development


Having to do with things I'm playing around with, development-wise

Hiatus

Posted on 14 September 2005 by jose

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With various deadlines at work, I'll probably be too busy to work on the server and have something to write about. This should improve as the end of the year approaches...

Drupal Out For Now

Posted on 01 September 2005 by jose

I've decided the Drupal experiment did not work out. I don't have enough time to absorb the complexity of Drupal, and it is irresponsible to tweak my security settings when I don't even understand how Drupal is interacting with them.

Wordpress is what I'm looking at now. It's a lot less complicated than Drupal and can do most of what I want it to. While I still have to tweak my security settings, the smaller number of files means that I can see why and understand what is going on between Apache and Wordpress when mod_sec throws an error (usually a 501).

Drupal Security Hijinks

Posted on 15 August 2005 by jose

I've been playing around with Drupal on this site (on the back-end, naturally). I really like its modularity. Amusingly, I'm running into security problems when trying to do various Drupal administrative tasks, indicating that my Apache app firewall's rather paranoid settings are finally coming back to bite me. I initially slapped together a config file for the security module that had no subtlety, intending to return to it to fine tune it.

Now With More Sidebar!

Posted on 10 July 2005 by jose

I've done Yet Another Site Re-design. I've added a sidebar for easier entry navigation, which played around with the way CSS floats behaved in Firefox and IE. I believe I've got most of those bugs ironed out, but now the archive navigation needs a re-write. Right now, the code is pretty messy; I'd like to go through and refactor it all. I'm tempted to completely re-write it, as the sidebar adds an interesting wrinkle: right now, the sidebar is generated from the id and subject line of the latest 10 entries. But I'd like to see if I can reduce the number of times MySQL is accessed.

Google, Ruby and Rails

Posted on 14 June 2005 by jose

I've been hearing a lot about Ruby as a programming language, and Rails as a Ruby-based web development framework. Today I saw that ONLamp.com had a feature on Ajax on Rails. Ever since I started using GMail and Google Maps, I've had an interest in Ajax.

Archive Navigation 1.1

Posted on 12 June 2005 by jose

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Well, the new archive navigation is up. It's a little buggy, as I coded it in one long session, and there still things I want to add to it (like removing/blanking the navigation links when reaching the end of the database) and fix (like the #-of-entries selector in the form). I quickly slapped together the styles for the navigation and form that I want to return to and make more visually appealing. I'm also thinking of coming up with a recent entry index and possibly a calendar down a right hand column. And yes, RSS is coming.

Debian Update

Posted on 10 June 2005 by jose

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Rapidly approaching the artificial cap I placed on entries; nothing like a Y2K issue to spur the development of a less hacky method for organizing entries.

Outage!

Posted on 06 June 2005 by jose

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Had a fairly lengthy outage yesterday, caused by the first real hot day of the spring/summer (depending on when you think summer starts). Turns out the server's CPU cooler finally breathed its last; the frequent hum was a dead giveaway, but I hadn't gotten around to replacing it, as it had been fairly cool through all of May. Once I made my way out to Microcenter to get a replacement, plus a few other goodies, I was back online. The 3-pin power connectors on the server's motherboard seem to be dead, though; this suggests to me that the board itself may not be long for this world.

Archive Navigation 1.0

Posted on 09 May 2005 by jose

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The archive navigation is now written and implemented. It definitely needs polishing, and I'd like to add a few more features, but most importantly, I've devised some clever sanity checks in case someone tries to inject values into the SQL query. Theoretically, the form can only transmit values I've pre-selected for the user, but just in case someone tries to exploit the POST method, I should be relatively safe.

On Hacking

Posted on 10 April 2005 by jose

About that essay: I was going to write a defense of the term Hacking. Mostly because as a linguist, I fall into the prescriptivist camp, and I want to retain the original meaning of the word, rather than the completely negative term it's become today. I realize this is probably a losing battle. But the reason the essay didn't get written is that Paul Graham already wrote it, and did a much better job than I could have.

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