Events in WordPress [en]

[fr] Prise de tête pour trouver un moyen d'utiliser WordPress pour afficher des événements (des billets spéciaux, mais pour lesquels on précise aussi une date de début et de fin d'événement). Il faudrait qu'on puisse afficher les "événements encore pas terminés" sur une page spéciale.

Deux plugins m'offrent des solutions partielles, mais je suis incapable de les transformer en solutions totales. Toute aide serait bienvenue.

Besides using WordPress as a blogging tool, a client of mine would like to use it to display a page of upcoming events. I’ve dug out a number of plugins which somewhat do the job, but getting things to work exactly as we want is proving to be a pain in the neck.

As I’ve been stuck on this for a few weeks now and still see no light, I’m offering this problem to the collective mind out there in hope that a bright solution pops up somewhere before we go live (which is… very soon — hear my desperate plea for help).

Here’s what we want

  • events should be posts (this rules out Shrikee’s Events Plugin)
  • events have a start date, and an end date — time is unnecessary (this rules out RS Event)
  • events should show up in the normal flow of posts and on their own category page (we don’t want them on the home page, but I can exclude the category manually, so that’s a non-issue)
  • we should be able to display upcoming events on a WordPress page (I’ll stick whatever code is needed in the template for that page) — “upcoming”, here, meaning events whose end date is not yet past.

Partial solutions

At first, I thought about using upcoming or eventful, but for quite a few reasons this won’t work out in our situation.

Event Calendar seemed like a good candidate, although we didn’t really need the “calendar” itself. I hacked the layout of the event posts so they displayed OK. However, the main bit is missing. Event Calendar provides a way to list all the events “after today”, by calling http://blog.address/?ec3_after=today for example. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work on our setup (probably something we did to the rather hacked theme. I’ve had a look at the source code but couldn’t really figure out what happened when that variable was passed, so was unable to reproduce anything ressembling it in a Page template.

Another problem is that this will not show events which have started yesterday but which are not yet over, if I’m not mistaken.

Last but not least, we have two event subcategories, so I’d have to create two (or even three) separate event pages — but I guess that if I manage to make one, filtering posts by category shouldn’t be too hard.

Another solution would be to use Posts Expire and Posts Begin as described in this forum post I stumbled upon yesterday. Again, these plugins provide a way to call “posts which have not yet expired” with a particular URL: home/?orderby=post_end_date. Again, I haven’t manage to dig out the code and stick it in a Page template — trying to rewrite a pretty URL to that one is source of much hair-tearing upon this server I have very little control on, and I haven’t found a way to make it work.

The other problem I’d have to work around if using these plugins is that expired posts are not displayed in the blog anymore. I’m not sure what code in the plugin takes care of that, but it would have to be commented out.


So, I have two partial solutions here, but I’m stuck making progress on either. Do you have any ideas which could help me out — either to make one of my partial solutions a working one or to find a third one?

I’d really really appreciate help on this one. Thanks a lot.

Stowe Boyd: Building Social Applications [en]

Warning: these are my notes of Stowe‘s workshop at LIFT, meaning my understanding and interpretation of what he said. They might not reflect accurately what Stowe told us, and might even be outright wrong in some places. Let me know if you think I really messed up somewhere.

Update 05.2007: enjoy the slideshow and the video of his presentation (not the workshop!).

Questions to play ball with:

  1. What makes social applications social (or not)
  2. How can we make applications more social?
  3. What are the common factors in successful social applications?
  4. What is worth building?

  5. iTunes vs.; also non-social applications which implement, at some point, some social component.

“Software intended to shape culture.” Stowe Boyd, in Message, August 1999

steph-note: a step further than “groupware”

LIFT'07... Stowe Boyd

Applications which are qualitatively different. But they haven’t replaced the rest: people are still building applications which allow people to buy stuff online. But we’re looking for ways to stick the humans back in there (“what do the top 10 authorities on cellphones recommend?”)

Read: The Great Good Place by Ray Oldenburg (Third Place, not home and not work)

Decreasing affiliation in the USA (Putnam — sp?). People spend less time “hanging out” with people. steph-note: cf. danah/MySpace More TV. Commuting isn’t that significant, but hours in front of the TV is. The light at the end of the tunnel, the only hope we’ve got left, is the internet. Social hours spent on the internet are hours not spent watching TV (steph-note: yep!)

TV is not involvement in people, but in this “entertainment culture”. TV reached lowest numbers in the USA since ’50s.

One way we can measure the success of a social application is how much it moves us in that direction.

Social: me first. Put the individual in the centre. Look at the difference between traditional journalism (disembodied third voice) and blogging (first person, you know who’s writing and who’s reading). Need to start with needs and desires of the people using it (?).

Adoption happens in stages. First, the application needs to satisfy the needs of an individual, in such a way that he/she comes back. And then, there needs to be stuff to share that encourages the individual to invite his friends in.

my passions — my people — my markets

Start with the people. Put the people in the foreground (but how?) Easy to fail if you don’t do that right. How are people going to find each other? Second, support their networks/networking.

Only third: realisation of money — markets — shipping etc.

Give up control to the users: “the edge dissolves the centre”.

To review a social app, you need to use it “for real” over an extended period of time.

Xing: the edge doesn’t dissolve the centre. E.g. can’t create a group. Need to ask them by e-mail, and they try to control group creation and management.

Build an environment in which people are “free”. Allow them to find each other.

Success factors for a social application: me first and bottom up. Otherwise, it won’t spread.

Blogging: primary goal is social interaction and networking (steph-note: half agree, there is the “writing and being read and getting some recognition” goal too — and that is not necessarily social interaction and does not necessarily lead to network contacts)

What suicide girls get right: low price, real people, real lives, social stuff like chat, pictures, etc. They have the connections between the people as the primary way to go around.


  • iTunes
  • Pandora (until recently)
  • After the fact (eBay: reputation, Netflix: friends in a tab, Amazon: recommendations from other users, Basecamp: not that social, fails some of the critical tests)

The Buddylist is the Centre of the Universe…

A case against IM being disruptive: the user chooses how disruptive the client is (blings, pop-up messages, etc… same with e-mail)

Totally acceptable to not answer on IM. But also, maybe at times your personal productivity is less important than your relationship with the person IMing you.

“I am made greater by the sum of my connections, and so are my connections.”

(Give to others, and they’ll give to you. Help your buddies out, be there for them, and others will be there for you when you need them.)

List of hand-picked people who are on your list.

Groups help huge communities scale, in the way they bring them down to manageable sizes for human beings again. (Dunbar constant, roughly 150 people.)

Six degrees of connection doesn’t work. People are strangers. Even second degree is really weak.

Difference between people you really talk to, and “contacts” (often people will have two accounts => should build this kind of thing into the service — cf. Twitter with “friends” and “people you follow”).

Me, Mine, and Market.

Market: it’s the marketplace where the application builders are going to be able to make money by supporting my interaction/networking with “mine”.

You can’t “make an app social”, you need to start over most of the time.

Think about the social dimension first, and then what the market is. E.g. social invoicing app, what could the market be? Finding people to do work for you. And then you can invoice them using the system.

E.g. Individual: “I need a perfect black dress for that dinner party.” => who knows where to shop for the most fashionable stuff? => market = buying the perfect black dress, with commission to the recommender. (New social business model!)

Facebook profile: all about flow, it’s not static. It’s a collection of stuff going on in my world. Information about my blog (posts), friends… I don’t have to do anything, and it changes.

It represents my links to the world. People want to belong. Be in a context where what they do and say matters. Make it easy for users to find other people who will care about them.

Orkut failed because it was just social networking for the sake of social networking. Not targeted at a specific group of people. Nobody who cares! Disease-like replication and then died down. Nothing to do there.

Swarm intelligence. People align around authority and influence. Some people are more connected then others. Inevitable. Swarmth = Stowe-speak for measure of reputation. As soon as reputation brings something to those who have it, charlatans step in and try to figure out how to game the system. Need to be aware of that, to discover those cheating mechanisms and counter them.

General principle: things are flowing, and we want to support the rapid flow of information (ie, stuff that goes in my profile). “traffic”: do you make it possible for people to get information from a variety of sources delivered quickly to them? (e.g. Facebook bookmarklet) (traffic=possible metric).

The media hold the pieces, but not the sense of the conversation. You need to immerse yourself into the flow to get it. How transformative is it to get a constant flow of information from people you care about? Can’t evaluate that from the outside.


cf. David Weinberger: tags matter for social reasons. The power of classification is handed out to the users. They use it to find information and to find each other. They define implicit social groupings.

If people don’t “get” tags, the interface isn’t good. Because the concept is really simple. (e.g. Flickr, get it right)


Primary abiding motivator of anybody on the internet: discovery (things, places, people, self)

One of Stowe’s pet peeves: Groups and Groupings

Networks are asymmetric, accept it. Everybody is not equal in a group. The groups are always to some extent asymmetric.

Groupings are ad hoc assemblages of peope with similar interests (from my point of view). (My buddy list categorisation.)

Groups try to be symmetric.

Community of tags. They happen automatically.

Power Laws

There will always be people with more power than others, get over it. The recommendation of somebody with more swarmth should count more than that of one with no swarmth.

Accept and work with the imbalance of power.

But careful! The people decide who has more swarmth. And you need to constantly counter the games. Natural social systems are self-policient (sp?).


Measure and reward swarmth (steph-note: !== popularity, quantity)

Reputation is not transportable from one network to another.

Deep Design

  • (neighbours!)
  • (events are nothing without people!!)
  • Facebook
  • ThisNext (about design and fashion)

First, just build the social app. Once the social stuff is in place, build the market (see

Journal where you can integrate music references. With backlinks from artists.

Mistake? tags aren’t source of groupings.

steph-thought: Flickr groups are not just about people, they are about editing content (creating collective photo albums).

If you have an existing social app, and an entrenched body of users, to make people switch to your new product you need to be an order of magnitude better.

Tag beacons: a recommended tag (e.g. lift07)

If you make people tag an item, the tags used stabilize over time. After a while, the same 10-15 tags. Little chance a new user two years latter will suddenly introduce another tag.

ThisNext is pretty. A piece of social interaction stuff missing however — can’t communicate with other people. Profile just leads to recommendations.

Cautionary Tales

Basecamp and the Federation of Work: multiple logins, domains — fragmentation. Wanted to be able to pull everything in a single place. Not simple to keep track of everything one has in the system. Pervasive static models with hardly any flow. It’s an online groupware app, not a social app. It doesn’t put me in the foreground. is about finding people who are in your zipcode. I remember Stowe did a post on this some time back. “Where’s the people?”

You only get one first launch. What’s the point of missing it by doing it before you got to the social tipping point?

Blinksale: where’s the market? (invoicing thing)


Where is all this going? All commerce on the internet in the future will be social. Put in context of social recommendations etc (perfect little black dresses). A social iTunes — what would it look like? They could acquire and integrate them to iTunes, for example. I could recommend music to my friends via iTunes…

Calendars are hard! We’re still waiting for the perfect (at least good) calendar-sharing system.

Social browsing… “What should I look at today, based on recommendations of these n people I really find smart?”

Safety/privacy concerns: solutions we have in the offline world need to be emulated online.

Bloggy Friday 2 février (dans deux semaines!) [fr]

[en] Meeting of local bloggers in Lausanne, Friday 2nd February.

Eh oui, le temps file. Avant d’aller s’amuser à Lift, venez nous rejoindre pour le premier deuxième Bloggy Friday de l’année.

Au risque de me répéter (comme chaque mois) le Bloggy Friday est l’occasion de se manger une bonne fondue (ou autre chose) entre blogueurs de la région, le tout dans une ambiance informelle, détendue et sympathique.

C’est ouvert à tous. Il suffit d’annoncer sa venue (ici ou bien sur, je compte les participants et je réserve le bistrot (Café de l’Evêché), et le tour est joué!

Le Bloggy Friday de janvier février (arghl!!!) aura donc lieu vendredi 2 février à 20h00 au Café de L’Evêché, à Lausanne. Je me réjouis de vous y voir!

Bloggy Friday 1er décembre à Lausanne [fr]

[en] Bloggy Friday december 1st. If you're in Lausanne, feel free to join us. Just leave a note in the comments.

Bon, caramba, cette fois je ne vais pas me laisser avoir comme en novembre. Le Bloggy Friday de décembre aura lieu le 1er (oui je sais, ça tombe toujours un vendredi, y’en a qui aiment pas) à l’Evêché. Rendez-vous à 20h00 et inscription dans les commentaires.

Je tiens à préciser (encore une fois!) que cette petite rencontre informelle est ouverte à tous et à toutes. Pas besoin de me connaître personnellement (ou de connaître qui que ce soit qui sera présent). On est plutôt accueillants et toujours contents de voir de nouvelles têtes.

Ce mois-ci, d’ailleurs, je lance un défi à l’équipe de Vu en ville sur Superlocal:Lausanne (qui ont d’ailleurs aimablement relayé l’info pour deux Bloggy Fridays précédents): enverrez-vous ce mois un(e) délégué(e) — voire une délégation — à cette petite réunion autour du caquelon?

Pour les autres, les paris sont ouverts. Moi, je pense qu’ils répondront à l’invitation.

Comme je l’ai déjà fait en octobre, je me permets de microformatter cette rencontre (avec l’extension Firefox Tails, vous pourrez ainsi automatiquement l’ajouter à votre calendrier):

Bloggy Friday de décembre au Café de l’Evêché, Lausanne
6 octobre 20h00 jusqu’à tard

Rencontre mensuelle, le premier vendredi de chaque mois, des blogueurs romands ou d’ailleurs (on n’est pas sectaires!)

Inscriptions par commentaire sur le blog de Stephanie Booth (merci d’utiliser le billet annonçant l’événement, publié en général une semaine avant la rencontre).

En venant au Bloggy Friday, vous avez l’occasion de rencontrer d’autres blogueurs du coin fort sympathiques. Les nouvelles têtes sont toujours bienvenues.

Si vous êtes timides, soyez tout de même prévenus que vous courez le risque d’être photographié, blogué, — si vous ne voulez pas, il sera donc important de le faire savoir aux paparazzi présents!

hCalendar event brought to you by the
hCalendar Creator and modified slightly by CTTS.

Pendant que j’y suis, n’oubliez pas de garder un oeil sur le calendrier des blogueurs de Suisse Romande. Vous pouvez aussi vous y abonner dans gCal (ou même iCal et chose compatibles) pour ne plus jamais rater une de nos rencontres. Sympa, non? Vous pouvez aussi directement ajouter cette rencontre particulière du mois de décembre à votre calendrier.

Et là, pour être totalement-complètement à la page, j’ai même inscrit cette rencontre sur Je découvre aujourd’hui (merci Yoan et ça me semble très utile et super sympa. Faites-vous un compte, c’est pas exclu qu’à l’avenir j’utilise ça pour gérer la logistique.

PS: deux semaines avant, ça fait trop tôt?

Jeudi: Stamm Genilem sur le fameux web 2.0 à Lausanne [fr]

[en] A local networking meetup for entrepreneurs. Topic: web2.0 (blogs and podcasts and stuff). I'll be (briefly) talking. It's on Thursday evening. It's in Lausanne. It's free.

Quand j’ai sondé un peu autour de moi pour savoir comment mieux nommer notre fameux cours sur les blogs en entreprise, on m’avait dit qu’il fallait parler de réseaux et de “web2.0” pour attirer l’oeil. (Oui oui je vous casse les oreilles avec ce cours. J’arrêterai quand il sera plein. Inscrivez-vous, 28 novembre et 5 décembre.)

Eh bien, voici donc un Stamm Genilem sur le web2.0, où l’on parlera de blogs et de podcasts, surtout.

Stamm Genilem web2.0

Euh… un Stamm Genilem? En très bref: Genilem est un organisme de soutien aux créateurs d’entreprises. Ils organisent régulièrement des Stamms, où l’on vient écouter une assez brève présentation sur un sujet (ici, notre fameux web2.0), et surtout rencontrer des gens. Vive le networking! Pour le faciliter, chacun a l’occasion de se présenter en une quinzaine de secondes brièvement. On a donc une vague idée de qui on côtoie avant de se retrouver autour de l’apéro. C’est très sympa, venez donc nombreux! C’est ouvert à tous et gratuit, il suffit de s’inscrire auprès de cathy at genilem point ch ou au 022 817 37 77.

Ah oui. J’aurai un petit moment lors de ce Stamm pour vous parler de blogs, et de leur intérêt/importance pour les créateurs d’entreprises. (C’est marqué sur l’affiche, je crois.)

A jeudi, donc?

Et tout ça, c’est la faute à Thierry et Ramon. 😉