Why don’t I use the Livejournal Comments system?

I have a fairly large readership that uses Livejournal as a news aggregator for reading my blog postings. This posting is for them…
Ya’ll probably notice a tagline in the postings you see that ask not to use the Livejournal comments mechanism to post replies. The reasoning behind this is that I want to keep commentary on the postings in one place – on the blog itself. When you comment on the feed in Livejournal, you’re just commenting on ‘a copy of’ the article, not the article itself.
I do understand that there are elements of the Livejournal comments mechanism that I do not have available in Movable Type (my blogging software), such as threaded comments, etc. I’m working to add that functionality via plugins, but for the time being, I do ask that if you want to comment on my postings, please click through to the original article, and comment there.


Okay, maybe not quite that bad.
Ya’ll may have noticed that I’ve been posting some new reviews, and made a new section just for Linux and Mac playable webgames. I was getting tired of going to websites that advertise WEB GAMES! Play online for free!, only to find the links for the games are either ActiveX applications or simply a downloadable .exe file. The net is far from homogenous, guys, get with the program.
Anyway, as part of my fight against The Man, I decided to start collecting the best of the online games that are not windows-dependent. As I started working through them, I realized that my Flash player for Firefox was not working. While this doesn’t affect Java based games, it really does limit access to some of the more entertaining stuff.
What followed was 3-4 hours of arguing with multiple Firefox installs trying to get the libflashplayer.so plugin to work. Firefox would recognize it, and ‘about:plugins’ would show it, but nothing would display. I’m still not running, so until I do, no more game reviews. (If anyone has deep insight in to configuring Debian Linux and Firefox to run this correctly, I’d love to hear about it.)
The other chaotic element is we’re going to move all the MovableType based blogs off Homeport and onto Dwight’s machine, which is a managed system located at Serverbeach. This’ll give us greater bandwidth, better support, and less dependency on our home connectivity.
This will affect Planet Geek (Yours truly!), Emergent Chaos (Adam’s fine blog!), HandsOffMyBag.com (Voice your rights!), and Stonekeep.com (Conferences are cool!). We’re planning to do it in a way that will generate zero downtime, so even the people running the blogs shouldn’t notice the change, but there may be a bump or two along the way.
Fun right here in river city!

New MovableType version

This weekend blog goddess Lisa spent a couple hours and upgraded the blogging software that drives Planet Geek and my business site Stonekeep Consulting. It was a bit of a rocky upgrade, but tonight everything is up and running properly.
A HUGE thanks to her and all the work put in. Yay!
One sideline… MovableType can now use TypeKey to verify people posting comments on the site. This is a way to help cut down the amount of blog spam my site gets (hundreds of attempted posts per day). If you don’t use TypeKey, comments postings will remain ‘queued’ until I approve them, so things posted may take a bit of time to appear.

Trivia tidbit du jour

Did you know that Canadian coins stick to magnets?
I was carrying around one of the spiffy Google pins I got at Gnomedex in my pocket this weekend, and noted that one of the coins I had stuck to it (quite strongly). Fishing it out, I noticed it was a Canadian quarter.
Having been brought up with the knowledge that “Coins do not stick to magnets” this was quite an interesting discovery.

A quick bit of relaxation. Best space-military portrayal?

Finally got a few minutes to sit down and watch a little tv… and what should be on, but Aliens… and it got me thinking. This is an 18 year old movie (1986! Can you believe it?) and to me it’s still one of the best portrayals of a future military. Equipment, personnel, and everything, it’s something I can actually watch and go “Yeah, I could see that.” This is as opposed to garbage like Starship Troopers which had me rolling my eyes every 5 minutes with “Oh PLEASE!”. (Planetary drop operation – why is every carrier within a few hundred feet of the other? Where, oh, if one drifts off line just a bit, it’ll smash into the next ship over… sheesh.)
So, what do you think? Movies that even come close to being believable about a future military. Marines in space, if you will.

Blogspam and Livejournal feed updates.

I got nailed 3 times in the last 24 hours with blogspam to Planet Geek Now, normally spam doesn’t bug me that much, It’s there, its’ a part of dealing with life on the net. A minor annoyance. But the way we had the LJ feed set up, anytime someone posted a comment, even in an old archive, the posting will show up on LiveJournal, because the RSS feed content changed (the ‘Comments (4)’ went to ‘Comments (5)’).
This is why folks are seeing old postings from me in their friends list. This drives me absolutely nuts, because I know it really annoys you all as well.
I’ve just altered the feed to take the ‘count’ portion of the comments out of the feed, so that even if someone adds a comment on the blog, it won’t update the feed (proper). The problem there is you never see if there are comments available, and there’s no way to avoid this using the mechanism that Livejournal provides.
Anyway, this change will most likely cause my entire feed to update, and everyone may get a pile of rehashed postings. My apologies, this should be the last time.


I just got my first phone spam. A hotmail return address and everything. I’ve had this number for probably 3+ years now, I hope this doesn’t get to be a problem. I may have to disable msging on it (which I almost -never- use – but it is set up for downtime paging from offsite monitoring… have to figure out how to let that through)


Sorry bout that folks, we made a change to the LJ feed setup, which caused livejournal to assume all the posts happened just now. THis’ll make the postings look better (there was an extraneous link in there).

When Brass Was King.

Radio Paradise comes through again for me, and plays a track that is impossible to keep still to.
January 16th, 1938, Carnegie hall… as told on Gene Krupa’s biography:
“Benny Goodman urged Gene to join his band with the promise that it would be a real jazz band. After joining, Benny soon became discouraged with the idea of having a successful jazz group. The band was relegated to playing dance music and Benny was considering packing it in. Upon the band’s engagement at the Palomar, Benny decided to go for broke and play their own arrangements. The audience went wild and the band took off. The Goodman group featured Gene prominently in the full orchestra and with the groundbreaking Goodman Trio and Quartet. The Trio is possibly the first working small group which featured black and white musicians. On January 16, 1938, the band was the first “jazz” act to play New York’s Carnegie Hall. Gene’s classic performance on “Sing Sing Sing” has been heralded as the first extended drum solo in jazz.”
Sing Sing Sing” to me represents all things seductive about swing music. It’s powerful, driving, and beautifully executed. It’s an example of a piece, performed in this style, with Krupa’s driving bass and Benny’s mesmorizing clarinet that calls to me to give up all this computer noise and truly take up music.

Semantics debate.

So apparently I’m out on my own here, but to me, when someone says “next Saturday”, they are talking about the very next Saturday that will occur.
Apparently I’m in the minority here. When someone tells me, on Wednesday, “Hey, we’re doing something next Saturday” – I naturally assume they’re talking about the day 4 days hence. Nonnon! They’re talking about the day 11 days hence! The one in 4 days is ‘this’ Saturday.
Who thought up this goofy plan? Days are individual entities. If I say ‘take the next thing in line’, you pick up the next available thing, right? You don’t ‘skip’ one and go for the next one after that, do you?
Is this a Boston regionalism or something? Was my brain just counter-programmed when growing up in New Jersey?