News for June 2007


Radiation tri-blade 29.june.2007 » Here's an entry worth staying up late to document » Potty training has commenced! Quite by accident, I might add.

We'd just finished eating lunch at a local taco joint (where Kobe eats) and it was time to change the bug's diaper (as usual, following a big meal).

I was unable however, to find a clean diaper anywhere. (Something I try to avoid, squirreling away spare diapers in every cubby hole imaginable).

Tore apart the car » no diaper anywhere. (First time that's ever happened.) Not good. So I say (after cleaning him up), "You gotta go pee here in the toilet." And he does an amazing job, if ya know what I mean. Better than I ever could've hoped for.

So we're high-fiving there in the bathroom. "You so totally rock, dude!" (I've begun patterning my style of praise, you might've noticed, off Crush, the 150-year-old turtle featured in Finding Nemo).

This evening's entry continues in Ye Olde Rad Blog .. see here » Potty Training Commences!

Radiation tri-blade 28.june.2007 » Took the Bug to the movies today. (A first.) Seems like a small thing, but felt like something big.

We've stopped by the theater before today, but never gone with a specific movie in mind. Previous visits were merely intended to familiarize him with what it feels like to walk inside a (dark) movie theater .. so today (when it finally came) wouldn't be such a surprise.

Surf's UpWe saw Surf's Up (dude). Strong reviews. A flick about penguins who surf. Pretty funny. Made me laugh out loud several times.

The bug is still small enough that he can sit on my lap. Before leaving the house I found the Surfs Up web site, and reviewed the main characters with him, so he'd be familiar with their names (Cody, Chicken Joe, Tank, Lani).

Today's entry continues in Ye Olde Rad Blog .. see here > The Bug's First Theater Movie (Sorta)

Radiation tri-blade 26.june.2007 » Been upgrading my web master skills recently, to include proficiency with HTML, XHTML, CSS & Dreamweaver. I'd also like to become familiar with JavaScript, PHP & SQL-based databases, such as MySQL.

Much of my web skills to date have been acquired on an ad hoc basis, learning only what I've needed to know .. to accomplish a particular result/effect. I've simply not been very interested in learning the details of web mastery.

Yet the Internet (or the Web, I should say) remains one of mankind's coolest inventions. And the web - as you know - is comprised, primarily, of web pages. So skills in this area might allow me to take better advantage of (indulge myself in) this evolving technology.

None of these skills, mind you, are particularly difficult to learn. It's not rocket science, but there *is* much material involved.

Like most people, I learn best by doing .. by having a project to which I can apply my new skills.

You might recall I've begun working on a new Guide to Norton Ghost, based on Ghost 12 (Rad NG12). This new guide will be layed-out with a CSS-based (table-less) 3-column liquid/fluid design (with header & footer), which I've selected from a variety of pre-coded templates available in Dreamweaver.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here » Upgrading Web Master Skills | New Technologies Presenting Challenges

ThornRadiation tri-blade 23.june.2007 » The Apostle Paul wrote (in 2nd Corinthians) > "There was given to me a thorn in the flesh..." Now I may not be an apostle, but I know that feeling.

With a little poetic license, using modern vernacular, this verse could be interpreted > "There was given to me .. a pain in the @ss." (the Rad translation)

I was supposed to get the bug this weekend. (Court order says I get him every other weekend.) I've been donating my Saturdays to his mom (trying to be nice).

She, unfortunately, doesn't respond well to nice. (Maybe she views it as a sign of weakness.) She only wants more, more, more. Anyway, I'm done being nice .. especially after she wouldn't let me see him Father's day (last week).

So I'm taking everything the courts granted me. His mom however, doesn't see it that way. She called yesterday, saying she was coming by to pick him up in the afternoon.

So I hid out with the bug. We found a quiet little park, that nobody knows about. I threw down some blankets and made a bed for him on the grass, in the shade, with a cool breeze blowing. There he slept nearly 4 hours (looking peaceful & beautiful).

Afterwards we went home. She musta been circling the block for 4 hours, cuz we hadn't been home more than 5 minutes, when we all decided to go to El Torito (Mexican restaurant) for dinner. I was taking the car seat out of the Rad-mobile and transferring it to the other car, when his mom pulled up.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > A Father's Thorn in the Flesh | Weekend Visitation Snatched Away

Radiation tri-blade 20.june.2007 » Summer solstice tomorrow. First day of summer. Longest day of the year (or shortest, if you live south of the equator). Sun enters sign of Cancer.

The exact time (when the sun reaches its northern-most position, and turns around to head back south) will be 2:06 PM EDT. That's 11:06 AM for us Left-coasters. I hope this summer isn't oppressively-hot, like it was last year.

The word solstice comes from Latin > sun stands still. Cuz the sun appears to stop (for a few days) its north-ward movement along the horizon, if you watch where it sets every night.

Starting tomorrow, days begin to shorten. Autumn however, is traditionally my favorite season > warm days, cool nights, clean air & pumpkins.

In other news, the Rad-mobile got smog checked today, something we do here in California every two years. Takes 15 minutes. Costs $60. Car passed, easily, with less than half the allowable emissions.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > First Day of Summer; Rad-mobile Passes CA Smog Check.

Radiation tri-blade 19.june.2007 » A security vulnerability was reported for the forum software (YaBB v2.1), as posted at iDefense Labs...

... which allows attackers to register with Administrator privileges by "setting the values of certain variables to contain certain characters." (Nice of them not to spell-out how to implement the hack.)

Attackers can then wreck all manner of ugliness.

I discovered the vulnerability last night, but couldn't implement the fix, cuz other mods I've installed had modified the original source code of the files I needed to patch (register.pl + profile.pl).

The patch searched for (some of) the flawed code, but couldn't find it, cuz it had been modified by another mod. Actually, the first 8 steps proceeded fine. Only the 9th and final step errored. But unless the entire fix can be implemented, the patch refuses to install.

At 11PM last night, I was tired and not thinking clearly, so I disabled the registration feature (to help mitigate the vulnerability) and went to bed.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > YaBB Forum Security Vulnerability Patched

Radiation tri-blade 17.june.2007 » Father's day. Was kinda hoping the bug's mom would offer me the day with him, cuz this isn't normally my weekend.

But when she came to get him Friday, it didn't happen. Things between us lately haven't been exactly a day at the beach (or a walk in the park). So, can't say I'm completely surprised, tho really thought she'd come through in the clutch.

Father's Day 2007Perhaps I should note that Mother's day weekend, was *my* weekend with the bug, and I donated (gladly) the entire thing to her. (Most would assume this is the thing to do, right?)

So normally, you might expect this generosity to be reciprocated. But "normal" is not how I'd describe this relationship.

I really am trying (for the bug's sake) to normalize relations with his mom, but progress is .. uh, fleeting .. along with hope (of normalizing).

I find myself dealing with her as you might an institution, such as the DMV > unpleasant but necessary. You rather not be there, but you gotta stop by from time to time.

So you do what you have to .. or more accurately, (you do) what you can. Take nothing personal. Any ugliness > just part of the system.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > Father's Day 2007 | Not So Happy, Could Be Worse

Valid XHTML 1.0 TransitionalRadiation tri-blade 16.june.2007 » Converted this page (you're reading) to XHTML 1.0 Transitional (from HTML 4.01 Transitional). You can see for yourself by clicking the button to your right.

Thought it would be a piece of cake, since Dreamweaver comes with the feature: File > Convert > XHTML 1.0 Transitional.

After conversion tho, the text in this center column (you're reading now) became center-justified (yuk!), but only in Internet Explorer & Opera. Everything looked fine in Firefox & Seamonkey. (Text here should be left-justified.)

Couldn't figure out why. (Pulled out much hair trying.) Finally solved by adding > text-align:left to the CSS page. (Shouldn't have to, tho .. since left-justified should be the default.)

Then I tried to validate, but got 8 errors. Resolving some of them was a pain. Initial attempts to correct only introduced more errors. =/

Eventually however, I whittled them down, one by one .. 8 > 7 > 6 .. valid! And all new web pages, of course, will be crafted to XHTML 1.0 Transitional specs.

I enjoy learning about new technology (and especially how to use it). But I don't enjoy doing things that show no perceived benefit. For example, it's unlikely you observed a difference between the page you're reading now and the one posted here yesterday.

Still feels good tho, to upgrade the site's home page to the latest version of the language that rules the web.

The new blog - BTW - produces pages that are (also) XHTML 1.0 Transitional (by default).

Radiation tri-blade 12.june.2007 - Installed Norton Ghost 12 last night, and (successfully!) created my first Windows-based back-up image (which Symantec terms a Recovery Point) .. of my laptop's system drive .. to a 500-gig Seagate external USB drive (from Newegg).

Installed Norton Ghost 12 last night, and created my first Windows-based back-up image (called a Recovery Point)If you've been Radified for any length of time, you know how we stress the importance of backing-up your hard drive with a cloning program, such as Ghost.

The Rad Community forums have become the de facto Ghost support forums on the Web, frequented by people smarter than me, who graciously lend their experience.

We even have one of the program's original developers stopping by (from New Zealand), sharing insights, along with other wizards, who all possess their particular niche of expertise.

I've been pooh-pooh'ing the notion of Windows-based back-up images ever since Ghost 9.0 first arrived on the scene (for reasons detailed > here),..

.. but figure it's time to join the 21st century, and gather some experience with these newfangled (Windows-based) imaging tools.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > Installed Norton Ghost 12 & Created Back-up Image, called a Recovery Point

Six Apart Releases version 4.0 of its MovableType Blogging Software Radiation tri-blade 09.june.2007 - Six Apart (6A) has released version 4.0 (beta) of its Movable Type blogging software, with a final Open Source version scheduled for release this summer. Sweet!

There will also be a separate commercial version (with tech support) released along with the eagerly-awaited open source version.

I installed (apparently) the final version of the 3.xx series (v3.35) on 16.April.2007. See here > First Post with Movable Type v3.35. I also installed a bunch of cool plug-ins, as detailed here > Dialing In Movable Type.

I very much like v3.35, finding it sophisticated, elegant & powerful, especially after "upgrading" from v2.63 (v3.35 was actually a new installation), which I installed back in May 2003.

Heard rumblings that 6A has invested considerable developmental resources into v4.0, so I'm looking forward to checking it out .. tho my days of being an "early adopter" are long gone.

I'll probably migrate to v4.x after the 1st or 2nd update (4.01, or 4.02). Actually, I'll probably do another new installation, like I did with v3.35.

Word on the street is that 6A neglected MovableType while working on the Enterprise version & TypePad, and have now come back (with a vengeance) to focus on making MT the best blogging platform (on the planet).

6A will need a strong showing from MT4 if they hope to stave off the WordPress phenomena. Under heading, "Why now" listed here (half-way down page), 6A says MT4 is the > "culmination of more person-years of development than any other release."

SixApart Releases Version 4.0 of its Movable Type Blogging SoftwareThe very next paragraph characterizes MT4 thusly > "the biggest development investment we've made in any version in Movable Type's history." So expectations are high.

Today's entry continues in the blog (MT 3.35).. see here > Six Apart Releases Version 4.0 (beta) of its Movable Type Blogging Software

Radiation tri-blade 07.june.2007 - Been dealing with an assortment of life-challenges recently. Consequently, I've been feeling blue and generally crappy (both physically & emotionally).

So you can imagine my surprise to hear so many people commenting this past week (some guys, but mostly girls) how "good" I look.

"Say what? You're joking, right?" I feel like hammered dog-krap, and naturally suppose I look the same (like krap). Tho apparently not.

Even had some hotties come on to me. Heck, just yesterday, I was mentioning to a casual acquaintance how one of the things I've been dealing with recently "suks big-time". (Can't remember my exact words, but I can't forget hers.)

She surprised me by stating (with a straight face), "By the way, I have a black-belt in that."

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > When Feeling Bad = Looking Good | AKA The Black-belt Syndrome

Radiation tri-blade 05.june.2007 - The site was assigned a dedicated IP address yesterday eve. If you're having trouble (like me) viewing any pages, try this:

In Windows XP:
a. go to start > run
b. type: cmd [enter]
c. at the prompt type: ipconfig /flushdns [enter]
d. close the command prompt window

That should fix your problems. (It did for me.) Or you can wait a day or two, until DNS completes propagation.

In other news, the bug will be next month, putting him mid-way thru the Terrible Two's, which I've heard much about, always wondering how much of the surrounding lore is true.

My experience (so far) is that he's at the coolest age yet, a blast to have around.

The real problem (at this age), I feel, is that kid's immune systems are still developing. Consequently they often get sick, with some illnesses more serious than others. And nobody enjoys feeling crummy, no matter how minor the symptoms might be.

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > Two's Not So Terrible

Radiation tri-blade 03.june.2007 - Tomorrow (Monday) is the site's 7-year anniversary. If you enjoy the study of math & numbers like I do, you probably know the number 7 is often associated with notions of completion & perfection.

Seven years ago tomorrow, I acquired the domain name radified.com. Following day (June 5th), site went live (online).

Celebrate Radified's birthday with a fine Cohiba cigarYou can read the very first Rad entry at the bottom of this page (archives for June/July, 2000). Fortunately I learned a thing or two since then (tho much of it the hard way > trial-n-error).

I tell people who praise my computer skills (especially my troubleshooting skills) > "It's cuz I've made every mistake possible with a PC."

We are now at the site's 4th server, beginning, originally, with a server in Kansas City (at web-host named Communitech), which started suk'ing soon as it was bought by Interland, who then loaded my server (along with many others) on a flatbed and (in the dead of night) moved them to Atlanta.

After a year in Atlanta, we began having problems (increasingly) with Apache (open source web server). Until stability problems got so bad I had to move the site ...

Today's entry continues in the blog .. see here > Radified's 7-year anniversary | A brief history