What Does That Mean?

Just spent an hour on Skype with Robbymac. Looks like he has a bit more gray in his beard than I recall, whatever that means. He says he’s been too busy to blog because he’s doing “important things” — whatever that means. (Just kidding!) It’s warmer where he is. He also said of my new blog design that I’ve gone from college professor to beatnik. Whatever that means. Maybe the new design will give me more blogging energy, but it seems there are others as well who are losing steam, tiring of the “same old” conversation. Whatever that means.

New Technology Vexation

htc-touch-diamond.jpg I seem to be in the midst of a technology update. It started with replacing my Treo 650 with a shiny new HTC Touch Diamond. I have to say I like the calendar and the email app on the Treo better than the HTC, but the Treo lacks about 83 of the features on the HTC even though it has a much more functional keypad. Or it could be 84 features. Anyway, now I have the task of transferring everything over. I hate the transition where I have half my data in each place and have to carry two devices as a result.

It was also time to upgrade my desktop PC — Mandriva 2009 has been out a while now, and I finally got around to upgrading the OS. Note: the Mandriva 2009 upgrade does not go smoothly. Somehow as a result of the upgrade, I no longer have a graphical environment, just a command-line, which makes most of my everyday applications a bit of a challenge.

Watch out for Tumbleweeds

tumbleweed.jpg Over the past 4+ years, I think only two or three days have gone by where I haven’t posted. That’s a pretty good record — but not perfect. When that much time passes and I haven’t posted, I feel I’m neglecting the blog, and if I let one or two days go by, it’d be easy to let a week go by without posting. On the other hand, I’m trying to say things actually worth reading rather than posting just for the sake of typing practice.

Part of the issue is that I’ve had very little time to read blogs… I haven’t been “caught up” with blogreading since September, but the last month or so has been worse than usual. I guess I know how Bob Hyatt feels, to one degree or another. And for the record, Bob, I do have a ponytail and graying hair. I got this far, and you’ll get here too. Just pray that when you do, you’ll be smarter than I am. ;^)

9rules: networks++

9rules_knowthebest.gif Looks like I got accepted as a 9rules member. I forgot I had applied to the network back in November, but am happy to be in.

9rules is a collection of blogs representing good writing in a variety of categories. As they put it, “We find the best content from the independent web and pull it all together in one location.” And the 9 rules? Those are:

9rules.gif

1. Love what you do.
2. Never stop learning.
3. Form works with function.
4. Simple is beautiful.
5. Work hard, play hard.
6. You get what you pay for.
7. When you talk, we listen.
8. Must constantly improve.
9. Respect your inspiration.

I can go with those… hopefully without stretching too far, as they’re generally ideals I already hold. Oh — and I feel a blog redesign coming on. I think I’ve been using this theme for two years now. It’s got a couple of rough edges I never did finish off, but I find I’m growing tired of it these days. In any event, this design (and the new one, should I actually get around to it) will now sport the 9rules logo along with my other networks.

A few changes around the blog

new-technology.jpg I’ve upgraded my WordPress install from 2.2.3 right up to 2.7 now, including updates to several plugins and a few plugin changes as well (add this, drop that). Turns out I had an improper MySQL query, and the changes I’ve made seems to have overwritten it. Like the shoemaker’s son who wanders around town in the worst shoes of all, I keep falling behind in the updates to my own website. Kind of embarrassing how long I let it slip because of some necessary database changes that I wanted to avoid. I won’t be doing that again.

Please report any weirdness or let me know if you see significant issues at all… but most significantly, everyone should see a marked performance increase. This is the main thing I’m after with these changes, as well as some of the back-end improvements in WordPress. While I was at it, the astute reader may notice I’ve shortened the website urls. But don’t worry, all the old links still work.

A Few Standout Items from 2008

tsk-emergent-survey.jpg Blog Moment of The Year: Andrew Jones stops using the term “emerging church”. This one generated its fair share of buzz around the blogosphere, and no small amount of controversy over the term and the question of whether or not Emergent was all but done. I don’t think the term “post-emergent” came up in the aftermath at all, but the whole thing was a noteworthy moment to be sure.

kathy-escobar.jpg New Blogger of the Year: Kathy Escobar on the carnival in her head. Despite her jonny-baker-esque broken shift key, Kathy’s voice is a great addition to this general conversation. Kathy is insightful, shares personally, and writes very well. Technically, I suppose she began blogging in 2007, but I don’t think many people noticed until 2008, when suddenly everyone was reading her blog. And you should be too.

WordPress 2.7 is Out!

wordpress-logo.jpg I don’t normally do straight tech posts, but this one is worth it: if the title didn’t quite give it away, WordPress 2.7 was released today. I’ve already been running WordPress 2.7 on a couple of blogs I’ve been readying for another project, and I must say I’ve been quite pleased with it. Huge changes in the admin area, enough that I will no longer need to add admin themes to make the interface more easily navigable. Not only that, the admin screens are easily customized. Other major enhancements include automatic software updates, threaded commenting, and more — it’s quite a significant upgrade. If you’re not running WordPress, it’s time to switch. john-coltrane.jpg Seriously.

Oh, and one more reason: this release is called “Coltrane.” Now that’s incentive.

Too Busy to Blog

oldshingles.jpg Today I spend the day on my roof with several friends ripping off our old shingles and putting down new ones. The work went quickly, and by 7:00PM we were ready to sit town for a beer, a bite to eat, and stare at the fire in our fire pit. I got 27 years out of the old shingles, so I can’t complain… but they’d reached the point where I wasn’t going to get another year out of them. Anyway, I spent the full day at manual labour; I have blisters on my hand, a sore back, and I’m pretty tired… so no real blogging for me tonight. Still, it was good to spend the day working with some of the folk from our little band of gatherers… working together builds community.