I’ve been experimenting with writing some of my posts using only my phone. I think I’ve come up with a set of tools that make it possible for me to create well formatted blog posts using either my BlackBerry 7100i or Nokia N95.
Wap Review is a WordPress blog and up through WP 2.5 I was actually able write posts and moderate comments with Opera Mini using just the standard WordPress administrative screens. For version 2.7, WordPress completely redesigned the administration panels with several critical functions like approving or deleting comments now using links that are hidden until you hover over them with the mouse. The trouble is that it doesn’t seem possible to make those links visible using Opera Mini or any of the other mobile browsers I’ve tried.
I looked around for a mobile posting solution and after a few false starts I found two that worked, WordMobi and WP-T-Wap . WordMobi is a S60 Python app where you compose posts offline using an editor which lets you insert HTML tags for bold, italic, links , etc. You can even browse for and insert images into a post. When you publish the post, WordMobi uploads the images to your blog. I really like WordMobi for posting but it only works on S60 phones and keying long posts my N95’s phone keypad is a pain.
Which brings us to WP-T-Wap. It adds a mobile friendly administration panel to any WordPress.org blog. Compared with WordMobi, WP-T-Wap’s post editing capabilities are rudimentary. You can enter text and that’s about all. Any HTML has to be keyed manually and there is no provision for uploading images. Where WP-T-Wap really shines is comment moderation. WordMobi isn’t able to show a list of the latest comments in the moderation queue for all posts, only for one post at a time which is impractical when you have hundreds of posts open for comments like I do.
The best thing about WP-T-Wap is that it works with almost any browser. I ended up writing this post entirely in the BlackBerry Messaging app and then pasting it into WP-T-Wap in Opera Mini on my BB 7100i. Then I opened the draft in WordMobi on the N95 to insert the links and screen shots. For spell checking I used the excellent free BBCorrector application. If you don’t have a native spellchecker on your phone you can use SpellBoy.
WP-T-Wap also provides a mobile formatted version of your blog to users. I didn’t need that feature as I already have wapreview.mobi which was built with a highly modified version of Alex King’s WordPress Mobile Edition. I discovered that if you deactivate WP-T-Wap on the WordPress Plug-in screen, it will no long redirect mobile browsers to itself, however you will still be able to access it by appending /wap to your blog’s URL. For example, to see what WP-T-Wap’s public interface looks like visit wapreview.com/wap .
Now I’ve that found WordMobi and WP-T-Wap, I plan to use them for live blogging from mobile events and occasional posts while traveling.
I tried Wphone a while back and ran into a problem where it wouldn’t let me switch back to the normal administration panel on my PC.
I just saw that it was updated last month to fix a logout problem with 2.7 which sounds like it might be related to same issue I was having. I’ll give Wphone another try.
There’s an excellent plugin called Wphone for WordPress that works (mostly) through v2.7. Unfortunately, when the WordPress for iPhone app came out, the plugin authors blindly decided that users with other smartphones weren’t worthy, and have all but stopped development. I’ve been hoping that Alex would pick it up and continue, as it’s really quite nice to have.
It allows WAP access to most of the dashboard features, aside from some of the more advanced/custom fields in WP2.7.