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Step 1. Register a Mode and Mode Handler

If you are familiar with Movable Type and its URL scheme, you may have noticed that virtually every screen within the application has a URL that contains the following query string parameter:

http://foo.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt.cgi?__mode=do_something

Each individual mode, identified by the __mode parameter, has associated with it a handler, or subroutine that is responsible for processing input from the user and rendering the results of their request to the browser. For each request Movable Type refers to the value of this __mode parameter passed in via the query string, or via form input, and looks up the corresponding handler for that mode in the registry. Movable Type then routes the request through that handler for processing invoking the necessary callbacks along the way.

To register a mode, edit your plugin’s config.yaml file and create an entry according to the example below:

name: Example Plugin for Movable Type
id: Example
description: This plugin is an example plugin for Movable Type.
version: 1.0
applications:
    cms:
        methods:
            do_something: $Example::Example::Plugin::do_something

With the mode now registered you will be able to access the screen you are about to create at the following URL:

http://www.example.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt.cgi?__mode=do_something

About Blog Context

The __mode query string parameter is a special and reserved input parameter managed by Movable Type. It knows to refer to its value for the method name to route a request to. Another reserved input parameter is blog_id. When a URL contains the blog_id parameter it automatically sets the mode’s context to that of the referenced blog (referenced by the blog’s numeric ID).

Providing the ID of blog via the blog_id parameter is what will give the app the proper blue background, and the blog specific menus for the application. It is also what instructs Movable Type to load the blog and make an instance of it available to developers through the following convenient method:

   sub foo {
    my $app = shift;
    my $blog = $app->blog();
    # do something
}

The value returned by MT::App->blog() is a complete MT::Blog object containing all of the properties and methods defined by that object.

If MT::App->blog() returns null or undefined, it is because a blog context could not be established and the developer should assume the user is operating in a system context.

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