A sample of things to come

Press This has a much needed refresh coming. Major, major props to Stephane Daury and Michael Arestad who have cranked out the bulk of the work thus far.

Press This Working Group for Core

Old and busted: blogging a web page with a picture in WordPress, through the bundled Press This bookmarklet (7 steps, 9 if you include having to select some text for a meaningful description, and in-popup scrolling):

Upcoming new hotness: blogging the same page with a picture in WordPress, through our in-development Press This tool, in bookmarklet mode (2 steps):

😀

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Day One: Couch to 5k

I’m finally doing it.  I’ve meant to for a while.

This morning I started week 1 day 1 of the Couch to 5k plan.  I’ve been doing weights regularly for nearly two years now, but have been a bit lax on the aerobic side of looking after myself.

So on my way into the coworking space, I stopped at the gym, cranked up the headphones, and started running.  I’m playing around with an app right now — RunDouble — that you select the program, and it pings you at the right intervals.  My soundtrack for the run today was the album “Bad Blood” by Bastille.

Figuring Couch to 5k is a 9-week program, I’ll probably be trying to find a 5k to do some time in June or July.  As I’ve got my Daughter’s birthday, WordCamp Chicago, a family trip to Vermont, and WordCamp Seattle the four weekends in June, I’ll probably be aiming for July — which is looking much more clear.

Any suggestions for a 5k to do in the Lancaster PA area?

Serial TV Dramas that are Worth the Watch

Babylon 5

Summary:

It is the dawn of the third age of mankind, the middle of the twenty-third century. Man is far from alone in the universe.

A hundred years ago, humanity made contact with its first alien civilization — or more to the point, they made contact with us. Before the arrival of the Centauri, we were confined to our own solar system, forced to use slow sleeper ships to explore the universe. The Centauri gave us the stars, offered us the use of their “jumpgates” — portals into hyperspace — and later, taught us to make our own. In exchange for this and other technologies, they asked only for trinkets, novelties to sell back home.

In the eighty years that followed, humanity flexed its muscles, expanding outward at a rapid pace. When a group of less powerful races was attacked by an invading army, Earth came to their aid, cementing its role as a major galactic power, if a young, brash one.

The wave of euphoria came crashing down when humanity made contact with a mysterious race called the Minbari. The Earth-Minbari War began with a misunderstanding, a human captain and a Minbari commander too quick on the trigger. Thanks to bad luck or something darker, our first meeting with the Minbari resulted in the death of their supreme religious and political leader. To the Minbari, what followed was a holy war, vengeance for the murder of their spiritual leader. Earth was no match for the technologically superior Minbari, and they easily beat us back to our home planet.

Then, without explanation, as their ships closed in on Earth and wiped out our last desperate defenses, the Minbari halted their advance and surrendered. Only an elite few knew why.

The Babylon Project was conceived in the aftermath of the war. Modeled after the United Nations, it would be a meeting place, neutral ground where the powers could meet and work out their differences peacefully.

The first three Babylon stations were sabotaged in mid-construction. The fourth was completed, but just as it was about to go online, it vanished without a trace. The Earth government would have stopped there, but some of the alien governments, seeing the value of a meeting ground, offered financial assistance for the construction of a fifth station. Naturally, there were strings attached.

Babylon 5 is the story of the last of the Babylon stations, the last hope for a galaxy without war. It begins in the year 2257 with the opening of the Babylon 5 station.


Unlike most television series, Babylon 5 is a single story, completely planned out from day one with a beginning, middle, and end. Each episode is enjoyable on its own, but is also a piece of a larger whole, a chapter in a five-year-long novel for television.

(summary swiped from The Lurker’s Guide to Babylon 5)

Viewable on:

24

Summary:

Jack Bauer is a officer on Los Angeles CTU (Counter-Terrorist Unit). Each season takes place over a 24-hour period, and all 24 episodes proceed in real time. It does require a bit of suspension of disbelief, as phone batteries never die, and people neither eat, sleep, or use the restroom facilities, but it is a very engaging show.  Ideal for binging.

Viewable on:

Others that I have yet to flesh out:

  • House of Cards (US)
  • Deep Space Nine
  • Hustle (UK)
  • Spooks/MI-5 (UK)

ComicPress and Jetpack Photon

Howdy, all! Just a bit of a reminder if you’re a webcomic creator, and you’re running your webcomics on WordPress, you can get a pretty big performance improvement (and savings on bandwidth costs) if you activate the Photon module in Jetpack.

http://jetpack.me/support/photon/

Photon is a free Image Content Delivery Network hosted by WordPress.com. For most content images (depending on how your theme is serving them up), it will just swap out a CDN url of the image automagically, nothing to configure.

If you’re using ComicPress, though, it’s got some funky ways of outputting images just due to legacy code.  It’s pretty easy to fix, though:

Just upload this as a new file entitled comicpress-photon.php to your /wp-content/mu-plugins/ folder — or add it into your theme (or preferably child theme)’s functions.php file (but without the opening <?php)

It’s a huge savings on your hosting account because when serving images, your shared host has to keep talking to the client the entire time that the image is downloading, which can occasionally take longer than creating the page that the image is embedded in! So if your webserver has less load, it behaves better, your hosting company is probably happier with you, it’s not getting choked with serving up images when it could serve up HTML or the like, and you’ll instantly become 200% more attractive! (Okay, I lied on the last one)