Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Drupal and MySQL Patch problems

Recently my web host server had a MySQL Patch applied taking it to version 4.1.21

This causes some bizarre problems with some Drupal installations - version 4.6.x. I have 3 sites that it is affecting differently. Fortunately it is only the main page (node) that it affects and so I have been able to limit the problem while waiting for a patch to be appplied.

Basically what is happening is that the main page posts have had their chronological appearance (from newest to oldest) reversed.

Discussion on the problem here.
Technical bug info here.
Patch to MySQL link found here.

Cool Blog and Web Tools

Technorati This is a great blog tracking tool - work out who links to you and what post. Great for looking up the people who link and then thanking them. This technique has helped me develop a wide community of friends and contacts in the blogosphere and the wider web as well.

Google SiteMaps Get Google's view of your website, and diagnose potential problems.
See how Google crawls and indexes your site and learn about specific problems we're having accessing it.
See how your site is performing.
Learn which queries drive traffic to your site, and see exactly how users arrive there

LastHalo Development Website LastHalo is a "last comment" sidebar created for Haloscan users.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Blogger Updated

I am one of many that was burned by Blogger by having two years of drafts deleted when the blogger administrators deleted my account after I requested they review my blogs for compliance with the TOS. The lack of professionalism I experienced in the resulting e-mails and inability to talk to a real person prompted me to advise people to stay away from Blogger! With better solutions like Drupal and WordPress which you can put on a trusted host allowing backups and greater control of your publishings, the risk associated with a service like Blogger is not worth it.

That said, Google has made its first major update to the Blogger service since its acquisition from Pyra Labs in 2003.

Google Inc. on Monday launched its first major revamp of its Blogger service since acquiring it last year, adding new ways for bloggers to post content and to interact with one another.

Blogger now offers a comments section on blogs and lets bloggers post content through e-mail and create profiles of their background and interests. Beyond the new features, Blogger redesigned the user interface across its site and publishing tool, said Evan Williams, Blogger program manager at Google.

Doug McCaughan's personal blog is Reality Me and consults as Superior Internet Designs.

Update: The striked reference above may have been a typo in the date. C|Net has the same information with an August 15, 2006 publishing date. So, strike the strike. See also Update aims for friendlier Blogger (which they won't achieve unless they have fixed their customer service issues). From the horse's mouth at Blogger Buzz with an August 14, 2006 publishing date.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Do you blog? What topics, if any, do you consider off limits?

KristyK has posted this fantastic question. I look forward to reading the comments. I wrote a lengthy comment myself. Hop over and give your answer!

I suppose I fear having my character come into question over some satire or by misconstruing my writing. The reality of it is I am who I am. I am happy with who I am. I live honestly and try my best to treat others kindly. I offer my words so you can know me for I have nothing to hide. [Source]

Friday, August 04, 2006

Blog and web site tools

Following is a list of links to new tools or resources I have discovered recently.

Technorati roll out a major update
Their view - Dave Sifry writes"After months of work and weeks of testing, we just released an updated version of I hope after spending some time with the updated service, you’ll join me in celebrating its release. "
Darren Rowse's review

My first impressions were not that great but it’s growing on me. Their challenge is that they are now tracking a lot of information and a lot of blogs and to present it all in a useful and uncluttered way is always going to be difficult - particularly because I suspect that different Technorati users use it differently to each other (ie some use it to find stories, some to track blogs, some to observe trends etc).
Robin Good's review
The key new features include:
  • a completely revamped and easier to use interface

  • more comprehensive reference and authority data for each blog

  • a new Discover feature allowing individuals to find out what are the most interesting blogs to read for each major news category

  • more precision and accuracy in the link counting feature, allowing you to see more reliable and more frequently updated data about the authority of any site (including yours)

  • less geekiness, so that even non technical users can better understand the beauty and unique value that Technorati brings

  • a new Favorites section features which allows you to select and organize your favorite blog news sources

  • a new Popular feature, which algorithmically derives the most linked-to items in the last few days

  • significant improvements to blog profiles information - giving you access now to stats, tags used, posting frequency, traffic, and Technorati ranking for any blog that Technorati tracks

  • more speed. Now you should see the new engine reacting and responding like a true champion

  • From Unofficial Microsoft Office Stuff
    Animated GIFs For use on the Web or PowerPoint
    Harry the
    3,000+ Royalty Free Copyrighted Animated Gifs for non-commercial use
    Free Gifs & Animations, also editors, guestbook's, etc.
    1,500 FREE Animated Gifs and many other items (gifs, jpgs, letters, buttons, backgrounds, etc.)
    There are more than 300 of them from which to choose.

    Military Clipart - Thousands of items.
    All of these files are in the public domain unless otherwise indicated. However, we request you credit the photographer/videographer as indicated or simply "Department of Defense."

    From ProBlogger
    Controlling the Googlebot
    How to control what gets indexed by Google and when? That is the question. Most of the time, we want Google to snarf up as many pages as possible. In my own experience, I can think of a few times when indexing was not something I wanted and I had to go back to Google to actually have pages removed.
    Effective Blog Architecture
    A very good article loooking at how to maximise the architecture of your blog for the purposes for which it is intended and readers it attracts.

    Why This Blog Sells Tons of Ebooks (And How It Can Sell Even More)
    A long and in-depth article about monetising your blog with e-books.

    Integrating Digg Within Your Blog Gets Easier

    Reinvent Your Blog

    From J-Walk
    Wesite sidebar photos and PHP code to randomly select them. If anyone would like a copy of these photos, you can download them here. It's a 2.6 Mb zip file that contains 300 identically-sized (100x125) images, mostly snagged from the Web. I also included a text file that has the PHP code I used to display them.
    Open Source Web Design is a place to download free web designs and share yours with others. We help make the internet a prettier place.

    Thursday, August 03, 2006

    Chitika Minimalls updates and new services

    Chitika minimalls is a great way to monetise your blog. They have contextual and non-contextual (default) services which allow you to combine with Google Adsense without breaking the Adsense Terms of Use. You can however tie in keywords to specific posts or just generically select categories of ads.

    Here is some news from Chitika about why minimalls would be good for your blog.

    Recently Chitika has extended the number and range of categories and also the ad unit sizes.

    They have also launched Multi Product Units (MPU)
    MPU announcement
    More MPU's