Theology and Blogging/ Blogging and The Church

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Tuesday, May 27, 2003
We need labs to develop our enabling Web apps
All of that (the previous post was offered: Some boring technical background of the Weblog building was motivated by the slight hope (perhaps "wishful thinking") that I might be able to find a home and an academic "fellowship" in which to continue this work,  and have a way to get paid to do it or be able to manage the project and make an income, too.  I have ranted before about how the Church needs the kind of entrepeneurship such that it invests in something like an MIT Media Lab (in An MIT for the Church -- there, I just used a shortcut--- see the Some boring technical background of the Weblog building entry below).  The Church has pastors, and theological teachers,  and secretaries and custodians.  It also needs to support the people who can help build the next generation of "communication technology systems" which will enable it to more effectively use not only time and paper but also its people power --like Knowledge Management.  But it goes much deeper than KM.  It's got to do with connecting people with passions for certain things; something that is known in Church structures as "calling".  People often discover that certain callings bring them together in mission with others.  The more "avenues" we enable for these callings to be expressed and explored corporately (ie. in the context of exploring call as a community),  the more effective we are in our community.  I believe so strongly that these web technologies arriving are going to accelerate the pace of  our exposure to ideas and to visions of our people.
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6:14:45 PM    
Some boring technical background of the Weblog building

I do have a few technologies which I have chosen as the candidates for my "online community platform".

.Net "portal" software called DotNetNuke provides a very modular and extensible framework for hosting all kinds of interwoven features,  all stored in a single SQLServer database, a nd includes such modules as a Discussion Module (to add a threaded discussion anywhere,  link lists to which logged on members can contribute,  and a still to be released Weblog component (which is the featrure I most want to add to this.)   I have two weblog platforms I'm now using,  one is a Desktop based "Weblog generator" called Radio Userland (where I am composing this entry for the Theology Project section of my weblog called Theoblogical Community,  on which I have cut my "weblog teeth".  In the past two months,  I have added a "mirror" of thatWeblog in "Movable Type",  and have called that version or instance Movable Theoblogical.  There are still many additional longer articles I have yet to copy from the Radio Userkand version to the Movable Type version,  and still want to do this since there are additional features in MOvable Type that Radio does not yet offer (like "TrackBack",  which is a way for differrnt weblogs to"notify" each other that a reference --- and this usually means a comment--- has been made by another author to this entry ,  and usually shows up as a numeric count of  "Trackback(s)" beneath the entry itself.  Selecting the Trackback link will open a list of links to the entries on other weblogs where this reference has been made.   The other weblog has sent a "Ping" to the referenced weblog as a "notification". 

The Weblog world,  even though mostly based on XML technologies which are touted as "Standardized" are not yet in sync as to how their entries are "tagged" and what additional features are supplied.   The longer articles I wrote in Radio Userland did not get picked up bythe export process I used to convert all the other entries into a format "importable" by the other system.  Further, the entries that did get migrated over have quite a few "Shortcuts" which Radio outputs to the html files as a href links,  but the export tool left in their native "Radio shortcut format" ,, which was simply to enclose the "Shortcut" in double quotes (like "this is a link".  Radio stores the Shortcut names in a special table that it checks for matches to what's in the quotes (which now seems lilke an odd choice to have us unsupsecting Radio "shortcut users" use).  Now I've got all these "quoted" titles ,  many of which are  actually article and entry titles that get converted to html links on the fly when Radio builds the html files with the latest entries included. 

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5:59:41 PM    
How the Online Church concept changes with the technology
A new post in Theology Project, Theology Project 2003 ,  where I take a whack at what my DMin project,  if it were to continue on "where I left off" (Just getting into the implementation of some online community platform).  
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5:36:44 PM    

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