The Roof is on Fire

Another year, a full year of new fun-fun-fun happenings I can tell you about! Don’t you just love it? I bet you do.

It’s a new year I’m glad I lived to see. Someone – I will not mention names, but if you know the people I live with, you’ll know who it was – almost set our apartment on fire Saturday night by being

  1. To drunk to cook, but still determined to do it.
  2. To tired to cook, but still determined to do it.

As we know, drunk people are often hungry when they get home in the middle of the night and want to make some food. Also, they don’t have that good short-term memory and if you add “tired” to the equation you probably get the picture. That the baking tin full of butter had cracked, creating a stream of fat that poured all over the turned on stove, which in turn filled the kitchen with grey smoke, did not stop me from waking up at around eight in the morning, go to the kitchen, turn off the stove and remove the fat. I don’t think the stove was actually hot enough for the fat to catch on fire, but if it had, there is a good chance at least three people would’ve been royally fucked.

But everything went OK. This time. Knock, knock.

In other news, I’ve received a new fan sign, it’s been a couple of years since the last time. Have a look in the Webcam section. Come to think of it, the whole webcam-thing is totally passé, and you’ll have to look real hard for any web sites this day with a webcam section. Maybe I’ll pull the plug on it soon. Or maybe I’ll wait for webcams to once again become the new loud and be able to tell everyone that I always believed in webcams and the extreme entertainment value of the concept? Nah… But it was fun as long as it lasted.

Site is Even Tighter Now

I was on support duty last weekend, which means there was little time to be social and stuff. It’s not like there is always something to do when I’m on support duty, but I have to stay within a certain distance of a computer connected to the internet in case the shit should indeed hit the fan. On Saturday one of our clients was streaming an international football match with a potentially high number of paying clients, so I decided to monitor that event instead of going to Katrine’s place and drink beer.

Of course nothing happened, all systems nominal, meaning that I could’ve been drunk beyond all recognition and it wouldn’t have mattered much. I’m way to conscientious.

Anyway, since football is one of the things in life I found the most boring, I used the time to do a little hacking on the site core. The blog is now 100% database driven, with no static pages whatsoever. A challenge surfaced with all links referencing to the static blog pages. By converting to dynamic pages, every link would be broken. After a bit of internet surfing, Apache‘s incredible mod_rewrite solved the problem. I have no idea how the mod works, it just works. With a simple regular expression, every request to any of the static blog pages in the archive are rewritten into a query string request and sent to one single PHP page. I’ve also been able to remove the query strings from all other links. Have a look at the links for the calendar on the side bar, for instance. Marvelous.

I also tried to redesign the site, but I just have to face it – I’m not a designer. Or realigner, for that matter.

Site is Tight

I feel that the site is pretty tight now. The new Calendar works well, and it looks good, too. I’ve also been able to get rid of the annoying time zone problems that has haunted me ever since I moved the site from Norway to Australia. It was quite easy to solve, really, just took some reading in the PHP. RTFM sometimes is the right thing. Still, there is a couple of things I’d like to do:

  • Remove a couple of bugs I’ve found,
  • Redesign, or rather realign the site. It’s been quite a while since the last time.
  • Get rid of the static blog pages. Inspired by Greymatter, I decided to generate static versions of all the pages when I created the first version of the CMS. This has turned out to be a real PITA when I add new features or modify old ones. The whole archive is static, the front page also used to be mostly static, but it’s dynamic now.
  • Implement some kind of user system to make comment posting a bit sweeter, probably something inspired by waferbaby. An alternative is to implement support for an authentication system like OpenId or TypeKey. Or both.
  • Maybe, some day, convert the whole CMS shebang to PHP5 (I’ve been rambling on about this before), create an open source project and release a very simple, but all-that-you-really-need CMS for nerds like me. This will have to be when I get a lot of spare time on my hands, for instance if I ever get unemployed.

But before I do any of that, I have to get rid of the intense pain in my left hand.

Sony BMG’s Automated Answer

Sony BMG sent me an automated answer within one day of my enquiry, which is acceptable, I guess. It’s possible to download an update for the DRM software that allows you to remove rootkit based DRM content protection software and replace it with a non-rootkit DRM technology that is compatible with “all current security protocols”. Uninstalling the software is another matter, you’ll have to contact Sony BMG again through another web form to get instructions on how to uninstall it. The e-mail doesn’t answer my two questions, but it ends with “Thank you for the opportunity to be of assistance”.

Sure, be my guest.

Over the last couple of months a lot of comment SPAM has been sent to the site. I’ve been able to block some of the spammers out by banning IPs, but today I decided to ban an entire ISP. All of the SPAM has come from computers connected to 013 Barak so now I’ve banned every 013 subscriber. Read my message to the poor suckers.