Yesterday I sat down with UBC Philosophy faculty and ds106 rockstar Christina Hendricks to record a walk-through of how to install and manage WordPress Multisite using the script-installer Installatron. Additionally, we covered the following:
- How to manage your multisite account, with a special focus on the level of abstraction from the site to the network
- How to export and import a WordPress site
- How to use the syndication plugin FeedWordPress
The more I work with faculty and students on managing their own web hosting and domain, the more I am convinced it’s not only manageable for just about anyone, but it’s near on getting dead simple. This is by no means to suggest Christina isn’t tech savvy—quite the opposite! However, she’s represents a demographic of faculty who’ve been rocking open source applications like WordPress for teaching and leanring on amazing platforms like UBC Blogs or UMW Blogs for a while now. Given that, they’ve come to the point where they want to start managing some of their own sites, and exploring beyond the confines of these systems. That’s awesome because in my mind that’s why we started platforms like this in the first palce, so folks would start to move beyond them.
Nonethless, I emphasize some of her sites above because Christina is not planning on exporting and managing all of her numerous course sites on her own domain. Rather, she’s bringing in a few sites that make sense to be on her own domain: her blog, her portfolio site, her ds106 tumblr, etc. It’s not all or nothing, rather the two systems working brilliantly together, and the above video is a testament to how awesome open publishing platforms like UBC Blogs and UMW Blogs can be when faculty (or students, staff, etc.) can export their work from a university’s platform and seamlessly import that work into their own domain. THAT’S PROGRESS, KIDS!
In effect, by setting up her own WordPress multisite she is able to move from the concept of a site to that of a network of sites that she manages and controls. It’s weird for me, but I just really wrapped my head around this idea of the personal network while talking to Christina over the last couple of days. The WordPress Multisite network nomenclature gets at the idea that you, by way of your domain, become a multichanneled space for publishing, sharing, syndicating, aggregating, etc. As Andy Rush has noted before, a “Network of One’s Own!” And that’s exactly what Christina is demonstrating in this walk-through.
If you are interested in how to install your own WordPress Multisite (via Installatron, which you can get through Reclaim Hosting 🙂 ), manage WordPress Multisite, export/import WP, oand/or use FeedWordPress this video might prove very useful. I am hoping Christina and I can get together again and do a few more about managing your own domain and demonstrating that managing your own oiece of a server has never been simpler!
Oooh do we get a URL?
And is volumes going to live here?
We do get a URL: chendricks.org/weblog, chendricks.org/ds106
But it’s all fairly boring at the moment, because I haven’t done anything with themes except keep the boring old default one.
I wish Volumes could live there, but my courses sites must be on Canadian servers (a complication of a BC privacy law), so I’m sticking with UBC Blogs for those sites. Plus, the UBC blogs system rocks and has fantastic support. So we’ll have to see if we can get Volumes on there!