webdev

Welcome to schuss.net 6.0

Is it a little scary that I’ve had 6 complete redesigns of this site? Someday I’ll dig them up for you in the internet archive – maybe for my 10th blogging anniversary. 😉 Anyway, welcome to the new fully-wordpress-integrated look. I’ve been using WordPress on the backend for over a year, since I took a weekend and migrated all my legacy posts and comments into it. The site’s been a little clunky since then, so I’m happy to present a more unified, consolidated experience now that I’m taking full advantage of the flexibility of this platform.

Some of the hot new features I’m excited about:

  • The Post Tags cloud on the left, showing the topics I talk about the most – bigger ones are more frequent.
  • Twitter integration – also on the left, my latest random thought (ie: tweet), thanks to the slick Twitter Tools plugin. As these are now linked with WordPress I’ll have the option for future integration, and the same one-liners are also becoming my Facebook status as of late, too. I love killing many birds with one stone… haha, a twitter pun.
  • Check out the Links tab up top for my del.icio.us tag cloud – like the Post Tags cloud but a collection of my bookmarks grouped by relative topic. There’s some good stuff in there.
  • In case you missed my post about the British Auto Show, check out the new photo gallery format in use there. I’m still working to migrate old photos into this but new galleries will be this way and somewhere I’ll come up with a list of all the galleries that’s easy to navigate.
  • And this is a gimme, but comments work properly now – you can log in and it will remember you next time, you can subscribe to a post and get RSS updates when someone replies to your comment – all the things everyone else using WordPress takes for granted that my visitors have been suffering without. So enjoy that, it’s been long overdue.

Feedback is welcome, as always, and thanks to the internet and all of you for listening to me for the last 8 years. 🙂

Woefully out of date

I’m finally posting something after more than 20 days, but don’t expect this to be the catch-up post that explains everything noteworthy that’s happened in October. So much of this month has been events worthy of their own post that it just wouldn’t do them justice to breeze through them in bullet points. I did want to explain, though, that I’ve migrated all of my various sites to new hosting in October due to some things I didn’t like about how the previous host was managing them (more on that later). Moving the domain names and all the data has taken a long time – longer than I had wanted – especially because it wasn’t a planned, well-coordinated move. It was more the sort of move passengers on the steerage deck make if they’re lucky enough to be near an unlocked porthole when they hear the call to abandon ship.

Anyway, beware of broken links, weird errors and other migration hiccups as I manually go through every page and file looking for configuration changes. I’m learning that I may have been depending on my previous setup a little too much and I need to design in a more modular and universal way so migrations are simpler – something I’ve known but been lazy about in using the same hosting platform for the past 10 years. Unless you see a grossly overlooked error don’t bother pointing them out right now… might already be on my list. 🙂

Happy, uh, saturday afternoon.

So, like, happy new year and stuff. Whatever. It’s such a strange holiday, just a date on the calendar, so arbitrary. An excuse to party, i guess. Personally, i went to bed at 10 and got up at five to come to work, just like i do every friday/saturday. Big whoop. So yeah, i’m lame. I was going to go to Jason & Christie’s, but everyone was bailing on them so they called off the poker night – me and the two of them wouldn’t have been enough (and basically i could’ve just given Jason all my money and saved myself the trouble). And i didn’t have any anyway, so it’s probably for the best.

I spent the day at work today updating Danielle’s website and mine; after moving them to a new server with the webhost this week i broke pretty much everything and they were hosed. Some of my core PHP scripts that do some of the really mundane work (and that i wrote like 4 years ago and have totally forgotten the details of) no longer work thanks to evil admin settings on this new machine. After some back-and-forth with the host about how evil it is, i was left with only the rewrite-it-all-in-Perl option, so that’s what i did today and yesterday. It works better… and worse. But it works. And it was a nice Perl refresher (even if the code is really ugly).

Ok, enough boring you with nerd fodder. Let’s talk last year. It was all kinds of special, wasn’t it? Not always the hallmark kind of special, either. But there were some high points, and i think it’s healthy sometimes to focus on those. Apparently fox news thinks so, too. They compiled a nice happy little list of things that didn’t suck in 2004. Some of it i find rather difficult to believe (american kids are getting less violent? yeah right!) but it is at least refreshing to see someone spinning statistics to sound upbeat for a change, even if they’re doing a poor job of hiding the man behind the curtain.

I’m having a hard time concentrating – i spent all my focusing energy for the day writing the code i was talking about in the part you skimmed thru previously. And i’m watching Space Ghost C2C and it’s very entertaining, so i’m having a hard time thinking about, well, you all… 😉 So skip it, i’m done.

Site redesign

New and improved look to the site! My redesign is finally live! I was going to wait until i had all the graphics work done before i switched over, but i was just getting too impatient… so watch for nifty images to pop up over the next few weeks. Mostly, i wanted the new organizational system to support all the europe photos that will be coming down the pipe. Whatever my motivation and despite my meandering disclaimers, it’s up! Check it out, lemme know what you think. 🙂

Search yerself

Just a quick update for ya. The news is now searchable (bottom of the page) so you can see how many times i’ve talked about you. 😉

Update: when I migrated to WordPress the search box moved to the top of the page.

What flavor do you want for Christmas? Mild, Medium or Hot?

I’m surprised i can actually still type today, although it is getting better since yesterday. What with all the bruises and scratches, and several bandaids, i keep missing keys or hitting two, which can be pretty difficult in my profession. Thankfully, most of my coworkers are one-finger typers, so i’m still doing ok at work, even with my battered digits. What exactly have i been doing? Well, although it feels like i slammed my hands in a car door, i actually spent wednesday night helping Patrick finish his leather seat install. He had the rear bench done; i helped with the front seats and the headrests. It involved a great deal of hogrings, pliers, and sharp edges. Those seats were wicked! They look super cool, tho, and for the extra cost of a pro install… well, i’m not sure if either of us would do it ourselves again, now that we know how much work it was! Someday i might do that myself, when i have the $$, but there’s a lot of other things i’d like to do more (like get a recalibration of the transmission valve body – man, oh, man, do i wanna do that!).

I’m sitting up late watching blind date. I can’t decide if it’s encouraging, because of the really pitiful people that still manage to find someone… or wait, if they can do it, but i’m single… or is it depressing, that the people on blind date are doing better than me… on the other hand, on my current budget a dinner date would have to involve maruchan noodles… so not sure if it matters that i have no social life, cause i can’t really afford to have one. Just another thing on the list of stuff i can’t afford. Ugh. Only like 40 days until Christmas. Tomorrow’s payday, but i spent it last month, so i guess i’m not going to start shopping just yet. And by shopping, i mean collecting condiment packets from fast food restaurants. 🙂 Hope that was on your Christmas list…

In site news, you might notice the news page loads a bit faster. that’s cause it’s not loading a whole year at a time anymore. 🙂 I’ve moved the news into the mysql database with the quotes and the music list (databases are neat!), so now i can filter it to just the most recent few. Don’t worry, it’s all still there, and you can browse away to your little heart’s content with the navigation links at the bottom. Hope that works better for ya.

Site redesign

Ok, i just posted the completely overhauled site. If you have any feedback, feel free to let me know. I like it much better. Hopefully, it’s easier to navigate, with less clicks to get places and less of the parts no one looks at. My apologies for those on slow connections if it takes forever to load, but once you get there, it looks nice!

Maybe I’ll be a geek someday after all

I never know how to start these. It’s kind of like figuring out what to put in the “subject” line of an email – what exactly am i supposed to say besides “here’s today’s stuff”? Mailing a big padded envelope to Christian today – Danielle and i put together a note, some goofy pictures and a couple cd’s to keep him entertained in boring old Europe. I drove to Tacoma last night (not nearly as scary as i imagined) to meet a friend of Dad’s, Niles, and we talked about linux, open source software and other geeky stuff over dinner. He’s connecting me with a strong linux users’ group down there. I’m excited to have some more friends and contacts in the tech biz, especially of the open-source variety, and of course the potential for finding a great job is huge. So that will be cool – Niles is headed back to MT this weekend, but we’ll get back together after he gets back and swap more ideas. In the meantime (until some linux shop snatches me up for a great new project) i’m applying to be a bank teller at Key Bank today, and will drop an app at Columbia Winery this week, too, for part time possibilities. So maybe i can turn in that resignation letter this week after all – here’s hoping! If that doesn’t pan out, i can always hope to get laid off… Ann dropped me a note, expressing her frustration about the small repertoire of the quote generator on the front page. She suggested i beef out the database with Friends lines, but i’m not sure if the first thing i want someone seeing when they pull up my site (especially if they’re considering hiring me to maintain their highly secure database, or something) is “Ooh, shrimp toast!” So in the meantime, my apologies for the repetition. And Ann, lay off the DVDs!

Let there be fireworks or whatever

So, like, happy indepence day tomorrow, and everything. Personally, i’m thinking the guaranteed jobs and government-supplied health care that come with socialism are starting to look pretty good. It’s only wednesday. Although i am on parole tomorrow as required by federal law, i’m forced to return to solitary confinement friday morning for another full day of insurance evil. Although an optimistic person who has something to live for might look at tonight as a bonus mini-weekend, i find it more of a cruel joke that allows me to believe i’m gleefully unemployed for just long enough to begin accomodating the idea before it’s yanked away and wicked reality returns to taunt me. I suppose in that sense, it is a mini-weekend. At least i was able to make today somewhat productive; some cool updates to the site today while i was shackled to my desk. The front page randomly selects a quote from a MySQL database each time it loads, and i’ve got a neato little interface for adding new quotes, so hopefully the variety of platitudes will only increase as i continue. Are you totally impressed, or what?

I expect both of my readers to respond promptly

What a great week! It’s been busy and exciting this week – Josh will be sorry he missed it all, being in ho-hum Chicago all week. 😉 Lots of assorted madness, and some of the best stuff is classified until further notice, but I promise you’ll all be the first to know. So, yeah, in thinking about it I really can’t tell you all that much. But just suffice to say that I had a good week. ;-D In other news, Annie got a job (yay for Annie!), Mike’s car broke down (sucks, Mike!), Carrie’s sisters came to town (hide your sons, Seattle!) and we had a lovely martini party Friday evening with a small group of unassuming guests. And Christian and Danielle will be here in 21 more days!

Now for some interactive news. I’m feeling creative and wanna hype up the site a bit. This requires some feedback from my readership (both of you!). I’m pondering making the news interactive – giving you a chance to add your thoughts, disagree, tell me what a dork I am, etc. Whattaya think? Also, am I the only one who thinks the photo section is totally disorganized and it’s impossible to find what you’re looking for? What would make more sense? Strict chronological? By geography? All the blackmail material grouped together? Any opinions? Thanks!