I’ve been evaluating some of the material objects I have recently along with how and how much I use them, and one of the things I’d like to use more is my BB gun. Gifted to me for Christmas 2008 and barely used since, I’ve been thinking I could ‘recycle’ some of the soda cans that will ultimately be recycled anyway and create a small target range against one of the brick walls of the house or another similar location whereby I can safely pull the trigger without bodily nor property harm, and also get some more regular use out of it.

Other targets I have in mind right now are more personal-goal oriented. I need to find a job or some source of reliable income, and I also have a couple of website ideas to document and build. If anyone in the area has Flash experience and has a serious interest in collaborating on a fun project then hit me up.

Silence is Golden

At least, that’s what they tell me. I haven’t posted for a while, and I don’t really have a whole lot to say.

I’ve been whining recently about trying to find work, I’m still looking for a full-time IT job while I continue to apply for anything I see in a two-hour radius from where I live.

I applied recently for an IT position via fax, because the organization’s mail server wasn’t accepting emails. This amused me. I also forwarded messages I’d printed with the error messages so they could look into fixing it.

Yesterday and today I worked high ropes, yesterday with a church retreat from in/near DC, and today with a bunch of kids from DC’s Public Schools. A few funny things were said, but the one that stood out was a girl yesterday who said the 3 places she wanted to visit before she died were Argentina, Australia and Alabama. On querying her wish to visit Alabama, she explained her desire to visit “The South” and drink “Real” sweet tea. I tried (in vain) to suggest she could get real sweet tea just by visiting this far south in Virginia, but she wouldn’t have any of it. The only place, in her mind, where she could get such a delicacy was if she went to a “Real” southern state like Alabama.

I had a great time, today I got to try out the new gloves I got for doing ropes work with (and they were amazing!), and had a good laugh or two with some really cool people.

The other day I set up a new website on a domain that has been empty for a few weeks, is now a quote board for amusing or moving quotes from Christian chat rooms all over. Not necessarily UCCN, or even IRC. They can be from Yahoo! or anywhere else for all it matters!

Tonight is a thanksgiving dinner at church, and tomorrow morning Kelly and I leave to house-sit for two weeks! I’m sure many photos will abound.

A Matter of Trust

I woke up this morning, discovered I don’t like Fruit Loops, and set to work on my new website project (for which I am yet to purchase a domain, so I’m not talking about it at all!). I didn’t get very far, though I decided it is probably going to need to be a custom CMS rather than using something existing. I have a basic layout ready, I do need to work on it’s compatibility with Internet Explorer as it doesn’t show very well.

But that’s not what this posting is about. This posting is about my awesome puppy (who I need to take new photos of, probably tomorrow) who has proven over the last few days how much he can be trusted without a tether. On Monday I grilled my lunch and had him hanging out outside with me without a leash or tether, and he behaved well. The last few nights I’ve put his leash in my pocket and just untethered him to bring him indoors for the evening, and tonight he won the game (gah, I just lost The Game) by proving he can go outside, pee, and come back in without a chaperon. Of course, for the next few weeks I’ll have his leash in my pocket and be standing outside ready to run if I need to, but he has shown he can behave with less strict supervision. I’m looking forward to letting him roam free in a house at night when we finally move out!

Today is Boring.

Really. It is. You probably don’t even want to read this, because it is only going to be boring.

I received an email from my potential employer pretty much saying I have a job. I am going in on Wednesday to do paperwork and generally hang out. I *do* need to get documentation from my former “employers” regarding number of hours working with children. If I can’t prove 1000 hours then I’ll be an aide rather than a leader, and the pay rate drops accordingly. But hey, a job is a job.

I also have 2 Saturdays coming up working high and low ropes at Camp Horizons for two larger groups. That’s an extra $70/day too.

The only other “excitement” today involved getting lunch at Subway. I won a free 21oz. FUZE Tea, and a scrabble letter. Other than that I’ve been sitting here watching nothing happen on TV and watching facebook. I guess I could do some programming stuff, there is an outstanding bug in my ticketing system that is to be fixed, and I have an idea for fixing my service detection system reading false positives. I should also work on expanding the system and stuff. Maybe a website? Could be a good moneymaker. Who knows.

See? Boring. If you made it this far, congratulations. Have a nice day.


Yesterday I made a personal site using SilverStripe, and it was my first experience with the CMS that worked. I think last time I didn’t follow the instructions or something and problems arose multiple times.

This time however, worked a treat. It’s not your average CMS, where absolutely everything is configured via a web panel and then stored in SQL. SilverStripe has the basics in SQL (Pages) and the rest is left up to the developer. Once again, a piece of software where its greatest asset is its greatest downfall, and proves, once again, that perfect all-around software does not exist. Either it’s simple for the newbies who want a good looking website, or it’s technical for developers and geeks who want a website that will do anything they ask it to with minimal fuss in breaking their entire index.php-based site with a parse error.

SilverStripe doesn’t have dynamic site names/descriptions like WordPress does. I had to go and edit that in the theme itself. Not a problem, I just need to remember to change it if I change themes.

As far as which is ‘better’, I no longer have a preference. They both do an awesome job at what they do, and I may at some point transfer the UCCN Support site to SilverStripe from WordPress. I’ll still keep the LifeCity site running WP, and probably the I-aL site running it too. WordPress is easy to install and configure, SilverStripe will probably prove easier to develop for.

Don’t take my word for it, test them and decide for yourself!

In other news, we took crash to the vet for his first-week checkup, and he’s doing really well. He weighed in at 28.2lb, and no sign (at this stage) of entropion, thus everything is probably good on that front! Going back in a couple of weeks for his shots, that won’t be such a good time for him 😉

Quiet Day

We’re kinda hanging in the family room, Crash, Kelly and I. We’re watching Family Feud on TV, the Porter family are playing the final game. Oop, they just lost, getting 159 points (needed 200 to get $20,000).

I’m also talking to a friend who has a DVD of photos of his son, from newborn through the first year that he is trying to recover. It isn’t going well.

Kelly just moved to the other chair beside Crash, and he started trying to chew the blanket she’s wearing to keep warm. She’s not doing too well, has a sore throat. She really enjoys the look on his face when she pats him on the nose with a rope toy and hums a tune. We’re working especially to train him out of mouthing/biting people, and we’ll also be working in the next few days training him to not jump up on people when he’s excited (or at all, really).

Just took him out to ‘potty’ and he peed, but hasn’t pooped for a while. Now he’s kinda ignoring lunch in favour of laying beside the chair and licking himself. So far he has acquired at least 6 names or variations on names, all of them in the first 3 days. Crash, Chase, Crush, Crash Taylor, Chuck, Trash.. as well as the obvious ones like Pup and Puppy.

I’ve given myself a coding project for the afternoon, after I retrieve the power pack for the macbook. It’ll be a whois and status facility for UCCN, which will begin our web-integration with IRC. The first will be a web form that queries whether a nickname is online, and if so returns normal public information about them (their hidden host name, public channels, etc). The second will be a status image that returns ‘online’ or ‘offline’ depending on whether the user is online or not (duh..). Both will be dependent on the SQL database from Denora, and will probably also utilize the SQL database from Anope for Nickserv aliases/groups. It will detect if someone is online but not using their primary nickname.

I also need to work on the web interface for Supportive, and will be developing an improved version of the java.php @, both in look and in function.

So, I shall stop blogging nothingness and go get my power pack!

Web Design

I reminded myself yesterday and today how much I enjoy, and how much I hate webdesign.

I guess thats why all my site designs are simple as poop, make it work and then plug it with PHP, and then make it work with the PHP.

This weekend saw two new sites for the United Christian Chat network – one for, and one for (a subsidiary).

I did one entirely on my own, and Ed helped us out by doing the C-IRC one, though it was graphiced for UCCN and I’ve updated/changed the wording on the images.

I played around with Gimp doing them, and was pleasantly surprised compared with my previous experiences with anything photoshop-like. In fact, most of my problems were CSS side rather than graphic design.

They aren’t live as yet, we still have a few minor changes to make, but here are some screenshots to wet your appetites:


UCCN on the top, obviously, and C-IRC on the bottom

3 Almost Completely Unrelated Things…

The first two are both geeky..

Firstly I got my control panel system past the first stumbling block: user login/out. I imagine this is a hard problem for a number of programmers as it is almost always the first step in a secure system. Now that it’s in place I can build everything else around the existing security system (rather than having to build everything else with the prospect of applying security to it later and probably rewriting it all etc).

My second achievement of the day was IPv6 vhosts. I assigned 20-odd IPv6 addresses to Telly for my BNC (ZNC is good so far if anyone is looking for an IPv6/SSL aware IRC Bouncer). Over the last 24 hours or so I assigned 10 of those vHosts. The list is available here. I will be looking into IPv6 hosts for Rizzo next week (IE, seeing if it is workable), so will work on coming up with some more vHosts then.

The third accomplishment, and completely unrelated to the other two in any way, I got my VA Learners permit. If I’d been aware that Kelly’s car actually was insured I could have taken the road skills test and got a full license, but I also think I should take some time to practice first.

That is all, good readers, that is all.


I started work late last night on my 4th concurrent coding project, something I’ve been thinking about for a loong time and it was brought up by Ninex on chat again, confirming that it isn’t a bad idea.

It needs a lot more integration with things, ideally it’ll probably work a lot better once Anope supports real-time SQL. For now it just feeds of the statistics database.

So, check out and tell me what you think!

The final product is intended to have configurable colors, background images, header images, as well as channel-owner-configured ‘about us’ information. There’ll also be a few statistics blocks available, and possibly logging on request? Unsure at this point how to make it integrate!

Should I Really Be Laughing?

My wife showed me this today, and I thought it was hilarious. Not sure if I should be laughing or not, it’s a turtle using a shoe for pleasure, so called ‘shoe-raping.’ Check it out, and tell me what you think!

In other news, I’m still working on several PHP/MySQL projects

Firstly, there is ZcP, a module based control panel for linux (mostly debian) to handle Bind, Apache and qmail (with vpopmail) and PureFTPd (with MySQL auth). I haven’t found anything yet that meets my needs, so I’m writing it myself. It is intended to support multiple servers (IE a web server, primary and secondary mail servers, and primary and secondary DNS servers). It’s also modular based on task, it’ll just call a function and pass the relevant information so it should be pretty easy to create extra modules for postfix or djbdns, for example.

Second, I haven’t named it yet but a support/ticket management system. I have found two existing systems that I like, but none are quite good enough. SiT is good looking and works well, Eventum works well and has an IRC bot attached that sits in support channels and reports updates and new tickets etc. I may have to give up pretty or the bot, but I’d also enjoy the challenge of writing my own.

The third and final project is a database system for my old church, Life City, whose access database was lost in a hard disk crash (had been talking about a new one for a while). It’ll probably be a social-network type system, where we’ll create a house-hold, and individuals and then assign them to households and assign each other relationships (probably based on head-of-house, but not necessarily).