One of the RSS feeds I get in Liferea is Gnomefiles. This as background only, of course.

One of the recent articles to have come through on said feed was one announcing an update to something named Drivel, nominally a LiveJournal client with some other back-ends hacked into it.

Curious, I downloaded the application, built a Fedora Core 4 compatible RPM, dumped it in my YUM repository and installed it; this is my first attempt at posting to JADB with it, and herewith my impressions.

The first of the things I like about it is that it supports categories, something I use fairly extensively. Unfortunately, however, it only supports posting the entry under a single category. That’s okay in general for people who only use primary categories, I suppose, and even I can always go in after the fact and add multiple categories, but I would really have liked multiple category support. To be fair, though, I’ll admit that I’m not too certain whether the Movable Type API actually supports that, or not.

Spell checking works as expected, underlining wrongly spelled words with the accustomed red wavy line and allowing correction or adding to the dictionary on a right-click. That is, it works fine if you actually remember to install gtkspell-devel before you compile Drivel…

Drivel unfortunately doesn’t have a Gnome Panel plugin, something I got quite used to having with gnome-blog. Fortunately arbitrarily adding launchers to the panel is an absolute no-brainer which does go quite some way to mitigation.

Another drawback compared to gnome-blog for some people may be the lack of a WYSIWYG option. I must admit to not minding much since I prefer the source-view, but I could easily understand those users’ point.

I have to ask myself the question, however, whether I prefer Drivel’s implementation to gnome-blog’s.

Currently, that is a definite maybe — which could quite easily become an unreserved, if slightly selfish, definitely if the developer/ developers added some of the more advanced features of the “Movable Type” API as used by WordPress, the software driving this blog. Something I consider quite inevitable; the wheels of Open Source seems to turn that way…

In all, currently Drivel gets the thumbs-up; I’ll be keeping an eye on it to see how it improves.