M u s t i q u e

Mustique

Muse originally started production in 2005 shortly after I returned from Iraq. SOSAM, a close friend of mine first told me that WP was the best blog tool ever. Being deeply interested in running a server (which I did/do) I installed it for him and he was off to blog the world around him.

A short time later, while I was on post-deployment leave, he came to me again and said that serious gallery utilities for WP where scant, and of those that existed most required a second installation, cooperation with one’s ISP and sometimes even third-party plugins to get them to truly jive.

Haphazardly, I started creating a gallery. First, under the name “WP Gallery” (which was taken), next “Picture Press” (also taken), then finally “Muse” after looking over all of the plugins available in the WP repository and spending a week wondering “What’s in a name…?”

So, here I am, nearly a year later and I’ve laid down nearly 150k of original code, gone through two or three major revisions and I am ready to let people see what Muse is all about. In the excerpt of the plugin itself, “Muse is a complete gallery manager built around the idea that a gallery should be what you want and where you want it; simple, dynamic, sleek and easily inserted into posts without integrating multiple interfaces or ‘getting under the hood’.”

Muse aims to do the following:

  • KISSKeep It Simple, Seriously
  • Have low overhead:
    • Thumbnails
    • Intermediate images (for low-bandwidth transmission of high quality photos)
    • Simple, complete database for cataloging
    • Simple AJAX
      All work together to keep bandwidth down but keep your website nimble.
  • Be practical:
    • No code!
    • 4 distinct options pages
    • Installs in seconds: UnZip, Put the folder in “Plugins”, & Activate
    • Intuitive design and layout
    • Integrates automatically with your theme
      (and it knows if you change it)
    • Security options
      (To help protect your images from accidents & unwanted copies)
  • Be customizable:
    • Thumbnails can be scaled
      by Height, Width, Largest side, Shortest Side
    • Thumbnails can be cropped
    • Your gallery has the title you want
    • You choose how your gallery is navigated:
      All of your images on one page or divided amongst several pages
      Show any number of pages in the navigation bar or all of them
      Choose your own “first”, “previous”, “next”, & “last” text (or don’t have any)
    • Styles
    • Inserts easily into your blog
      (compatible with WP 1.5 & and WP 2.0)

In reality, Muse aims to accomplish, in the most efficient way, everything that you’ve ever wanted to do with your blog or even photo-blog. It is hard to actually list all of the functions that Muse will provide you, but if you really want to know, please refer to the Features page.

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