Apple's Weblog Server, included in OSX Server, has been a disappointment to me. It's supposed to be a blogging tool, and a podcasting tool. But it does neither well, from a user interface standpoint, and comment moderation is very poor. As Apple has survived and then thrived by its interfaces, this is surprising to me. Nothing has been done to improve Weblog Server since its inital release. I'm sure the "back end" is very robust, but the front end is poorly thought out. You can actually do more with Blojsom, which it's based on. I have a right to criticize Apple products, by the way, as I use many of them!
After many hours of work, and searching for information scattered at different web sites, I managed to customize the interface to make it usable for podcasting, it's at http://video.conncoll.edu/weblog/
I have to admit that trying to edit those Velocity templates, which I had never heard of before, was not much fun.
We have not really used it yet (still hand-coding podcasts), and I'm afraid if I install a major OS update it will break something. The purpose of our podcast server is to make it as easy as possible for a novice end-user to update a podcast after we create it for them. We are not ready to sign up for iTunesU yet, waiting for the early adopters to pull the arrows out of their backs and help Apple improve the first release. I decided to take my lumps on other new software.
Well, it seems Apple has finally woken up! I had run across iTunes' iMix a while ago, but did not pay much attention. However, this link caught my eye
It seems that now you have a "Publish to the Web" feature, which creates code that you can paste into your web page or blog, and links you to your or others' iMix. Here is an example of an iMix.. I picked a random one, have not looked at the songs yet.
When I copy-pasted the Apple code Blogger Beta gave me the error "Your HTML cannot be accepted: Tag is not closed..." but I bypassed it and it seems to work anyways.
I think this is a first for Apple: automatically creating copy/paste code for web sites and "social apps", and I hope to see this functionality incorporated in some of their server products, such Weblog Server, which needs a complete interface overhaul and some back-end tweaks, and extended to other media types, such as QuickTime movies.
Another first, I believe, is that the above is in Flash format, I have not seen Apple use Flash in such a prominent role before.
I have to investigate if an iMix, now that it can be published, has any educational uses. One more thing to look at!