Category Archives: Computers

A milestone: 1024×768

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I am not an early technology adopter. The reason I am slow to adapt is sometimes due to cost and laziness. If something is working fine for me why change.

Usually it takes force to make me change. I didn’t get Windows XP until there was little to no software for Windows 98 and some software either stopped including Windows 98 or couldn’t.

I didn’t get a cell phone until I had to get one for work purposes. My job had me at different sites without access to a landline. Although I am not dependent on my cell phone, I have one.

This week I finally was forced to change the screen resolution on my monitor from 800×600 to 1024×768. The change has been creeping up to me for some time. Many websites and some programs I use are only usable at a higher resolutions. It does become a chore to scroll the screen or not being able to access a button on a program that is hidden below the edge of my screen.

I am going to miss 800×600. Everything looks so small now with the higher resolution and it seems to be missing some detail. It is probably my monitor because I use higher resolutions at work and on my laptop and it doesn’t look bad.

Oh well life is full of changes, I guess.

Tooting my own horn

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I wanted to post about updates to two of my blogs.

iHumanism – narrowly focused on Humanism. Available since 1999, it was previously a standard HTML based site but has now been converted to a blog using WordPress. Content includes articles, essays, and commentary on Humanism, which is my life stance.

Most recent post talks about something called “vague theism” that is causing issues within the Humanist movement.

The Review Geek – basically a review style blog. It offers commentary on media offerings from TV to music to film and culture. I use the new Movable Type version 4.

Most recent post talks about the show “Feasting on Asphalt 2: The River Run” showing on the Food Network.

I really have no social life and am quite pale, so check them out if you have time.

I’ve won a prize

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A few months back I entered the Humanist Vision contest sponsored by the American Humanist Association. The challenge was to create a “commercial” about Humanism and post it on YouTube. There was prize money involved and the goodwill of the Humanist movement.

My entry was based on a slideshow I am working on for my local Humanist group.

I didn’t win the top prizes but my entry did get Honorable Mention. That meant that not only was my entry shown at the AHA Conference in Portland, back in June, but that I also got a book from Humanist Press. The book I got was “Freethought Across the Centuries: Toward a New Age of Enlightenment” by Gerald A Larue.

I haven’t agreed with everything Larue has written in the past but the book is an interesting look at the history of Freethought.

So here is my winning entry as posted on YouTube:

New home for this blog

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This is the first post on this blog since I moved it to a new server.

I want to say that my previous host – 1and1.com – was a good host. They were easy to use and provide a good package with unlimited e-mail boxes and several mysql databases. In the approximate 4 years I was with them, I had only one real technical issue and that happened early this year when one of my databases went down due to the server going down. It was fixed in few hours after my I put in a ticket.

The reason I’m leaving 1and1.com is because they had severe restrictions on running scripts and since I use Movable Type, my blog is mostly scripts. I understand that in a shared hosting environment that resources need to be shared but I was paying for the top shared package and it was getting to be useless.

And before various fanboys point out that I am using dead technology etc… I know that some others have passed MT by (like Wordpress) but I spent literally hundreds of hours on this blog and I don’t feel like learning new software. However getting a glimpse of MT 4 currently in Beta may change my mind – it seems at the start too much like Myspace or Vox and I like old school blogging. If I wanted 1500 pictures of people I really don’t know to clog up my web page then I would be based on Myspace. Send your fan mail to my contact page.

Any way, my issue with 1and1 started slowly, I would get 500 error messages that I never had before and rebuilding my pages would get slower and slower before crapping out altogether. I tried all the tweaks and hacks I could to squeeze out the rebuilds. At the end I was working on slices of 5 pages at a time and it would take an hour and half to rebuild my pages if I made any changes to the structure. I think the problems got bad when 1and1 started offering a blog feature.

The other issue I had was that 1and1 has had issues with spammers. I found that out when my e-mail to a friend at AOL bounced because the 1and1 mail server was blacklisted. I had also heard some stories that 1and1 had an issue with hosting spam sites and not booting them out quickly enough.

My contract was coming up so I decided to find a host that was more Moveable Type friendly. Six Apart, the makers of MT, has a partner page that listed some hosts that 6A recommended. That’s how I found NEXCESS.NET

For about the same price I was paying for 1and1’s top shared host package, Nexcess had an entry level VPS package.

VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. It is a bridge between shared hosting (many accounts on one server) and dedicated hosting (you are the only one on the server). VPS has two or more accounts on a server with separate resources and the big feature is that I have root access to my server. I also have my own mail server and name servers.

This has allowed me to put each of my blogs in their own accounts, separate from each other.

It is so nice to be able to rebuild my blogs without any errors and it finishes in a reasonable time.

The downside is I know next to nothing about running a server.

Wish me luck.

For more info:

MaxVPS

MovableType Hosting Partners