The last challenge in the Gillius.org conversion was assets. At first, I tried to find an external solution like the "Asset Handler" plugin, but it only works for MT4. In the end I wrote my own Java code to scan my assets and upload each of them via the XML-RPC interface.
Using the XMLRPC interfaces I mentioned in part 1, I needed to parse my HTML content, strip it of the original "template", and upload it to my development Movable Type instance. I used Java and XMLRPC for this, Java because I was most familiar and XMLRPC since that is what MT provides.
The original Gillius.org site was entirely static content. In order to move to Movable Type, I needed to first convert the original site's content in a way that would be compatible with the old one, both in looks, content, and even the URLs themselves. I did choose MT partly because it appeared to be easier to import. I also looked at Drupal and Wordpress as well.
In this first part, I will cover conversion of the blog posts, conversion of the style, and parsing the original static HTML pages into a format that can be uploaded into MT. Read on for the details.
While developing the updated Gillius.org site, I noticed that sometimes the pages would not update when I went to them, until I hit refresh, even after I exited the browser and restarted it. I was using Firefox, which I learned made the problem more apparent versus IE, but I learned that it was my site's cache settings that was having a problem. I've fixed the problem, so if you see content that doesn't look right, missing comments, or is out of date you might have to refresh manually once, but hopefully not again after this. Read on for the details.
Previously, I used to maintain this site as static content (with the exception of the news page). Now I am using the popular blogging software Movable Type to help manage the site. My intention is to start doing a lot more blogging posts, rather than articles/static content that have been seen (and hardly touched) over the last 10 years.
Moving to a proper system now means that you can search the site, leave comments and trackbacks, and navigate by categories/tags/dates. It also means you will see more content as it is easier for me to post now.
In the short-term, my next posts will detail some of my experiences converting my existing site to Movable Type.