Ye Olde Archive Archived Posts: 2004-2009

31Jan/07Off

Fire and ice

fire and ice

I was rudely rousted from slumber at two in the morning by the building's fire alarm. Ten minutes later, four fire trucks showed up outside my window. Fifteen minutes later, they were gone and I was back asleep. It was worth it for the lights and the snow.

Filed under: montreal, photo No Comments
31Jan/07Off

All your base …

I have this horrible feeling that the database the site is running on is hopelessly fubared. A lot of the older content isn't indexing correctly, and there's a lot of debris hanging around from my previous installations. All of which is just to say that, having finally started towards a site I find nearly optimal, I may have to take it all back to formula. At least the process is bound to be much quicker the second third fourth fifth time around.

Who knows, maybe it will right itself somehow. In the meantime, I'm playing around with sitemaps to see if that helps my indexing. Wish me luck!

Filed under: wordpress No Comments
30Jan/07Off

Bend, don’t break

There's some small amount of joy in messing around with code until you break it, and then backtracking to figure out if there's some other way you could make it work. Granted, I'd probably have much greater success if I had even more than the slightest idea what I'm doing. I doubt it would be quite as much fun, though.

On a more practical note, if someone could tell me how to combine the functionality of Kashou's Inline Ajax Comments with Mike Smullin's Ajax Comments 2.0, I'd be incredibly grateful. I fiddled plenty, but it's not something I'm likely to figure out on my own.

Filed under: wordpress 2 Comments
30Jan/07Off

Je devins une biblioteque fabuleuse

No matter the facts of our past, it seems that every memory carries a hint of melancholy. What are these days we've put behind us, what bonds were forged then broken? What then do we become, we strongly forged yet pulled asunder chains? Are these chinks in our armor, then, from gnashing together, from pulling apart, from trying to find that place where we could link together like a magic trick?

When it comes to separation, I've never been very proficient. One lucid moment of deja vu and deep inside I'm sure that all of this happens simultaneously. But we organize, we pull things apart here, put them together over there, arrange them by genre and color and place, until the synchronicity is all gone and we're left with neat little piles, each one tagged and indexed and we wonder why we feel sad when we look upon our great achievement.

It's natural, maybe inevitable. There's no reconciliation. Once we've made our piles, we'll never again find their homes, never again be able to separate them out and recreate the synchronous, chaotic jumble that we somehow tumbled out of.

It's okay. We've arranged ourselves into vast libraries, now we get to be librarians: we provide access to some, deny it to others; we give out parts of ourselves and then, almost inevitably, demand them back; we reclassify certain parts as our standards change; and maybe, if we're very lucky, we find a quiet moment when, alone and lost in the stacks, rustling through pages of memories, we rediscover some beautiful treasure that we had long since forgotten.

Maybe that's what makes it all worthwhile.

That is over. Now I know how to salute beauty.
- A. Rimbaud (tr. by Louise Varèse)

29Jan/07Off

What you see …

WYSIWYG editors are just plain annoying. They load slow and they try to do everything for you, but they do it wrong. I mean, haven't these people learned anything from MS Word!? The default editor has a handy link button, and will even do bold and italics for me if I become too lazy to bracket my b's and i's, and really, that's all I need.

At the moment I'm hanging out, slightly buzzed off a Canadian table wine called "Cochon Mignon" (cute pig), which is actually quite good, and thinking about doing my homework for tomorrow (which I imagine I really should). Next week we have our first set of due dates, as far as assignments go. I'm not quite stressed ... yet. I work best under pressure.

The new site loads much faster than the old one. I attribute part of that to the shiny new underbelly of WordPress 2.1, and some of it to my having somehow broken my old install with random plugin installations and too many bells and whistles. This install I will keep clean and limber, because I like it that it loads much faster than it used to. And really, what is a blog besides a place to put words? Of all the communication mediums, words have always been my favorite anyway, so even in this age of fancy podcasts and youtubisms, I figure they're what I'll stick with. I have some fun plans for some other projects, though who knows if I'll ever follow through on them. Mostly I just get excited about having plans, so much so that I really don't feel like doing anything about them would contribute to my excitement. I'd much rather just plan things. One of the things I always forget when moving urls around is that it breaks referral links. Mostly, this means that the handy links I got from the Librarian Avengers "Why you should fall to your knees and worship a librarian" link won't give me all the fancy hits that it used to. Rather, it will just direct to my boring, empty (but very speedy), portal page.

Speaking of which, my portal page uses Drupal, which is itself kind of fun. It's nice to get out there and try out some new software every now and again. I even installed it manually, since Dreamhost doesn't have a Drupal one-click install (yes, I really am that lazy most of the time). It kind of makes me wish I was in the web design course this term, but I am glad to be getting my requirements out of the way so that I can have fun next year (I think). I also, from time to time, mourn the fact than I'm not in McNally's history of libraries class, but I guess it's too late to do anything about that now. I'm excited about taking his history of books and print course next year, so at least that's something.

Alright, back to the wine, and maybe even some studying....