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Making template errors not suck so much

By Byrne Reese
Posted June 11, 2007.

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So one week ago today we released the first Beta for Movable Type 4.0. It was very well received, and I must admit the more and more I use the new version the harder and harder I find it to use Movable Type 3.x. The difference between the two is that dramatic. If you are a Mac user the closest thing I can compare it to is the feeling you get when use Max OS 9 after having used OS X for a while.

There are simply so many improvements each and every day; and I am not just talking about bug fixes either. Being a "real beta" we are using this time to not just to ferret out bugs, but also to listen to our users in an ongoing effort to make Movable Type 4.0 the best blogging platform on the planet. Bar none.

For instance, one feature we didn't initially plan on implementing was a way to capture, display and handle template errors more gracefully. We all get them - it is inevitable: you mistype a template tag name, or forget a closing tag somewhere, or who-knows-what. So it wasn't long before we found the existing approach in handling template errors simply not elegant enough. So now, when you save a template that contains a syntax error, we display the error, the template tag generating the error, and the line number the error can be found on. Thus making template editing, and the process of debugging your templates easier than ever before.

This feature along with a slew of new ones, more refinements to the user interface, improvements to the installation experience, and lots, lots more can be found in tomorrow's release of Beta 2 of Movable Type 4.0. Drop by tomorrow to download the latest and greatest of Movable Type.


7 Comments on June 12, 2007, 1:17 a.m. Reply

This is a fantastic feature, it will prove to be very useful indeed :) Great work team (though a feature request, those line numbers in the error messages would be even more useful if the textarea had line numbers down the side ;)

Mark Carey

Mark Carey on June 12, 2007, 6:39 a.m. Reply

Wow, I like this one a lot. This will be a real time saver when tweaking templates. One of those features you didn’t realize you needed until you see it.


Beckah on October 18, 2012, 1:41 a.m. Reply

I agree with Naemi. Since this change has been made it is now much more easier to find any problem. It is quite warm feeling to remember how MT has been improving with all these years and we the users have been a part of this improvement.

George Coverdale

George Coverdale on October 24, 2012, 12:53 a.m. Reply

I am continuing reading different post here (I am new in Moveable type) and for me is real easy to see all the steps that you have made through all these years. I can easily say you have done a tremendous job in your effort to make MT one of the best CMS these days.


Edwina on November 12, 2012, 9:51 p.m. Reply

Hi, could you share with us the system you’ve used to display the miswritten code we’ve made? Did you write it or it was inserted from other projects?


baldric on December 18, 2012, 2:47 a.m. Reply

Even more some programs adding their code when you do copy paste function from them which make the process even more annoying. With this option for safe direct coding everything seems to me more easier.

Rupert Boneham

Rupert Boneham on December 24, 2012, 9:48 p.m. Reply

The secured coding was great improvement. I really like the idea (it’s obvious) and I think this was a great step forward for Movable Type :) The other new things in this Beta were also great.

I miss Betas. There are almost a year without new Beta released from Movable Type and I think it is enough. You should start another one :)

Byrne Reese

Byrne Reese was previously the Product Manager of Movable Type at Six Apart, where he had also held positions as the Manager of Platform Technology and Product Manager for TypePad. Byrne is a huge supporter of the Movable Type user and developer community. He dedicates much of his time to promoting and educating people about Movable Type as well as building the tools and plugins for Movable Type that are showcased on Majordojo. He contributes regularly to open source; and he is an advocate for open protocols and standards like Atom and OpenID.