Another step for Piwigo.com with a dedicated blog. Because I really appreciate the user experience on WordPress.com I’ve decided to use a self-hosted WordPress.
Why not another WordPress.com account:
- I wanted no ads (the No-Ads upgrade costs $30)
- I wanted a perfect integration with other pages on Piwigo.com (the Custom Design upgrade costs $30)
- I wanted it on URL piwigo.com/blog (not possible with WordPress.com) or at least on blog.piwigo.com ($12 on WordPress.com)
Considering that we have a dedicated server for Piwigo.com presentation website and because I have the skills to run a web application, paying an additional $72/year does not really makes sense.
I’ve installed WordPress 3.1.3. I wanted to customize header, footer and CSS. Just like Piwigo, WordPress has child themes : I have created the “piwigo.com” theme, with twentyten as template (as “parent” theme). As my customizations are only made on my own theme, I won’t have to care about losing them on future upgrades of WordPress.
Compared to my WordPress.com blog, the one you’re reading right now on piwigo.wordpress.com, I’ve lost the great WP Stats feature. I may reactivate it with the Jetpack package but I will rely on Piwik statistics for now.
Note: Jetpack is a collection of WordPress plugins designed by Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com, founded by Matt Mullenweg, co-founder of WordPress. Jetpack is active on all WordPress.com blogs.
Does that mean this blog will be closed? No, absolutely not. I won’t write about topics like new releases or specific features on the Piwigo.com blog, so I still need a place for this kind of post!
A new page was added on Piwigo.com: Featured Galleries (or nice examples). We start with a short list of 12 galleries. I will add some new featured galleries next days.
In addition to the new dedicated page, Piwigo.com home page displays 3 random featured galleries.
Congratulations to the first 12 galleries listed!
- studiozanzibarimage.fr professional studio, landscapes and illustration from South of France
- gary1701.piwigo.com you like United Kingdom helicopters and planes?
- sauvant.piwigo.com portaits and country landscapes
- drakonis.piwigo.com 13,000+ avatars sorted by themes like Vampire, Dragon or Knight
- toxa.piwigo.com travels, landscapes and fauna
- www.yvesmariequemener.fr professional photographer, sport competition
- raymonddelvaux.be macrophotography, check the spiders!
- franchesmontagnes.piwigo.com horses with mountain landscapes
- pichardie.piwigo.com nature, birds and landscapes
- frederictestard.piwigo.com motor competition (cars and motocycle)
- maltabuses.piwigo.com 4500+ photos of buses from Malta
- peijy.piwigo.com macrophotography, birds and landscape
Dmitri Popov has written a new article on Linux-Magazine blogs : DIY Mobile Photo Sharing with Piwigo and ReGalAndroid.
For a week, all new Piwigo.com accounts are based on Piwigo 2.2. From today all “old” accounts have been migrated to Piwigo 2.2 as well.
The first question you may have is: why do Piwigo.com accounts had to wait for 6 weeks to run on Piwigo. 2.2? the answer : because of themes and plugins compatibility. There are 37 plugins and 23 themes available on Piwigo.com and we have been waiting for Piwigo 2.2 compatibility on all of them before starting migration. Because this wait has lasted a bit too long while many accounts could have been migrated earlier, I have coded a “filtered migration tool”: depending on the themes and plugins active on your gallery, your account is migrated or not. This way, your Piwigo.com gallery may be migrated much earlier for Piwigo 2.3 🙂
So what’s new on Piwigo 2.2 compared to Piwigo 2.1:
- easier photo upload for your visitors (your family or friends for example) thanks to plugin “Community”, no need to use pLoader, an advanced web form is available
- the photo batch manager gets a new design to make it easier of use
- ability to remove or downsize your high definition photos
- automatic rotation on your photos uploaded with the web form
- improved compatibility with remote tools like Lightroom or Shotwell (no need to activate the pwg.images.addSimple plugin)
- advanced use: ability to edit your own CSS rules with plugin LocalFiles Editor
- if you have selected themes Stripped or Gally*, new configuration settings are available to customize your gallery
There are many more interesting improvements, you can read the full list on Piwigo 2.2.0 release notes.
Piwigo 2.2 was planned for Fall 2010. Obviously we have been late! Even if that doesn’t really matters, I would really like to shorten the release cycle. In my opinion, having less features is not a problem at all. Piwigo 2.1 was out on May 2010 and coding for Piwigo 2.2 really started in September (we made other useful stuffs than coding for 3 months).
Here is a review of past release cycles:
- 1.4 = 16 months
- 1.5 = 8 months
- 1.6 = 8 months
- 1.7 = 10 months
- 2.0 = 21 months. Far too long (with 6 months between RC1 and final version)
- 2.1 = 14 months. Better, but still too long.
- 2.2 = 11 months. Still Better, but can be improved.
Why is a long release cycle a problem? Because it encourages the coding team to add many new features at the very last moment (even after RC1) and to add nothing new right after the major release is available. If you have a short release cycle, there is no problem to say:
ok, let’s postpone this feature, I’ll add it for next major release
With a long release cycle, this would be:
oh no, if I don’t add this feature right now, I’ll have to wait another 10 months before it’s available in a stable release! let’s try to add it now and postpone the release date
The consequence is a release cycle becoming longer and longer.
A good compromise is a 6 month release cycle. There is no real problem as soon as we’re not forced to add a fixed list of features. Instead of a list of features, we set the release date, and we’ll have the stable features available that day (after a 1 month release candidate period RC1, RC2, RC3…). Piwigo 2.3 will probably have less new features than 2.1 or 2.2 but it doesn’t matters at all.
Last week on Piwigo.com contact form, we’ve received several questions from customers of Fotopic.net. They told us that their photo sharing website had closed down. Of course they are searching for a replacement. Here is an anonymous extract of a message we’ve received:
My question is if I sign up for your site, like it and pay a subscription, will it be reliable? It takes a lot of hours creating a nice site and disappointing to lose it. Hope you do not mind the question but I am having difficulty finding a suitable replacement to the defunct fotopic.
And my answer looks like:
I perfectly understand your concern about reliability and sustainability. Piwigo.com is a commercial offer, so we can’t promise we will last for a hundred years (not even Microsoft or Google could promise that) but we have a major advantage compared to our competitors: Piwigo.com is based on Piwigo and Piwigo is a free software (open source).
It means that in case you’re not satisfied with Piwigo.com services or if Piwigo.com is closing for any reason, you can get your data back, including photos, user comments, visit history… and move your gallery on any other host and you won’t lose anything
(the best is to have your own domain name so that your visitors won’t have to find your new address if one day you decide to move)
This is what I call the no vendor lock-in advantage! I truly believe it makes a big difference with any other photo sharing website.
A few weeks ago, we’ve received a message from DreamHost team on Piwigo.org contact form:
Hi there folks!
We’ve received an application submission from a customer to have Piwigo included in the DreamHost One-Click Installer’s application catalog.
Since a user submitted it and not the developer, we had to reject the application submission, without even so much as reviewing it. 😦
Piwigo is already available in 1-click installers Softaculous and SimpleScripts, but DreamHost has its own 1-click installer system. So I have added Piwigo, next to Zenphoto and Gallery2 in the category “Gallery”. Today it is available to any DreamHost customer and this is one of the biggest web hosting in USA.
Considering their 1-click installer for Piwigo, we have added Dreamhost in the list of recommended hosting for Piwigo.