News for April 2007


Morning at the Newport Back Bay: Newport Beach, California (Test of Lightbox2)Radiation tri-blade 30.april.2007 - Test of Lightbox2 image overlay JavaScript (by Lokesh Dhakar, from Boston).

Click the thumbnail image (of the Newport Back Bay) to your right, and a larger version *should* pop-up .. in a cool-looking overlay, with the rest of the page assuming a smoked-glass appearance.

Web site designers like Lightbox because it allows the reader (you) to view an image (or images) without taking you away from the page you're reading. Simply click the Close button, and you return here (never really left).

I like it cuz it allows me to display a photo on a separate "page" (so to speak), with a black background, without having to create a separate web page (*.htm), such as I did > here. Plus it opens with a cool animated ("fancy pants") launcher, perfectly centered.

Today's entry continues in the NEW blog .. see here > Lightbox2 Image Overlay JavaScript

Joomla! Open Source Content Management System (CMS)Radiation tri-blade 29.april.2007 - Thinking of splitting-out site content pertaining to my experiences as a dad .. to a NEW site, such as raddad.com (oops, that domain name already taken) .. or rad-dad.com (uh, that one is also taken). One reader suggested dadified.

Anyway, I'll find some new domain that will work. (Costs a measly $10/yr, and I already have tons of content I could transfer.)

What do you think of oneraddad.com? or radfather.com? Those two domain names are still available. Any ideas? (Shorter the better.)

Now that I have the lastest version of MovableType installed (v3.35), and knowing that Movable Type allows you to publish multiple (unlimited) blogs, including to domains outside the one in which MT resides, I could use MT 3.35 to publish to a new rad-dad site.

In the grand scheme of things, despite how much I love cool technology, there aren't many things more important than being a good dad.

Today's entry continues in the NEW BLOG .. see here > Comparing Joomla! vs Drupal Content Management Systems (CMS)

The Bug is no longer stuttering. Happy days are here again.Radiation tri-blade 28.april.2007 - Heading out for a bike ride, but first I wanna share > the bug is no longer stuttering. Everybody told me not-to-worry, but it still bothered me.

He stuttered for ~ a month. Broke my heart. No more, tho. You can't imagine the sense of relief. (Happy days here again.)

He slept over last night. In the middle of the night, I felt a little hand on my face. I'm guessing he woke (in the dark) and wanted to know who was sleeping beside him.

He probably felt my (scruffy) face for a clue, then went back to sleep. (Cool feeling. Made me smile.)

Today's entry continues in the NEW BLOG .. see here > The Bug No Longer Stuttering

Radiation tri-blade 24.april.2007 - Regulars might recall a dream I had last year, in November (the 14th, to be precise) .. which said .. well, here are my exact words:

Barack Obama: Democratic Presidential Candidate Had a dream last night that Barack Obama was on the verge of becoming the first black president (way ahead in the polls), but was assassinated right before the election (similar to what happened with RFK). The dream seemed real. Would be weird if it came true.

Recall this was long before Obama even announced his candidacy (on Feb. 10).

Today I learned Obama has (for the first time) pulled even with Hillary in the polls. See here > Obama, Clinton Tied (at 32%, from poll of 579 Likely Voters). More coverage at Boston Globe, Reuters & Yahoo.

And I believe he even raised more money than Hillary (which must've raised a few eyebrows), despite political connections she cultivated over the last two decades with Bill.

Of course, this doesn't mean Obama will become the Democratic nominee, or if he does, that he'll be assassinated .. but certainly, it seems more plausible than it did 5 months ago, when everybody considered Hillary the prohibitive (inevitable) favorite.

Makes ya wonder tho, doesn't it?

Today's entry continues in the NEW BLOG .. see here > Disturbing Dream: Barack Obama Assassinated


Radiation tri-blade 23.april.2007 - Test of Google's AJAX Search API, which lets you insert Google elements into your web pages (using JavaScript code). Pretty cool.

You first have to sign up for a license key. (Google gives you a big, long key, ~100 characters.)

And the key is only valid for one domain. I initially signed up for a key to use with the new blog (subdomain > blogs.radified.com) .. but it wouldn't work when I tried to use it on the site's home page.

It gave me an error when I loaded this page, saying I needed to apply for a new key. (No problemo.) So I now have two AJAX Search API keys. (When I convert today's entry into a blog entry later, I'll need to generate new AJAX code.)

With this AJAX search API (Application Programming Interface), you can add web searches, video searches, blog searches (also see AJAX Search API playground), News (News bar), or (like I did) map searches. Heck, there's even a book bar.

Today's entry continues in the NEW BLOG .. see here > Using Google's AJAX Search API

Movable Type Publishing Platform v3.35Radiation tri-blade 22.april.2007 - Been dinking around with my new installation of Movable Type (v3.35), configuring both the display page (the part you see) and the admin interface (where I compose entries).

As with Windows, the installation takes only an hour-or-so, but subsequent tweaking and configuration can take days to dial in (just the way you want) .. just like it did with the new forum installation.

I'm done playing with the part you see (.. for a while anyway). Content is always more important than (mere) style.

For example, I tweaked the published pages (you see) so *links* turn orange when you roll-over them with your cursor. (Default style makes them white.) That page can use a little more color to brighten it up.

But I couldn't figure out how to make the link's underline go away on the roll-over. I know how it *should* work, but it wouldn't go away. No biggie.

Today's entry continues in the NEW BLOG .. see here > Dialing In Movable Type blogging software

Movable Type Publishing Platform v3.35Radiation tri-blade 17.april.2007 - First post with v3.35 of Movable Type blogging software (uh, I mean, publishing platform) .. which represents the latest release from Six Apart (on 12.april, see here).

My old blog (v2.63) is still > HERE (same place it's been last 4 years). I installed that version in May 2003, and never upgraded (didn't wanna do anything that might risk losing hundreds of posts) .. until now.

Actually, this is a *new* installation .. not an upgrade (same strategy I took with the YaBB forum software recently). All went surprisingly well. Oddly enough, after the installation, I had a little trouble getting the StyleCatcher plug-in to work, but that's solved now.

StyleCatcher is a very cool plug-in feature (comes with v3.35 installation) that allows you to browse a truckload of different styles .. and change the entire style of your blog .. with a single click. (Told ya it was cool.)

Most of the styles suk, but all are better than what I could do on my own .. and some are pretty snazzy.

Today's entry continues in the NEW BLOG .. see here > First Post with Movable Type v3.35

Houseboat on the River KwaiRadiation tri-blade 15.april.2007 - Lotsa mail regarding Friday's post, about living out of my Porsche (homeless in SoCal, hi-tech hobo). Several related similar experiences. But most read like this one (titled Touched by your PorscheBago!):

> I first discovered your site while seeking better understanding of digital audio. And of course, I discovered your Ghost guide and digested that as well.

I began following your personal posts and have continued doing so the last couple of years. You haven't got your own FireFox tab yet, but Radified is usually one of the first sites I peruse during my daily Net Ritual...

... which starts with Google > then NetVibes (set to GTD topics) > MSNBC > BamaMag (lifelong, rabid Crimson Tide fan) > CNET > TechSpot > and Radified. Then I usually check RadioParadise (recommended) to stay abreast of the latest great music.

I am a father of 5 daughters, still married to same woman after 29 years, and a small businessman in the Southeastern US. My business is parking lot maintenance. We travel throughout Florida, Alabama and Georgia, maintaining corporate clients' drives and parking areas. (Mostly self-storage mini-warehouses.)

You went through a break-up at a time when my marriage was in difficulty. I must say, some of your despair and pain helped keep me centered .. at a time when I was ready to toss it all, buy a houseboat on the bayou, and lead the solitary life of a recluse, traveling the country via its rivers.

The thing that is so appealing about that lifestyle, I feel, is the freedom from responsibility .. for anyone but yourself. As I read the accounts of your experiences with your son, I can tell you love him deeply. And as I discovered, that kind of love isn't something easily cast aside. We fathers will endure most any discomfort to ensure the well being of our children. (Another lesson I think you have discovered recently.)

As the Holy Man said in Dances With Wolves, "You are on the path of a true human being." That path isn't always easy. But it's always right.

Good Life to you my friend,

[Rad note: Used with permission. Minor grammatical editing. Links & yellow highlights added, including houseboat graphic.] This entry blogged here > Rad Mail: Touched by your PorscheBago!

Homeless Man: Havana, Cuba .. photo courtesy Dan HellerRadiation tri-blade 13.april.2007 - Regulars may recall last year, when I discussed moving to "...pristine ocean-front property .. mere steps from the beach. Will be falling asleep to the sound of waves every night, sitting in front of a cozy fire."

Well, confession time (Friday the 13th) .. that *was* the beach. =)

Ever lived out of your car? Been homeless? It's a lot like camping.

There was a last-minute problem with the new place. And I'd already given notice on the old place, I currently occupied, unable to stay. So I was caught in a jam.

I decided to throw everything in storage and make the best of a bad situation.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > Homeless in SoCal: Rad Guide to Living out of your Porsche (as a Hi-Tech Hobo)

Killer Waves at the Wedge! (literally) in Newport BeachRadiation tri-blade 11.april.2007 - Had a little glitch in the forums today. Received an email early this morning from NightOwl (who never sleeps), saying the FAQ had disappeared.

Of the 3,000+ threads we have (representing more than 25K posts), this is probably the worst one to lose .. cuz it's linked on every page of the Ghost guide.

Still half asleep, I originally imagined someone must've accidentally deleted the thread .. cuz that's the only way I know to 'lose' a thread.

Then I noticed the FAQ-thread still had a link on the index page (stickied near the top). [When a thread is deleted, it also removes its link from the index page.]

We've never had this problem before > An Error Has Occurred! 300 : .txt No such file or directory. (Bad juju.)

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > YaBB Forum Glitch > 300 : No such file or directory (& Killer Waves at The Wedge!)

Cape Town, South Africa, from Table Mountain, near Devil's PeakRadiation tri-blade 10.april.2007 - One of the cooler aspects of having a web site is the contact I get .. from an interesting assortment of folks .. scattered around the globe .. living in a variety of cultures.

Other cultures have always interested me. I like the way they stretch your mind, trying to see the world thru their eyes.

One such fellow (Stephen) lives in Johannesburg, South Africa. We've been trading mail (off & on) for more than a year. He works in the film industry there (writes, shoots, edits, directs).

Every so often, he'll drop a line and share what's happening in his (busy, exciting) life.

Sometimes he'll even include photos, from his work or play .. in exotic places like Patagonia, Ushuaia or Drakensberg. Being in the film industry, his photos are always excellent.

Anyway, he just sent a couple more pics, from a recent trip to Cape Town, taken from Table Mountain, near the (1,000-meter) summit (called Devil's Peak). See here:

Today's entry continues in the blog .. here > Lekker South Afrikaans friend sends photos from Cape Town

The White HouseRadiation tri-blade 09.april.2007 - Ever have a dream so vivid it felt like it really happened? Had one last night.

The President (dub-ya himself) called me, on my cell (normally set to vibrate). I was sitting at the local coffee shop, on a sofa there, talking to my climbing buddy, Tom.

"Who's that?" he inquired, as I checked the display, squinting to see who was calling. I held up the illuminated screen so Tom could see: White House, President.

"Aren't you gonna answer?" Tom asked, as I slipped the phone back in my pocket. "Nah," I said, thinking how I was mad at the President (tho I can't recall what he had done to p*ss me off).

"The President's calling, and you're not picking up?" Tom said, with raised eyebrows.

"Actually," I said, "that's the *third* time he's called. He called *twice* yesterday. You're probably right, tho. I oughta call him back. I mean, he *is* the President, right?"

Today's entry continues in the blog. See here > White House Calls to Ask a Favor (uh, in my dreams)

Resurrection Egg, by Peter FabergeRadiation tri-blade 08.april.2007 - Happy Easter. "He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay." [Matthew 28:6]

Rode my bike to the coffee shop this morning (for the first time). Feeling a sense of duty to minimize pollution, ease my impact on the environment, and help minimize our dependence on foreign oil (in some small way).

It's no biggie, since the coffee shop is only six or eight blocks away. A little chilly this morning. Next time I'll dress warmer.

Also checked out a book from the library this week (Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms). Haven't done that since mom used to take me there, back when I was a just a tike. Normally I purchase books to read, but now figure the library might save a few trees.

At the coffee shop this morning (where I've been drinking herb tea, in an effort to avoid caffeine), the coffee demons were working me, whispering sweet nothings in my ear, about how good an espresso would taste.

Today's entry continues in the blog. See here > Easter Conservation, Triple-espresso & Ghost guide revision

WordPress Blogging SoftwareRadiation tri-blade 04.april.2007 - Fourth day without coffee. No headache (surprisingly). Drinking herb tea instead. It has been 10 years since I've gone without coffee for more than a week or two (usually while camping or backpacking).

Feeling mellow. Decent energy. Looking to break the 1-week mark. It has been 20 years since I've gone without for a month.

Folks have told me I get aggressive on coffee. Amp'ed can seem aggressive, I guess. Certainly, I don't want to come off as a jerk. Having grown up on the East coast means I tend to be direct (the culture there), which some find abrasive.

Anyway, I'm trying to think of all the reasons I should quit (for increased motivation), and a kinder, gentler Rad is one of the more appealing ideas I came up with. Next thing you know, I'll be practicing yoga.

On a geekier note, after successfully upgrading the forums to YaBB v2.1, I noticed that WordPress (blogging software) is also at v2.1 (actually 2.1.3). Coincidence?

I've been using MovableType (v2.63) since May 2003. (Never upgraded my original MT installation.) But SixApart, the makers of MovableType (now at v3.34), started charging for all but the most basic installation options, and WordPress has become the cool, new kid on the block.

Today's entry continues in the blog. See here > Thinking of Installing (Converting to) WordPress Blogging Software

Radiation tri-blade 02.april.2007 - First the good news. No coffee for *two* days. Might not seem like a big deal, but I'm really gonna try to go without caffeine for 3 months.

I still visit the coffee shop, yet drink non-coffee drinks (normally a triple-espresso). I'm not even that crazy about the taste; rather it's the buzz (the zing, the amperage) I enjoy.

On the downside, the bug has begun stuttering. As you might imagine, this is most distressing, especially since his impressive language skills have represented the most common comments I've received from others (who know more about kids than I do).

He doesn't do it all the time, but when he does, it seems severe. I mean, he will repeat a syllable 5 or 6 times, unable to get it for 9 or 10 seconds.

I first noticed it a couple of weeks ago. After researching the topic, where it said stuttering could be caused by emotional trauma, I called his mom to ask if he had any traumatic experiences the last 4 or 5 days (since I'd seen him last).

She said not to worry .. that stuttering in kids was normal. But last week, she agreed his stuttering was severe enough to be a concern.

Today's entry continues in the blog. See here > The Bug is Stuttering

Birds and bees, busy at work in springRadiation tri-blade 01.april.2007 - Is spring fever real? Do the birds and bees really represent an emphasis on springtime mating for *all* God's creatures?

The past few weeks, at the local coffee shop, my rock-climbing buddy (Tom, see entries dated 27 & 28 October) has been making comments such as, "Wow! Look at that girl who just walked in," and "Ooh, check out the one in the red dress."

I've never seen him act like that before. It's rather entertaining to see him so 'interested'. Every girl looks hot to him.

Yesterday, a girl walked in wearing white pants. "If there's *one* thing," Tom said, "that really gets me going, it's a girl with white pants and a black thong underneath."

At the counter stood such a girl. (I had to turn and stare in order to see the black thong.)

Tom proceeded to explain, between sips of java, how, while a young lad, he had a "magical" experience with a girl wearing white pants and a black thong.

"It's not the girl," I argued, "that's got you so fired up, but rather the classical conditioning from what happened many years ago."

"If a 90-year-old granny walked in," I continued, "wearing white pants and a black thong, weighing two, two-fifty, you'd *still* get fired up .. cuz you've been conditioned to respond that way .. like Pavlov's dog." =)

Today's entry continues in the blog. See here > Spring fever: birds, bees & human hormone