Last week on my personal blog I discussed how to put the MT:OtherBlog tag to use and compared that tag with using PHP includes to create the same functionality.
In the comments of that post J. Brotherlove reminded me of one serious advantage PHP includes have over using MT:OtherBlog: automatic updating. If Iâ€™m pulling content from Blog 1 with a PHP include into Blog 2 whenever Blog 1 is updated the pulled content is automatically updated on Blog 2. This isnâ€™t the case when using MT:OtherBlog. When I update Blog 1 the pulled content on Blog 2 will not be updated until Blog 2 is rebuilt (either indexes or the entire blog depending on how youâ€™ve got it set up). So after round 1 the score card finds MT:OtherBlog winning in the ease of use category but PHP includes winning in terms of actual useful functionality. So, a tie.
But then (again in the comments of my post on MT:OtherBlog) David Raynes dropped some incredibly helpful knowledge that turned PHP includes and MT:OtherBlog both into also-rans. Turns out David originally developed the MT:OtherBlog functionality as a plugin for an older version of Movable Type. With Movable Type 4.0 this functionality was packaged into the application as MT:MultiBlog. While on the surface MT:MultiBlog and MT:OtherBlog do the same thing (namely allow you to easily pull content from one blog into another blog) the former has a serious advantage.
The MT:MultiBlog tag gets its functionality from the MT:MultiBlog plugin and that plugin has rebuild triggering options. Whereas when using MT:OtherBlog I would have to manually rebuild Blog 2 to force it to pull the most recent content from Blog 1 when using MT:MultiBlog I can set a rebuild trigger to automatically rebuild.
Let me use my personal blog On a path and content from Correspondence Notes as a real world example. I want the content Iâ€™m pulling from
Correspondence Notes into the footer of On a path to always be up to
date. Using MT:MultiBlog I have two steps to making that happen. First
step is getting the code in order:
This is of course almost identical to the code used in the MT:OtherBlog example. David rightly points out that this code could be condensed but I prefer writing it out like I have here. Just a personal preference so feel free to do it however you like.
The second step is to configure a rebuild trigger using the MT:MultiBlog plugin. Go to plugin configurations for Blog 2.
Select MT:MultiBlog 2.0, click settings and then Create Rebuild Trigger. Choose the blog that will be triggering the rebuild (in my example itâ€™s Correspondence Notes) and configure it. I chose to rebuild the On a path indexes whenever a Correspondence Notes entry is saved.
Now the Correspondence Notes content in the On a path footer will always be rebuilt when a new entry is saved at Correspondence Notes and thus the On a path footer will always have the most up to date content. Sweet.
This a slightly modified version of an article that originally appeared at On a path