Archive for the 'Site' Category

Switching To Atom

Nov 18, 2007 in Site

I’ve configured Feedburner to use an Atom feed in place of the old RSS feed. With the Atom feed, I’ve found that NetNewsWire properly handles the footnote links I use in some articles (clicking on a footnote in the Atom feed scrolls to the footnote while doing the same in the RSS feed loads a new tab). I probably could’ve reconfigured the RSS feed to accomplish the same, but I took what seemed like the path of least resistance.

Let me know if anything seems horribly broken.

I Hope This Works…

Feb 07, 2007 in Site

OK, this weblog is now powered by WordPress. If you’ve gotten this far, that means at least the bare minimum is working. Hopefully, everything’s working.

Why’d I change? Well, one of the reasons (not the only reason, by far, but one of the reasons) my blogging slowed was because I’d let my MovableType installation get woefully out of date and I’d slipped far behind in the cleaning out the comment spam that had been building up. Right now, the Weblog Comments folder I’ve got in Mailsmith has 2245 unread comments. I’m willing to be 2244 of these are spam. So, I decided to apply the Inbox Zero approach to the old weblog. If you wrote the one valid comment that I missed or if my estimation is a little off, sorry.

As for WordPress versus MovableType, I’d been using the former for a few months while I was managing the GW MBA Association’s web site and I’ve become rather fond of it. One big benefit was that posting from MarsEdit to the WordPress-powered blog was much faster than posting to my personal MovableType-powered blog. I suppose that could have been a configuration issue specific to the two blogs, but it had a big influence on the way I viewed the two blogs. Also, DreamHost‘s one-click install support for WordPress had a huge impact — as I said, dealing with my out-of-date MovableType installation was one of the things that helped keep me away from blogging for stretches of time. I’m more than happy to offload the bulk of the responsibility to somebody else.

Switching to WordPress also gave me the opportunity to undo a horrible decision I made when starting this weblog — my selection of a permalink format. Why, oh why I thought it was a good idea to have my links as 000123.php, I’ll never know. At least I had enough common sense to use the year/month directory structure to make things a little simpler, but still, that was dumb. Now, I’m using a more rational permalink structure that uses the post title in the link. I’ve configured my .htaccess file to forward old links to the new URLs, so both internal and external links should continue to work. Also, I discovered that when I moved from XrackHosting1 to Dreamhost, MovableType began renumbering my posts. The links still worked because the actual php files remained in place, but they weren’t actually live in MovableType. These orphaned links also point to the new pages in WordPress.

As I said earlier, if you’re reading this, it means the bare minimum is working. However, if you’re reading this via a pre-existing RSS feed, it means that more of the .htaccess voodoo is working — all the old MovableType subscriptions should be forwarded to the new FeedBurner subscription. At least, I hope.

One catch on the new feed — the timezone is off by several hours. As far as I can tell, WordPress is generating feeds in GMT and not the EST that I’ve configured in my options. Oh well.

For the time being, I’m using a modified version of the Say It 2.0 theme. It’s functional for now, but I’m not completely in love with it. In the not-to-distant future, I’d like to come up with something new. Of course, I was saying the same thing about the modified stock MT theme that I was using for roughly 4 years, so you should probably take it with a grain of salt.

The old photo album did not survive the transition. Although DreamHost offers a one-click install option for Gallery, my personal installation predated this functionality. Since I’ve haven’t touched the photo album in a few years, I decided not to bother moving over the data. In place of the album, I’ve included a link to my Flickr photos in the Destinations section of the sidebar.

I think that about covers it. If anything seems broken, leave a note.

  1. Is it strange that a web hosting company would give you a 403 error if you entered their URL sans “www”? []

Off and Running Again?

Jan 22, 2005 in Site

Looks like I’m up and running again. It’s amazing how much better MT 3.1 works when it’s not using the 2.x Admin UI.

In my… zeal… to get this fixed, I forgot to back up my templates and plugins before blowing away my old installation. I think I’ve repaired most of the damage to the templates (especially the style sheet), but if anything looks munged, do let me know.

I took down the blogroll. For a while, I’d felt it was getting to long to be real useful. When I tried rebuilding my index page after reinstalling MT, I started getting errors about XML::Twig — that was the straw that broke the camels back, so to speak.

Offline for a bit

Jan 22, 2005 in Site

It’s Saturday night and I’m in the process of getting snowed in at this very moment.

Since I’ve got nothing better to do, I’m going to fix my MovableType install. Comments and stuff will be down while I’m working.

Trying del.icio.us

Dec 28, 2004 in Site

I’ve decided Buzz is very persistent. I’ve never been able to get into any of these community web services in the past, but Buzz’es writings on the development of Cocoal.icio.us have piqued my interest. I created a del.icio.us account and I’m slowly adding links.

I have to admit, I’m more excited about the idea and development of Cocoal.icio.us than I am the idea of social bookmarks. I’ve only posted three links so far, but with each one, I’ve thought “do I want to share this with the world?” It’ll be interesting to see how long I stick with this and what I end up posting.

Up until now, whenever I came across an interesting articles in an RSS feed, I flagged it in NetNewsWire. When I came across interesting web pages, I bookmarked it in Safari. Since I’ve had a distinct lack of free time lately, all that accomplished was generating a backlog of flagged articles and bookmarked web sites.

Now, I’ll try to post everything interesting to del.icio.us whenever I come across it. Later, I might use this space to ellaborate on a particular link.

Well, that’s the plan at least. We’ll see how it works.

I keep wanting to come up with a new design for this site. I’d like to incorporate the del.icio.us feed into the site as a sidebar. In the meantime, you can access my del.icio.us page or feed.

I’ve actually got a few ideas for Cocoal.icou.us features, so perhaps I’ll try and make a contribution. Of course, that brings up the whole “free time” thing…

Running Gallery

Jul 10, 2004 in Site

I finally got Gallery setup to on my server so I could post an album from my Arizona vacation last January. Setup was actually pretty simple — it would have been done a few months ago, but I had to stop the process while I waited for a change in my Dreamhost account settings to take effect. It only took 30 minutes or so for the change to take effect, but inertia kicked in by that point.

I’m enjoying Gallery now that it’s running. It’s blatanly simple to create new albums and add photos. So far, the only thing I haven’t found is information about integrating Gallery with an exisiting web site design. It definitely looks like some customization is possible, but I need to investigate whether or not it’s worth the trouble (not for this site, but for another I’m constructing.)

I Think There’s Still A Pulse!

Mar 09, 2004 in Site

Will Carroll:

However, across spectrums and formats, bloggers are starting to burn out. There’s always been a pretty high churn rate with blogs, I’d imagine, as people realize that it’s either a lot of work, they don’t have as much to say as they thought, or they can’t capture enough feedback to feed them.

Will Carrol’s piece is mostly in reference to baseball bloggers, but I it’s easily applicable to bloggers in general.

In January, I wrote that I’d try not go a month without posting again. I blogged on 4 days that month. Then I blogged 3 days in Febraury. This is my first posting in March.

I know I’ve said it before, but I’m making an effort to get better about posting. I haven’t had a whole lot stuff to say Mac-wise, so some of the other topics might pop up more frequently. With the Red Sox in spring training and the Bruins closing in on the playoffs, I might start writing more about those interests. Heck, my Red Sox tickets arrived today and I’m waiting on my Bruins’ playoff tickets. I’m excited about what both of those things represent.

I’m Not Dead Yet

Jan 04, 2004 in Site

Almost a month without an update. Pathetic. No excuses. I’ll try to be better in the future.

On the bright side, I’ve finally taken up the Jon Gales challenge and posted my blogroll. It’s in the right sidebar, replacing the People I Know and Places I Go sections. The only sites that didn’t survive the transition from my custom link list to the new blogroll are Symphony Sound and C-Command. If I ever get around to redesigning this site, I’ll try to add a link section for cool non-weblog sites.

The reason for finally adding a blogroll is that I discovered Chad Everett’s Outliner plugin for Movable Type. Outliner converts the contents of an OPML file into something I can use with MT tags.

I looked at the Blogroll plugin, but I didn’t really like it because I couldn’t manipulate the output in the MT templates. Outliner gives me control over just about everything. Tis very slick.

Also, Chad is quite responsive. With the exception of a few obvious groups, my feed list in NetNewsWire is rather disorganized. I asked Chad about a “sort” option for Outliner on December 28th and he’d released a new version of Outliner by the 30th.

Now, updating my blogroll is quite simple.

  1. Export the OPML file from NetNewsWire.
  2. Open in BBEdit to remove newline characters from description element since these seem cause errors in the output from Outliner.
  3. Upload MySubscriptions.opml to raoli.com.
  4. Rebuild the index page.

If I put some thought into the process, I could probably automate steps 1 — 3. I’m not so sure about step 4.

Backlog Cleanout

Oct 12, 2003 in Site

I just finished cleaning up after refereeing 7 soccer games in 2 days (covering tournaments in 2 different towns). Suffice it to say, my legs are a little sore right now.

However, they say timing is everything. Since I’m pretty much couch-bound for the rest of the night, I can finally caught up on my backlog of blogging topics 🙂

…and, if you’ve got to be couch-bound, what better night to do it than before a Red SoxYankees‘ playoff game. May it be better than yesterday’s debacle.

Now Mostly Up

Oct 01, 2003 in Site

As you can see, I’m baaaack!

The folks at XrackHosting were able to set me up with a temporary URL for my webspace so I could access my Movable Type installation and re-export my data.

This time, I used Camino and the data file came out looking exactly like the spec for the MT Import Format. I’m not entirely sure what happened the last time I exported the data, but the line breaks were not in the correct place and my HTML tags were stripped. I know there are problems exporting MT weblogs with IE, but I’m fairly certain I used Safari

In my last post, I mentioned that the guys at XrackHosting had been very helpful, even though most of my issues involved switching providers. Basically, I just outgrew their offerings (the lack of shell accounts was a rather big issue for me) and decided to jump on DreamHost‘s birthday special. However, if you’re looking for a Mac OS X web hosting company with excellent customer support, I can’t recommend them enough.

Now, the only thing keeping me from blogging at full speed is that there are only 24 hours in the day. 🙂 Between work, moving on Sunday, and the Red Sox being in the playoffs, there’s not time for much else!