MT4 Is Built With Its Own Template Tags

By Anil Dash

Okay, this one's huge: With MT4, everyone who knows how to make a Movable Type template also knows how to customize any Movable Type application screen.

We've talked a bit about the powerful new ways that information is presented in Movable Type 4, encouraging you to understand what's really going on with your blog, but also helping you connect with the contributors that make your site's community thrive. But one thing we've learned from working with the MT community for almost 6 years is that we've got to be humble -- the things we can think of putting into our applications are nothing in comparison to the creativity you've all shown over the years.

Usually, a lot of the praise goes to plugin developers, with good reason. But what about those of us who know our way around some HTML and CSS, or maybe a little bit of Javascript, who have good ideas about changes or fixes to make to the user interface of Movable Type itself? If presenting blog information is so critical, it's just as important to make sure you can custom-tailor your display to suit your needs.

For years, we've supported customization of application screens in Movable Type, but it could be a little tricky -- you had to learn a new templating system to do it. But now it's easier than ever: MT4 uses the same template language to customize the user interface as it uses for your published pages.

Anyone who can create a template in Movable Type can now go in and customize the Dashboard or any other page in the application using the skills you've already got. And if you're new to MT, you can bone up on the Template Tag Reference documentation for a list of all the powerful tags available to help you make MT4 fit your needs perfectly.