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chronicle - A simple blog compiler.


chronicle [options]

Path Options:

--comments Specify the path to the optional comments directory.
--config Specify a configuration file to read.
--input Specify the input directory to use.
--output Specify the directory to write output to.
--theme-dir Specify the path to the theme templates.
--theme Specify the theme to use.
--pattern Specify the pattern of files to work with.
--url-prefix Specify the prefix to the live blog.
--sitemap-prefix Specify the prefix for the site map.

Blog Entry Options:

--format Specify the format of your entries, HTML/textile/markdown.

Pre & Post-Build Commands:

--pre-build Specify a command to execute prior to building the blog.
--post-build Specify a command to execute once the blog has been built.
--pre-filter A command to filter each blog entry before HTML conversion.
--post-filter A command to filter each blog entry after HTML conversion.

Sorting Options:

--recent-dates-first Show recent entries first in the archive view.
--recent-tags-first Show recent entries first in the tag view.

Counting Options:

--entry-count=N Number of posts to show on the index.
--rss-count=N Number of posts to include on the RSS index feed.

Optional Features:

--author Specify the author's email address
--comment-days Specify the number maximum age of posts to accept comments.
--date-archive-path Include the date in the archive.
--force Force the copying of static files from the blog theme.
--lang Specify the language to use for formatting dates.
--lower-case Lower-case all filenames which are output.
--no-archive Don't create an archive page.
--no-cache Don't use the optional memcached features, even if available.
--no-calendar Don't use the optional calendar upon the index.
--no-comments Don't allow comments to be posted.
--no-sitemap Don't generate a sitemap.
--no-tags Don't produce any tag pages.
--no-xrefs Don't produce any cross references.

Help Options:

--help Show the help information for this script.
--manual Read the manual for this script.
--verbose Show useful debugging information.
--version Show the version number and exit.


Chronicle is a simple tool to convert a collection of text files,
located within a single directory, into a blog consisting of static
HTML files.

It supports only the bare minimum of features which are required
to be useful:

* Tagging support.

* RSS support.

* Archive support.

The obvious deficiencies are:

* Lack of support for instant commenting.

* Lack of pingback/trackback support.

Having said that it is a robust, stable, and useful system.


The format of the text files we process is critical to the output
pages. Each entry should look something like this:

Title: This is the title of the blog post
Date: 2nd March 2007
Tags: one, two, three, long tag

The text of your entry goes here.

NOTE: The header MUST be separated from the body of the entry by at least a
single empty line.

In this example we can see that the entry itself has been prefaced
with a small header. An entry header is contains three optional lines,
if these are not present then there are sensible defaults as described

The formatting of the output dates may be changed via the use of the
B<--lang> command line option (or the matching "lang=french" option in the
configuration file), but the date of the entry itself should be specified in

Title: Describes the title of the post. If not present the filename of the entry is used
instead. "Subject:" may also be used.
Subject: This is a synonym for 'Title:'.
Date: The date the post was written. If not present the creation time of the file is used
Publish: This header is removed from all entries, and is used by the chronicle-spooler
Tags: Any tags which should be associated with the entry, separated by commas.

The format of the entry is assumed to be HTML, however there is support
for writing your entries in both textile and markdown formats.

The format of entries is specified via the B<--format> argument, or
via a "format: foo" setting in your chroniclerc file.

The format of entries is assumed to be global; that is all your entries
will be assumed to be in the same format. However you can add a
"format: foo" pseudo header to specific entries if you wish to write
specific entries in a different format.

To allow flexibility in the handling of entries each blog entry will
be passed through the filter script B<chronicle-entry-filter>
which allows you to modify this handling in a single location. This
script allows entries to be updated via filters both before and after
the conversion to HTML. For further details please see the manpage for
that script.


The configuration of the software is minimal, and generally performed
via the command line arguments. However it is possible to save settings
either in the file global /etc/chroniclerc or the per-user ~/.chroniclerc

If you wish you may pass the name of another configuration file to
the script with the B<--config> flag. This will be read after the
previous two files, and may override any settings which are present.

The configuration file contains lines like these:

input = /home/me/blog

output = /var/www/blog

format = markdown

Keys which are unknown are ignored.


To speed the rebuilding of a large blog the compiler may use a local
Memcached daemon, if installed and available.

To install this, under a Debian GNU/Linux system please run:

apt-get update
apt-get install memcached libcache-memcached-perl

You may disable this caching behaviour with --no-cache, and see the
effect with --verbose.


If the 'HTML::CalendarMonthSimple' module is available each blog will
contain a simple month-view of the current month upon the index.

To disable this invoke the program with '--no-calendar'.


Included with the chronicle code you should find the file

This file is designed to write submitted comments to the local
filesystem of your web-server. If you install that, and edit the
path at the start of the script you should be able to include
comments in your blog.

In short there are three things you need to do:

Install the CGI script and edit the path at the start.
Copy the output comments to your local blog source.
Run this script again with --comments=./path/to/comments

This should include the comments in the static output. More
explicit instructions are provided within the file 'COMMENTS'
included within the distribution.

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