Crossing over

I’ve been reading some “alternative” blogs at . By alternative, I mean not my usual faire. I’ve been sampling the Journals category and Kathryn Lively’s St. Blog’s. Interesting what you can find when you take the time to try something new.

blogs about shutting down his blog and why he did it. It makes sense. He said that his motives revolved around the need for attention and the craving that it forms. I can relate. When I first started blogging, I was checking my referrer logs every hour to see if I had any hits. I still check my logs regularly, but not in the same way. Plus, any comments that came my way were a big bonus. “Wow, someone real out there knows that I’m alive, and they read my blog!” You get the idea.

Then there was a provocative, well-written, beautifully presented journal called Oddly enough, the thoughts and events recorded were so personal that I was both moved and bothered. Bothered because I was reading something so personal. I hope that Candace, her family, and Matthew of illness.

I tried some other blogs, too, only to find that they had fallen prey to link rot or some other form of abandonment, such as .

But then I was quickly back to my old haunts in the techBlogs category. I must say, even though I’m not a Mac fanatic (don’t love ’em, don’t hate ’em), I was totally

impressed with ‘s graphic design, layout, and content. Sweet and kudos! I gave a quick read to his description of an . Did I get that right? Curious. His blog archives use PHP. I wonder what system he uses to run his weblog. Is it homegrown?

I had to check in at to see how things were going. It appears that , , with the bane of bloggers everywhere: comment spam.

On another note, I just discovered that now has a of their online service. Very cool! I tried the trial edition, and I plan to buy it when I can. It’s only $29, so not a bad deal.

DevX: C# without .NET?

. Visual Mainwin offers unprecedented platform flexibility, allowing you to develop applications in C# and deploy and run them on J2EE. Learn how to take advantage of this freedom by building a C# Web service that you can run on platforms besides .NET and IIS. By lmoroney@philotic.com (Laurence Moroney). []

. My blog replacement is coming alongabout 3800 lines so far. The database layer has been stable for the last two weeks, and I have all my current MT blog entries imported. Im currently working on the web layer…

[]

Fun, fun, fun!

I think it’s great that so many tech-heads are writing their own blogging tools. I know the old addage about not reinventing the wheel, but when you reinvent the wheel, you get to keep, control, and distribute your wheel as you please. Let’s just hope that Nu Cardboard’s new wheel doesn’t turn out to be a tire. :-)

. Dave Kopper explains why ‘E-mail just can’t be trusted anymore at all, ‘ detailing an email spoofing problem similar to one that recently almost got my Redland Baptist Church website shut down. Audio Engineers, lend us your … I’m sorry,… []

Here’s an example of stupidity in usability. On the pickup window of a
local Burger King drive-thru, there is a small sticker that reads,

Please present coupons before ordering.

First of all, shouldn’t the notice be posted at the point of ordering,
rather than at the point of pickup?

Second, shouldn’t the print be much larger?

On top of all that, the sticker is on the outside of the pickup window
which folds out when opened, so the reader can no longer see it.

Of course, when I mentioned all of this (as nicely as I could) to the
person at the window, all she could do was blush, smile, and shrug just as
all helpless, unempowered peons do. The old “Don’t look at me–I just
work here” line applies to this situation.

I’m sure she thought I was either a nut, a jerk, or both.

Ain’t life grand?

No kidding around

via , on how genXers are destroying their futures/posterity. Somehow it makes me feel guilty for being a member of the DINKs (Dual Income No Kids) category (well, sort of–my wife is retired) with no likelihood of change.

Am I less of a citizen of God’s kingdom for not wanting kids? Even though God gave the commandment in Genesis to ‘go forth and multiply,’ I don’t think his love and mercy is conditional on having offspring. Besides Paul indicates that it’s actually good to stay single if you can manage it (read ‘no poopy diapers’). This is a far cry from the promiscuity described in the story above. That’s not what I’m defending.

I think that the decision to remain childless must be inspected for selfishness. At least a couple of times. Then, I say, exercise your liberty in Christ. But, as Christ said, “…suffer the little children to come unto Me…” Children are precious in God’s sight, poopy diapers and all.

I’ve been experimenting with a mix of tools for personal organization:

  • MediaWiki

    (http://wikipedia.sourceforge.net/)

  • SquirrelMail
    (http://www.squirrelmail.org/)
  • WebCalendar
    (http://www.ma.utexas.edu/webcalendar/)
  • Radio Userland

    (http://radio.userland.com/)

  • NewsGator
    (http://www.newsgator.com/)
  • Outlook 2002
  • FranklinCovey PlanPlus for Microsoft Outlook
    (http://www.franklincovey.com/)

  • TreePad

    (http://www.treepad.com/)

  • An iPAQ PocketPC (PocketPC 2002)
  • A FranklinCovey planner binder with paper forms.

I’m slowly finding a rhythm. I recently found an easy way to update my
Outlook calendar from Web Calendar. When in Web Calendar, I create a new
appointment and include my own caledar as an “invitee,” and it allows me
to “Mail all invitees” (myself). I select the “vCal” option to attach a
vCalendar file.

I’ve set up a special email address for this calendar, which is the
default recipient for the mail message. Then, when Outlook downloads my
mail, a rule sorts messages from the special email address to an
“Appointments” folder. All that’s left to do is open each message and its
accompanying attachment. Then I save the appointment, and voila! The
appointment from my Web Calendar is saved to Outlook and synchronized to
my PocketPC.

Very cool.

RSSify – an example of the cost of novelty "Web Services"

RSSify was pretty cool. It could turn a non-RSSing blog into RSS for consumption by aggregators. But here’s the catch–it caught on so much that it was hogging precious bandwidth (see below). Successful grass roots services (not necessarily limited to XML-RPC/SOAP) face the same problem–becoming the victim of their own success.

. Unfortunately I can no longer bear the bandwidth cost of running this service so I’m turning it off. There’s a mirror at . There may be others.

RSSify is a rather horrible hack that shouldn’t be needed any more. Please ask the owner of the site you’re reading () to change to a system that generates RSS natively such as or . Alternatively consider hosting yourself rather than using my bandwidth. []

Oh, and by the way, note the mention of the Blogger Pro subscription. It’s not that expensive for the year. That’s why it surprises me so much that Dave Barry’s weblog doesn’t use the pro version. Come on Dave, if you don’t want to fork over the cash, have somebody pay for it. Your readers will thank you.