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Running Weblogs with Slash

Slash is the open source software system that drives the Slashdot web site and others. It implements the kind of web site that has come to be called a "weblog": a moderated list, in reverse chronological order, of items with links to further discussion on-site, or to further information off-site. Essentially, a weblog is a cooperatively-authored daily newspaper for some defined community on the Net. Anyone who wants to get a weblog site up and running may find this book useful, particularly system administrators who may not have the time or the background to learn all about Slash by reading the source code. Content managers of Slash sites who want to be able to use the system more effectively may also benefit from this book, which organizes the knowledge currently distributed throughout the Slash source code, Slashcode web site and mailing lists, and provides it in an organized package.
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Table of Contents

Foreword Preface Chapter 1. Slash: An Overview The Slashdot Story Becoming a Slash Guru: A Roadmap The Slash User Interface The Slash Author Interface The Slash Publishing Cycle The Slash Architecture Chapter 2. Installing Slash Before You Begin Getting the Software The Short Version The Details Advanced Installations Chapter 3. Basic Administration The Admin Menu Editing Authors Modifying Configuration Variables Chapter 4. Editing and Updating Stories The Stories List The Edit Story Form Gotchas Chapter 5. Reviewing and Approving Submissions The Submit Story Page The Submissions List The Revew Submission Page Editing User Submissions Chapter 6. Comments, Filters, and Content Moderation Viewing Comments Posting Comments Comment Filters Comment Moderation Moderation Configuration Variables Chapter 7. Managing Topics and Sections Managing Topics Choosing Topics and Icons Managing Sections Choosing Sections Chapter 8. Managing a Slash Community How to Stifle a Community Setting the Tone Finding and Generating Content Promoting the Site Managing Authors Managing Users Chapter 9. Basic Site Customization Blocks and Slashboxes Managing User Polls Chapter 10. Advanced Customization Changing the Look Customizing Template Behavior Themes and Plugins Modifying the Code Itself Internationalization Chapter 11. Advanced Administration Tasks The Slash Daemon and Tasks Slash Utilities Appendix A. Slash Architecture Appendix B. Common Slash Database Tables Appendix C. The Slash Template Language Appendix D. The Slash API Appendix E. Slash Configuration Variables Index

About the Author

chromatic is a freelance writer and programmer living in the Northwest USA. He has been published by a handful of popular web sites, including He recently wrote the user manual for the Everything Engine, besides adding features and fixing bugs. chromatic was one of the earliest members of the PerlMonks programming community. In his spare time, he runs a free software project called Jellybean, a Perl Object Server built with some principles of XP. Brian Aker is the lead Slash developer. He currently works for VALinux/OSDN as a Slashdot Senior Architect and teaches the Perl certification course at the University of Washington. David Krieger is the system administrator for Foresight Institute's Slash site ( He has been programming since 1978 (in Perl since 1995), working in the software industry since 1992, and developing for the web since 1994. He was a founding director of Extropy Institute and an early administrator of the Extropians mailing list.

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