Writing about writing on writing

I’m always one for the latest thing, particularly when it comes to social media. So when I heard the @Ev (the man behind Blogger and Twitter) had started up something new, I was quick to check it out. His latest venture is called Medium. It’s an online writing space. At least that’s part of what it is. It’s a wonderful hybrid; an excellent online writing tool (which already makes writing this blog post in WordPress seem clunky), and a shared repository of posts and articles created using Medium. It’s a lovely tool to use and speaks to the fact that, for many people, the act of writing needs a focus and space to be allowed to flourish. There are many …

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On blog comments

I always get excited when I see an email in my inbox with a subject line that starts “WordPress:…” as it means someone has commented on one of my blogs. Such a simple delight I know but hey, you take pleasure in the little things I guess. Sometimes that delight is instantly crushed when I realise it’s a spambot that is trying to add a comment containing a link to either some ‘enhancing’ pharamceutical, a flirty comment from a hot chick, or just complete nonsense accompanied by a phishing URL. However there seems to be a rise in the number of “real” spam comments these days, and that is hugely disheartening. These comments are left by, it seems, real people …

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Best Post

For a while now I’ve been meaning to update the About page of this blog. Ideally I’d like to put a short list of the ‘best’ posts from this blog. Trouble is, whilst I’m quite happy to choose the list myself, it’s sort of tricky to find them, I mean seriously, there is a LOT of crap in here. I would use the number of comments as an indicator but, having only switched to WordPress a couple of years ago and deciding then (foolishly) that I wouldn’t bother migrating all the old comments over, I’m a bit stuck. Dare I ask my readers to help out? Would any of them be able to list one ‘best’ post, let alone three?? …

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UA Conference Notes – Day 1

Notes and thoughts from Day 1 of the User Assistance Conference Session 1 – Tony Self – Emerging Help Delivery Technologies It’s been quite a while since I heard Tony speak but as ever he provided an entertaining, if somewhat limited, presentation. Covering the various types of help viewing technologies he nicely summarised some of the available choices including the features to look out for, including the ability to wrap up an online help system in its own application (using technology like Adobe AIR). It was interesting to hear some Web 2.0 features making their way into online help technologies, including voting and commenting facilities which would give you direct feedback from the people using your help system. Session 2 …

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Fate?

What is it about these things, these events in life that all seem to collide. Days go by with only the merest ripple distorting the norm then … BLAMMO! … For example, take tomorrow. I need to be in the office to deliver a presentation as part of our induction and the kitchen fitters are due to, finally, start work. I’ve also got an appointment with the nurse to get my blood pressure taken. I’d figured out the timings, I’d wait until the kitchen fitters arrived and then head to work. The presentation is right after lunch, so I’d give that then head off to the local health centre, then home to see how the fitters are doing. Except they …

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No searching…

I’ve been trying, unsuccessfully, to add a better (Google) search to this site. Alas because I have a hand-coded WordPress theme, and I last looked at it about a year ago, I’ve managed to bork the search results location. So, for now, the search isn’t working. Nuts. Thanks to Tom, it’s all working now, and it’s even better!

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Web apps are not products

Matt Haughey is, amongst bloggers, pretty well known and respected. He recently wrote up his thoughts on weblog applications and, as they mirror some of my thinking, I thought I’d expand on this theme here. The title of the post, Bottom line, all weblog apps suck in some way, was borne of frustration and outlines a few points which, reading between the lines, boil down to the same kind of thing. Few web applications are at the point they could be considered a product. Matt talks specifically about weblog applications, one of which I use to power this site (WordPress). I do a little web design in my spare time (there’s an oxymoron if ever I heard one) and have …

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And slowly, it became right

Decluttering continues, hampered only by a sudden lack of interest. I’m not surprised of course, that’s how it always is with me, all excited and raring to go at the start before… meh.. apathy and distractions. One of which has been catching up with the latest travelogue from Michael Palin. It’s been fascinating to learn more about parts of Europe which I knew of, but knew nothing about. It is a very quick look at the culture, politics and beliefs of Eastern Europe, but well worth a look. I may also be watching series 2 of Heroes, but that would be naughty and illegally so can’t possibly be true (although the mexican girl is kinda cute, huh). I’ve also managed …

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Planning ahead

In my hangover fug I’ve been thinking about stuff wot needs to get done. One of those things is to sort out my WordPress install as the recent upgrade has left it littered with errors. It seems to be working OK but… well.. it’s annoying. Other than that, with the bulk of last week concentrated on Louise and her new job, there’s loads to do in the house. Nothing major, but a small pile of “stuff” has slowly grown and needs dealt with. I’ve also got my presentation for the TICAD conference to hand in this week. So, I’m going to dial back on my ‘online’ activities this week. Not disappearing but less conspicuous. Maybe. You know how it is…

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WordPress 2.3

Upgrade complete – sidebar borked. Apparently the introduction of the new tagging doo dah means a table is now no longer valid, the table that quite a few plugins were using, one of which was powering my miniblog posts. Hence why they’ve all, suddenly, appeared here. So, until I get some free time to get the code sorted out myself, this is how it’s gonna be… mind you, maybe a switch to single column…

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