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PHP Server-software for Nokia's Share Online blog tool, with live demonstration.

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Blogging from your phone

Last year I bough a Nokia N95. This is a high-end smart phone with many media-features built-in. One of the features lets you 'blog' and upload photos and videos from the mobile directly to an online blog or photo service, like Flickr and Vox. That's very nice and all, but I have my own photo album system. Wouldn't it be great if I could upload photos from my phone directly to my own album? Yes it would! So I start digging.

Nokia's Share Online application

Nokia released the Share Online ↑ tool for a large number of their Symbian-powered phones, including the the N95. In fact, the N95 comes pre-installed with this tool.

The Share Online blogging software handles the accounts and services used for blogging. This is NOT Nokia's own LiveBlog, but third-party services like Flickr and Vox. With the help of a HTTP debugger proxy Fiddler ↑ (great tool, and free!) I found that the Share Online application uses a form of the AtomPublish protocol. More specifically, the Atom protocol developed by Six Apart ↑.

The best thing is that the Share Online application lets you add and manage new services, based on this protocol.

Updated information (21 July 2009)

Recently, I've looked much deeper into the Atom protocol, and how Nokia Share Online v3+ uses it, and documented it. I was actually surprised to learn the extend to which Share Online supports the protocol. My original intend was to write complete new server software for this, supporting much more of the protocol.

However, I don't think I'll be using a Symbian smartphone much longer →, and therefore I'm not really that motivated to do so anymore. But, I think the report provides a nice introduction in syndication, Atom, Atom Publishing Protocol and how to use it with Nokia Share Online.

Download the report on Atom and Nokia Share Online (PDF/A, e-book reader friendly!).

The rest of this page is more or less obsolete; the information in the report is much more detailed. Still, the PHP-code provided here works just fine, and perhaps it's just what you need.

PHP server code

Apart from the documentation and the AtomPublish implementation in WordPress, there was very little PHP-code for server-side handling of AtomPublish on the net. So I wrote my own, which you can download here.

Download PHP Nokia Share Online Blog Server and demo ↑. (v0.9.1 released on 20-6-2008)

Notes:

  • The code is only tested on my Nokia N95 mobile phone, but I guess it should work with all Nokia phones with the Share Online (v2.0 and v3.0) software.
  • Only images are supported. The Share Online software lets you blog text with attachments, but only the image-part is handled. However, adding text-support should be quite easy
  • The code has been tested on PHP 4.3 on Apache 1.3 and PHP 5.2 on Apache 2.2.
  • BSD-licensed.
  • Read the readme and license!

Todo

  • Support text-blogging, with links to the (image) attachments.
  • Support other features; the configuration file XML indicates it's possible to automatically include the current GPS location and network information with every postig. For more details, see the Nokia Share Online configuration details by Fredrik Davidsson ↑.
  • Better standards-support, to  support more phones and other clients.
  • Support for Atom 1.0, which seems to be supported by Share Online v3.0. However, I don't know whether this will be of any use now.

Demo

You can test the Share Online image blogging features right here! You'll need a Nokia phone with the Share Online v2.0 or v3.0 software ↑. You'll also need an internet connection on your mobile. Uploaded images will be shown below!

Note: the steps provided here are for Share Online v3.0. For v2.0 the procedure is a bit different, but it does work. However, in Share Online v2.0 you can also use manual configuration →. Also note that in v2.0 you cannot remove the demo blog service afterwards!

A special note for CorePlayer v1.2.x for Symbian users: CorePlayer seems to use a non-standard method for file association. However, this method makes it impossible to use this demo, and perhaps even to break image uploading using Share Online altogether! Uninstalling CorePlayer solves the problem. I've tried to file a bug report, but currently there's a malfunction in the registration system of their bug reporting system...

Demo steps

  1. 3.0configuratie.pngOn your mobile, open http://randysimons.nl/overige/blogdemo/blogconfiguration.php, or simply use the barcode on the right. This will download the configuration file, which is automatically imported in Share Online. You can close the browser after downloading.
  2. 3.0Screenshot0012.pngOpen "Share Online".
  3. 3.0Screenshot0002.pngSelect the "Share Online Demo". The software asks if it should retrieve the services, answer "Yes".
  4. 3.0Screenshot0005.pngYou'll need to enter a login name and password. Use the following data:
    User name:
    foo
    Password:
    bar
  5. 3.0Screenshot0007.pngFor convenience, select the Share Online Demo blog, and from the menu select "Set as default".
  6. 3.0Screenshot0008.pngPick "Blog1" or "Blog2".
  7. Close Share Online.
  8. 3.0Screenshot0009.pngOpen the camera to take a picture, or simply select an image from your galery. Select the second icon, "Post to demo account".
    Alternatively, you can select the first icon (Send), and select "Post to web". You can then select the account and specific blog you want to post to.
  9. 3.0Screenshot0010.pngThat's it! Your phone now automatically resizes the image, and uploads it to the demoservice. Your photo should appear below :)
  10. After you're done playing around, you can delete the demo account and provider.

Uploaded images

Below are the images which are uploaded by users of this demo:

Last image uploaded on demoblog 1:

demo blog 1

Last image uploaded on demoblog 2:

 demo blog 2

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