FeedWordPress: A Widget Wish

The whole syndication-oriented architecture (feed-frenzied learning) many have been playing with using WordPress Multi-User has been moving along pretty well for us at UMW. With the help of just a couple of plugins we have been able to generate a single feed for tags and/or categories throughout UMW Blogs (using the Sitewide Tags Pages plugin for WPMu), and we are then able to republish these sitewide feeds in any blog using FeedWordPress. Moreover, it provides us with the ability to incorporate and re-publish sites with RSS feeds that are outside the UMW Blogs environment. All very cool, EDUGLU here we come, yadda, yadda, yadda.

My wish now is to do something similar with FeedWordPress to what Andre Malan already has done for BDPRSS. Namely, create a widget extension for the FeedWordPress plugin that will allow you to have an “Add RSS” widget which provides a field on the front page of any blog so that people can add their feed (for the whole blog or a tag or category), and have the relevant posts republished. I like the fact that Andre’s extension of the BDPRSS plugin gives you levels of control over who can add the feed, and that would be a nice feature to include. Moreover, I would add sending the admin of the blog an email message to let them know someone has added a feed so that they can check it out and make sure it was added correctly and is parsing.

So, anyone else see the need for something like this? Additionally can we you build it?!

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14 Responses to FeedWordPress: A Widget Wish

  1. Gardo says:

    This would be way beyond completely cool, into whatever realm lies in that wonderful space.

    Bring it on. Who’s got their hackers on? Who’s ready to cross the streams?

  2. Mike Bogle says:

    Hi Jim,

    Many thanks for all of the WP goodness you’ve posted about here. I’ve begun to go back through everything to see what other cool stuff UMW blogs has been up to.

    Along those lines, I’ve been meaning to ask you about the blogging culture at UMW. I can’t recall if you spoke about this during your presentation last week or not. Did you and others work to cultivate a blogging culture when setting everything up – openness, discussion, creativity, exploration, etc – or was it a matter of stepping back and letting people discover their own views of blogging?

    By this I don’t mean issuing edicts – such as “Thou shalt blog daily.” – but more by modeling, encouraging the questioning of standing preconceptions, etc.

    To a large degree I think that no one can really tell you what your blogging voice will be, nor how you should use the platform – but I’m also wondering whether misconceptions exist about what blogging is or is not that benefit from discussion? Then again, perhaps the discussion evolves organically (as it does on the open web).

    These questions are all floating around in my head since we’re starting to think about setting up a WPMU instance at UNSW. I’m quite used to blogs, but most people here aren’t – so a lot of basic questions are arising at this point.

    So I’d be interested in hearing about your experiences.



  3. Mike Bogle says:

    Looks like I answered my own question 🙂

    The UMW Blogs Story



  4. Reverend says:


    Your search powers are so jedi-like that I didn’t have a chance to answer quick enough. And, indeed, that would’ve been the post I referred you to. In addition to that, I’ll also recommend checking out Gardner Campbell’s “The Reverend Asked me a Question” post, which I think is the best discussion of course blogging I have read to date. Gardner was the impetus behind the blogging “explosion” at UMW, and the stuff he does with blogging in his course—the expectations, the ability to interconnect so many loose threads, and his talent for getting students and others to believe in it can not be emphasized enough—his work with blogging is quite impressive.

  5. Reverend says:


    You are so sick! Thank you, thank you, thank you. I’m trying it out now.

  6. Reverend says:


    Just tried out your plugin and it works like a charm, one thing is that the installation instructions were not entirely commented out, so it throws an error until you comments them out.

    Fantastic work, I love the password feature too, it is the whole package, you rule the edupunk school! next time I am up in Vancouver, drinks are on me all night 🙂

  7. Andre Malan says:

    Thanks Reverend, although it was only my idea… Vince at OLT did most of the coding.

    I’ve fixed the installation instructions on the live version (It just goes to show that no matter how small a change you make, one should always test again before sending things out).

    Can’t wait to see what you do with the plugin.

  8. Reverend says:

    Consider Vince on that tab as well, thank you both, I can’t laud the work you are doing over there as often and as loud as it needs to be. Great stuff!

  9. Scott says:

    Andre and Reverend,

    I am working with an installation of WPMU at the University of Oregon. We are also using Feedwordpress to aggregate posts from many blogs to one. We had first started with BDPRSS and then the whole thing broke with 2.8. I would love to use this plugin add-on for FeedWordPress that you talk about. I went to the link you provided but could not find any relevant information. Is there any way you can help me out?

  10. Andre Malan says:

    Hey Scott,
    I’m not sure what happened to that page (it seems like OLT is using a different system at the moment). All the plugins that they write are available on the WP development site. The link is http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/profile/oltdev. Hope that helps.

    “Add Link” is the name of the plugin that you are looking for.

  11. Scott says:

    Hey Andre,

    Thanks! We will check out the plugin.

  12. Reverend says:

    Thanks for chiming in here so quick, you rule.

    @Scott and @Andre,
    You know I got BDPRSS working with the latest version of wpmu (2.8.4a), which means it’s death has been greatly exaggerated by me, I need to do a followup post. In the meantime, I am using that with cet_embedrss for a few classes, cet_Embedrss is worth a look if you haven;t seen it yet:

  13. Scott says:

    Hey Reverend,

    That is interesting news. I will take a look at it. Right now I am compiling a list of plugins to review for Winter term roll out. We are essentially performing a live beta test right now. The driving vision is for an eportfolio system for Arts and Administration Grad Students. Though it would hopefully be extended to the entire school of Architecture and Allied Arts here at the UO. I am using the system right not to teach an entirely online course for undergraduates called Art and Human Values. WMU blogs has been a great model for us and has become our benchmark. Can’t wait to see what happens next.



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