Wikis Revisited

So back in the day (July 9 and July 10 precisely), I was having trouble with the wiki not embedding in D2L, having it pop out and not stay in the frameset. What it came down to, and was something I wasn’t 100% sure of at the time, was that the MediaWiki version we were using was fairly old. After attempting two upgrades, we now have a wiki that stays in the box, but IE 7/8 break the login (especially on the deep frozen computers in our labs). That problem is part of the default settings of the browser, where you have to override the privacy settings through Tools > Internet Options > Privacy tab > Advanced > Override Automatic Cookie Handling.

settings for cookies in IE to keep logged into the wiki

So for now, we’re still having trouble with legacy versions of MediaWiki, but on my personal page, the latest MediaWiki install is great and works fine with most browsers. Thanks again to Barry Dahl for the inspiration to do this.

Another Reason To Use Twitter

So, it appears I’m a convert. Yep, a Twitterer. Perhaps just a twit. Anyways, people always ask me, “Why do people use it? Isn’t it just a waste of time?” Well, not always a waste of time. I posted on my Twitter account about the slow length of time that it had been taking for my Technorati claim to go through and really, I didn’t think anything of it. Sure, network traffic may be busy, claims may be going through the roof… holidays for workers… all sorts of options. Lo and behold, Technorati folks were listening. And I didn’t use a hashtag or any special thing. Twitter search must be OK.

Same sort of thing with MediaWiki, when I posted about my problems with an old install (which I also posted about here) they were quick to connect. Clearly, Web 2.0+ companies are paying attention. Facebook responded to the concerns over privacy which spread quickly through blogs and twitter. It will be interesting to see if older models of business are paying attention as well. I suspect the ones that are will be better able to survive the seismic shifts we’re still going to see before things settle down again (if they ever settle down again).


OK, so the problem I’ve been having is apparently because of a MediaWiki setting. Freakin’ great. Admin level settings force the page to not be embedded. I have to wait a couple weeks to see if the admin wants to change that setting, or if I have to use some other product.


Hmm, I suppose I’ll look back at this moment in a few months with a hearty guffaw, and muse “Oh Jon, there’s such a simple solution.” These are truly “first world problems” if I’ve ever heard them. Oh yeah, Barry Dahl’s video is incredibly useful, except it doesn’t actually show how he embeds the wiki in D2L – it basically shows you how to embed stuff in a wiki which is embedded in D2L. Close to what I need. Yes, I’ve e-mailed to see if Barry can help sort out my muddled mind, but venting never hurts.

EDIT: After a brief phone call, he’s still baffled, I’m ready to tear my moustache out.

I’ve been trying to embed a MediaWiki in my proposed D2L version of my Searching The Internet Effectively course. I’d like to constrict the opening of this page to remain in the frameset that D2L exists in so students can pop back and forth between the content that’s in the course, and the wiki to add their own content. Every method of embedding I’ve tried opens the wiki in a new page. I’m beginning to wonder if the damn thing is set to automatically open in a new page…. or maybe Firefox is overriding some weird thing. First of all framesets?? Give me a break. If framesets get deprecated anytime soon (as they should) D2L is in for a major redesign. Talk about a total head-scratcher.

Also, I hate IE. I thought when I got out of web design as a career that I could learn to like, accept, ok not hate IE. Wrong. IE is crap. IE 8 is OK passable, except that when you use  the TinyMCE editor in D2L in an IE browser (IE 8 included), it strips out co-ordinates of an image map. And other attributes of the object tag. WTF??