Housekeeping

Time to move on…

In recognition of the fact that revision99 now seems to have no readers at all, I have changed the title of my blogroll to “What to Read,” and I encourage all my imaginary friends to follow the links and read. I have also deleted all the old entries that link to blogs that either no longer exist or haven’t been updated in years. There are a couple of exceptions and I have my reasons, but they’re my reasons, so I won’t discuss them here.

I’m doing this because I think my affair with Facebook is coming to an end, and I’ll be moving back to this place on the web soon. It’s a lot quieter here, and that’s what I need these days.

Continue reading “Housekeeping”

The New Look

Hope you like the new look of revision99.

I’ve changed to the “Elegant Grunge” template by Michael Tyson. A few days ago I updated my platform to the very latest version of WordPress (version 2.8.4), and became painfully aware that my old template — “Letterhead” by Robin Hastings — was simply too outdated to continue using. The WordPress community works tirelessly and endlessly to improve the platform, and those generous souls who develop and release templates for all of us non-coders to use sometimes get left behind. I loved the Letterhead template. It was clean and simple and easy to read. But the features that have been incorporated into the new WordPress are just not usable in the older templates, and most of us bloggers have neither the time nor the knowledge to update them ourselves.

So now I have this new look.

It will probably require some tweaking to get it working the way I want. The first thing I have to do is make this text black. The default color is some hip grayish color that probably pleases the designer’s eye, but, really, it’s a little hard to read, don’t you think? There will be other changes I will have to make, and they will come slowly since I will be figuring out how to edit the template as I go. So please bear with me, and also let me know if you find stuff in revision99 that is broken or doesn’t display correctly on your screen.

Thanks!

UPDATE: Text is now black. Woohoo.

Upgrading revision99

Today I discovered that something was wrong with my blog and I was unable to post. I’ve been putting off upgrading the software for, well, years, even though the very excellent and generous programmers at WordPress have come out with numerous updates and — for security reasons — have urged me to get up to date. Of course I’ve been ignoring them, but I was unable to fix my posting problem in my usual haphazard way, so in desperation I decided to upgrade to the latest version of WordPress (2.71, and I was way back at 2.0), which is what you’re looking at now (I hope).

Things probably don’t look quite right — they don’t to me, either, but I have a cold and I have a weekend trip coming up that I must prepare for, so I’ll have to leave the place messed up until next week. Or maybe the week after. But I’ll get to it.

Notice

In case anyone was wondering, the server for revision99 was down for 24 hours, ending (I hope) at 10 PM PST tonight (Thursday).

But I’m still here.

Server Down!

revision99 was down for much of yesterday.

I don’t know exactly how long because, hey, whaddaya think, I obsessively check the site every ten minutes day and night? Well, maybe I do, but I was at work when I discovered that the site wasn’t loading, so all I had time to do was try it in a couple of different browsers, go to another site that I know has the same web host as me (it was working), check my FTP access (no dice), check to see if I had exceeded my bandwidth quota (no problem there), verify that I had paid my bill (yes) and wring my hands for ten minutes.

Finally I called my web host — on the phone. A nice man named Peter looked up my file and told me that they were moving my server, the problem was on their end, not mine, and everything would be fixed “by the end of the day.” The server was going to be located in Missouri, so shout out to Jack: My site should be quite zippy for you now, buddy. I didn’t think to ask them where the server was being moved from, or why it was being moved. Anyway, things seem to be OK now, since about 10 PM on the west coast. Let me know if you find any problems, OK? (jones at revision99 dot com)

Web servers, huh? Can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em.

UPDATE, Friday Afternoon: APPARENTLY THEY ARE STILL SCREWING AROUND WITH THE SERVER. SERVICE HAS BEEN UP AND DOWN TODAY. I’LL MAKE IT UP TO YOU, I PROMISE.

Holiday Spirit

You people are not showing me any love.

I mean, can you not see my Christmas tree? (Hint: Top of the page, to the right of the banner. Blinking.) I spent at least an hour trying to set it up right in that spot and get it to blink at you, to brighten your holiday blog reading.

Hope you like it.

No Gravatars For Now

Later for Gravatar.Sock Puppet Bunny

I must apologize to Blue Girl, Theresa, Ron and everyone who went at my insistence to gravatar.com and got their own Gravatars. I have been forced to disable Gravatars on revision99, because it was causing the site to be verrry slow. It went like this:

Once I had enabled Gravatars on this site, every time one of you Precious Few would leave a comment, the machinery in the basement of revision99 World Headquarters would call gravatar.com and request an image. If there was an image, it would retrieve it and display it next to your comment. If no image, well, we still had to go look. All of this took time. And even though revision99 saved a copy of your image and reused it instead of getting it fresh each time from gravatar.com, there were still those who didn’t have a Gravatar, and we had to go check that out every time. And I suspect the system actually went and checked for images even if all you wanted to do was view a page. And because the Gravatar server is overloaded and overworked and stressed out and bogged down, all of this image searching and retrieval was taking a long damn time.

The result was that I lost almost all my readers (I think), because no one had time to wait for this procedure to take place just to get a chance to see the latest stupid stuff I was writing about. Can’t say I blame anyone, but please come back!!!

Don’t worry — if you signed up for a Gravatar, you still have one, and it will show up in Haloscan comments and other sites that have Gravatars enabled. And in the future I will give gravatar another try, because they claim to be working on an upgrade that will make everything speedy again, or maybe because I will try a different way of enabling them that doesn’t take so long to work each time. Stand by for that announcement, but don’t hold your breath.

In the meantime, revision99 — minus the pictures and Sock Puppet Bunnies — is quite snappy these days. No need to make a pot of coffee before checking it out, and as always, my heart beats only for you.

Dropdown Menu

I’m all puffed up and pleased with myself because finally,

…after about a year of thinking about it, I have made the revision99 Archives list into a dropdown menu. You can see it in the sidebar, under the heading “Archives.”

I’ve been thinking “Jeez, that list is so long, no one will ever see what’s at the bottom of the sidebar. I have to think of a way to shorten it.” In the end, which was just two days ago, I didn’t excatly “think of a way.” Instead, I looked at the page source of someone else’s WordPress blog (someone who was using just such a dropdown menu) and found the code that makes this happen. Then I copied it and stuck it in my own sidebar template.

Cool, huh? Forgive me. I am easily excited. Go ahead. Click on it. Read something from my past. All my best writing is there. All my commenters are there, too.

Zeroes and Ones

Dear Blog Diary,

I’m sorry I haven’t been posting lately.

It’s not that I don’t love you anymore, really. You see, what happened is that my computer sort of died. When I turned it off on Saturday night, it was working fine. But when I tried to start it on Sunday morning, nothing happened. Oh, there were a few whirring sounds, but none of the reassuring beeps it usually makes as it’s booting. So I switched to a different computer, but had a hard time finding you on the internet, Blog Diary. My other computer (the one that died) knew exactly where everything is, and it even remembered all my secret passwords and stuff. Without it, I had to figure out how to get my email, how to get my work stuff done and how to log onto you, dear Blog Diary.

And all the while I was distraught about my dead computer.

I figured out that my computer was dead because the motherboard broke. When something that cost $150 and contains 10,000 teeny tiny little components breaks, I have found that it’s best not to try and fix it, but to get a new one. But I had a little hitch in that plan: It seems that in the three short years since I built the computer, technology has advanced far into the future and all the motherboards that are currently available to buy won’t work with all the rest of the stuff in my dead computer, like my memory and my video card. It took an extra day to find a store that still had a replacement motherboard that wouldn’t force me to buy $1.6 million dollars worth of new peripherals.

Even then, I had to buy a new processor. Can you believe it Blog Diary, the guy in the store laughed at my “old” 2.8 Ghz Pentium 4. “A Socket 478,” he said. “Hey, guys, come look at this old thing!”

To avoid further embarrassment, I immediately purchased a Pentium D chip to go with my new motherboard. It is much faster, plus it is “dual core,” which is the modern, high-tech way to say there are actually two processors in it.

So now I have to put all this together and get it talking to the RAM and the AGP card and the modem and ethernet port and all the drives. Remember, Blog Diary, when I was a computer geek? Those were the days, eh? I carried a screwdriver in my pocket protector at all times, and I could assemble a P3 in the dark with one hand. Well, the computer world has passed me by, and I must now struggle with this thicket of cables and parts and arcane terminology like a newbie.

So that’s why I haven’t been writing, Blog Diary, and if I don’t write much for the rest of the week – same reason.

But at least I’ve found most of the blogs I like to read, and I’m keeping up with them. Talk to ya soon!