Referrer Spam

   18 January 2005, evening time

The amount of referrer spam I get in my refer logs is ridiculous. I used to enjoy reading my logs, it was a good way to find new sites to read. Now it’s just a sea of Texas hold-em poker sites and other such junk. I should post the links on Slashdot; that’d take their sites down fast enough.

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Archive Page

   13 January 2005, late at night

The archive page is now complete. You can view older articles on this site by date, category, or popularity. As I think up more exciting ways to let you browse old posts I’ll update that page. Let me know if there are any problems.

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Date Based Archives

    6 January 2005, late at night

This article at Pixel Meadow got me started on finally trying to implement a proper date based archive at this site. You can check out the archive page which now features links to my posts in a given month. I think adding date aware navigation at the bottom of each archive page would be handy, but I am not sure when I will get around to doing it.

Dunstan’s idea of making all dates links got me started on taking my changes a little bit further. So, you can also click on the various parts that make up the date of a post to go to a page that contains all the other posts made on that particular day, month, or year.

I will probably write up what was involved in getting this working shortly. The short version of what you need to do is: change the doArticles() function, modify your .htaccess file, rewrite the posted() function, and write a function that generates the archive table. (I had some other complications because of the changes I made to display my link-log inline.) If you see any problems please let me know.

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Import Moveable Type Export File into Textpattern

   18 December 2004, late morning

I’ve modified the Wordpress Moveable Type import script so that it will import posts, comments, and primary categories from a moveable type export file into a textpattern database. I think that under the GNU license my changes are OK.

Read the rest of this post. (413 words)

Comment [16] |  

Stupid Ass Feedburner

    1 December 2004, evening time

A lot of sites have started using FeedBurner to manage their RSS or Atom feeds. This is all well and good; I think it’s a cool service. What bugs me however, is that Feedburner lets you send the lame pictures you posted on your Flickr account as part of your feed. This is annoying. Most sites that use Feedburner don’t offer up an alternative feed which doesn’t include Flickr photos. So, I end up getting to see such classic photos as Road Trip or Oh I’m Having Fun. I’m sure the friends of these two authors loved both photos, but as a perfect stranger I really don’t care to see them. And these are sites I don’t want to unsubscribe from; I like reading them.

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Replay Attack on TypeKey?

   23 November 2004, evening time

On my system I can login to a TypeKey powered site in Safari, copy the URL TypeKey redirects me to from Safari to Firefox, and thereby login to the same site in Firefox without entering any of my information. This is essentially a replay attack, albeit a stupid one.

Read the rest of this post. (442 words)

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Funkaoshi: Year 1

   20 November 2004, evening time

If you look far enough back, you’ll see my first entry for this site was a conversation I had on ICQ with Gary. That was posted back in August 2003. Back then this site was run using blogger and served off the web space I had at the University of Waterloo. The orange was still there, though the layout was nothing like this. The colours I was using were much deeper and darker. I also had a 2-column layout, which I now find thoroughly boring.

I registered funkaoshi.com on November 19th, 2003. I announced to the world the domain was up on November 20th, though I don’t think that many people were interested. The site was a fair bit different back then. I would post the inane details of my life, primarily for my friends to read. I would also bitch about the pointless nature of this site. This went on for quite some time.

I changed the layout to the one you see today, and moved things over to textpattern in the middle of the winter. This was probably the worse time to do that, since I was knee-deep in the compilers course I was taking at Waterloo, which is a big bitch. The layout of this page hasn’t really changed at all since then. I changed the name of the site to A Funkaoshi Production from The Not So Immaculate Conception. I’m not sure why I changed the name. I think the old name was too long and I couldn’t work it neatly into the layout. I also noticed that no one referred to the site by that name.

At some point I started writing about movies, and couldn’t stop. I think this is actually the point in time I started noticing that people I didn’t know were regularly reading this site, which was strange to say the least. I call this period, “the summer”. Unemployed and done with school, I took some time off to do nothing. Well, almost nothing; I would watch movies and work on this site. You’d be surprised how long you can do that for and not complain. With employment came an end to my summer. Those of you who have been reading this site for quite some time will have noticed the lack of movie reviews. If there is one thing I really miss, it is watching lots of movies.

So this brings us to now. I was worried my domain would disappear into the ether, but 1&1 automatically renewed it for me. Another year of A Funkaoshi Production? Oh my, whatever will we do?

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Guerilla Blogging

   18 October 2004, early evening

I liked Dinu's definition of Guerilla bloging so much, I decided to dedicate a whole post to it. I wait patiently for Guerilla bloging to be discussed at some bloging conference as the next big thing. Guerilla bloging will be the Mobloging of my generation.

Guerillia Blogging
The act of blogging on someone else's blog via comments on a blog entry without the blog owner's consent to use his blog in such a fashion. (Example)

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Baby, We're Moving On Up

   24 August 2004, the wee hours

I check my referrer logs every other day or so to see who has been suckered into reading my site. Usually it’s poor people willing to wade through 17 pages of google search results before ending up at my site, probably disappointed they didn’t find any Bukkake. You poor sons of bitches. Hop off Kazaa already. If you search for Fuck Moveable Type I’m the third result. I would have never learnt that without checking my referrer logs. (Forget the fact the company calls themselves Movable Type — whatever that is — and that the article google brings up isn’t critical of SixApart.) Sometimes I am pleasantly surprised to find a new site linking to my blog because they like it. Well, I’m not certain people linking to my site like my site; that is presumptuous I suppose. I mean, I watched You Got Served just to laugh at how bad it was after all. My point is that your referrer logs can be full of interesting surprises.

Today, before I was about to go to bed, I noticed someone visited my site from Kotte.org. Now that was a surprise and a half. A link from Jason Kottke? That is nice. It almost makes my wasting the whole summer to work on my web site worthwhile. Almost.

We’re Bad Boy baby. Can’t Stop. Won’t Stop.

my link from kottke.org.

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Gizmodo

   14 July 2004, lunch time

Gizmodo is a gadget site I’ve started reading more frequently. It is part of the same consortium of blogs owned by Nick Denton. The not-safe-for-work Fleshbot is my favourite. The last issue of Wired had an article about the man and his fleet of blogs.

Now, I had no intention of posting anything about this to my blog, till I read this line at Gizmodo on an article about Black iPods

My guess? I think the original iPods were black, and then were later changed to white, just like they did to Jesus.

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Poem a Day

    4 July 2004, evening time

Valblog is offering up a poem a day in an attempt to add some culture to your life. My favourite poem of the set he’s posted so far is who knows if the moon’s… by E.E. Cummings.

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Bloglines vs. Kinja

   10 June 2004, late at night

I’ve taken to using an online news reader called Bloglines. Bloglines is very similar to Kinja, though the layout of two programs differ. Kinja, which I have spoken about earlier, displays all the weblogs you read together on one page, as a sort of aggregated weblog. Bloglines takes a different approach, and instead lists all the weblogs you subscribe to in one frame, and highlights those which have new articles for you to read. Bloglines was released much earlier then Kinja, and I think for this reason may have stolen a lot of Kinja’s thunder. Bloglines is just a news reader, so you can only use it to subscribe to, and read, RSS and Atom feeds. Kinja can process some pages that don’t have feeds, for example, Matt’s page—Matt, add an RSS feed to your page already.

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Upgrade

    9 June 2004, late evening

I’ve just upgraded the site to the new version of Textpattern. Please let me know if you come across any problems with the page?

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Editing on the Internet

   20 May 2004, lunch time

Google recently started a company blog. They recently posted an interesting message about their new offices all over the world. One such office is in bangalore. They had this to say about it:

Interestingly, when we announced our engineering center in Bangalore, we found ourselves knee-deep in the debate about “outsourcing”—the practice of cutting a company’s American operations in favor of cheaper labor elsewhere. India in particular has been a subject of a lot of press coverage on this topic lately, which we find to be pretty unfair. It’s not their fault they have a lot of brilliant computer scientists who don’t care to relocate to the States.

I was happy to see a US company make a statement such as this. Blaming India and Indians for problems in the US tech sector is foolish. I think the blame india watch does a much better job of discussing this then I possibly can.

I was disappointed to see that the next time I checked Google’s blog, the paragraph about Bangalore had been edited out. Instead, the only mention of Bangalore comes at the end of the blog entry. Its quite possible they felt the article was too long, or the paragraph about Bangalore didn’t fit with the rest of the post. However, I suspect they were in fact worried about the “outsourcing” debate they would find themselves in had they left the post alone.

Regardless of their intentions, Google has probably drawn much more attention to this post then would have been garnered had it been left alone. You can read more about this situation at: Slashdot, MetaFilter, Hello TypePad, Dive into Mark, and CNET News.com.

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Page Number Plugin

   18 May 2004, terribly early in the morning

I’ve written a plugin for textpattern that will display the current page of you are on when viewing an articles list page. Someone on the Textpattern forum asked for such a thing. Hopefully this is what she wanted.

rsx_page_number.txt

Update May 18th: The plugin now can be used to find the current page, and the total number of pages. There is also a tag that will generate a navigation widget that looks something like “ << Page 4 of 7 >> “.

Update May 19th: The plugin now lets you specify what text to use for the right and left navigation, and is enclosed in span so you can style the navigation element with css.

Update Sept 2nd 2005: The un-linked page number in the list generated by rsx_page_number_list is now wrapped in a span tag with a class of unlinked.

Update Oct 20th 2007: Jean Rajotte has updated the plugin; more details can be found on his web site.

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Obsessive? Me? More Moveable Type News.

   17 May 2004, the wee hours

I’ve spent 40 minutes listening to an interview with Ben and Mena Trott of SixApart and Moveable Type fame. The interview was done a week before the chaos that followed the release of Moveable Type 3.0. The interview is well done, and gives you some of the history of the product, and its current direction. I’m actually surprised at how emotional the interview gets at times. Also surprising is how much the interview foreshadows events that would happen a week later. If you’re as bored, as I’ve been recently, you should give it a listen. The two come off as quite pleasant and passionate about their product. [via Mena’s Corner]

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Referrer Logs

   15 May 2004, mid-afternoon

I’ve taken to looking at my referrer logs to see who is viewing my site. Basically, a referrer log will keep track of the URLs that are sending people to your site. For example, someone was so enamored with Rishi’s comment as Willy Wonka on my post about the price of Moveable Type that they linked to it (see the noted column). When someone clicked on that link, the address of the site the link was on was saved in my referrer logs. I’ve found lots of interesting sites by looking at these logs.

I recently posted in my del.icio.us links a link to my favourite picture by Fredrik (of smudo.org fame), and this was picked up by someone who runs a site called coolspot.

I wrote a script to import Moveable Type export files into Textpattern. The script runs as a web page, and has a link back to my homepage. I get the occasional referrer from my script to the page about my script. It is interesting to see who has used my script to start their new Textpattern site. Of course, it is also a bit depressing, since, more often then not, the script doesn’t work.

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Clarification from SixApart

   15 May 2004, lunch time

SixApart speak in great detail on their new pricing scheme. I suppose in response to the bitching, they have clarified a lot of things. Most importantly, they have cleared up their definition of a weblog. Most of the bitching came from people saying, “I run 18 weblogs to make my Moveable Type site.” SixApart have confirmed that this scenario constitutes one weblog in their eyes. I imagine a lot of the angry sentiment thrown their way will vanish now. Frankly, I wonder why they bother doing what they do. People are very quick to treat the company like shit. They received the same sort of mindless backlash when TypeKey was announced. Mind you, it would help if these announcements were more clear and concise.

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Free Software

   14 May 2004, early evening

A common subject of discussion at Slashdot is free software. It is common to describe software that is free in two ways: software can be free like beer, and software can be free like speech. In the former case, we are speaking of free in a monetary sense. In the later case, we are talking of your liberty to do what you please with a program.

The fuss over Moveable Type was that it was free in the free like beer sense. Moveable Type didn’t cost anything, and was really nice, so people naturally would choose to use it. But it was never free software. SixApart were never granting users rights to do what they will with SixApart’s software. SixApart are well within their rights to do what they please with Moveable Type. This problem wouldn’t have existed if Moveable Type was free as in speech. Mark Pilgrim dicusses this in more detail with lots of good links.

I use Textpattern, which is also free as in beer, but not as in speech. Dean has commited to keep the software free for personal use. That’s usually free enough for me. However, this whole episode illustrates the problem with software that is not free.

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People, Calm the Fuck Down

   13 May 2004, early evening

Moveable Type 3.0 Debuts with a Bang

When SixApart announced that they would be billing people for Moveable Type 3.0, to say people started freaking out would be an understatement. There are currently 438 529 603 695 818 trackbacks at Mena’s post on the new pricing scheme. There are 127 comments on the thread about this situation at Metafilter.

Mind you, there is still a free version of the program. People like to bitch I suppose.

I am a fan of Moveable Type. I run my photoblog with the software. I run Shima’s blog with Moveable Type. That said, I don’t feel like SixApart owe me anything. People have been mooching off their work for ages now. If they want to start charging from this day on, it’s their prerogative. The older versions of their software remain free, so what’s the problem?

Comment [8]  

Blogger Blog

   12 May 2004, the wee hours

My Blogger blog will be a blog about Blogger. I like Blogger enough to want to keep my Blogger account all blogged up with blog entries. So, I will post to my Blogger blog blog entries about Blogger, Blogging with Blogger, and other Blogger related things. Also, I will try to say the word blog and Blogger as many times as I can in this blog entry. My first real post to my Blogger blog is about the Google blog.

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Blogger Relaunch

   10 May 2004, late at night

Blogger has relaunched, and at first glance it looks pretty hot. For starters, there are proper comments at last. This was probably the biggest hole in blogger up till now. There are some really nice new templates, individual archives, and probably more than enough features for your average blogger who isn’t in the mood to install Moveable Type.

Ahilan has a blog at blogger now. Krishna has a blog at blogger as well. I also have a blogger blog, but I’ve had one for ages. I like this template more then my old design however.

A lot more info can be found at the stopdesign homepage.

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Del.icio.us Links Are Here To Stay

    8 May 2004, terribly early in the morning

I figured out how to display the links I store at del.icio.us here at this site as well. Currently, you can view them on the links page.

What’s going on? How does this all work? Why, I’m glad you asked.

  1. When I find a link I like, I can make note of it with the del.icio.us bookmarklet. The site will then be saved at my del.icio.us home page.
  2. I found a python script that will query del.icio.us for the links you saved on a given day. I modified the script so that it will instead find the last 10 links you saved. The links are retrieved and formated into a small snippet of HTML, which gets saved on my computer. This file is then securely copied to funkaoshi.com using scp. Running python program and copying the file I made into a shell script.
  3. The shell script gets run 4 times a day using cron. cron is a program that will run jobs at times you schedule. I didn’t know how cron worked previously, but thankfully it is quite simple to use. I found a great site that taught me enough to get by.

What I would ultimately like to do is have a bookmarklet that will let me quickly save links in textpattern, and post those links to del.icio.us. Update: I have done this!

I’m quickly running out of things I can think of to do with this site. I will probably start reading Quicksilver shortly.

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Archives

   28 April 2004, the wee hours

I’ve started working on an archive page for this site. Right now, you can read older posts by the section they are in, or the category they are in, or both.

Now, some of you may be wondering why there aren’t any date based archives. The creator of textpattern, Dean Allen, isn’t a fan of them, so they aren’t a part of textpattern. I may try and add date based archives at some point in time, but I think with the search box and the categories and sections, they aren’t needed. Any opinions on this?

Lex Konrad, who runs Naked Loft Party (NSFW) managed to get date based archives and URLs working quite nicely. So, if I have time, I may and try to mimic what he has done. As it stands though, I think I may stop mucking around with this site. I would say it is pretty complete now.

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Kinja: Reprise

   27 April 2004, lunch time

For those of you having trouble getting your websites processed by Kinja, try adding a Atom or RSS feed to your site. Shima’s site is now being processed by Kinja, although it was not before.

If you use Moveable Type or Blogger this is done for you automatically. You just need to include a link to your feed in your URL, like I am doing on this site for example. Making your own RSS feed yourself isn’t too hard a task, but it is easier if you have a program that does it for you.

For those who don’t know, Atom and RSS are syndication formats. Atom is a newer format, whose popularity stems from the fact it is the default (only) syndication format available for use within Blogger. RSS is an older format, though there are in fact several conflicting versions of RSS available for use.

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