-Greene. We really, really can’t do it without you.

MediaGobin will continue to update it’s appearance and we promise to keep you in the loop. Want to help us with user experiene or write a plugin or translation? Swing on by! We’re nearly always in #mediagoblin on freenode.net Or you can join the mailing list or even send us email us at press@mediagoblin.org.