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Bartlomiej Owczarek weblog

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Blogging in Lijiang

In Lijiang’s cafe I had the opportunity – and an obligatory one due to my table’s location – to observe another blogger blogging.

Blogging in China

There were many interesting things to be observed, the ones that come to mind when you ponder why blogging is taking so much of your time. Like how long does it take to write a post for other bloggers, how much they edit and rewrite, how fast they publish.

So it’s not just me after all. It does take long.

The blog was Spices, Silk & Tea, writing about Tiger’s Leaping Gorge (everyone was on the same route in China). It’s in French.

One blog fits it all

I could write a lot about how difficult it is for me to write this blog for so many different groups of target readers, which include my family, friends, employer, potential employers, people interested in specific subjects, random people redirected from Google, etc. But recent comments on guestbook tell the story:)

Steve Job’s diary

It just feels lame to point to something previously recommended by Nick Carr, because I feel like everyone already is or should be reading him anyway.

But I can’t resist in case of Steve Job’s Secret Diary. My favorite post as of recently concerns visit of Sony executives to apologize for screw-up with their faulty batteries.

Upgrading to WordPress 2.0, third try, I call it a success

Another precious three hours and I managed to get WP2.0 working without errors, visible errors, at least. I repaired SPGM rewriting rules using trial and error approach, but it is now such a mess that I don’t even want to look at it.

As for added value, I started to use Akismet anti-spam plugin. I’m curious to see how it performs.


More geeky stuff… (too much time on my hands to screw around with technicalities?)

I was playing with Zenphoto, and it is a heck of promise as far as a gallery script replacement for my site. I even managed to run it on this server, which was, quite as usual, quite challenging because its software is outdated.

Even mod_rewrite functionality (the one responsible for pretty urls) seems to work.

The value added to my current script is that ZP seems well written, works on the database as a decent script should work and supports comments, rewriting, and quite a few other features that I miss. It is likely that I would manage to integrate it with WordPress as well.

But a show stopper for me is lack of sub-albums support. It should be part of the next release, and hopefully it will come out soon, because the script itself is really the best I have across so far, its issues with my server notwithstanding.

Update: Judging from the author’s plans, it might take quite long before the subalbums functionality will see the daylight. But I can wait, probably. No better option on the horizon, anyway.
(weird feeling about this open source software, you peek into author’s life and discount his personal plans)

Upgrading to WordPress 2.0, second try, almost there

I found an article that helped me to bypass the original problem, here:

The workaround seems quite rough and I’m not sure if there aren’t any side effects, but it does its job.

Everything seemed to be fine, except for the SPGM gallery, whose rewriting rules, as usual, got broken… I must roll back again and postpone this fun till weekend (2.5 hours wasted so far).

Upgrading to WordPress 2.0, first try, failed

I decided to upgrade to WordPress 2.0 this evening. First I started on my test site, ie. on the account I still have on the university server.

I copied the files, made database backup, uploaded new wordpress in, copied old files into its directory, renamed old wordpress installation to make the way for new one, renamed the new one to take over. Ran the upgrade script. Script said it worked. And the site itself… bingo, everything fine!

Looks cute, this new version, and this shiny post editor. Right away I start with my “production” facility.

I copied the files, made database backup, uploaded new wordpress in, copied old files into its directory, renamed old wordpress installation to make the way for new one, renamed the new one to take over. Ran the upgrade script. Script said it worked. And the site itself…

500 Internal Server Error


1 hour of unsuccessful tries to repair the thing.

I rolled back. Thanks God the database backup was flawless…

More blogging friends

Przemek decided to give it a try:

I worked with Przemek in ConQuest Consulting. He is less masochistic than me, so he writes in Polish.

But still, I wish more will follow soon, I feel we are so far behind with the blogging thing.

Spam comment of the day

“Your site is very informative, interesting and a certain daily visit for critical weather information. Thank you.”

Spreading the word

As an input to my ongoing considerations about benefits from writing this blog – which I am hardly writing recently due to lack of time – I’ve recently discovered that people actually use it to check out what I’m doing, and sometimes get back to me if they find it interesting. At least Jacek did when he learned that I’m going to learn Chinese.

To make it more general – there are few more important things in making progress with anything than making it clear to people around where are you heading and what you are passionate about. The message travels fast across the social networks and often, in a totally unexpected way, someone appears out of nowhere and offers help or advise.

It’s natural and reciprocal. I always forward stuff or extend help to people who I know are passionate about something. I never forward anything nor, to be honest, care much about people who are passionate about nothing.

So, to get you updated on the things I am trying to do at this very moment:)

1) Design my apartment in a Japanese style (but no sleeping on the floor)

2) Find a virtual project space, with file storage, wiki & blog possibly included.

Little time to write

Or maybe I’m just too busy with other topics.

But I’m right on track to start Chinese lessons, maybe next week.

RSS is worse than email

I’m back from the training and vacation in the US.

I caught up with my email already, but I’m not sure when I will be able to read all those feeds accrued during the last two weeks.

30 spam comments a day

At least, but fortunately, hardly any gets through the filters. Still, every day I need to waste some time deleting them from the queue. Maybe installing CAPTCHA would be worthwhile (and fun). First on the list, though, an upgrade to WordPress 2.0, required sooner or later, but will be pain for sure.

I wonder why such increase? I thought spam comments are ignored by the search engines anyway.

Journalism after Google

NYT article by Steve Lohr pictures journalism trying to cope with new search engine driven reality:

This Boring Headline Is Written for Google

Not that it’s only today that the profession is shaped by technology and marketing: headlines were always meant to attract attention, and telegraph invented the pyramid.

But now comes the Google and the rules change again. After the editor and the reader, the spider becomes third stakeholder that needs to be satisfied.

Professional blogs in Poland

Seems that after all there are some professional blogs in Poland, I found one today:

MEDIA CAFÉ POLSKA (in Polish) by Krzysztof Urbanowicz

It’s about media industry and thus not so much in my area of interest, but still a good start, I’m looking for more.

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