back atcha, captcha!

Until now, I’ve required users to be registered on the blog in order to leave comments. I’ve realized however that this does act as a deterrent to people who would impulsively comment but don’t want to load a few extra screens. So, I have taken a cue from Shamus and installed a captcha plugin. I’m using a derivative of the one he uses, called Peter’s Math Anti-Spam Plugin, and again taking a cue from Shamus I’ve configured it so it shows exactly the same math problem every time. (Incidentally, please assume completeness of the Real numbers before answering. Thank you.)

If you are a registered user, and are logged in (use the handy login form on top of sidebar) you won’t ever see the captcha. I am still disabling all pingbacks and trackbacks, and have also installed a domain blacklist to prevent spammy email addresses from registering (mostly Sorry, Russian Haibane fans). And I’ve got Akismet purring along in the background. Spam hasn’t really been a problem until now and if this (marginally) more open scheme results in a big increase in spam from registered bots, then I’ll yank it.

tagged by Dexter and not impressed is now running version 2.3.1. The 2.3.x upgrade brings tag functionality to the WordPress core. At present I only have one tag, “wordpress” – I need to sit down and think about a strategy for making best use of this functionality. As it turns out, it also breaks my blog in an interesting way… and leaves me highly skeptical of whether tags are meaningfully different from categories at all, despite the prevailing dogma that insists they are truly separate things. Continue reading “tagged by Dexter and not impressed”

trimming the chrome

I’ve drastically pruned my blogroll to just the same anime blogs that I subscribe to in my feedreader. Long-overdue links to Nick, Ubu, and Author were added, and if you’re a regular commenter here with a blog of your own, let me know so I can do the needful.

I also filled out XFN relationships where appropriate (if you’ve ever linked to/emailed me, you’re at least an acquaintance. If you’ve kicked me off your web forum or sent me Firefly DVDs, you’re a friend 🙂 WordPress supports XFN natively so might as well do my part for the Semantic Web and make Tim Berners-Lee happy.

Oh, and if you noticed any WordPress theme wierdness, that was just me pushing the big red button I wasn’t supposed to push. I think I should roll my own theme template, as I’ve hacked on the default quite a bit now. I’ll wait till after the WP 2.3 upgrade on monday.

post ratings

I’ve added a plugin that lets readers rate individual posts on a scale of 1-5. It’s dynamic (AJAX) so you don’t even need to reload the page. I’m interested in some feedback on which topics interest you, because frankly there’ sso much to write about I am almost paralyzed with indecision 🙂 So, please rate the posts! no user acct or login required, just click on the stars.

wordpress woes

Astro mentioned that my site was still buggy – the main problem is that WP 2.2 added native support for Widgets, which breaks when combined with my preferred theme K2’s implementation of “sidebar modules” (also a form of widgets). The long and short of it is that I have to wait until the K2 people release a new version (the latest nightly build did nothing for me). Until then I am going a bit retro; I’m using the Widgets because they are there but I really miss K2’s SBM functionality, it’s so much more powerful. Wouldn’t it be nice if K2 could spin off SBM as an extension to Widgets so all of this would be theme independent?

anyway, gripes aside, everything works now (since I’m giving up on K2 for the present). So comment away!

life is bigger

So, I’ve been AWOL a bit recently. Part of it is paralysis; there’s actually a tremendous amount of material I could be blogging about, but since I’m not usually a fan of the linkdump, I don’t know where to start. But the main issue at present is that we have a six week baby in the house who hasn’t figured out the function of that giant yellow object in the sky, not to mention the fact that we are moving our household from Texas to Wisconsin for my wife’s residency, in less than three weeks. Related to this is the postdoc position I am trying to wind down and make sure I leave here with all i’s dotted and t’s crossed. So, things are a bit hectic to say the least.

That said, though, I intend to take some time today and fire off a few posts. Please bear with me 🙂 I haven’t abandoned this property!

UPDATE: I wrote this post without even realizing that my site was down. Its funny that while I personally am too CPU-limited to blog, my blog is being disabled by Dreamhost for consuming too many server resources. I am trying to resolve the issue with DH…

UPDATE: thanks, Astro, for noticing. I feel loved 🙂 OK I switched to the simplest theme I could find and deactivated all my plugins. Even my beloved Textile (though Akismet stays). And voila, we are back. Now I have to debug the site and figure out which plugin was causing the resource hogging.