Results tagged “kwc.org” from kwc blog

Be careful with that mt-search.cgi

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My hosting provider notified me Saturday morning that MovableType was consuming too much CPU by shutting off kwc.org -- a really effective notification mechanism. There was no actual spike in usage, just a gradual uptick, so this was a tad aggressive. At first I agreed to the upsell to a higher-level hosting plan. When their tech mentioned that I would still exceed limits on that plan and I should consider a $200/month dedicated plan, I decided to do some more investigation.

At fault was mt-search.cgi, which powers tags on MovableType Web sites. Between Google, Yahoo, and Cuill, there was too much pounding on the puny server I'm hosted on. I've added mt-search.cgi to my robots.txt file, so hopefully search engines will steer clear of it. I've also agreed to temporary suspend mt-search.cgi so that the various crawlers out there can get it out of their system. This means that all the tag links on the site will be broken until then. I need to avoid having my site suspended without warning again for a few more days, so probably not until next week.

Moving off Flickr: Probably a Success

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stats.sparecycles.toc.2007.2008.gif

Above: traffic to the spare cycles home page during the Tour of California. The decline over time I believe reflects the NorCal bias in my traffic as the NorCal stages were first in the race.

Here's a quick run-down of stats with my post-Flickr move. I thought I'd share as others have contemplated similar and might appreciate seeing the results of another's experiment. As a quick summary, I decided to move my professional cycling photography off Flickr prior to the Tour of California, my big event of the year. My galleries are a mixture of homebrew Python code to upload images and MovableType templates to display them.

My conclusion: moving off of Flickr was the right thing to do. There is a bit of apples and oranges: I photographed the Tour of California a lot more this year and there is carry over from my previous year's coverage. At the very least, though, I was able to significantly improve traffic despite my move off Flickr.

Traffic to the Spare Cycles homepage was up ~500%, visitors stuck around longer, my most popular ToC 2008 photo already has more views than my post popular 2007 photo*, my teaser ToC photos on Flickr have far less views than my kwc.org photos, and none of this counts the thousands of hotlink hits I got from embedded images on other sites. The embeds also made it easier to find my photos on other sites as those sites linked to kwc.org instead of Flickr. The only negative I could find is that there are far fewer comments, which I miss and reflect on the strong community of Flickr.

Purely on the goal of making it possible for more people to see my photos, I'm happy with my choice. As a bit of advice to others contemplating the same, I highly recommend the ability to embed images as this made it far easier for people I was working with to use my images.

* caveat: discounting a glitch Flickr had that gave bogus views to a sequence of my 2007 photos

Site corrupted

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The server this site is hosted got corrupted a bit. I've been able to catch a couple of obvious things but I'm not sure the full extent of what was affected. If you happen to notice anything, please shoot me a note.

On a separate note, I'm having a blast in Tokyo. Too busy to post for now, but I'll have plenty of robot photos from IREX2007 when I return.

Upgraded to MT4

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I've been a bit lazy in transitioning to MT4 -- I've been happy with the site and haven't really wanted to tackle any possible upgrade issues. But the iMT plugin -- MovableType for the iPhone -- is pretty darn appealing. I'm also testing whether or not I can move some of my Flickr content back onto this site, so it's best to start at the leading edge.

Update: the fancy new interface of MT4 is definitely causing some bugs... (the textbox in the entry didn't load, the page is jumping up and down because I clicked on a menu, etc...)

Another outage

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If I were to write a review of my hosting company right now, I guarantee it wouldn't be positive. This time around, they tried to make it sound like my fault. Before I was just annoyed at them; now I'm angry.

If you would like a clue as to who my provider is: they just got last and second-to-last place in this Digg/Reddit experiment.

redesign.5.jpg

The infinite spiral of redesign. I'm not happy with the tag pages or the front page sidebar yet, but all in good time (or never).

Blog redesign in progress

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redesign.jpg

If all goes well, the oft-delayed redesign should be ready to go tomorrow. I'm testing it here (the top navigation header is just a placeholder right now). I surveyed a bunch of different blogs out there and drew up all sorts of elaborate designs, but a quick-and-clean design I did in a couple of minutes in Photoshop won me over. This is my first design that is specifically geared towards Flickr photos: the main content matches the 500-pixel-wide Flickr medium images and the side column matches the small images. The new design also does away with all the AJAX-y stuff, aligns the site with the kwc.org frontpage, adds a footer, and makes use of the MovableType 3.x sidebar for more contextual content. There will be some more tweaks as I go along (such as what to put in the right column on the front page), but the basics are in place.

I'm a little amused by the fact that the design is close to the default MovableType 2.x templates, given that the point of this is to update things to MovableType 3.x. The plethora of MovableType 2.x blogs back in the day made the Georgia font uncool, but now that everything has moved towards sans-serif fonts I feel that I can go back and reclaim that territory.

5+ hour outage

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kwc.org was down for at least 5 hours today. Apparently overpowered air conditioners took out the breakers in the server room.

The Hindenburg and Underwater Car myths are two of my favorites that they have tested recently. I still have a huge backlog of episodes though this clears it up a bit.

New homepage

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New version up at http://kwc.org/, old version if you're curious.

More redesign fever strikes

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kwc.org.frontpage.mockup.1.thumb.jpg

I had to see how the logo design would work on my actual site, which somehow led to me doing a complete mockup redesign of my front page. This is all just photoshop and I'll need to redo the text and reshoot the top photo if I actually use this. I couldn't make up my mind on the logo to use, so the extended entry has the dot-less/drop-less version for comparison.

New logo?

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kwc.org.logo.sample1.jpg

I dreamt this up in the morning before work. I've always found 'kwc' typographically unbalanced and awkward: the 'k' and the 'w' clash. This is one quick attempt to bring balance back.

update: some alternatives

kwc.org.logo.sample1.nodot.jpg

kwc.org.logo.sample1.nodot.org.jpg

kwc.org.logo.sample1.nohang.jpg

kwc.org.logo.sample1.nohang.org.jpg

kwc.org.logo.sample1.org.jpg

Testing out the new digs

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Some of you may have noticed that kwc.org was offline today. This was inopportune seeing as I was 400 miles away and in the midst of posting lots of cycling coverage.

But kwc.org is back now and it is no longer on my home DSL. I am now serving it on AN Hosting. AN Hosting uses the atrocious cpanel UI, but it happens to be really inexpensive and they promise good uptime. We shall see. It can't be any worse than my DSL line, which was finally being maxed out by recent increases in traffic.

Things may be a little unstable until I get all the right permissions and configurations and whatnot in place.

Slashdot aftermath

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Yesterday's Slashdotting only brought in about 4-5x the normal daily traffic. As it turns out, I was actually getting hit by a one-two punch: two days ago was a big traffic spike due to a Obi-Wan Kenobi Valentine's image I posted from Something Awful (people were loading a 150K category archive page).

Looking at the number of visits:

08 Feb 2007 3832
13 Feb 2007 4782
14 Feb 2007 7946

15 Feb 2007 18078

18,000+ isn't that terrible in comparison to the normal 3,000-4,000 daily visits. It certainly would have been much higher had my server not been burning toast.

Yesterday was actually a good day from a bandwidth perspective (300-450MB is normal).

08 Feb 2007 412.45 MB
13 Feb 2007 658.47 MB
14 Feb 2007 946.67 MB
15 Feb 2007 457.37 MB

NOTE: The heavy bandwidth on the 13th and 14th was due to the Valentine's traffic.

# of pages and # of hits was only about 2x normal.

So, from a traffic perspective, it wasn't really the DSL line that was at issue. My Apache server (for whatever reason) wasn't able to handle the # of requests coming in. I blame Windows/Microsoft, as always (not my lack of skills in configuring an Apache conf file ;) ). Looking at my network utilization graph, the Apache server would handle the incoming requests well for a couple of minutes without fully saturating the link. Then there would be a sharp spike and the graph would flatline as the Apache server became unresponsive.

Perhaps the more interesting statistic was how I did with my Google ads. I believe I'm not allowed to share those directly, but I can make the following summarizations:

  • click-through ratios went down on my blog. Slashdot traffic is not ad-friendly.
  • click-through ratios on everything else went up about 3-4x.
  • yesterday still was not a 'banner day' with respect to ads

One nefarious conclusion one can draw from this is that slow site = better ad sales. This makes sense: people see the ad load, but the rest of the content is slow in coming and they decide to leave.

F- You Slashdot!

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Not really, but I do wish there was some content flag you could set that says, "if you are going to traffic-bomb my site, you have permission to mirror the content elsewhere."

I've been constantly restarting my server this morning trying to get some life out of it, but the fact is, I shouldn't be running Apache on Windows. The Windows Apache response to extra traffic is generally to lockup for a small period of time. If that extra traffic keeps coming in, the server gets knocked to the mat again repeatedly. I probably shouldn't be running over a DSL connection either, but I've actually been nowhere close to saturating the link: Windows Apache is the weakest link.

I know this is a bad setup, but its a whole lot cheaper than setting up an extra Linux box or paying a hosting company. Regardless, I am now looking into hosting providers. Dreamhost used to be a good one, but recent reviews seem uniform in saying that "Dreamhost used to be great until last summer." I shall investigate more, but the goal is to spend no more than $15/month.

Yet another blog baby

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kwc.org/architecture is starting to take shape. After my architectural splurge in Japan, I finally feel like there is enough original content there to stand on its own. The amount of traffic my architecture category page gets seems to justify this as well, though most of that is due to Google Image search. One other reason is that its nice to play with a pure MovableType 3.3 blog with tags and widgets, instead of trying to migrate an older, heavily-customized template.

With kwc.org/cycling and kwc.org/mythbusters, you might think that I actually like creating sub-blogs, but the real answer is 'kinda'. It's a pain to maintain a single blog between MovableType upgrades (kwc.org/blog still runs with MT 2.x-style templates), and having multiple blogs is multiple pains.

I used to believe in the idea of a universal data manager. The notion is attractive: throw everything into one big bin and have a good tool for pulling all that data out. But the fact is that you want to treat different types of data/media differently, even if they are all "blog entries." You can try and customize the wazoo out of categories and tags and whatnot, but that becomes ugly. Keeping them in separate sandboxes means that you can see just MythBusters-related tags when searching the MythBusters guides and see just architecture-related tags when searching the architecture entries. It also means that I don't have to type the 'architecture' tag when creating an architecture entry nor assign it to the 'architecture' category.

So anyway, step 1 of the separation is complete. I haven't really bothered with the default MT template just yet and I need to fix up some macros I was using with older entries. I'm also rethinking past decisions and I think I'm going to try and figure out how to merge all the various blogs and feeds into one display, instead of having the infrequent "Elsewhere" posts.

Mythbusters guides redesign

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AnnotatedMythbustersRedesign-thumb.jpgI did a very, very quick redesign of my MythBusters episode guides site and even gave it a new name: Annotated MythBusters. 'Annotated' seemed slightly less hackneyed than 'Unofficial', which was chosen because I was getting sick of dealing with absurd cease and desists. Annotated is a little bit closer to what I'm trying to do, which is both document what occurred as well as provide supplementary links to details not covered during the episode.

The only reason I was able to do a quick redesign was because I used Liz Lubowitz's "Calm, Cool, Collected" entry into the SixApart Style Contest. I made some minor tweaks, such as tweaking widths and removing background graphics, but I didn't want to spend too much time on it, and Liz's design was already so clean. Her other designs are quite good as well and are there to remind me that 1) I don't know jack about CSS anymore and 2) I really, really need to get the redesign of this blog done sometime. Maybe I'll make that a resolution as well.

Redesign poll

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Redesign is in the works. I've tagged ~400 past entries, slowly working my way up to all 2100+. Soon I'll redirect my efforts to actual visual designs, thus a poll.

  1. Renaming 'kwc blog'. I want something shorter. I'm currently favoring "kwc'r", but other suggestions are votes for status quo are welcome.

  2. Visual design. I need to update to more modern templates for administrative reasons: should I keep the same look, or should I venture into new territory? I absolutely don't like the default MovableType templates, so a new design would be anything but.

  3. Architecture blog? I'm thinking of breaking out architecture-related content in order to better feature and categorize content. I have some Japan photos awaiting this decision.

Your input is much appreciated.

kwc.org now on MovableType 3.3

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I've upgraded kwc.org to use MovableType 3.3 (this is a prelude to upgrade movabletypo). MT 3.3 adds two new major features in my opinion: built-in tagging and widgets. The latter should make it a lot easier for MovableTypers to maintain their blogs, as widgets allow you to update sidepanel content without having to edit your templates, which is a major pain of old MT. I haven't given that a try yet, though -- I've been busy trying to tag my old entries. So far I've tagged 100 entries. Only 2200 left to go...

This is all a prelude to a major kwc.org site redesign. I'm jealous that meta finally found the time. Mine will be more oriented towards finally bringing kwc.org into the MovableType 3.x world, as my templates were designed with the entirely different MT 2.x-isms that require many hacks to get them to do all the customized behaviors like books covers and selective ads that I like.

slight redesign

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I forgot to note that the kwc.org frontpage got a slight redesign. I'm still looking for greater inspiration, but I wanted to make greater use of the 1600+ photos in my Flickr account.

Google Pages on my domain

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At the very sparse pages.kwc.org you can see the start of a my new Google-hosted Pages site. It's much like their GMail for your domain product -- they share the same administration controls -- but with this particular port of their product, you get 100MB for your entire domain and only domain adminstrators are allowed to make edits. I hope that they open this up more in the future -- it would be nice if you could hand out individual Pages accounts to your users as well as setup collaborative Web spaces on your domain, although I personally don't have a need for that right now.

Those of us who already had hosted GMail got the upgrade to the "Google Apps" suite automatically. In addition to Pages I can now hand out kwc.org accounts for Google Talk and Google Calendar. I'm not a big fan of either of those products, so not a big deal right now. I'm wondering how long it will be until Writely and Spreadsheets join the suite.

kwc.org is back home

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If you are reading this, kwc.org has returned from its vacation at the wonderful Tooch Ranch looking well rested and better than ever. Many thanks to Tooch for the hospitality to my server.

This side of the blog will probably stay quiet a bit longer as I continue my Tour de blogging over at spare cycles and gear up for the Team Uni's Comic-Con. We actually have enough people (over a dozen, I think) for two teams this year. I'll tentatively refer to the other team as the Van Condos, after their mode of transport and lodging, at least until a more proper name is passed on to me. I'm sticking with Team Uni, going for the schwag points, but I'm excited about hanging out with all the people headed down to San Diego.

Now that I have my computer back I'll also have to start processing photos from the gadget wedding (congrats bp and joy!). They're off in Hawaii right now so I have a bit more time -- they're hopefully not reading this, but my guess is one of them is.

kwc.org is alive and tooch-ified

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Many thanks to Tooch who is lending kwc.org a wire and an IP address while I await DSL service at my new place. Comcast was hooked up this morning and I've found an open wireless network at my apartment complex so all should be set for the Tour-de-France-fest over at my spare cycles blog. The only problem right now is we can't seem to find any of my three TiVo remotes.

deut-sm.jpgWhile I was at Tooch's Norman Compound he showed off the manliest washer and dryer I have ever seen: the Whirlpool Duet. They have more switches and LEDs than an airplane cockpit. Tooch said that they were marketed at Nascar husbands, but doesn't that actually mean they are marketed at wives that want to get their husbands to do the laundry instead? And to think I had been thrilled earlier in the day to see that the dinky washer and dryer in my new place had been replaced recently.

Moving, kwc.org possibly moving

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Wednesday is set for the day of my move from one side of Shoreline Blvd to the other. A detailed plan of attack for each carload has been drawn up; it should be glorious.

A consequence of every move I make is that kwc.org goes into identity reassignment. In the past, I have sometimes temporarily transferred some of the kwc.org files to movabletypo.net. Now that I have separated out my mythbusters and cycling blogs, though, it may be too much of a headache to do the brain transplant. Also, with the Tour de France set to begin, nothing short of the real kwc.org will do for the torrent of multimedia blogging that is set to ensue.

If you happen to know of a spare static IP address and line in Mountain View/Palo Alto/Sunnyvale that I can borrow for a week or so to hookup this server, please drop me a line. If you know of anyone at AT&T/SBC that I can bribe to not take the week or so they normally take to turn a DSL line on, also please drop me a line.

BoingBoing'd: unimpressed

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I got a lot of traffic yesterday (to cooling a six-pack) from BoingBoing and it wasn't nearly as much as I thought it would be. It was secondary traffic, mind you, in one of the "Update" link sets, but it only generated about another 1,000 visitors to the site, which didn't even double my traffic. A third-order Slashdotting -- getting a link from the Slashdot comments section -- is just as effective.

Update: hmm, maybe I'll have to retract my "unimpressed." According to Feedburner, my subscriptions to MythBusters went from 17 to 85. 66 of subscribers are listed as Firefox Live Bookmarks, which seems odd to me, so I'll have to see if that one holds up.

for Kolo, I've posted a couple more screenshots of the "Manage Domain" screens for hosted GMail.

More on hosted GMail

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Update: more screenshots

Here's a screenshot of my customized kwc.org gmail, slightly altered to block out some visible names (yes, that is my e-mail address if you wish to contact me). There's not much to review here that hasn't been said before: it's GMail. It feels a little cooler because it's my GMail (notice my little custom graphic at the top), but otherwise it's plain-old GMail: 2GB, chat, etc... My account has been 'verified' so I'm now sending and receiving e-mail with no problems other than the slight GMail slowdowns that I've noticed on both of my accounts today (@kwc.org and @gmail.com).

I'm still waiting for the day when we can get rid of our corporate IMAP mail servers and replace them with GMail boxes or something similar. I'm tired of slow search and trying to keep things filed in folders.

kwc.gm.screenshot.jpg

At last, @kwc.org e-mail (Gmail hosted)

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Update: screenshots and more screenshots

I've never had @kwc.org e-mail addresses before. I'm just too lazy. I also prefer Web e-mail and very few options exist that would be superior to my regular GMail account. Now, in a couple short minutes -- short enough to do lazily -- I have a GMail-hosted @kwc.org account. I'm still in the setup process. I can receive, but not send e-mail (they are verifying my account or something).

The details I've gleaned so far: * you can login to both your @gmail and your own hosted account simultaneously * you get up to 10 e-mail accounts free * 2GB (I don't know if this is per address or total yet) * you can set your own logo to replace the GMail logo * you can enable/disable chat across accounts * you can customize the sign-in box color

I've always wondered why other free-mail services (hotmail, yahoo) haven't made similar moves. There is a wretched land grab that occurs with any of these services where everyone scrambles to get their screenname of choice; the late-comers are left with bob1230923x@atleastitwasfree.com . About once a month I get mis-sent e-mail for a Kimberly or a Kevin or some other poor soul would probably has some meaningless digit appended to their account name.

With domain-hosted e-mail, GMail now has effectively infinite screennames for its users. I get to have a screenname that makes sense (guess my e-mail, it's really, really easy), no one else accidentally gets my e-mail, and other people should hopefully be able to easily remember the address.

Poll update

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Based on the feedback, I'll post links to the MythBusters episode guides when they're done so that they show up on the Movabletypo page and I'll do the occassional pointer to the cycling entries, but much less of those. If I'm going to be cross-posting a lot less of the cycling entries, at least allow me to brag about my photos making it to some pro cyclist sites :). Of course, there's no limit to where your photos may end up ... when you give them away for free.

The cycling and mythbusters blogs are now 'hidden' from both the Movabletypo front page, LiveJournal users, and the normal feed for this page. Is this what people prefer? There are several options for the Movabletypo/LJ feeds that I can try out, which of these do you prefer?

  • Keep hidden, people can check the cycling and mythbusters separately
  • Put MythBusters entries back into the Movabletypo or LiveJournal feed
  • Put cycling entries back into the Movabletypo or LiveJournal feed
  • Do summary posts like my previous entry that highlight some of what's going on in the other blogs

I personally don't care either which way as I have no trouble reading my own entries :) ... and I already know how much each entry gets read so it doesn't affect my vanity for you to say thumbs up or thumbs down to seeing certain entries (muhahaha Google Analytics/Measuremap).

And the winner is...

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Entry 2000, "Shooting cycling photographs with a Canon Digital Rebel," was just posted over on my spare cycles blog. I think the cycling-related post is rather appropriate for entry 2000 as it was the Tour of California that seemed to throw off the guesses the most.

The winner of the contest to guess the correct post time is .... HORIZONLINE! who wins a threadless t-shirt with a guess of March 13th at 12:45:07 -- only four days off. Of the other guesses, honeyfields seems to think that I am capable of posting as fast as ln m -- puh-lease, no one but ln m can achieve such blistering rates.

You're free to accuse me of collusion, but with the regular Tour of California entries making up the bulk of February, it would have been harder to rig. If you feel like protesting, you can try to guess which Threadless t-shirt horizonline will buy and buy it first instead :).

I have no retrospective for entry 2000. Mostly this was a good excuse for me to get some entries finished or deleted from my drafts, slighly update the kwc.org frontpage, and break off two new blogs: mythbusters and cycling. I will say that 2000 entries is a lot for MovableType -- my new blogs build so much faster!

Cyclists, please update your links

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Spare Cycles (kwc.org/cycling) is my new cycling blog. I've broken off my past Tour of California, Tour de France, San Francisco Grand Prix, and other coverage and moved it on over. My reasons for doing so were similar to moving the mythbusters entries: people who want to just see cycling coverage get innundated with many entries that having nothing to do with it, it's harder to navigate, and it's harder to showcase links to other cycling-related sites.

The first new content of the Spare Cycles will go up once I finish prepping an entry on lessons learned for taking cycling photographs. The blog may be a little dormant until the Sea Otter Classic and Tour de Georgia in April (still waiting for the Morgan Hill Grand Prix announcement), but I'll see what other content I can put together that isn't just race coverage and photos.

2*1000 contest participants, don't fret. Entries for all three blogs -- this one, Unofficial MythBusters, and Spare Cycles will count towards the total. And to littlestar who thinks I don't post enough, the 57 entries I've posted this month is the greatest amount since October 2004 (also 57 entries)... and February is a short month :).

MythBusters episode guides relocated

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If you're reading this blog for MythBusters episode guides, let me now point you to kwc.org/mythbusters. I've been wanting to run a separate episode guide site as I've never liked that someone searching for a MythBusters episode summary is dropped into the middle of my blog. The separate site should eliminate a lot of navigation confusion. I've also gone back through a lot of entries and have tried to add in photos to replace some of the removed screenshots where possible.

I'll still be posting MythBusters news on this blog, but the episode summaries will go to the new location.

On a related note, I'm thinking of separating out the cycling and Comic-Con content so that I can create more customized pages. I may wait until I have more artistic inspiration for those as the new mythbusters episode guide site is rather bland.

Brief update

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Thanks to bernadette I've been browsing the Chilling Effects database. There are a few cease and desist letters from the same law firm and one for Discovery Channel that is much more harshly worded than the one I received. They are a bit nicer in their wording now, though the arguments I feel still conflate copyright and trademark and are awash in slippery slope non sequiturs. It's still not clear to me how one defends against a cease and desist letter without financial liability.

I also found this fair use article online, which I'll link to because of it's title:

Copyright Mythbusters: Believe It or Not, Fair Use Exists

For now I've updated the MythBusters episode summaries to really, really try to make it clear that this site is not Discovery affiliated. I've also decided that I'll leave all the broken image links in so that future visitors can appreciated the absense of screenshots.

Myths undecorated

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In my more recent episode summaries for MythBusters, I have been using screenshots from the episodes as I felt that they conveyed some of the mythbusting better than text. I did so believing this is fair use, as they were merely screenshots and not actual video clips, they were of low quality, and in no way did they devalue the original material. Apparently the Discovery Channel does not agree.

They state that I am using Discovery Channel's copyrighted material and, oddly, Discovery Channel's logo (do they mean their own logo they place in the bottom right corner of every episode?), and they are concerned that somehow someone will mistake kwc.org for a Discovery affiliated or sponsored site. This is probably a form letter and, as such, I can only expect a form response to any further inquiry. In the mean time, I have disabled the images in the links so you will see many, many broken image links. It will take quite awhile for me to fully purge the entries of these images.

I'm saddened as I feel that this was a fair, legitimate, and appropriate way in which to document MythBusters episodes. I also feel we live in a very bogus era of copyright enforcement where any weak argument can be used to effectively deter legal uses of material.

Speaking of stats (Tuning Apache)

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kwc.org has slowly been degrading in performance, but thanks to some Apache tuning slides and some followup with bp I think I have bought some more time. The key was turning off the AllowOverride for nearly every directory on this site. Way back when kwc.org had very little traffic, I had created an htaccess file to help me migrate from an older MovableType installation. It turns out that a large htaccess file and a sudden influx of traffic can bring your Apache to a halt.

I've wondered what the breaking point of my setup would be. I run kwc.org on my home Windows desktop over 802.11g and DSL. Eventually it was going to start showing cracks. January was the first month that this site eclipsed 50,000 visitors and there is a slight chance of breaking 60,000 this month. This isn't very large compared to other sites: Alexa ranks kwc.org somewhere between 116,013 and 383,693, which is not in the range that Alexa actually considers trackable. However, kwc.org is now serving 6KB/s on average, with much higher traffic during peak times and as much as 800MB in a single day. Anywhere between 10-20% of my DSL bandwidth is being eaten up, so I may have to get more creative in the future to keep things running. I've also noticed MovableType degrading, often failing to rebuild files on the first try. It will be a race between MT and my DSL line to see which requires attention next.

2 * 1000 update

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I'm aware that some might try to gain advantage by entering at the last possible moment (you know who you are :) ), which is unfair to those who boldly entered when I announced the contest. To be more fair to the prompt entries, I'm adding this addendum: starting tomorrow, all new entries will be assessed a 24-hour penalty per day, i.e. if you enter a guess tomorrow then it will be penalized 24 hours, if you enter on Thursday your guess will be penalized 48 hours, and so forth, up until the time I close entries. Today is the last day you can enter with no penalty.

2 * 1000 contest

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I create competitions out of everything, especially when there is little or no point. In this spirit I am announcing the Second Mill-entrial Guess When kwc Posts Entry 1000 (* 2), a Celebration of Ginormous Wastes of Time. bp was probably hoping for another free dinner, but I decided to be more fair to the VA watchers and redo the prizes this time around. For the best guess of the post time of the 2000th entry, I'm offering your choice of one of these <$20.00 prizes, selected for their appropriateness to recent content:

To enter, leave a comment here with: * your guess of the exact post date and time of the 2000th entry (down to the second) * your preferred prize * your name

I promise not to read your entries until after I've posted entry #2000 -- a filter in my GMail inbox will be keeping a tally of how many entries have been made. Do not leave entries in the comments here -- you should only comment here if you wish to complain about the prize selection.

The most important thing you need to know, of course, is that this is entry #1948.

See also: First Mill-entrial Guess When kwc Posts Entry 1000

kwc.org back online

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BitTorrent has a habit of knocking out my DSL, which knocks out kwc.org as well. 'tis a small price to pay for the new Battlestar Galatica episode.

Happy New Year, a little late

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I meant to wish everyone a Happy New Year and apologize for the flood of entries as soon as I finished writing that flood of entries, but it turns out there were quite a bit more than I thought. I sometimes get asked how I manage to get any work done and blog so much. My answer in the past is that blogging doesn't take that much time. You see a site, save it in a Firefox tab, hit copy and paste a couple of times, and add a snarky line or two. Or you type what you're watching on TV, hit post, and you've got yourself an episode summary. Or you write an entry about writing entries, if you're feeling self-referential.

Having recently succumbed to deadlines at work, though, my new answer is, "When I work eight hours a day, there is plenty of time to blog. When I work more than eight hours a day, there is not." Thank goodness for this Monday holiday. Here's to 2006.

This is post #1902. I will be doing another free dinner for guessing the post date of entry #2000 like I did with entry #1000, but I'll wait until things get a little bit closer before accepting guesses. I don't regularly make New Year's resolutions, but I notice that on entry 1000 I said that I would probably:

  • work more on the 1010 aggregator aka movabletypo (true, though bp did most of the work)
  • blog less (true)
  • write an MTInNOut plugin (0% progress on this one)

These aren't resolutions as much as predictions, which is perhaps more fitting with my pragmatist approach. I guess I have until entry #2000 to write that MTInNOut plugin and write up some new predictions.

I'm superduper rich!

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adsense100.JPGI sold out last May and started putting Google Adsense ads on some of the older entries on this site. For the first couple of months I only got $0.29/day. In August it jumped up to about $1.07/day and this month it's $1.29/day (the increases were due to placing ads on more pages).

At $0.29/day having ad revenue is like getting a nice birthday present once a year: it's nice, but you're not really sure it's worth the effort. Once I broke $1/day it became much easier to match the revenue to the costs of running the site: $30/month matches well with Web hosting costs or can easily fund hardware upgrades. There's no profit in it, but it feels more self-sustaining.

I didn't sell out to make a profit, so this for me is a wild success. I still find it mind-boggling that anyone would pay me any money to read my old dreck, but I'm sure I can manage a happy maniacal laugh when I deposit my first check.

$10

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I broke the magical $10 barrier with my Google adwords today. It took about a month to reach that mark, though it took about a week of fidgeting with the ad layout to figure out what was the best placement.

I monitored mybloglog to figure out which entries to place ads on, eventually choosing about 15% of my entries to mark with ads -- this results in about a third of my incoming traffic is being served ads right now. I would get a higher percentage if I placed ads on my category archives, but I'm not willing to do that right now.

Of course, given that In-n-Out pays $10/hr starting, I would make more money flipping burgers, but experiments are experiments. If only I could start getting some of the home loan ads or trial lawyer ads, I would really be rolling in the dough.

I've placed ads on this entry if you're curious to see them (if you don't see them, click on the entry title to go to the individual entry page).

A slightly new look

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I'm jumping on the Ajax bandwagon and redesigning my site a touch. A couple weeks ago I pared down the right-column a bit, and now, with the assistance of Ajax, I've modified the "Old: Monthly | Category" menu into its now current incarnation. I plan to add in an option to load my Flickr photos and del.icio.us bookmarks into this page, but that is on hold until I do some server upgrades.

My overall goal is to add more content to the front page while at the same time reducing clutter.

kwc.org Search Keyword Fight I

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In the spirit of mining stats to do auto-captioning, and inspired by wombat's Googlefight model of decision making, I bring you the latest to be scraped from my server logs: kwc.org Search Keyword Fight I (roman numerals indicate the potential for future fights). Rules: each term below is given a score indicating the number of times it was used in a search query (Google/Yahoo/etc...) that ended up on kwc.org. For example:

  • mit 9
  • stanford 7

means that "MIT" was used in 9 search queries, and "Stanford" was used 7 times.

Round 1: Gender superiority

Hard to judge this round: man has a slight lead in the individual scoring, but Batman was a suprise third.

  • man 22
  • woman 16
  • batman 10
  • stickman 8
  • manchuria 7

Women shutout the men in the team competition, and the co-ed X-Men team posted a respectable score for homo superior.

  • women 34
  • x-men 6
  • men 0

Round 2: Warrior supreme

  • samurai 50
  • pirates 9
  • ninjas 6

Note to Hollywood: do more samurai films (w/o Tom Cruise).

Round 3: Computer Religion

I couldn't help but notice these two fighting neck-and-neck for position among my stats:

  • apple 67
  • microsoft 67

Round 4: Morality

  • evil 33
  • hate 13
  • good 9
  • love 0

I'm not sure how to interpret this round. Is it my site is evil -- I do write about evil bunnies from time to time -- or is it that people who use search engines are looking for evil/hateful content?

Bonus Round

This is a search query stat fight, so we'll end the scoring with a fight between the search engines themselves:

  • google 125
  • yahoo 11

I could complain, but...

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It's been interesting to watch the top search keywords for this site evolve over time. There was a bit of pride when my top keyword was 'gollum', which was related to a photo of gollum that I had posted to one of my entries. There wasn't nearly as much pride when the Khleo generics fan club hijacked my Holes review. Befuddlement turned to slight disgust when my top keyword was 'species iii girl comic-con in box'.

In recent months, my Mythbusters posts have each taken their turns in the top keywords list. While I'm happy to see that people searching for "Archimedes Death Ray" may find something useful in my show notes, I'm a bit bothered that Scottie Chapman -- blond, tattooed, female, welding member of the build team -- has spent several months in the top spots. I would even be tempted to write a rant about this, but parakkum has already saved me the effort, pointing me to this quotable rant written by someone empathetic to this specific vexation:

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, the number one referrer to this here blog are search requests for "Scottie Chapman."? The number two search request is for "Scottie Chapman...nude."

While I appreciate the traffic, Sweet Jesus, people get a life!

There are no nude pictures, no pictures of the lovely and enchanting Ms. Chapman here or anywhere else of which I know. There are no pictures of Scottie Chapman here at all. Now go read a book, plant a garden, or something.

Instead of a personal rant like the one above, I can instead happily report that a force more powerful than Scottie Chapman has captured the top rankings this month: EVIL BUNNIES!. Yes, honeyfields, your evil-filled bunnies have shown that the power of the Evil Cute can defeat the Forces of Pr0n. Cute Animals and TnA may battle it out daily on the Yahoo! Image Popularity Tracker, but here, on kwc.org, "Evil Bunnies" have won the day.

Mine!

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Kenji informs me that my logo has been stolen by Creatas.

I'm offended that a design site, of all places, would dare to steal my copyrighted/patented/signature/unique Four-Square (tm) design for their own. I can remember back to the third grade when I first came up with the basic design, while swiftly dodging a red bouncy ball and advancing to first square. The original Four-Square (tm) logo design had more of a black-and-white feel back then, with a pavement texturing. There was further refinement during college, when the Four-Square (r) design took on more of an urban sidewalk feel, reflecting my move out of the suburbs.

So I say, round up the posse! I've been working on my side-spin and it's time to take Creatas down!

Underperform'

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The new kwc.org isn't living up to expectations right now. It's hard to tell whether it's the: * new DSL line underperforming * barrage of comment spam attacks across many MovableType servers that are causing high server loads * wireless setup the server is running over (due to the unfortunate location of the phone line)

As I try to diagnose this, I'm turning off comments and will be fiddling with other bits. I may have to give up and move the setup to a web hosting company, something I've been reticent to do in the past.

Most systems go

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Reinstalled everything last night, took a bit longer to get everything up and running than I planned. If you notice any problems, please let me know. The main problem I have noticed is that TypeKey logins no longer work, though this started happening when I upgraded MovableType awhile back.

I be back

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As my home server has become a functional brain in some regards, serving as both memory and recall, the title for this entry holds a grain of truth.

The real kwc.org is back now, which means some previous crippled content and functionality is back online now, including:
- movie list
- reading list
- kwc.org/site
- ability to post photo galleries
- monthly and category archives
- the search bar should actually work again

Note to people upgrading to MovableType 3.0D with MTRssFeed, the following patch to mtrssfeed.pl from TweezerMan seems to work:

# return MT->VERSION<'2.50'?_decode_xml_fallback($value):decode_xml($value); my $mt_ver = MT->VERSION; $mt_ver =~ s/^(.*)\D$/$1/; return $mt_ver<'2.50'?_decode_xml_fallback($value):decode_xml($value);

Crossing my fingers

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Hoping that DSL will be setup today so that kwc.org will resume normal service and I can start work once more on the feed aggregator. Tired of the broken links and missing content and inability to use the Internet from my bed.

Update: booo, still no DSL. suck

Systems at 75%

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The feed aggregator has flown over to its permanent home at movabletypo. Sorry for the interruption in service, but from now on things should be much more stable. No more random DSL interruptions, etc... so I hope you enjoy the not new, but more stable feed aggregator at movabletypo.

The real kwc.org is still lying in a helpless heap, but most of it's functionality has been temporarily transferred here, and the temporary server lets me play around a bit more nimbly as it doesn't have to rebuild 1300 entries.

Despite various anti-spam attempts, it appears that I will lose this battle unless I take advantage of Typekey in some way, so I had another idea. I've setup a Typekey account called 'noone' ('anonymous' was already taken, so my idea is probably far from unique). It's password is 'noone'. Clearly, some one could login and screw with the account info, but really, what's the point?

So I am updating my templates for a trial period in which I will require all comments to be registered or otherwise be moderated, but if you choose to remain anonymous, you are free to use the 'noone' account to do so. This will be the first entry that features this requirement, if you wish to test it out.

My site's Amazon page

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This is sort of a strange cross-over. As a result of visit Joi Ito's site, I found out that Amazon is now putting up listings for Web pages using Alexa data. This listings follow most of the normal convention for books, musics, and other products, including info such as: * Traffic rank (instead of sales rank) * Contact Info * Thumbnail of your site * People who visit this site also visit * Ratings

The latter two are apparently only available to high-ranking sites. When your traffic rank is in the millions like mine, they only provide basic info. I can't seem to find an easy way to browse info for different Web sites, so it seems that the easiest way to get info on your site is to go to Amazon's A9 and type in the URL there, then click on "Site Info" next to the appropriate search result. * Amazon.com: website info: kwc.org * Amazon.com: website info: bOING bOING for an example of what a popular site looks like on Amazon

We have a winner

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Five people entered the free dinner contest to guess the date of my 1000th entry, which ended up occurring April 5th. Of those five, two people had the text of their original submission available, two didn't have the text but honestly submitted answers that weren't winners, and one was unrecoverable. (Note to self: when you have people submit entries for a contest that involve using MD5 to hash the entry, make sure that they know to save the original text of their entry :) ). This isn't the best result you want in a contest, but we can still announce an undisputed champion, a prognosticator supreme:

bp, with your guess of April 1st, you have won a free, all expense paid trip to a restaurant of your choice! My checking account salutes you!

Okay, now what?

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I am composing this 1000th entry using my old paper notebook, which is something I did without much thinking, but now seems to bring things full circle. I wish I could offer you something spectacular that I have been saving for precisely this moment, but instead I'll bore you with retrospection.

Having reached 1000 entries, it feels like these last ten were the hardest. Most of my posts have been reflexive, without much thought (perhaps a bad thing), but for each of these last ten I put much more consideration into whether or not it was appropriate, or whether I was just trying to reach 1000 quicker. I am reminded of what was said during meta's marathon: it's the last 0.2 miles that gets you.

This is hardly an accomplishment of the same order. Instead of being evidence of hard work, pain, and endurance, it is more appropriate to call this a tribute to the copy machine, which I learned so much about, for most of this blog has been defined by the content of the Web that I stumbled upon and was amused by or related to.

When I first started, it was easy enough to post links from BoingBoing and Fark, but at some point I grew bored of this, and many of you also started reading the same sites. KoKoRo, Kottke, mefi, and others also entered in the mix, and when this seemed to be not enough, I went to the Technorati and Blogdex aggregators to follow what was interesting. Now I'm inundated with 200+ entries a day from 50+ sites (all organized nicely by Bloglines), and yet, with all of this increased material to choose from, I can feel my rate of posting declining.

I liken this to when I first discovered Slashdot: it was like I was in geek heaven. I read nearly every entry, as well as the comments. Soon the comments became predictable, and the story posts familiar. I used to joke with friends about writing a bot that would automatically generate the first 200 comments for any given entry. Nowadays I read perhaps two Slashdot posts per day with interest, and I rely on a friend of mine to send me funny comments that he often finds moderated down to -1.

This same effect is happening with many of the sites I read. There's only so many stories about amusing things done while drunk, stupid criminals, flip-flopping Bush policies, and geeky stuff done with rotten meat and legos that I can read before it becomes hard to distinguish. There's a phrase bantered about that there's seven original plots in novels (or something like that), and the same could probably be said of content on the Web, especially when reduced to a category + one-line summary on Fark.

There have been sites that I think will remain exceptions. Making Light regularly engrosses me with it's original content, even if the topic of discussion is how to find an agent in the book industry, which is knowledge that I will never put to good use. Neil Gaiman tosses anecdotes into his journal that make me yearn for the never-to-be-written Good Omens II. Just today he posted the best possible review one could ever write for Scooby Doo II. Udell and Zeldman continue to push the edge in XML and CSS, respectively, filling me with new ideas for pages and software to write. There's also Gizmodo and Engadget, which will probably drain my wallet with their content for some time to come.

There's also all of your sites. meta, who has as many blogs as I do; pqbon, founder of 1010 blog, without which I would have hit 1000 entries a long time ago :); Gadget-superhero bp, who made the whole movabletypo experiment possible; the movabletypo guinea pigs -- honeyfields, cshell, rcp, and cr -- who probably don't realize how much they contribute to my publishing experiment; Paul, who introduced me to Mythbusters and thus gets credit for many entries here, including his cool-but-disturbing federal/state budget calculators; the LJ folks -- allplainstapped (aka cr), snortykills, glynnenstein, davextreme, and cyndercalhoon -- who introduced me to the site that inspired the 1010 aggregator, give me a link to the East Coast, and keep the cost of kwcblog down; and the Xanga folks -- ginfiend, psychoshepard, and wdj -- who entertain me with entries that are sometimes often too disturbing to post here.

I don't think that I will ever give up this blog, though I do imagine that less and less of my energy will be focused on writing entries here. Already I've diverted some of my energies to xanga2mt, tripod2mt, movabletypo.net, and the 1010 aggregator that powers it. If there is anything that I am happy with as a result of blogging for this past year, it's been the 1010 aggregator. It appears that for some of you at least, it has created a sense of community among our disparate sites. I've heard some of you ask about people that you don't even know because of it, and someday you'll meet each other and awkwardly realize that you already know each other by your blog voices.

One of you has told me that the 1010 aggregator has encouraged your posting because it makes you feel that you have a common place to shout among other voices. For me, I think, it will have the opposite effect. The aggregator creates one voice out of many blogs, and now I don't feel like I have to be as loud. People visiting my site once a day won't be disappointed by the lack of new content; instead they can visit movabletypo.net, and when I have something to say, it will appear there alongside the rest of your entries.

Looking forward, I see more work on the 1010 aggregator to test a couple more ideas, an MTInNOut plugin, and fun with MovableType 3.0. Also, copying meta, I envision spending more of my energies commenting on the sites of people I don't know and finding amusement in this wherever I can. My voice may be quieter here, but hopefully my vanity will make its presence known online through other means.

Samplin' the google rankin'

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I found an online tool that returns the GoogleRank of your site (via blogdex). I posted some samples here, mainly because I thought it was interesting to see how easily blogs can destroy search engine results. As you can see, meta's and my blogs are only one pagerank away from Neil Gaiman, which really just doesn't seem appropriate, because he's way more popular, his blog is far more interesting, and has been around much longer. Also, if you were to look at our Technorati Cosmos, we're nowhere close to the sites that Google puts us next to.

I could not figure out any URLs that were a 1, nor could I find a Web site that was legitimately a 2. For the site that came up a 2, I added "www" to the front of it, and it became a 3.

movabletypo.net: 0/10
kwc.org: 3/10
pqbon.com/1010blog/: 3/10
metamanda.com: 4/10
kwc.org/blog/: 5/10
metamanda.com/blog/: 5/10
zephoria.org: 5/10
macrumors.com: 5/10
www.whatever.com: 6/10
www.neilgaiman.com: 6/10
pvponline.com: 6/10
boingboing.net: 7/10
www.parc.com: 7/10
technorati.com: 7/10
joi.ito.com: 7/10
csszengarden.com: 8/10
www.sri.com: 8/10
cnn.com: 9/10
slashdot.org: 9/10
www.stanford.edu: 9/10
google.com: 10/10
web.mit.edu: 10/10

Site redesign launched

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It seems appropriate that for entry 900, I should launch a new design. I know that it's only been an hour or so since I posted about this as a work-in-progress, but I got impatient and decided to give it a go. Pages other than the front page are still using the old design until I have enough time to go through and tweak their layouts.

Partial site redesign in progress

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Despite many attempts, I was never able to erradicate the MovableType-ness of the current site design. There was also a whole lotta cruftiness and duplicate/dead CSS.

I've done a "partial" site redesign that I think, once and for all, will fix this, though it sacrifices the calendar at the top for now (I may stick it back in later). Also, the redesign is "partial" because I don't have Photoshop with me. Once I do, I think I will change the banner at the top. The redesign is sitting on my laptop, waiting for some final tweaks and feedback before it is deployed, but I've posted a screenshot below.

Comments are appreciated. Apologies for the low-quality screenshot.
screenshot of partial redesign

Done reminiscing

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I spent a lot of time beefing up the memorylane page on the other half of this Web site. I managed to recover four Web pages, some I didn't even recall, from old backups.

The memorylane section was originally intended to be a non-professional portfolio of all the Web pages that I've done, from high school to present day, and it still is, but I also found that as I wrote entries for the pages along this timeline, it took on the more personal connotation of the title; as I wrote about my high school page, I wrote a little bit about myself in high school, and for various pages along the way I was able to share some short anecdotes and recollections. The CS Circus and Powered by Arrogance pages were real nice gems that get to see the light of day once more, while others like Storefront Media still remain mostly unearthed, and I still need to recover the NMAA page I did my sophomore year in college. With the exception of my senior year of college, there is at least one, unique Web site representing each of year of my life from junior year in high school to present.

It's a bit strange that the only recounting of my life so far exists in a series of Web pages, and slightly older generations may be shocked that I can recount between the last third to half of my life using Web pages dating back to ~1995-6. Regardless, I find it nice to be able to go back and watch my 'growth' and juxtapose it within a medium that was nascent at the time I started making Web pages and has since grown extremely rapidly. Even the design of the pages at various points serve as interesting landmarks demonstrating my own technical ability and also the current generation of Web page design.

The slow evolutionary chain and incremental dialogue on my life within those old Web pages is finally broken by this site, both in the sheer amount of content (approaching 900 entries) as well as complexity of design enabled by Movable Type and a wireless connection. This dramatic jump makes me wonder what future improvements are possible. Perhaps the next step is the new community server and aggregation tools I'm playing with, which will give me the chance to interrelate my life experiences with those I spend my life with and turn the Web page monologue into a dialogue. I don't know what results I'll achieve, but for the first time I'm starting to cross the line between publisher and toolmaker, and I'm rather excited by this.

BTW, If you go through the pages, you might even be able to find the only three photos of myself on this site that I know of, all from high school (one only shows me from the neck down holding a stapler to someone's neck).

kwc.org:site/memorylane

google, you're _too_ good to me

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While I was sick, the traffic on this site suddenly quadrupled. Normally, this would be an exciting event for me, and make me wonder how I ever managed to be so clever, but it turns out that it was most likely because Google image search for "gollum" was returning a screencap off of this site (no, not the sketch you see here in this entry). Also, people were inlining the image in their Web pages straight from this site. It wasn't enough to hurt yet, but it was such a skew from the normal I had to take preventative action.

pqbon and this useful guide both deserve some Google juice; pqbon gets it for telling me that I could block the inlining practice using a .htaccess file, and the guide gets it for giving me specific instructions for using Apache's mod_rewrite to get it done. Two things that I wished the guide mentioned, though, were these two steps:

1) change AllowOverride None to AllowOverride All in httpd.conf so that .htaccess files are enabled
2) uncomment the load mod_rewrite line in httpd.conf so that the rewrite module is actually loaded

If this were four years ago when I was regularly editing httpd.conf, I probably would have remembered those two ditties, but my old age makes me forget things nowadays.

gollum sketchGoogle: It was an honor, really, to have such a cool search term top my lists. I brought back my Gollum sketch for this entry to keep me company now that all the Gollum fans won't be siphoning my bandwidth anymore. Please respider this page one last time, read my new robots.txt, and eviscerate that image from your brain.

Xanga people I don't even know: I'm sorry -- I know you can't upload photos, and I normally would't mind, but it was too much. Maybe xanga2mt will be of some use to you.

This page should show you what happens when you try to inline now: a tiny blue box.

Die Comment Spam!

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After the most vicious attack to date, I finally caved in and installed MT-Blacklist v1.62. If the spammer were more intelligent, he should have stuck with leaving only one or two posts, as has occurred in the past. Instead, I was confronted with about 30 spams, which finally broke me. I should have broken much earlier, because MT Blacklist only took a minute to install, and would have saved me 10 minutes of deleting and rebuilding. It also seems really nicely designed.

kwc.org zeitgeist

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Google posted their year-end Zeitgeist, which is always a fun perspective on the content the Web provides. The Tour de France made the top ten, woohoo! Orlando Bloom made #3 on the popular men search, which is partly due to the efforts of metamanda (I wonder if they know to combine "elfin nugget" with his results yet).

I'm going to demonstrate some bad manners and post my own year-end stats here, not as an act of self-promotion (because the numbers are kinda pathetic), but because this is entry #800, and if there's ever a time to draw attention to yourself, nice multiples of a hundred are it. Also, I find it interesting to see how the number of visits to this site is steadily increasing even though the set of regular readers has not. This increase in hits is 99% due to search engine links. Apparently Google thinks I am an expert on Khleo generics (~300-400 searches/month), and my article mentioning YzDocklet is quickly gaining steam. Also, 61 people visited my site last month because the "Redskins Suck."

Unique Visitors 2003
May 2003: 280
Jun 2003: 709
Jul 2003: 1542
Aug 2003: 2160
Sep 2003: 3251
Oct 2003: 4237
Nov 2003: 4914
Dec 2003: 6129

Top Fifteen Search Topics Dec 2003
3.5-1.3%
khleo generics/movie holes 364
statue venus london 145
ipod stuff 135
yzdock 118
library.advanced.org 78

1.1-0.8%
atari adventure 71
cool inventions 62
redskins suck 61
terrell owens sharpie 51
frank gehry disney 51

0.7-0.4%
internet blockers 45
wireless power 38
callipygous 35
photo stitch 33
stupid stuff 25

A fine thread has come to an end

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I've had to close the Khleo Thomas fan club thread due to overwhelming popularity. While it greatly entertained, and slightly disturbed, me to read the admiration women have for him, the inability of the admirers to press the 'post' button a single time, instead of five, has given me reason to close the thread. The time spent cleaning up the thread has outweighed the amusement, so farewell Khleo Thomas Fan Club, I'll miss you.

Top Ten Search Phrases for September

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I have nothing else to post, so I thought I would show off my stat-hoor side and list the top ten search phrases that lead people to this site in September (according to awstats). Hopefully, by listing these search terms I will reinforce their ranking and thus skew the results even more in their favor:

ultimate fantastic four (74)
the movie holes (46)
movie holes (41)
wavecrest bike (33)
picasso guitarist (32)
david statue (31)
internet blockers (29)
venus statue (28)
exoskeletons (27)
waterclock (24)

The top keyword for this site, excluding common words (of, the) was... 'japan'

At last, a logo

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I've owned this domain for several years now, and I've finally gotten around to doing the logo for it. Funny how, after so many years, the logo was finished in about ten seconds as I was doodling with my new brush pen. I probably won't use the logo on this blog until I have enough time to redo everything. Click on the logo to see the "redesigned" front page. Perhaps a better term would be "undesigned."
kwc.org

Site outages

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Hopefully the frequent site outages will come to an end tonight. I will be moving my dsl over to my roommate's connection. If www.kwc.org is unavailable, you may want to try http://alt.kwc.org/blog/ until the DNS caches clear.

Update: the switch has been flipped. For the next couple of hours things are going to be screwy until DNS caches clear (certain images won't load).

Entry 300

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Ladies and Gentleman, Entry 300!!! *applause*

I had a tough time choosing the appropriate posting for my three readers, and hell, you each have hundred entries each you can read so what does one more matter, but I ended up choosing this little ditty from my Stanford application. I don't remember the question, but I know this is what I wrote (Amanda, any ideas as to what they were asking?):

There's something I have to get off my chest. I'm pretty ashamed of it. I don't like seafood. In fact, I hate it. So, what's so strange about that? Well, my mother's Japanese. In fact, I was born in Japan, spent 7 years living there, have studied Japanese for five years, am president of the Japanese National Honor Society, am a member of Asian Awareness, and have won two second place trophies in the Japan Bowl . Yet, for all my attempts to connect with part of my heritage I am resigned to the fact that I will never, never, be able to enjoy dinner at my grandmother's house in Japan.

The mere fact that I wrote this for a college application made it worthy of posting. Notice the thinly veiled attempt to fit in every Asian-related club/accomplishment I had in high school. Note the hapa tension, the Asian guilt, the academic hubris. I'm quite proud of myself, and also sick at the same time.

Only a couple things left

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The site redesign is almost finished (after stealing some know-how from Amanda). Just need to tweak the colors and also add in some plugins to the link bar (mtamazon, mtlink, rss feeds).

Site redesign in progress

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Now that Bryan and Amanda both have Movable Type weblogs, I feel compelled to redesign this site to look different. If you notice any display problems in your browser, please send me a comment. Thanks!

BTW: this is the "template" for the current redesign:
tiles
It's a photoshopped image of a photo I took at the Bellagio in Vegas.

BTW2: the calendar bar is partly inspired by Tufte's Visual Display of Quantitative Information. Although you lose information such as day-of-week from the redesign, I like the fact that it gives you a good idea of frequency.