A Movable Type experiment

Blogs are becoming an easy way of having a presence on the web. Most of personal sites these days are blogs. TypePad and Blogger are getting into the mainstream. They had normally been called the ICQ of web sites .The former is fee-based while the latter is freebie. What sets them apart from the old days of free (or, paid) website? The richness of content and ease of use. Most of the content on blogs are syndicated (RSS) and links are, most of the time, ads. With blogs, you simply type away, add your images or photos, click a button, and, ergo, instant but professional-looking website – uh, er – blog!

Blogs are great if you simply love to write and put your ideas on the web. Unlike regular web sites, blogs lack the snazzy extra features that enables one to have total control of what to put on the site. But what it lacked in features, its ease of use is what casual web users loved the most and lured them to sign up for their services.

Since I host this site on my own web server, I decided give the most popular one – Movable Type from SixApart – a peek.

From what I had read before, I needed the latest versions of Movable Type, MySQL and the database hooks – they were quickly downloaded and installed (Perl also required but this is already included in OS X) on the server. After doing a lot of web searches, it took me some time to set it up and get it running, using instructions from maczealots.com. My plan was to incorporate the ‘blogger’ into this website but I backed out on the last-minute. It was a hardware hog – well, at least for my current setup and use. Rebuilding was quite slow. Since the Mac G4 is also my FTP server and web cam host, I didn’t like the extra strain Movable Type put on the server. Maybe, I can incorporate it on this site later on…when I get my hands on a G5!

—notes:

After acquiring an Apple iMac G5 a few months later and testing other blogging software, I integrated the same blogger – Movable Type- to my web site in Oct. 01, 2004.

My other blog: kupitero.blogspot.com

Download the XML FeedReader here

A Short Trip to Lake Tahoe

I was feeling bored that I decided to make the four hours plus drive to Lake Tahoe, to take a breather.

English: The Gondola ride at Lake Tahoe, South...
English: The Gondola ride at Lake Tahoe, South Lake Tahoe, CA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After three days of revamping this site, the occasional tweaking of all the computers in the house and my fix-your-PC moonlighting, I had it for a while. After all, it had just been just quite a while since I updated/revised my (this) site. That third revision was easier, since most of the images were already done – from the previous two versions. My initial site and its subsequent revision were both hosted at Philippine-based servers. After I setup my own server, I thought that making any major revisions to one’s site will seem to be all too easy – I was wrong!

I noticed a smaller volume of traffic going to Tahoe specially on a weekend. Usually, the traffic is a little tighter – specially on a Friday – since the folks with RVs normally start their weekend jaunts early. Not so these days. Maybe the Indian casinos had really taken a deep bite into the business of the usual casino haunts like Reno, Tahoe and even, Las Vegas.

We arrived a with a little bit of sunlight to spare and immediately grabbed a quick bite at our favorite 24 hr. cafe inside the Horizon – – the spicy buffalo wings is always on our to-order list.

Afterwards, it was back to Harvey’s, where we played our favorite nickel and penny slots…way until the early hours of Saturday.

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Waiting for the Netpliance iOpener hack parts

The thing had been sitting on a makeshift shelf on the garage – very close to the roof. I had only tested it briefly after I had acquired in from an estate auction in Dec. 2002 (too bad, I missed to get the compatible Canon printer in the same auction!!!…grrr). Back then, it was still fairly a popular hobby for hardware guys to hack this piece. But, back then, maybe I got too much stuff to attend to and forgot the iOpener altogether.
Suddenly, last month – after I set up yet another PC/TV for my parents in our living room – using the assortment of PC hardware strewn in all parts of the garage – the final product doesn’t seem to appeal to me aesthetically. Ding! Ding! Why not use a hacked iOpener instead?…Maybe its fortuitous…Parts for the hack would have been considerably steeper had I done it earlier! Now, I’m simply waiting for the UPS truck to arrive!!!
—notes:
You can see the ‘blow by blow’ account’ of the iOpener transformation (hack??) here.
After a month of on-off work, on 6/01/04, the hack was done. You can see the finish product here.

Started the Revamp of this Web Site

The graphics and overall design were obviously aging. The more I looked at it, the more I remember my carefree days in Manila in the 80s and 90s.

The original Kupitero’s Keep website, I created in 1998 but launched in 1999 when I finally got a decent web hosting site – Surfshop.net. Prior to them, I had tried a lot of freebie hosting GeoCities, Angelfire, etc., as well as, other local ISPs like Epic.net and Tri-Isys.

The tools of the trade were basically the same ones I used back then: an HTML editor, Photoshop, an image animator, image mapper, and a file transfer program (FTP).

I ported the site to Netscape’s free hosting – simply called, WebSites- after we terminated our contract with Surfshop.net in 2001. The nice thing was: it was only in 2003 that they put down the site. Unfortunately, Netscape’s freebie hosting didn’t last long as well — they stopped most of their free services after they merged with AOL.

I decided to put up my own web server only after I got broadband access — with download speeds of about 7 Mbps. I learned from the past that hosting your own site via dial-up is like torturing your viewers. Plus, it didn’t make a lot of sense if you only have a single phone line in the house – all your relatives will give you the ‘look’ for hogging the phone line just to make your web server/web site available.

Also, imagine using a dial-up to dial-up link while streaming a large video file. Dial-up was king during the glory days of electronic bulletin board service (EBBS). Those were the pre-browser Internet days. In short, forget web serving and hosting if all you’ve got is dial-up.

The makeover I had in mind will make the overall site smaller in size but will retain most of the features of the original site. Faster page loading – for those accessing the site via dial-up – will be my priority and I had decided that bulky graphic files will have to go.

So, the components are set: the server, the gateway and the site…Looks like its 1984 again for me….Just trying to keep in step with the times.

 

notes:

After drinking countless pots of coffee, I launched the 4th revision of this site on May 10, 2004.

Click here if you like to view the old home page of this site (some links there are gone while some will lead you to the new pages within this revamped site).

Manila’s favorite novelist, Nick Joaquin died

Manila mourns the death of one of its favorite sons, Nick Joaquin, who died April 29, 2004 in his San Juan, Metro-Manila

Gravesite of Filipino writer and National Arti...
Gravesite of Filipino writer and National Artist Nick Joaquin at the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

home. It was via the Philippine Daily Inquirer’s web site, that I learned of the news.

I had read quite a few of his novels – way back in my high school and college days, and one of my sister – Lolet – actually knew him personally. She, being a staff at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) for quite some time before migrating to the US in 1997.

A known beer lover, Nick Joaquin will be surely be missed by Manila’s intelligentsia and sensible beer house habitués– specially in the Malate and Ermita areas.

—links:

www.inq7.net
Kupitero’s 1999 review of Nick Joaquin’s, Manila, My Manila

Installed Apple’s revamped iTunes (v2.5)

Gotta love iTunes new version 2.5. Apple is pushing the envelope for more and more sassy features in their industry-leading

iTunes Dec 13
iTunes Dec 13 (Photo credit: Hanna Iris Tolonen)

music software. I basically got it for the “free downloads” (just one song – and spoon-fed by Apple and, only for one week…but, well…free is free and no matter what genre of songs they give for free, I can still gladly pack them into my barely filled iPod), to commemorate last year’s launch of the iTunes Music Store.

Notable new features were: Shuffle Play and Lossless Encoding. But, what I liked best was the new “Publish-Your-Own-Playlist” feature.

iTunes enabled me to hook up once again to most of the songs I basically grew up listening to. Since most of my music collection were in LPs and cassettes (a sure giveaway of the era I grew up in), and most of them I had either long lost or given away, iTunes enabled me to ‘rediscover’ those songs and now, have a fairly decent ‘reconstruction’ of those music that I had come to love listening to!

—link:

www.apple.com