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Can one easily create a dynamic 'Recent Posts' section on the front page of a site?

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  • Can one easily create a dynamic 'Recent Posts' section on the front page of a site?

    I am back to working on the http://theforensicnurse.org website to try and get the 'Recent Posts' section of the front page working. To try and do so I installed the GetSimple CMS but have had nothing but trouble and very little, if any, help from the community and developers.

    Here is an image of the section I need to work on, on getting it dynamic:
    Click image for larger version

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    The yellow arrows have been added to the image to make it easier to see where this section is.

    What I want to be able to have here is a sidebar that shows a list of recent posts (not popular posts as that would require a lot more work). The posts would be created by a CMS type system that is easy to use by people who are used to a Wordpress-type environment (which is why I went for GetSimple) back-end.

    When one clicks on one of the posts one would be taken to a page where one could read the full post, which would be a template created for having the full post inserted into it. I would have thought that this would be a relatively easy thing to do but nooooooooooo, people who create these CMS systems have the arrogance to assume that everyone wants to use THEIR templates. Well, I bloody well don't!

    On the flower website (http://gumpasteflowersbysuzette.com) which deathshadow helped a lot with, fckeditor was used as the back end for the flowers page. That CMS has now become CKEditor. Would that CMS system work? Or is that just too much for such small functionality?

    Has anyone come across a simple blog/news CMS that can be plugged into an already created page? As always any help is much appreciated and many thanks in advance.

  • #2
    If I understand the problem...

    I just checked and "Popular Posts" and "Recent Posts" links for every item are set to #. Looks as though list of links to the source is incorrect.


    • #3
      I haven’t worked with GetSimple in quite a while but I’m gonna try to help you. First of all, to get recent posts on the front page, you’d have to have the front page itself part of the CMS (or use an API to load the posts from the CMS into your own, unrelated page but I find this like putting the cart before the horse).

      How are you creating these posts? I suppose you’re using a plugin in GetSimple? As far as I remember it doesn’t come with news/blog functionality by default.
      Stop solving problems you don’t yet have!


      • #4
        Blimey! That was fast! That is why I like coming here more and more. People actually give a damn. Thank you both for responding so quickly.

        JOhn_Betong, the links do not work yet. That is what I am trying to get to work with GS.

        Hi VIPStephan. I have installed two blog plugins: News Manager (Updated) and GS Blog. I have also installed the I18N set of plugins. With the News Manager one is meant to be able to have a sidebar include like so:
        PHP Code:
        <?php nm_list_recent(); ?>
        One creates the posts in the admin/backend of the site.

        I was under the impression before I installed this CMS that one could just 'plug in' the code into a page that one wanted to use and then go from there. Nowhere in the instructions does it say that you have to have everything working 'through' GS. If that is the case then I will have to go to something else. I tried using Perch and one could do what I wanted in the way I wanted but the support was so appalling (for a paid for product) that I went looking for something else. It was one of the actual developers of Perch that recommended GS! He also recommended Kirby. Kirby seems too technical though for what I need. But the support, even for functionality questions, was amazing.

        Here is an image of the backend/admin area where one can create news/blog posts:
        Click image for larger version  Name:	GS-editing.jpg Views:	0 Size:	50.0 KB ID:	2425471
        Last edited by judgedredd; Sep 16, 2020, 03:16 AM.


        • #5
          Originally posted by judgedredd View Post
          I was under the impression before I installed this CMS that one could just 'plug in' the code into a page that one wanted to use and then go from there.
          Yeah, no, that’s not how it works (and no CMS works like that) but it’s easier than you think. You see, the server has to know what to do with the PHP you “plug in” there. If you have a static page, how would it know what <?php nm_list_recent(); ?> is supposed to do? It’s the CMS that defines this function, so you can only use it within the scope of the CMS.

          You don’t have to manage everything through GS; you can basically keep your static files, just the one where you want the latest posts to appear has to be a CMS template. And there, the simplest solution would be to just move your static code into a template file that you are using for the home page. This way you can keep your static HTML and just “plug in” the code for the recent posts, as you had in mind. Here is a guide on how to create a custom “theme”: http://get-simple.info/wiki/themes:creation
          And yeah, I know Kirby, too, and from a developer’s point of view I like it even more than GS, because in Kirby you can define the fields you need in your admin interface yourself. And the support is awesome. But there, too, you need to have at least the home page as CMS template in order to use the CMS functionality.
          Last edited by VIPStephan; Sep 16, 2020, 06:34 AM.
          Stop solving problems you don’t yet have!


          • #6
            Ok VIPStephan I get it. You may be surprised to know that the requirements I put up is what Perch could do. One would put an include at the very top of the page which was a Perch derived include to tell the database that this page would be using Perch functionality. Unfortunately, their level of support was so bad that even their own developers were having issues with using Perch CMS. One of the things I liked about Perch were the videos that were created that showed how to include various functions into one's already created static pages. But as with most other systems, the developers made some assumptions on how people used their CMS which caused confusion on some of their videos.

            Thanks for that link. I will see what that has.
            Last edited by judgedredd; Sep 16, 2020, 06:10 PM.