Archive for March, 2007

Site downtime, never-ending spam, and planning

Posted in Tales from the grind-stone on March 30th, 2007 by MrCranky

Annoyingly, the site was down for several hours this morning, putting a major crimp in my efficient mood this morning. Apparently Dreamhost are having (yet more) woes with their NFS servers. Still, all is well now.

Yet more spam in the Akismet box though – it makes me wonder how there is value in those things, and just how much money the people sending the spam (or at least the people paying to have the spam sent) are actually getting back in for it. I’m still thinking that the Internet will have to go the way of the micro-transaction as the only way of getting rid of the spam. By which I mean, having an account through which you pay some pittance of an amount to send emails and/or post comments on blogs. Some amount small enough that an average person will hardly notice (like 0.1p per post), but that makes the sending of millions of emails/comments more costly than it’s worth.

The more I think about it, the more I wonder if it would be tricky to set up a site/plug-in that manages a system like that. Say 10000 free comments/emails a month, but you have to register and log-in to post/send. Anything more and you have to enter credit card details to unlock unlimited posting, and are billed at some fractional rate. Get buy-in from the ISP’s so that people automatically get an account with their ISP so they don’t have to register manually. It would have to be nicely integrated, and you’d have to persuade site owners to set it up… Anyway, enough distractions.

Planning for our 3 month project is pretty much settled for now, we should be signing agreements soon and getting cracking on the work. It’s a big pile of stuff, but I’m confident we can manage it – as long as the development kits turn up in a reasonable time!

Having to buy my own coffee again

Posted in Tales from the grind-stone on March 26th, 2007 by MrCranky

A big sigh of relief this morning – back at my own desk, drinking my own coffee; no more 45 minute commute. Also feeling substantially healthier than last week, thankfully. I’m conscious of the factor over-working played in my body’s rebellion against me, and so even though I have a huge stack of work to be getting through, I am going to make an effort to only work 9 till 5, Monday to Friday for a couple of weeks to give my system a break.

On the agenda for this morning: some routine checking up on our finances and future, some emails and phonecalls to make relating to our next project, and then some planning work. I’ve decided to use the manual XP recommended way of tracking work (8×5 cards, with items written on them), for which I need to actually go and buy some stationery, but I am putting that off until tomorrow.

A minor side note: since the forums are currently sitting dusty and unused, I’m going to put them into hibernation until they are needed again. While I like the idea of a discussion and feedback place, there isn’t much call for that for the next little while, and the constant phpBB security patching process is quite annoying. It is also, even fully patched, a potential security hole in the site, so minimising our exposure seems prudent. Plus the fact that it makes the site seem stagnant, and if the blog is the only frequently updated part of it, I’d rather that be explicit.

Mucus. Lots and lots of it.

Posted in Tales from the grind-stone on March 20th, 2007 by MrCranky

Have been feeling more than a little run down over the past few weeks, I’m sure due to the 6 day weeks since the start of the year. As a result, the cold which has hit me the last week or so is doubly unpleasant. But the end is in sight! I’ll be winding up my contract position at the end of the week, and turning my attention fully towards our next job – the prototype educational title. I hope that the return to working from the home office and lack of commute will allow me to return to more sensible working conditions (and update this blog more often). Anyway, in the meantime, some ginger and lemon tea for steaming, and making sure I have a ready supply of tissues.

Not good. Then good.

Posted in Tales from the grind-stone on March 3rd, 2007 by MrCranky

WordPress compromised.

Only briefly, but it was up here for a couple of days at least. :-( Anyway, all fixed up now, and its unlikely the exploiter would target such a small blog as this.

Still, on a much brighter note, we’ve had some funding approved for our prototype plan, and are now just waiting on some PSP development kits and some other details to get started on making things! This is for the educational title alluded to previously, of which I will share more details when we can.


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