A little blog refresh

I’ve refreshed my blog’s look again! I’m pretty happy with the Twenty Eleven theme and how easily I can change colors and images and such.

Here’s how my blog looked this morning, with its pink background, Gibbs Gardens header, and profile pic from last May:

pixelscribbles screenshotAnd here’s how it looks now, with header and profile pic from Sunday’s trip to Little River Falls:

pixelscribbles screenshotI’m not sure how long my blog was pink, because I don’t seem to have screencapped it when I updated it. The last screenshot I have is from 2013, when I put a Sweetwater Creek photo from 2012 in the header. I do know that Gibbs Gardens photo was taken in August of 2014, so that sort of dates it, I suppose.

Anyway, it’s nice to have a new look every now and then.

A new look, again

I’ve removed the Christmas customizations I had made to WordPress’ Twenty Eleven theme and replaced them with a look based on a photo I took at Roche Abbey in England. Here’s what the Christmas theme looked like:

121209-blog-thumbI actually forgot to screencap the design before I changed it, so I had to guess on the background color and link color, but this is essentially what it looked like. I created the header in Photoshop using this photo of our Christmas decorations. This look went live on December 9, 2012.

Here’s the new design:

blog screenshotThe background color is #3a3d3f, the link color is #1c67b2, and the color scheme is Light. I made the header in Photoshop featuring this photo from my birthday in 2009, which was spent with my friends Brooke and David and the Kenmore family at Roche Abbey in South Yorkshire, England. It was a wonderful day of picnicking and exploring and kicking a soccer ball around. :)

Since I’m not sure if I ever actually archived the other looks my blog has had this year, here they are. First up is my fall theme, which went up on October 16, 2012:

blog screencapThe background color is #47240E, the link color is something like #CA3026, and I made the header in Photoshop based on this photo I took on a walk to Kroger in North Augusta in November of 2008. My profile picture is a crop of this photo of me from AJ’s birthday.

Before that, this is what my blog looked like, starting July 15, 2012:

blog screencapUnfortunately I don’t have a full page version of this one, so you can’t see all my sidebar stuff. The tiled background and large graphic element in the header came from a site that I really want to credit, but I can’t find the link now. Just know that I did not create them. My profile pic is a crop of this photo from the 4th of July.

Before this design, I had left Twenty Eleven pretty much alone other than swapping out the header. Here’s a picture I used for quite some time; it’s the view from the front yard of the family farm.

farm blog headerThe Internet Archive hasn’t grabbed a snapshot of my blog since July of 2011; I don’t know if I have messed up a setting or if something else is going on, but I’ll try to fix that, because I really like being able to step back into my design history. I’ll also keep trying to archive my designs myself.

The shift has been made…sort of

If you’re reading this, you can perhaps see that I’ve switched my blog to WordPress and also moved it from pixelscribbles.com/journal to plain old pixelscribbles.com. Both of these changes have been long in coming; I’ve thought about doing them both for years but just never had the motivation. Blogger’s ending of FTP support changed all that, and last night I slapped everything together in something of a rush.

This is not the template I’ll be sticking with, though I do like it. I’m hoping to design my own. This, of course, will take time; in the meantime you may see this blog cycle through various looks. My first order of business, though, is to see if I can’t do something about a few lingering problems.

My old post URLs don’t work anymore. This is sad, since many of those URLs had been around for years and years and years. I’d like to fix this problem, but to do so I will have to cope with three things.

  1. I need to redirect links including /journal/ to the root directory. [done]
  2. Blogger removed articles (a, an, the) from post-title URLs; WordPress doesn’t do that.
  3. Blogger permalinks had .html at the end; WordPress permalinks don’t.[fixed with redirect]

I’m thinking I will need to do some sort of mod_rewrite to solve these problems, which is a bit beyond my knowledge at this point.

The next issue is post images. My posts have pictures from three sources: this server, from back when I uploaded and embedded everything manually; SmugMug; and Blogger uploads that were sent via emails from my phone. The first source isn’t a problem; I simply left all the images on the server as they were in /journal/images, even though I don’t use /journal for anything else. Similarly, all the SmugMug images are still where they were before, so no need to change anything there.

But the Blogger uploads are quite the issue. When I was publishing via FTP, all the images saved into a folder on my server called uploaded_images. It would have been ideal had I left things this way, but alas, last night I was in a fit of “good grief I’m tired of looking at Blogger’s ‘We will no longer support FTP’ notice”, and I impulsively moved everything to Blogspot. It was only after that shift was done that I realized I really, really prefer to have my blog on my own server, where I can control things like .htaccess.

Unfortunately, Blogger’s migration tool was quite thorough, and it copied over all the Blogger-uploaded images and changed the URLs in the posts that referenced them. So now I have 1200 posts (apparently) that are pulling images from Blogspot.

I’ve left cosleia.blogspot.com up for now, so I shouldn’t have any broken images for the time being. Comments are disabled over there; that blog is a relic that maybe I’ll delete and maybe I’ll save for fun. Regardless of what I do with it, though, I need to somehow get rid of all the Blogspot images over here. I’m guessing this is going to involve a lot of manual searching and editing, but who knows? Maybe there’s a plugin out there that can help.

So that’s the state of pixelscribbles for now.

Despite all the pressing issues above, I’m thinking my first moves really ought to be to restore my blogroll and webcomics [done!] lists…I miss them!

Edit 3/16/2010: I’ve solved one issue with a redirect. And webcomics are back, baby.

Don’t mind this

This is not what my blog is going to look like long-term. I just got tired of knowing my template was broken and built with tables, so I took an hour this morning and tweaked an existing Blogger template. This is step one in a redesign that I promise will be pretty and standards-compliant!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged

Twitter search on homepage

It would appear that many of my Twitter followers do not see the Twitter search box in the top right-hand corner of their home pages. Thus, they do not believe that I do.

Well, nay-sayers, here’s what I see! (Click the image to see the whole page.)

Twitter search on home

As you can see, the Profile and Settings links have been moved down next to my username, making room for the search box.

I’ve already used search more thanks to this change!

Template tweaks complete!

I have finally finished tweaking the template to make the comments look right, to fix some messed up links, and to add some new links. You’ll notice a new navigation bar at the bottom of the pages now; this will hopefully assist people who have scrolled down while reading to get to where they want to be without having to scroll back up. I’ve also made the title graphic into a link to the main journal page–I don’t know how many times I’ve moved my mouse cursor over to it and wished that it was a link, so now it is one.

Miscellaneous other changes have been made that are small but that satisfy my anality. (Is that a word? Sounds better than “analness”, anyway…but I’m prejudiced against the suffix -ness.)

Blogger has been lagged recently, which has made the publishing process take a lot longer. I imagine this is because everyone is realizing how cool it is and there are people signing up left and right. Plus, there are probably a lot of existing Blogger users who are updating their templates to include the comments (just like me!). Needless to say, I’m very relieved to have finally gotten all of this done. :)

I hope that those of you who are planning on posting comments a lot will go ahead and sign up for a Blogger account. You don’t have to use it ever except for posting comments. I promise that this is the last thing you’ll have to sign up for in order to respond to my posts, at least for the foreseeable future. I’m very pleased with Blogger right now and see no reason to suddenly change to something else. So to those of you who signed up for Xanga or LiveJournal accounts solely to post to my blog…sorry! Please indulge me!

pixelscribbles.com circa June 2004

Screenshot of pixelscribbles.com with Blogger comments enabled from June 2004

Blogger comments enabled

As you may have noticed, the old Blogkomm system is gone, and in its place is the new Blogger comments. You may register for a Blogger account to post with, or you may post anonymously. If you choose the latter, please include your name (or alias, or whatever) in your post. I like knowing who I’m speaking with :)

Last night I spent many, many (I don’t even want to think about how many) hours porting all old comments into this system. By “porting” I mean “copying and pasting one by one”. I put in not only Blogkomm stuff, but stuff from Xanga and LiveJournal too. Now this site is completely autonomous.

The comments are pretty messy right now…I have them center-justified, which of course won’t do, and the name of the poster and post time isn’t very well differentiated from the rest of the message. I’m going to have to redo my template again to fix this problem, something I’ll work on when I have the chance. I need to incorporate the archives better, anyway, and include a link to my Blogger profile too. (Plus I have to remove the Blogkomm link…)

But for now, things are working properly, which is good.

Pollen, and work

Spring is coming. We’re right on the cusp. I know because of the pressure in my sinuses and the beginnings of tears that are suddenly ever-present in my eyes. Yes, that’s right, folks…allergy season is here.

Last night I had a horrible migraine. I thought it was simply due to the work I’ve been doing on a new website for Macross 2051 (I’ve created a new layout and I’m translating it into the proper code for Mambo Content Management System), and though I did take some allergy medicine in the hopes that it would help, I didn’t really believe allergies were the prime suspect.

Today after work I noticed a light dusting of yellow powder on my car. So yeah. Allergies.

Augusta has one of the highest pollen concentrations in the world. Pollen forecast from the Weather Channel; pollen forecast from the makers of Zyrtec. ;> Whichever one you trust, we’ve got pollen, people. I’ve turned on the air conditioning in the hopes that it will help filter some of it out, but I’m getting the feeling that this sinus pressure will stick with me all week :(

In other news…

I haven’t been posting lately, but that’s not due to a lack of things to say. Either I’ve been busy doing something else or I’ve been too tired to write or, the case that happens a lot, I didn’t want to post because I’m going to redo this website in Mambo and I didn’t want to spend energy writing something that I would have to port over later. But heck, I’m going to be working on it for quite some time, so I may as well journal in the meantime. Life’s too short not to blog.

Yes, that was lame. Intentionally lame ;D

Today I talked with Robert about rearranging the office. He had my desk facing one of the sets of windows; I want to turn it to go along the wall to the left, so that I have a better view of the door and so as to open up more space in the center of the room. This will involve shifting some free-standing shelves around and sliding his desk and the mini fridge a few feet away, but it won’t be a big deal, and hopefully the result will make the office look nice and neat. We’ve had clients stop in and we look sort of unprofessional right now. As soon as the main area is laid out the way I want it, I’m going to work on the finer details of spiffifying the office. Should be fun; I like interior design.

I also mentioned to him that I’m going to want a week off sometime in the next two months, and I told him that I would work eight hour shifts the week before or after in order to make up my time. I then asked him when it would be convenient for him for me to go, since the new project will be starting this month. He said that two weeks after the project gets off the ground should be fine, so that means maybe the week of April 5. Of course, you all should know what I plan to do during that time…visit my family!

A week-long vacation to see them will probably be better than the trips I’ve been making, where I go for an undetermined amount of time and then end up getting too attached. One week should be fine. I felt better after the Christmas visit than I had for the other visits, and I really think it was a matter of planning how long the stay would be. I think not having a definite leave date puts me in the wrong mindset, especially towards the end of the visit.

Plus, now I have something to come back to besides housework! (Oh, and Sean, of course ;>)

Today was slower than usual at work, otherwise. I finally managed to scour some of the local magazines for restaurant leads. I also stocked up on printed materials (address labels, instructions, etc), and I affixed quite a few return address labels to bubble mailers. That puts me in good shape for tomorrow, when I have to mail packages.

I just remembered two things I forgot to do while I was at work. Bleh.

I’ll blame them on my sinuses…