Another Downing St travel-blog

Gordon Brown’s off to Japan for at the weekend, to hang out with the other G8 heads of government. So it’s time to crank out another Puffbox production for 10 Downing Street: the now-familiar mash-up of a travel-blog, Twitter stream and Flickr photo set.
As with previous trips to the US and Brussels, it’s based primarily around WordPress, with data pulled in from the third-party services via RSS. Once again I’m using SimplePie to handle the RSS processing; although if I’d had more time this week, I’d probably have tried out Google’s new AJAX Feed API, to do it all on the client-side. I’ve done some preliminary trials with the service, and it seems very useful indeed.
This will probably be the last such travel-blog to be done in this form, for reasons which will very soon become apparent. But these set-piece microsites have served their purpose – providing an excellent excuse to expose the Number10 team to WordPress, and the possibilities of lightweight content management.
Update – the site got a nice mention in Monday’s Washington Post. ‘British Prime Minister Gordon Brown is stealing the G-8 show online. No. 10 Downing Street is blogging the summit in Toyako, throwing up an integrated social media site to follow “our man in Japan,” with Twitter and Flickr feeds to boot. Downingstreet, “the official twitter channel for the Prime Minister’s Office based at 10 Downing Street,” has more than 3,000 followers, and is part of the prime minister’s ongoing Web-savvy operation.’ Best press No10 has had in ages… 🙂