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The 6 Million dollar site!

We can rebuild him. We have the technology.
We have the capability to make the world's first Bionic man.
Steve Austin will be that man. Better than he was before.
Better . . . stronger . . . faster.

After several web years having earned some sort of living from the development of interactive systems, I felt it was finally time to sit down and get started on a project that has been in the back of my mind for much of 2004. Namely, to relaunch, using database driven technology (in this case the popular LAMP combination [Gentoo Linux running as a UML instance on a coop server coowned and operated by myself and a bunch of people I met virtually through the Linux Users of Los Angeles, the Apache Web server, Mysql database server and PHP scripting language] as the platform for a php based "blogging" server called Serendipity. I realized some time ago that the original (which was always plain old html, created primarily in Dreamweaver) had always been designed to be a "Blog" of sorts, only I began it long before anyone had actually coined the term. Back in those days you just called it a homepage or personal home page. What I always wanted was a site that I could use as a repository for notes about my various projects, diary entries and musings about the places I've been, music I listen to, books I've read, movies I've seen, people I know, products I like and dislike, and things that I find interesting.

For quite some time the task of sitting down and manually updating things in the static html pages that comprised GizmoLA have made it an onerous task. The site has also moved a number of times and in the process things that were originally on the site broke or became obsolete.

I have a variety of goals for this new system, and I'm betting that Serendipity, which is still very much in Beta, will be the platform upon which I can build the type of site I have always wanted. As I work on converting the original Gizmola over, I'll try and elaborate on my goals, and provide an occasional update in the process.

My first order of business will be to convert some of the old articles over (or not, I haven't 100% decided how to proceed), and create a template that reflects as much of the original design as makes sense. This will certainly be an adventure in wrangling html and .css.

Another important aspect of what I want from my blog is the ability to include code and diagrams in certain blog entries. From what I can see this will probably be the first thing I'll need to create a module to do, unless I can find one that already exists. I did look hard at using the popular PHP blog package WordPress, even to the degree of installing it and adding in a few modules. I can't say for certain that my experience with Serendipity will be better, but the module architecture for Wordpress required me to do a lot of manual editing of existing scripts which didn't strike me as particularly modular.
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Server move

I moved onto a new server last night. There will no doubt be some things broken, as I begin the long overdue process of completely revamping the site. If you see anything odd drop me a note over at the forum.
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Code Red

As CodeRed mania sweeps the Internet, I thought it might be interesting to determine how many times this site has been probed/attacked. As you might know, CodeRed is a virus that infects Microsoft IIS webservers which have a certain ISAPI filter for indexing turned on. Linux servers aren't at risk. I found a simple script that awks the log files looking for the CodeRed signature.

This page shows how many times has been probed recently.
I was surprised to see the results.
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It's been a while since I updated. I have plans to move the site to a new server I bought and have been configuring. Part of the process involved getting my new ISP in place (thankfully, and after numerous false starts) I now have DSL again, courtesy of Megapath Networks. The new server is setup with RedHat 7, and is hosting several small gaming sites: Cali Tribes Players and LaLa-Lan. Eventually I plan to move onto it. So obviously, I've been working on a few side ventures.

I'm also playing a lot of Ice Hockey at Culver city and Burbank, and learning PHP and MySQL in the process. I think I can now be considered officially nocturnal, as I find myself up most nights. Lately I've been playing a fair amount of Tribes2, and my Tribes2 team has climbed into the top 10 of the teamwarfare ladder. This is somewhat contributory to the nocturnal lifestyle, although I think the primary reason is that I'm just basically a night person, and without the constraints of a regular job to attend, my free running cycle allows for me to sleep when I'm tired. As I write this, it's 5:40am and I'm still awake.
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Giz at the Gym

I bought and assembled a Smith machine, which is a sorta home gym weight rack a while back, and set it up in our basement room. Gizmo likes to sit out on the porch entrance and monitor the stairway while I'm working out.

It's been a long time since I updated, primarily thanks to the demise of my DSL Internet connection when Northpoint went bankrupt. Apparently, my house is just a bit too far to from the local pacbell central office for me to get reliable DSL service (even though I had it for over a year from Northpoint!). I tried two seperate ISP's and in both cases waited weeks only to find out at the last minute that they couldn't provide me service.

I've found a new one and am keeping my fingers crossed. Fortunately, I was able to colocate the gizmola server with Kent Bulza, who has been nice enough to help get it and my mail going again. Thanks Kent!
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Mister Scrapples

Ah unemployment. Lately I find myself with plenty of time to read, work on little projects, and scan negatives. I've done another RedHat Linux upgrade on Gizmola, and added some notes on using rpm. Tracy recently snapped some 35mm photos of the Scrapples, and we liked one in particular. I scanned the negative, and with a little help from photoshop, we have the thumbnail on the left. Click on it to see the photo gallery.
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