A Decade of Organic/​Mechanic

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Somewhere in the last cou­ple of months this weblog had its 10 year an­niver­sary. It was emo and ill-writ­ten 10 years ago, and I’m sure at least one friend would still claim that it is. For me, brows­ing through the archives of­fers a good re­ca­pit­u­la­tion of where and who I was, and how I’ve be­come who I am now; both in the things said, and the things left un­said. It started out as a di­ary and emo­tional re­lease dur­ing rough col­lege times, and once in Cleveland, I be­came de­fined by, and ac­cepted to some ex­tent, my sta­tus as a “blog­ger”. I have what web de­sign skills I have to­day di­rectly be­cause of this weblog. I spun off a few other weblog projects and be­came slightly “Tremont-fa­mous”. It was the first peer group I be­came as­so­ci­ated with in town, and I’m still friends with the best of them. 

Along the way, dif­fer­ent pri­or­i­ties as­serted them­selves and I be­came more in­ter­ested in prac­ti­cal ac­tion than cy­ber-noodling. The fre­quency of posts dropped off as my fo­cus be­came cen­tered on my meat-space life. A few years ago this post would have been filled with de­tailed links to the archives, and much more om­phaloskep­sis. I have a con­fi­dence now that I didn’t have then, and part of the rea­son I have it is due to this site.

Here’s to an­other 10 years.

Integrating A Sweetcron Firehose/​Lifestream into WordPress

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Whatever spare spare time I’ve had the last cou­ple of weeks I’ve spent try­ing to fig­ure out how to make a lifestream page for this site. A lifestream is ba­si­cally a page that shows as close to every­thing pos­si­ble that a par­tic­u­lar per­son has been up to on the in­ter­net. A fire­hose is some­what sim­i­lar.

This was tough. I first started out us­ing Yahoo Pipes to cre­ate a feed of all my feeds. Yahoo Pipes is pretty cool, but the feed it out­puts doesn’t al­ways work and can’t be styled or eas­ily in­te­grated with WordPress. So I looked around a bit, and found Mark Pilgrim’s Firehose. I liked the way it looked, so I found the post ex­plain­ing how he did it. Unfortunately, he’s much smarter at the in­ter­net than I am, and his so­lu­tion, though it looked promis­ing, was be­yond my ken.

My next stop was MetaFilter, since I hang out there fre­quently and the hive mind knows all. I found a cou­ple of good re­sources point­ing me to other pos­si­bil­i­ties; namely Sweetcron or re­Blog.

I chose sweet­cron and got to work. I even found a way to in­te­grate my WordPress theme into a sweet­cron theme. This se­tup process was not easy and hasn’t worked com­pletely. The sweet­cron-run fire­hose uses my WordPress theme bril­liantly, but there’s some sort of con­flict en­gen­dered by the WordPress mod-rewrites in the .htac­cess files, which re­sults in the page header al­ways dis­play­ing 404 Page Not Found. How to fix this? The afore­linked in­te­gra­tion men­tioned a few steps to take care of this is­sue, but in my case they didn’t work.

I dug around in the WordPress fo­rums and found out that Apache’s mod-rewrite in the .htac­cess file for WordPress has of­ten caused this er­ror for any non-Wordpress sub­di­rec­to­ries on a do­main. None of the sug­ges­tions men­tioned in that thread worked, so I think there’s some sort of con­flict be­tween the root-level WordPress .htac­cess file and the sweet­cron di­rec­tory .htac­cess file. I might be wrong, that sort of thing is out of my depth.

However, apart from the 404 Page Not Found in the page header, the rest of the lifestream/​firehose works just fine. If you re­ally want to mon­i­tor most of my on­line ac­tiv­i­ties (and I know there’s at least one per­son in the County Administration Building who does), this should make it eas­ier for you.

Always happy to help!

Reassertion

Sunday, 29 November 2009

I’ve been ne­glect­ing this site for quite some time. There are a bunch of rea­sons for this, but none of them are good ex­cuses. I’ve been a busy man, and real life has been keep­ing me bless­edly busy with school, con­fer­ences, hol­i­day travel, hol­i­day shop­ping and col­lab­o­ra­tion with some lo­cal folks. When my life re­arranged it­self a few years ago, I de­cided to only write when there were im­por­tant things to say. When Bram showed up, I told my­self I wouldn’t let this place turn into every other weblog of a new par­ent.

All of which is a be­trayal of the main rea­son I started this thing, way back in January of 2002. To write things down that I thought or thought were im­por­tant on a daily ba­sis. As a way to find my voice. Time to get back on track. I’m go­ing to write at least a small post on a daily ba­sis, just like back in the day.

Punishment

Monday, 8 December 2008

Since I haven’t up­dated this site in over a month, I’m pun­ish­ing my­self [and you as well] by forc­ing my­self to re­design. Again. Only the twist this time is that I’m not do­ing it be­hind the sce­nes, but, bit by bit, while try­ing to make the site re­main read­able as I go.

Playing with a baby is much, much more fun than keep­ing a web­site up­dated.

Temporary Switch

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

I’ve switched back to my old Minima theme un­til I fig­ure out what I in­cor­rectly coded in Mark Elf that breaks it in WordPress 2.3. This Dexter re­lease is pretty awe­some look­ing al­ready, es­pe­cially the na­tive tag­ging sup­port, so I’m anx­ious to get all my ducks in a row. Maybe I’ll even take the time to wid­getize my themes.

I up­dated the Sideblog plugin and FlickrRSS plugin and now I’m good to go. I fig­ured that was what.

From the Ashes

Tuesday, 13 May 2003

Here I am, back again and fancier than ever. I’ve fi­nally inched to­ward a higher ech­e­lon of blog­ging au­then­tic­ity by hop­ping on the MT band­wagon. Now that I have re­designed and have nifty auto-archiv­ing et al. there is re­ally only one thing about this site that both­ers me. You might be able to help…

I can­not get my par­ent DIV ta­ble in which all else is nested to auto ex­pand when the nested DIVs within it do so. My only re­course was to make the par­ent DIV in­or­di­nately long. If you have an idea for what I should do to make the par­ent grow in pro­por­tion to its chil­dren please, by all means, help this poor sod out.

All the links should work, but I still must put forth what lit­tle pow­ers of de­sign that are at my dis­posal in or­der to make those pages jive with the new ones. please bear with me, and if you see any­thing that needs fixed, holler.

Search Strings

Monday, 28 October 2002

a hand picked list of search strings that have re­sulted in a hit on my site (there could be fun­nier ones, but I only see 50 and there are over 140 for this month):

  • dirty toe­nails
  • drunk and shaved my head
  • girls that are crosseyed
  • goth room­mate from hell
  • how to pre­vent a dis­lo­cated kneecap
  • red­headed vir­gin catholic goth
  • a writ­ten de­scrip­tion of the ap­pear­ance of a scary per­son
  • fund­ing cir­cus per­form­ers 2002 (my per­sonal fa­vorite)