Want blog-like, short typed-in observations in my website

Not sure how to explain this, but I am pretty sure I’ve seen this feature in other weather websites and think it would be neat to incorporate into mine.

I’d like a small section on the main page that will show an observation that I type in. I’d be able to type these in from anywhere I can access the website, but would need a password to do so. When people visit my page, they can see the date/time-stamped observation that I entered (or the last two or three). Things like “Webcam currently under repair” or “6 inches of new snow last night”

I know I can put a text file on the server, update it via FTP, and have my page load it – but I’d prefer something that I can edit from my iPhone or work computer, right on the page.

Does anyone have something like this, or can you point me in the right direction? Sort of like a “visitor’s comment section,” but only allows me to comment, and is displayed on the front page…?


Curly had a Bulletin Board type feature he made


Zip File isnt around anymore. Maybe someone here has it.

I have this on my site in that my entire weather site (the newer one) is actually a Wiki based system behind the scenes.

However, it is rather trivial to create a form that you hide with a simple .htaccess password that prevents anyone but you from getting to the management page for it.

There are tons of resources for doing this (not specific to weather) on the net.

Search Google for “TEXT UPDATER” there should be some scripts you can use for this purpose…

I had one but it is way old and I don’t use it anymore as it isn’t supported any longer.


Thanks all. I did some research and learned how to make a form that writes to a file, and how to make it password protected per TNETWeather’s suggestion. I’ll update this thread once it’s done and integrated.

Looking forward to what you come up with…

My previous response was a bit curt as I was getting ready for a major project activation and really didn’t have any time available. Long time ago, I used a script like this before I started using a Wiki for my newer websites and can just edit the pages using its control.

Below is a PHP script I threw together from one of those to do a simple file editor and display function.

How it works…

Outputting Text
To output the data on your page, you just call the script with no arguments. It will read the text file, and then output some pre and post CSS with the contents of the file in between.

You can of course just point to the text file and use it directly.

Editing the File
To edit the file, you use the script with ?cmd on the end like:


When you do this, it then looks to see if you have logged in during the current session. If not, it will prompt you for the password. If entered in correctly, it will set a session variable, and let you use a “really simple” editor of the file. Each time you click on submit, it will replace the contents of the file with what is in the text box.

The password is set in the script, and you will need to change it because it needs to be 10 characters or less (it is currently much longer to force you to change it).

Note… there is no SSL involved so logging in is in plain text.


Example Output:

Example of Edit Mode:

and, no… the password in the displayed source is not the same in the active file. So unless you can guess the password, you won’t be able to actually edit.

This could be expanded to let you online choose the file and display the file etc… but this is very simple.

No .htaccess control is needed.

I was thinking of doing the same thing, my idea was to do it via twitter and this widget

Twitter has an RSS feed of your data… just use a simple RSS feed reader without the widget.

I did a very simple Twitterfeed like this

    Not bad and it fits your website nice.


    TNET, that’s great info! I managed a very simple solution, but had trouble with the .htaccess/.htpasswd setup. I made a simple HTML form in a sub-folder of my main web folder. I have that form submit to a php file that writes the current date and what I entered on the form into a ‘flat file’ with a php extension. Then I include that created php file on my main screen. You can see the output under the NWS/WXSIM forecasts on my main page. It’s very bare-bones and unsafe if someone were to find the URL to the form.

    I will continue to experiment with your suggested methods.

    I am not sure why the .htaccess didn’t work. Could that be an e-rice limitation?

    Thanks again,

    Norwegian, that looks great! I don’t do twitter but that might be a motivation to try.


    Thanks, keep it simple, that is my aim. Hopefully improving over time.