Free Dawit Isaak

Five Swedish editors-in-chief join forces to get the journalist Dawit Isaak free.

Dawit Isaak has today been jailed for 2 742 days. Without charge and without any sentence.

Dawit Isaak is a journalist and a Swedish citizen who is in prison in Eritrea. His crime? Dawit Isaak wrote and published articles on the need for democracy and freedom in Eritrea in the newspaper Setit. On September 23, 2001 he was arrested and imprisoned in connection with the Eritrean government shutting down the country’s independent newspapers.

The regime in Eritrea has never formulated any allegations against Isaak, let alone a prosecution, a trial or a sentence. In total silence, he has for nearly eight years been locked up in Eritrea’s capital Asmara.

Recently, there has been new alarming information about Dawit Isaak. He is alleged to have been taken by prisoner transport to a military hospital. He is kept isolated and his only human contact is with a doctor. No relatives are allowed to see him. His health has also deteriorated because of diabetes.

Go to expressen.wufoo.com/forms/free-dawit/http/true/, enter your name and click on the “Skicka” (send) button.

Join the Facebook group “Free Dawit Isaak”, you can find it here: www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=2252576225&ref=mf.

Read Swedish Dagens Nyheter’s article: www.dn.se/fordjupning/freedawit/free-dawit-isaak-1.831505.

Thank you!

Converting from Joomla to WordPress (up to 2.7x)

Quite a few people use the popular Open Source CMS software Joomla for just about everything they do. And in fairness, Joomla is a pretty flexible piece of code (from 1.5 and onwards anyway). One area where Joomla isn’t all that hot, however, is when it’s used as a “blog”.

There are a number of templates for Joomla that make it look like a blog, ish :-), but Joomla is far too “heavy” in its construct to be used as a proper blog. With the advent of WordPress 2.7x, there’s little reason not to use WordPress. One could argue that there are many alternatives to WP, such as Serendipity (S9Y). But few packages enjoy such as vast amount of themes, plugins, and so on. Never mind that most people rarely change their theme nor add any other plugins in than a few select.

Converting from one “content management” (neither WordPress nor Joomla qualify as fully featured CMS) software package to another isn’t as straightforward as one could wish. If you can run the databases from your old Joomla installation and your new WordPress installation, however, there’s help to get.

There are a few different solutions available out there; ranging from “one-click software” to custom solutions where you buy someone’s time to do it for you. One solution I found to do most of the hard work can be found here: Joomla2Wordpress Import Wizard v.3. This software assumes you have access to both databases from the server running your WordPress installation. It will not import physical images attached/included in your Joomla posts, but that wasn’t a show stopper in my case. I successfully converted a Joomla 1.0.1x installation to a WordPress 2.71 installation.

Thanks to all the people who put time and effort into that project.

It’s sad that there isn’t a 100% transparent way to export/import entries to/from “content management” software. I understand that some things are hard to do in a generic manner, and that aiming for 100% may get you to a 98% level of completion, but that is a lot better than where we stand to day. Can anyone say XML?

Link: Article in Swedish on 2u2.se

Cooperation with higher education in open source projects

Colin has an interesting and very valid point in Cooperation with higher education in open source projects on his blog.

Wouldn’t something along the lines of “Summer of code” (Google) move things in the right direction?

If we could use all or some of these (untapped) resources, many projects of public interest or public use could make quantum leaps forward in no time.