I need exemples of geeky sites that use a weblog system for publishing, but have sections not related to the blog.
December 10, 2004 6:09 AM   Subscribe

WeblogFilter : I want to convince someone that a site using a weblog tool can not look too weblog-y (= good integration on normal page, not "yet another template).
I know blog tools, I know templates & CSS, but I just need exemples of various websites (not weblogs per se, not techy/geeky, not news only) that implement a known weblog system (MT, WordPress, Dotclear...) for it's text publishing, and also has sections not directly related to the weblog.
OpenWeb seem to fit the bill, but it's too techy/ web-related to prove usefull here. Thanks!
posted by XiBe to Computers & Internet (23 answers total)
I don't know if it's quite what you're after, but The Morning News and Gapers Block are kind of what come to mind as sites not looking weblog-y.

The MT Spotlight or other developer-run featured site archives might have some good examples.
posted by milkrate at 6:44 AM on December 10, 2004

See this Kottke post (about web mags) which contain many sites you would be interested in.
posted by plemeljr at 6:47 AM on December 10, 2004

Why does having technical/geeky content make a site a bad example? Also, OpenWeb seems plenty bloggy to me.
posted by jjg at 8:48 AM on December 10, 2004

Url Grey Hot is done in Drupal and doesn't look bloggish to me. I mean, once you drill down to his blog, you see a series of reverse-chrono short entries, and, we'll, that's inevitably bloggish.

Derek Powazek has something that's sort of bloggish and original in appearance. Note that he clearly does a lot of hand-tweaking on the markup for each entry; I have no idea whether he does the whole thing by hand or uses some kind of CMS.

Dave Shea's mezzoblue is clearly bloggish, but also very original.

My own blog (in MT) doesn't use the prepackaged templates or stylesheets (apart from some remnants; I've been influenced by the look of others, so it has some familiar elements, and it certainly looks like a blog. I've created a few projects using Movable Type that aren't really blogs at all--MT was just a convenient tool for the job. I don't think they look like blogs (though I don't hold them up as examples of stellar design, either). I'm working on a couple other projects in Drupal; in one, I'm mostly relying on the static-page feature--I want others to be able to edit it through the web interface, but it's not a "newsy" site, so it doesn't focus on frequently updated content. In the other, content will be updated fairly frequently, but it won't really be newsy either.
posted by adamrice at 9:08 AM on December 10, 2004

Response by poster: Why does having technical/geeky content make a site a bad example? Also, OpenWeb seems plenty bloggy to me.

Because then they'd say "see ? Only geeks can use your blog-thingy, and my client won't be able to use it without help". Or something.
Yes, OpenWeb looks blog-y (which news section doesn't, really ?), but it was the best I could find in my bookmark when I asked the question. Hence, the question itself :)
The project is to allow a local "personnality" to self-publish content, and my brother thinks blogs are lame...and, err... he pitched a Flash-based site. I MUST convince them.

Thanks for the examples so far. If you have any more, I'm here all week, thank you. Try the lobster.
posted by XiBe at 9:52 AM on December 10, 2004

You might want to check out Beyond the Blog by our fearless leader. It includes links to Redland Baptist Church and Touch of Hope, both Movable Type powered sites.
posted by revgeorge at 11:05 AM on December 10, 2004

Also, you might want to use some of the anti-Flash arguments from this thread in the blue against your brother's Flash proposal.
posted by revgeorge at 11:54 AM on December 10, 2004

I have sort of a related question: can the TypePad manifestation of Moveable Type easily be jimmied into a format like the front page of The Morning News?
posted by COBRA! at 12:27 PM on December 10, 2004

I believe adaptive path is running on MT, and isn't really a blog, at all. I also have a site I'm rebuilding to use MT as a publishing system, and it isn't a blog; I'm just using MT as a CMS. There has been a great deal of talk about using MT to manage entire sites; some mike howdie guy or something wrote a decent article on the concept; also take a look at Brad Choate which yeah he's running a blog, but he has great things to say about hacking MT.

MT I think right now is more or less only limited by the imagination of the user. With brad's SQL plugins, you can use it to put the content you want where you want, in the structure you want. You certainly don't need to come across as "a blog"... an example would be all the portfolio sites people have been running with MT... Hicks has a great example/tutorial.
posted by cmyr at 12:28 PM on December 10, 2004

ah sorry, revgeorge beat me to the second link. Apologies.
posted by cmyr at 12:45 PM on December 10, 2004

also also: I think adamrice meant to link to this.
posted by cmyr at 12:54 PM on December 10, 2004

I believe adaptive path is running on MT, and isn't really a blog, at all.

Yes. This article goes into some detail on the technical underpinnings, which I don't fully understand.
posted by jjg at 12:57 PM on December 10, 2004

Based on Haughey and Kottke's "beyond the blog" type ideas, I used MT as a foundation for a few sites I developed for clients over the past few years:


Northwestern University Sound Design Program

Click on "Forum" for TV2K4 and "News" for the NU program to see the integration. Both look fairly bloggy, I admit, but it was fairly easy to wrap the site template around the blog. On the TV2K4 site, I even added some php authentication for posting comments, which shares a login DB with other members-only portions of the site. Anyway, I'd definitely recommend MT as a great platform for this type of development.
posted by idontlikewords at 1:27 PM on December 10, 2004

My former emplolyer's website is entirely powered with MT. It doesn't look anything like a blog but each "section" is a category.
posted by pwb503 at 2:38 PM on December 10, 2004

I use Blogger, always have, and with an amazingly trivial template to push a very simple HTML file to my site (obvious self-link) that is then included (PHP's include, that is) into my homegrown PHP page class templates and slightly prettified with CSS. So really you can do almost anything from the very simple like I do all the way to some very complex designs (per Haughey, Kottke, Adaptive Path et al).
posted by billsaysthis at 2:55 PM on December 10, 2004

Using a system to generate the entire site usually results in a somewhat standardized look, but some people do try to break out of it. You could check out sites like CMSMatrix and OpenSourceCMS for reviews, commentary, and links to various CMS (Content Management System) products and their respective user & developer communities. If you click around for a while you'll find many discussions about making things look less "template-y."

Mambo is reputed to be especially flexible, and people are doing classy things with Drupal.

But it sounds like you want simple blog entries inserted into a section of a page that is otherwise completely designed from scratch. Something like Blogger or a simple homerolled database is probably the best way to do this. I'm actually working on this very aspect of a new site, right this minute. (Mail me at ofh8rzp02@sneakemail.com if you want to see it this weekend.)
posted by Tubes at 3:10 PM on December 10, 2004

The website for the literary magazine of which I'm managing editor, Literary Mama, was designed using Movable Type -- mostly to facilitate ease of use for the 20-some editors all over the country who work on the content, and to eliminate the hassle of having the updating of the site's content be the responsibility of one person. One of our main requirements was that the site not look like a blog (although we will be adding a more blog-like news section soon, and that will resemble the more traditional blog format.)
posted by mothershock at 5:03 PM on December 10, 2004

"I have sort of a related question: can the TypePad manifestation of Moveable Type easily be jimmied into a format like the front page of The Morning News?"

Yep, sure can. The Pro level subscription lets you fully customize your templates, and you can do basically anything that's possible with MT (minus plugins) plus a bunch of cool/unique stuff with TypeLists and photo albums.
posted by anildash at 10:29 PM on December 10, 2004

Also, as a non-techie user of TypePad, who has a pro account for multiple weblogs but none with "advanced" templates, I would say that TypePad is extremely flexible even for a novice.
posted by SB at 6:39 PM on December 11, 2004

It's a self-link, but I think my docsavage.org doesn't look that "bloggy." It is constructed using MT with the Berkley database and a couiple of plugins.

And it is certainly not techie. Nerdy, yes, but not techie.
posted by ?! at 10:26 AM on December 12, 2004

Jad Fair is a site I did a while back that is entirely published with Movable Type. And I mean entirely. I even made a control panel for Jad to quickly access editable content without ever seeing the main MT and weblog admin pages.

Make sure to check out the art section. All done with MT.
posted by fooljay at 4:27 PM on December 12, 2004

All of MediaRights' sites are powered almost entirely by MT - including the streaming film festival and Youth Media distribution site.
posted by djacobs at 8:51 PM on December 12, 2004

Response by poster: Thanks folks, hopefully this will prove useful...
posted by XiBe at 5:14 AM on December 14, 2004

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