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20050206

How To Cook An Omelette (and not be a drama queen about it)

If Matt Haughey can’t cook an omelette with a chestnut roasting pan, then indeed nobody can cook omelettes (via) at all.

So, last wednesday on the way to ParisCarnet, the monthly parisian bloggers meetup, François Nonnenmacher told me about MovableType’s handling of TrackBacks.
If you’ve never used MT before, you’re in for a shock or two. (I was shocked myself, since the last time I used MT was years ago, circa version 1.4, and at the time I didn’t even check the functionnalities. I was already happy that I managed to install it.)

Apparently, when you use MT and your blog receives a TrackBack:

  • the notification does not tell you on which post it was made,
  • you can not edit or delete the TrackBack

The second point had me laughing. “So basically we end up deleting editing them using phpMyAdmin”, Laurent added. I wonder how those who use MT’s file-based database do; maybe they’re just screwed.

If Joe Jenett can’t cook an omelette with a chestnut roasting pan, then Joe Jenett cooks chestnuts instead.

I seriously hope someone is coming up with an MT plugin for PingBack (and not just for MT, mind you, I’d love to see more blogwares implement PingBack aswell). At the very least, this would make Joe Jenett’s blog interoperable with other blogwares, since he chose to go with a mechanism that mimics what most implementations of PingBack do.
Because it’s just very annoying to input an URL manually.

If Shelley Powers can’t cook an omelette despite having easy access to a frypan, then Shelley becomes a veggie.


Or really, everyone could just use the right ustensil to cook omelette accept TrackBacks: a frypan WordPress, and then sprinkle with salt to stop worrying about trackback spam ever again.
(Now if we could just fix the remaining bugs and quirks and release WordPress 1.5…)

Update: I’ve just been told you can delete (but not edit or moderate) TrackBacks in MT, and that the notification does tell you on which posts TrackBacks were made. Looks like with age, my memory is starting to fail me; or maybe it was just the alcohol. I still keep to my chestnut roasting pan analogy, if only for the lack of any sensible moderation option for TrackBacks.


9 responses

  1. Oh, you’re not far off (at least as of 3.01, I’m a touch behind on updates): the notification tells you with the post title in the subject, but no link to the entry (in 18 months, will you remember what “How To Cook An Omelette” is about?). If instead of looking at pings from the notification email, you look at them from the listing in the interface, it doesn’t tell you at all.

    And we can delete them, or edit them in phpMyAdmin, but not choose to moderate them, so if we wish to keep TrackBack what it is, saying “you should read this, too,” rather than what it is not and Pingback is, saying “I linked to this,” then our only option is to allow the ping that someone shyly and hopefully sent to be published, let them see it published, and then delete it.

    The only way we are given to make the omlette I want to make, one where every ping is a comment that lives on someone else’s server, where anyone interested in an entry should follow the link in every ping, is to make it by smashing the eggs in people’s faces.

    #1 Phil Ringnalda2005/02/06 at 18:19

  2. La gestion des trackbacks est très foireuse sur MT. On ne peut pas les éditer (mais quand même les supprimer !) et j’ajoute que dans la page de gestion des trackbacks (mt.cgi?__mode=list_pings&blog_id=#), il manque la référence aux billets impliqués !
    Pour mon sentiment, les trackbacks devraient être gérés dans le même “flux” que les commentaires.
    C’est quand même un peu dommage pour les créateurs des trackbacks d’avoir porté si peu d’attention à leur gestion.

    #2 Laurent2005/02/06 at 21:11

  3. So using spam karma is a guarantee not to have trackback or comment spam? I didn’t know that it was 100% guaranteed. Wow.

    #3 Shelley2005/02/06 at 23:30

  4. It is far from being 100% guaranteed to stop trackback spam, but on this weblog and others it has been very efficient at making spam much less of a nuisance.
    To express “ever again” more pragmatically, here’s a random thought: I can plan a vacation without having to close TrackBacks while I’m gone, confident that at worst what I’ll see when I’m back would be either some false positives, or some insults/flames (well those can’t really be filtered anyway, can they?); not texas holdem billboards.

    #4 michel v — 2005/02/07 at 0:22

  5. What I was trying to say was what Phil said, basically the notification has the post title somewhere but it’s quite melted with the TB content and you have no way to find the TBed post other than copying the title, going to MT, use the extended search with the post title to find it. That’s about ten clicks or so. They could have provided a simple link to the post like with comments. Also, in the main MT interface, you see TBs, but again without any way to directly access the post they are linking!

    Laurent is right, TB management in MT is, sorry to say, crappy, and participates to the feeling that 6A doesn’t really care about the protocol they created. Add to that the TB spamitis and you can easily foresee a doomed future for TBs.

    #5 padawan2005/02/08 at 17:52

  6. we use mt-2.661 and we’ll be coverting to wp, we’re using 1.5gamma.

    we’re now seeing a new ping-spam, a small set of distributed writers are injecting via mt-tb.cgi links that we only see in the menu i/f, and in the filesystem as archive/art.xml.

    #6 Eric2005/02/09 at 5:32

  7. [...] hutdown for your Movable Type weblog. I also have commented on other recent proposals for how to deal with trackback spam [...]

    #7 After Gutenberg » Blog Archive » If It Is Broke, Do Not Fix It2005/02/09 at 22:30

  8. [...] these, 18 made it through and landed online (including a set of ten at once). That’s not a 100% score, just over 99.3%. What really amused me with com [...]

    #8 zengun » Blog Archive » Love, your dearest spammee2005/03/01 at 11:06

  9. Sentimental and nostalgic. Great. Zachotnah.

    #9 Anonymous2005/07/31 at 19:36