Tag Archives: blogging

Given up blogging?

Maybe not. Last few weeks I’ve had an itch forming to start writing blog posts again. Maybe I’m starting to finally recover from the crushing despair I felt in the job I left in June this year? Who knows.

Whatever the reasons, I’m definitely starting to feel more creative again and that inevitably leads to blog posts.

Articles and Sorting

Hmm, the 8bit Mid-life Crisis posts are increasing in number pretty quickly, and I think they’re going to break the ‘articles’ page.  They already break the sorting which is alphabetical, so 10 comes before 2, and if I keep writing them at 1 a day, which is where I am at the moment, it’s going to outgrow that list of articles very quickly indeed.

That whole articles page was really a way of tying together a small number of posts on a particular topic, but I guess if I end up writing 10’s of posts for the Spectrum stuff, it’s not going to fit.  Also, frankly, it’s a ball ache adding the custom fields which make the posts show up on that page.

So, I need to have a think and approach this in a different way.  Maybe a simple 8bit Mid-life Crisis category would suffice.  I tend to under-use the categories, and they do list the posts in reverse time order so that might work out okay.

Edit: Right, stuck with ‘Retro Computing’ category, which I’ll post all the Spectrum posts under.  If you want to read them all, they’re there.  You can also read a summary of all the kit, on the Retro Computing page.

Windows Live Writer?

I tried playing with Windows Live Writer last year, but the download stalled and never fully installed, and I never got around to re-trying it later.  I don’t really have any issue writing blog posts directly into WordPress, the GUI is pretty nice, but there are times when I want to write something complicated or long, make a lot of edits, bring in text from elsewhere etc. and it’s easier to do that outside the browser I find.

So this isn’t a very constructive post, just me playing with the tool.  I’m am interested in the auto-linking feature, which hopefully has turned the first link in this post into a link to somewhere on the Microsoft site.  That seems like a neat thing, and if I was blogging a bunch of related posts that might prove useful.

So far, I’m quite liking the simple interface – when Microsoft gets applications right, they can be quite good (is that a tautology?)

Orange is a state of mind

Finally settled on a new theme (the excellent Suffusion) which comes with a bunch of colour schemes, and I’ve picked Orange on Black (for now).  I know it makes little difference since the 6 people who actually read the blog do so via RSS so never see the colours anyway, and the other hits are all chinese ‘bots trawling data to try and gimp Google out of some cash.  Some folk are tired of dark themes, but I still like them.

The Orange on White version is pretty good as well and if I get bored with dark I might go for that.

I’ve had to work on some new headers, since the old ones were too tall and too narrow.  Managed to salvage the Matrix and floaty text ones, and added a couple of others.  Was very excited to find an Atari Space Invaders icon font!

Haven’t been doing much stuff out of work other than playing Dragon Age: Origins for the second time.  Tried playing it through a second time after originally completing it but it was too soon.  A lengthy break has done the trick and it’s almost as engaging the second time around.  Grete’s also playing it, so we’re taking turns like well behaved kids.  First time through I played as a warrior and was hugely frustrated by all the chests you can’t open until you find your first rogue companion.  So this time, started as a rogue!  Very different feel to the game, can’t go rushing into fights, need to somehow get the others engaged first, and if the warriors die, I’m not likely to survive (where-as when you’re the warrior you can hold on for quite a while with just Wynne).

Playing through again reminds me how good BioWare are at dialog and storyline.

Grete’s doing well at pretending I’m not annoying, when she plays and I shout ‘no, no, do Sten’s quest first’, or whatever.  So I thank her for that.

We bought a couple of the little add-ons, well bought one, got one free.  I’ve also bought Dragon Age: Awakening which was good but no where near worth the price.

I’ve also signed up to the PlayStation Plus service thing.  Got a few free games so far (Zen Pinball being the best).  Hopefully there’ll be enough free content in the next 10 months to justify the cost.

Choosing a template

I want to change the template for this blog, because I fancy a change.  But choosing a template is not easy!  Instead of templates just changing how the site looks, over time, they end up changing how the site behaves, how you include little snippets of code, how your SEO stuff works, etc.

There are some really good looking templates out there, but they’re either too big or too small, or too fiddly or too hard coded with features I don’t want / need.

It’s pretty frustrating, mitigated by the fact that I’m not paying for any of this and it’s only thanks to other people’s freely provided effort that I have software to run a blog from anyway.

I’ll keep looking.

Oops

I changed themes to test out the new default WordPress theme, didn’t like it and then when I switched back to Mandigo, it won’t let me edit the settings 🙂

Please stand by while I try and fix things!

Stupid Spammers

So I’ve commented before on how stupid spammers are, mostly blog comment spammers clearly in the context of this blog.  Obviously there are bots which submit spam, and there are clearly people being paid a tiny amount of money to post spam, and here’s another favourite.

If you are given some boiler plate text to copy into blog comment spam, and the boiler plate text says ‘examples in this post’ then you really should replace that text with some examples, rather than leaving it in verbatim, otherwise it doesn’t work.

I really enjoyed this post, especially the ¡°examples in this post¡± portion which made it really easy for me to SEE what you were talking about without even having to leave the article. Thanks

See what I mean?

Also, if you post this comment to a blog,

Great crap as usual…

with the hope that it’ll get approved and your URL will get spidered, think again about your choice of wording.  Seriously.

Sometimes I wish they’d just stick to selling fake watches.