Damn GMT timestamps!

I’m working on a project. And my ambition was to store all timestamps in the database as GMT timestamps for maximum flexibility.

Conclusion? I cut the branch under my own feet. And I’m saying this because since 6 hours I’ve been struggling with these things and I made absolutely no advances! My mind strangely locks up. Too many variables. Too little experience. GMT. Plus 2 hours. Minus 5 hours. Offset of the server. Offset of the user. ARRRGH! I think I’ll start biting the corners of the furniture in my room!

For the moment I have no ideea how to continue… Google didn’t come up with anything relevant. Maybe (I hope!) it’ll come to me tomorrow morning.

Getting old?

Today I confirmed that I’m going to the wedding of a good friend and ex school mate. I feel weird again. But I usually feel weird when I’m about to go to weddings of people who have the same age or are younger than me (as in this case).

The way I got invited to this friend’s wedding is a rather interesting story. The most interesting fact about it is that I haven’t seen the guy since 3 years. I don’t know exactly. And this wouldn’t be such a big problem if we stayed in touch. But nope. This did not happen. So I see him 3 years ago. Fast forward. I go to the wedding of another ex school mate last November. I meet this guy’s parents. I ask them about the boys (he’s got an older brother). “Oh, Ovi (the older brother) is married and Flaviu will get married next summer.” I think I made a face… They asked me if I want to come to the wedding and I said, of course.

Two weeks ago I get this nice invitation to the marriage of Flaviu and Anca. The shock came again. Then I got used to the idea. But I discovered that their marriage is on the same date as the biggest and most important local festival. And what’s better, the place where the party will be held is in the center of the festival’s place. Hah. Nice. I’m eagerly waiting to walk through the boozed crowd dressed in a nice costume. His parents asked me then to confirm if I’m coming or not by phone. So I thought I’ll flung out by “forgetting” to make the call.

But yesterday his mother called and asked. And I said I’ll tell them the answer today. And today without thinking too much I confirmed. Phew. This will surely turn out to be an interesting experience.

Building

I mentioned yesterday that I’m working on the Movable Type templates and the rest of the site. Fact is I want to make as much of the site as I can manageable with MT. It’s such a nice tool and it’s so handy sometimes that you don’t have to fire up your good old FTP program each time you want to modify a character on your site…

Looking around a bit on the almighty Internet I found a very good article, Beyond the Blog - Powering an entire site with Movable Type, on Matthew Haughey’s site. He had links at the bottom of the article to some other writings on the same matter: Brad Choate’s Doing your whole site with MT and Doug Bowman’s Rebuilding a Portfolio (with MT). I’ll also take a closer look at the Textile 2 Plugin.

Posted this as a reference…

Restarting... Again...

Well, to tell the truth I lost count. I lost count how many times I restarted blogging. But it wasn’t always my fault.

The first time I tried my luck at blogging I was using Blogger and my dinosaur age account I have at Geocities. It all went well, I posted some entries being fascinated by what Blogger was offering for free but then Geocities cut FTP access for their free accounts.

A rather long pause followed. In the meantime I started my own “do some good for the people and all this for free” site, resurseweb.net (which can be translated as webresources.net). After a while I saw an installation of b2 on a friend’s site and I thought: hey what the hell, let’s start bloggin again. I installed b2. Posted a few entries, but browsing around the web I noticed that almost everyone was using this “magic tool” called Movable Type. First I didn’t like it. And that’s mostly because I saw the extension that always scares me: cgi. Later I found out that MT was written in Perl. And there was a fairly extensive install guide on their site. So one night I gave it a shot. Some of the Perl modules which were needed weren’t installed on the server I tried to install the system on but I got them installed somehow. Anyway, I got myself a working Movable Type installation which I happily used. Rather intensively around Christmas in fact. Posting all those “in progress” Christmas tree pictures. Haha.

The domain expired this year. I didn’t renew it. It looks rather funny if I take a look at it now. Owned by some porn site… I don’t know what they were thinking but hey I feel good that they considered my humble site worthy enough to take over it. Hehe. I checked Google and it seems that with the exception of one site nobody is linking to it anymore.

A little more than a month ago there came the news about TypePad. Whooo. Tried it out the moment I found about the launch of the public beta version. But for 9$ per month it wasn’t the real deal for me. Since I’m a not-so-bad web developer I figured that even if I can’t replicate the functionality of TypePad I can do something similar. So I cancelled my TypePad account on one of the last free days.

And so, here I am. For 10$ / year I bought my own domain name, which everybody hates, but hey it’s my name… And for 5$ a month I got some great webhosting. For the moment I’m busy customizing MT’s templates for my needs. And then there will come the other sections of the site.

I’m quite excited and I’m eagerly looking forward for the moment when I can publicly launch my own personal site on the world wide web. Hehe.

Precautions

Yes, I am paranoid. Today I made digital pics of my credit card because I was required to fax a photocopy or mail a good quality scan to confirm an order I made yesterday. Yes, well, us Romanian aren’t the most trusted nation. Because of our cool background. Gypsies, legislation that drowns pretty well in corruption and other juicy things like this.

Anyway I mailed them the pics in the afternoon. And suddenly while I was sitting just now it occured to me that what if somebody hacks my ‘puter and finds those pics on the hard drive? Well, he’ll find 30 bucks on the card which ain’t much. But since I can spare myself of some headaches why shouldn’t I take some steps? So I packed the pics with WinRar and password protected the archive. Hack this! Hah.

It occured to me afterwards that e-mails aren’t encrypted in any way… Well, let’s hope nobody intercepted mine. Hehe. It was required to send a clearly visible image of the card. And faxing wasn’t a real option because it would have required going somewhere to photocopy my card, then going to the post office to fax. Too much fuss.

I believe in my luck.