I have just made a whole series of behind-the-scenes changes to snowhenge.net, which I hope will make it more interesting and more attractive to use.
First of all, commenting. I get quite a lot of comments here. Almost all are spam or borderline spam. Since I moderate everything, they don’t get through. But they do get through the ghastly CAPTCHA. And it means an unfortunate delay for legitimate comments. I could allow comments from members only, but however much I try even my few regulars refuse to sign up, although several hundred did when I ran the site on Movable Type. Possibly I’ve screwed up the template, or possibly nobody can be bothered. But well over a 1000 spammers did manage to register themselves… Unfortunately Expression Engine insists on its member-based approach, and I can’t even seem to “whitelist” regulars allowing them to bypass moderation. In my opinion it’s a real weak area in EE. So I’m going to go with the flow, and try out Disqus comments. From now on all commenting passes through Disqus. Old comments will still be visible, but the Expression Engine commenting interface is turned off. We’ll see how it goes. Of course, this makes “logging on” here pretty pointless for now. But maybe I’ll add some members-only stuff in the future. Who knows.
Next, and starting with this entry, I’m going to try to ressucitate the “Other Stuff” part of this site by restarting the dormant “The evenings out here” blog. It has been raised to full peer status with “photoblogography”, and gets its own seperate tag cloud. T.E.O.H, to use the short name, has in the past been a repository for general writing, sometimes about music, sometimes general geekery, sometimes about work related stuff. Well, there won’t be much work stuff, as anything writing about anything vaguely interesting I’m doing would be a criminal offence. So it’s going to be more general. I’ve left all the old articles up, but a lot of them are extremly outdated these days. But I still find some of the more unbalanced ranting vaguely musing.
I decided to go with this revival after considering what some of my favourite blogs are doing - such as Patrick LaRoque, Rob Boyer - and also others who seem to go from total zero to fully accomplished guru in two years! I decided finally that my split personality “photography & other stuff” theme was basically my unique “selling” point, so the best thing I can do is to emphasise it. On the photography side, I’m also not so good at the more “photoblog” kind of very regular publishing. I’m more into (self)-curated galleries these days.
Obviously running this site has to fit somewhere in my leisure time, and there’s little of that to go around. I’m also pretty slow at writing articles, although I’ve usually got a least a handful floating around in my head.
Anyway, I hope all the new stuff works, and I apologise for the inevitable bugs. I’d be delighted if you left a comment (unless it involves an incredible business opportunity buying Viagra from Nigeria).
Whoa. I was finally getting around to looking at spicing up some of the more mundane stuff here, when I discovered that the whole member system was broken. I think it’s fixed now. Sorry….
I am only too aware that there are a few glitches in this site. Little by little I’m trying to fix them, whenever I get a spare moment and have the energy. Hopefully search is now fixed. I’ve implemented a very simple search only, as I don’t really believe this site needs anything more complex. There are two separate search contexts, one for each blog. For more general search, you know where to go ...
I would be very grateful for any feedback on bugs or any other issue - my next task is to try to nail down the remaining glitches in the comment system, but that is always tricky.
And on the photography side, the gallery design is actually pretty much finished. The problem now is selecting the content!