www.permuted.org.uk
Everything is Permuted
About this site



image

Diary of a website:

Latest entry

This site is built in Notepad with the aid of a free book called Build a website in 24 Hours. I actually went live about 6 hours into the process, not having done this before. The site was 'launched' at about 21.30 on 9 July 2002.

I aim to keep things reasonably simple, mainly text-based, with longer texts generally being put in Word or pdf format. Over time the structure will grow, but I'll try and keep the navigation simple. Every page should have a link to all the others (apart from the links to full texts), or at least back to the main sections.

the webmaster
Since writing that, the site has got more complex. I did a basic redesign (after a mere 3 weeks) to get rid of some garish titles. I also registered a domain (www.paulcecil.com), but initially relied on web-forwarding. For the non-technical, this meant that you'd see www.paulcecil.com as the address for every page. That was a while ago and in March 2004 I invested in some proper hosting. Which is where you are now.

A site map was added on 6 August 2002. A guestbook (removed 2014) was added in November that year.

Apart from regular updates to links, I also spent part of February 2003 re-sizing some of the image files to help speed up download times for those (like me) still on modems.

Quick links began to appear in early May 2003 via some simple javascript. I also tidied up some of the code.

A Reading Matters section was added in late May 2003, together with a feedback page devoted to all things books. For the moment the feedback page is located on my old site.

The newer photos (2003 and later) are taken on a cheapish digi camera (Konica Digital Revio KD-100, 99.00) which offers just 1.3 mega pixels. The quality is fine for the web (even after downgrading the images for faster loading time). Just mention this because I'm tired of being asked should I get 2.0 or 3.0 mega pixels and, on asking 'what are you using it for?', being told it's only going to be used for the web. The St Andrew's conference photos were all taken on the KD-100.

August 2003: I increased the use of tables to get a better design to the site, and adjusted some of the shades of grey to make things more visible on monitors that lack brightness. The revised style is on the Temple Press Links page. I also changed some text notices from red as this tends to disappear on some screens.

January 2004: Some sort of celebration is due. The site crept over 10,000 page hits in total. Probably a bit more than that actually, as I wasn't counting them all for the first few months. Anyway, it feels like some sort of landmark. Not huge in comparison to many other sites, but it makes me feel that it's been worth the effort. So thanks to everyone who's visited; and especially thanks to those who check in regularly.

February 2004: Not many changes to the site, though I updated the news and links. I also spent time de-Microsofting my PC (still running XP) by changing my default browser to Opera (which has great skins, and some fabulous features that have changed my browsing habits overnight. The 'notes' feature unbeatable.) I also moved my e-mail over to Pegasus (a good free package by David Harris, one of the gurus of the internet). For newsgroups I use Agent. The main reason for doing all this is to get away from the 'security' nightmares of IE and OE for web, mail and news. All these applications are much more configurable than Internet Exploder [sic] and Outlook Express. Links to all sites are at the foot of the page.

March 2004: Following my switch to Opera I started work on updating some aspects of the site to provide an Opera-specific experience. Mainly this involves adding a TITLE tag to graphics which gives extra information if you hover over them (this is in addition to the ALT tag), and improving the descriptions that display in the Opera Links Hotlist. I re-sized some of the graphics as well.

March 18th 2004: I purchased a new domain name (www.permuted.org.uk) and invested in some proper hosting (via 1&1). This meant I had to update various parts of the site to match the new address. I made a few minor visual additions as well, including the 'blinking buttons' on this and the home page. They only work if you've got javascript enabled. Over the next few months I'll be working on a more detailed re-design. The old site will remain in place, but is unlikely to be updated. I'll add redirect buttons on the date-sensitive pages.

March 28th 2004: Over the past few days I've added a new guestbook (removed 2014), and tidied up some other bits and pieces, including the new front page. The blue back button on the guestbook page works with all the browsers I've tested, but you need to hit it three times on Mozilla. I presume that's because of the way it handles the launch of new windows. Anyway, if you know of a fix, please get in touch... meanwhile I'll experiment further. The other new addition is the little icon that may be showing in your browser address bar. It's called a favicon, and mine depicts the 'P' of 'Permuted' (and an inverted 'P'). Always wondered how they did that, and now I know!

Since I wrote that last bit, I've changed the image into this: EiP And I've added an animated version to every page which will take you back to the previous page if you click on it. It only seems to work for one page at a time though, which is no doubt due to how it reads your browser's history.

I've also changed the web forwarding on my old address, so most people will come straight to this site. If you do want to see what the old site looked like, feel free to pop over there.

April 3rd 2004: The latest change is a redesign of the page so that the text doesn't spread quite as wide across the screen, plus a reduction of the overwhelming use of black as a background. I use a flat-screen on my machine so the colour scheme is optimized for that. Flat screens are generally brighter than CRT screens, but I do test on older screens to try and ensure that everything is still legible (as well as 'permuted'). The other trick I've learnt is how to get rid of the underline on active links. So increasingly, you'll need to hover over the links to see the line appear. (Scrap that. I've removed the underline. The links start off a brightish blue, turn red when you hover over them, and are green if you've already been to that page.) June 2004: I've tweaked some pages again (including this one) to underline the links except when you hover on them. Depending on your screen contrast this makes it easier to see.

April 14th 2004: I've started work on updating the Temple Press pages. This is long overdue. I'm using the new template, but in addition have added relevant external links to some of the pages. I'm also tweaking some of the texts to make it more relevant. Hopefully this will make the site somewhat more useful to visitors.

April 16th 2004: More or less finished updating all the existing pages, including adding the EiP back-button to every page. If you're wondering what the "Fz" button is, well it's an open-source ftp program called Filezilla. I'm using it to upload all the pages to my web-space. It's much better than the ancient ftp client I was using, and I thought it deserved a plug.

May 5th 2004: Added a Site Stats page. This shows total accesses since I moved the site to this address. I'll try and keep it updated (it's a static page).

May 31st 2004: I haven't been spending too much time on the site lately but I have been exploring the excellent Firefox browser. Firefox is open-source (meaning it's also free), and a massive advance on the Mozilla browser. Like Opera, it is capable of lots of configuration (it uses extensions which you download), but is very straightforward to use 'out of the box'. As a great stand-alone browser it's well worth trying. I'm now pretty much sold on Opera, but Firefox comes close. For a detailed comparison see my blog (link below).

June 20th 2004: I've been doing some more tidying up, mainly to make some pages easier to read. Increasingly I'm showing the underline on links as this makes the site easier to navigate for those with visual disabilities. The News Page has had a minor face lift to make the individual entries easier to read. I've also added some extra info on Computing Corner, including extra links on the main page and some screen shots from my Opera set-up.

July 9th 2004: The latest updates have mainly been to the Computing Corner pages. I've updated some of the info on Firewalls, mainly due to fairly major problems with the latest version of Zone Alarm. As a result, one of my machines is running solely under the built-in XP firewall, but I also plan to test out Kerio on my main machine. The other changes are mainly cosmetic as I've now got a bigger screen on my PC and am running it at 1280 x 1084 resolution. A couple of pages where I'd used some dodgy table dimensions showed up badly on the larger screen. I've now tweaked them for a better presentation on any screen. Oh... mustn't forget: HAPPY BIRTHDAY. The site is two years old today!

July 14th 2004: Minor updates today. I've relocated my guestbook (now removed) as I hate the standard interface that comes with my hosting package, and without broadband to tweak it the whole process was taking too long. So what this means is that I'm using my old site to host it for the moment, but I've changed all the links to point back over here.

August 1st 2004: I've just ordered broadband so most of my attention has been in that general direction of late. I have, however, managed to add a new page listing some of the techie sites I go to on a reasonably regular basis. I've also taken the plunge and decided to learn how to use css (cascading style sheets). Basically these reduce the amount of work to create new pages by storing all the font and layout information in a generic file, and then allowing all the pages to read it. It also makes the pages smaller and therefore quicker to load, especially where fonts change colour frequently (as on this page). Still early days and I need to figure out a fair bit more before I start updating the site properly. For the moment though, this page mainly uses some simple css.

Just tested the page and the style sheet doesn't get picked up by Netscape/Mozilla/Firefox (it works fine on Opera and shudder IE6). Will need to check out why this is. For the meantime I've hardcoded a couple of extra bits so the page is legible in all the tested browsers.

August 2nd 2004: OK... I corrected the css script and it now almost works on Firefox/Mozilla/Netscape. I just can't get the background to stick so have coded that in standard html. Hmmm....

August 4th 2004: Just added a page in the Computing Corner listing the software used to build this site. It's a short list! More to the point I've just grabbed the latest Opera update (version 7.54) and it goes like a rocket.

September 2nd 2004: I've been busy on the home-front for the past few weeks. We've just installed broadband and a wireless router to ease things along. More on that (no doubt) on future Computing Corner pages. In addition, I've just been lucky enough to get a Palm Tungsten C, with built-in wi-fi. It's primarily a business tool (if you believe that...), but it got me thinking about how difficult it is to browse the web on such a small screen. So I've started creating a PDA/Palm version of this site. Early days yet, not only in optimizing layout to deal with the variety of palm-browsers, but also in re-working the content. I've got about four pages up as of today's date, but more will follow. If you are interested (or have a palm/PDA) check out the mobile version for yourself. Feedback - as ever - very welcome.

November 7th 2004: I've been spending rather more time than usual over on various forums (plus some others not listed on that link), so haven't been doing a whole lot of work on this site. There have been some minor updates to the news pages, and I've started checking through the external links for any dead ones. There are a few lurking on the site, but the process philosophy links are now all working fine. Next I'll look at the Temple Press links.

Meanwhile it's been a great week for Chelsea who have gone two points clear at the top, and are qualified for the next stage of the Champions League. I've got a really good feeling about this season. Oh and I nearly forgot... this site passed the 10,000 visitor mark this week!

December 12th 2004 If you've been keeping an eye on my blog you'll have seen that I've spent the last little while exploring the benefits of Opera's in-built mail package, M2. Currently I'm using it for newsgroups and newsfeeds (rss). But there's just too much involved in moving my mail over to a new package right now. I've something like 9 accounts over 3 servers, all currently filtering just the way I want them; and anyway, I'm now also running four of the accounts on my Palm Tungsten C (with Versamail for POP and Snapper and IMAP) so there's a limit to just how much time I'm prepared to spend on this. And Opera is shortly about to release an upgrade (7.6) which should have some improvements on the mail front but also means that if I move now I may have to move again in a couple of months or so.

As to the website, I've updated news a few times, and added an 'update' note to the Blog link on the front page. I've also added my very first embedded sound file. I did this mainly to check out a problem on Firefox which wouldn't play wav files. Apparently it needs a quicktime plug-in. So having downloaded and installed that I wanted an easy way of checking whether it was working. Hence the addition of a somewhat pertinent sound-bite on the William Burroughs Birthday Book pages. I've tested it in all the main browsers and it seems to work.

December 23rd 2004 I've done some minor updates to pages (especially the PDA site, which was lagging behind on the news front). Plan to do some more over the festive break. The main changes though are that I'm now adding some automatic re-direction code to my old site. It still gets a fair few hits, so it sort of makes sense to get the pages to all end up over here. For the sake of history (or whatever) I've made an 'archive' copy of the old site which can be accessed from the link in the March 28th 2004 entry (above). The upload log reported a few errors (I think the bt site balked at several MBs going up at once) and I haven't checked every page yet. But mainly it should work.

I've backtracked from my entry of the 12th a bit. I'm now using Opera mail more consistently. Well actually I'm using nothing else for newsgroups, and have most of my mail accounts set up in it. Still mirroring mail into Pegasus, but Opera has some great features, such as being able to filter mail by 'contact' name. That means you can pull all ingoing and outgoing mail to the same person in one single list. Beats switching between folders endlessly searching for replies. And I just noticed that I previously said I was waiting for version 7.6. Well, the kind folks at Opera came out with an early Xmas gift in the form of the version 8.0 beta. I'm happy... hope you're happy too!

Merry Wotsits to everyone!

January 8th 2005 Several new pages have appeared in the past couple of weeks, all linked to my techie obsessions. First of these was a page on Opera skins. I'm pretty new at doing this (understatement) but have managed a reasonably successful skin featuring Chelsea. You can't see the full effect on the page, but basically I've replaced all the standard buttons with images of the team.

The other pages are about the Palm Tungsten C PDA, why I like it so much, and a little bit on how I've customized mine.

January 18th 2005 Just finished updating my Status Page and thought I'd record that since I relaunched this site on my current host in March 2004 I've clocked over 50,000 accesses.

February 8th 2005 Major technological breakthrough tonight! I've added an RSS feed to the news page. This provides a live update service which let's you know whenever the page is updated. All you need is a sensible web browser (such as Opera) to access it, or a bespoke RSS reader. It was a breeze to set up using a piece of software called ListGarden, and took me only a few minutes longer to remember how to code the anchor link so that the feed message takes you to the correct part of the page.

February 19th 2005 Minor changes only to report. I've decided to add some further spam-blocking techniques to my armoury so in future any email links I add to the site will be 'obfuscated' by using character entities rather than normal text. HTML renders them fine, so they look normal and will trigger correct email links. The purpose is to make them less visible to spam-harvesting bots. The email link here is a test to see what happens (please don't use it! You'll be treated as spam). So far I've only used this technique when adding new items to my news page. Details on how I do it are at this e-mail encoder page.

One other thing I've added - make that two - is that I've put a link at the top of this page to bring you straight to the latest entry (saves all that pointless scrolling through acres of old stuff), and added an RSS link.

March 23rd 2005 Several additions to the site over the past month, including adding some academic papers that I've just discovered have been given a web presence. You can check them out on the Process Essays page. I've also updated the News Page several times (including the announcement of John Geiger's forthcoming biography of Brion Gysin: Everything is True - Nothing is Permitted), the Reading Matters page, plus minor updates on the Computing Corner page. One or two additional links have also been added on various other pages.

In addition to all that I've been testing the latest beta of Opera 8 (beta3), speeding up my PC (some details on my Opera-hosted journal/blog). I'll get round to doing a more detailed guide on this site fairly soon. I've managed to knock over a minute off boot-up time, plus speeded up programme loading. Final changes are the addition to my set-up of the latest F-Secure Internet Suite (will write that up soon as well). The only downside is that my guestbook has been spammed several times. Spam entries are edited down or deleted.

Oh, one final word: my email encoding (see previous entry) seems to be working fine.

March 29th 2005 I've been concentrating on security for the past few days, and as a quick guide for my own use have added a Browser Security page which shows the current status of the three main browsers (Opera, Firefox and Internet Explorer). The images are linked live (with permission) to the Secunia security advisory site. Opera is the only browser with all security problems fixed.

On a related point, I've been having problems with my own home network, mainly with my Linksys WAG54G losing web connectivity. The problem occurs when the router gets flooded with packets, which it interprets as an attack and it drops the connection. I've now upgraded to the latest firmware (1.02.7) which indicates that these are caused by normal web requests. The upgrade didn't entirely fix the problem, so I'm testing it out with the in-built firewall switched off but with "Block Anonymous Internet Requests" and Port 113 filtering enabled. The router keeps me fully stealthed in this set-up, but for backup I've got personal firewalls enabled (currently F-Secure on one machine and the XP2 on the other). Will be upgrading the XP2 to F-Secure shortly. Stealth testing carried out as usual at Steve Gibson's Shields Up site using the "All Service Ports" test.

Finally, I've updated and added links on the Software used on this site page.

April 3rd 2005 I've been busy... There's a new page on the site covering "skinning your Palm" using ZLauncher. The idea to do the page was the result of an email from Arnie R asking for more info. Having sketched out in text how I got my Palm to look the way it does, I thought I might as well create a web page. The most time consuming part of the process was getting all the screenshots. I use something called HRCapture which grabs great pix which you can then convert to bitmaps (and then to Jpegs). For some reason the conversion process failed when I emailed the images to my desktop from the Palm via Versamail, so I ended up sending them with Snappermail. I could have just copied the card over of course, but that would be too easy!

I'll no doubt tweak the page over the next few days (I've already re-sized the images to reduce download time). Other plans include putting up a page on tweaking XP to run better/faster. I know there are lots of more qualified people with great pages already, but a simple 'user perspective' can be useful.

April 12th 2005 Just a minor update really. I've added a link (plus a photo) over on the Miscellaneous page. This time it's to an exclusive and somewhat de-focused set of Lou Reed photos I took back in 1979.

Also been having a minor bit of fun with my Tungsten C. I installed the SlovoEd dictionary package which was on special offer. Generally this has a good reputation, but it was causing crashes on my set-up, finally resulting in the need for a hard reset (which deletes all your data). It proved a good time to check out the claims for BackUpBuddy VFS which I have on my data card. Sure enough, a couple of clicks and the Palm was completely restored. Can't tell you how good that felt.

May 17th 2005 I've been fairly busy the past few days. I decided to undertake a fairly hefty re-configuration of my browser, mainly to lay to rest the mistaken view that Opera wastes screen space. It doesn't of course, and the proof is over on my Opera Set-Up page. I quite enjoyed writing that page by the way, especially the neat animation showing how the toolbars can be toggled on and off. I'll have to use that trick for some other 'how to' guides. Given that the particular page was becoming rather large (lots of graphics for a start), I've split it into two with previous set-ups being moved to a sub-page.

Alongside this deskbound activity, I have actually made some time to get out into the garden to watch the family of foxes that's moved in. A photographic diary of the foxes is now uploaded. Great fun to watch them, and I'm now feeling pressured into getting a better digital camera!

As usual there have been updates to the news page, and yes, if you enter the site via the index page, you'll have seen that the site now celebrates Chelsea's record-breaking season.

June 4th 2005 Well I went out and bought a better camera. It's an Olympus C-370, with 3x optical and 4x digital zoom (giving 12x zoom altogether). I also got a data card and rechargeable batteries. Happy? Well I'm getting about 50 shots of the fox each evening. The result of all this is that I've stopped the fox diary I was doing and have loaded up a gallery page. I'm keeping it to 48 thumbnails a page (which should be ok on dial-up). The images themselves range between about 30kb and 120kb. again, I've tried to keep file sizes reasonable, but I wanted some to be close to full screen. The thumbnails are produced in an old programme I had sitting on my PC called Arles Image Web Page Creator.

cub
The first page of the Fox Gallery has pictures of the vixen. She's becoming very confident and pitches up daily for an evening meal. The second gallery page will have pictures of one of the cubs which I managed to get in the early hours of this morning.

The photos are generally cropped from the originals, and occasionally the lighting is adjusted. I'm using PhotoImpact 8 for most of this work. It's got some good features, especially for enhancing lighting.

June 14th 2005 Most of the past week has been spent on getting more photos of the foxes. As of tonight there are three gallery pages, and I've barely touched the surface. The big excitement is that the cubs are getting ever bolder, and tonight we actually had three foxes in the garden at the same time (though one was keeping out of camera shot). I managed a few shots of mother and cub and will get these up in the next few days (I'm still working on photos from the weekend).

Plans include getting the news pages up to date (whoops! I've let things slip a bit), plus creating some wallpapers for downloading. Current designs feature... foxes (quelle surprise) and the Opera logo. I would create some with the Firefox logo (seems obvious), but that logo of theirs is damn pesky o fit smoothly into an interesting image. The Opera "0" is much more flexible. Anyway, be a few days before I get anything up so we'll have to see what emerges.

June 27th 2005 There have been a few updates since the last entry here. There are now (just about) four gallery pages of foxes. I'm getting so many photos that it really is hard to keep up. To balance that out a bit I've started a Fox 'Picture of the Day'. It gets updated most days, but there will be occasional lapses. I've also added a Wallpapers page. The enhancements are all done in PhotoImpact.

The latest major update is a series of photos from Patti Smith's "Meltdown" festival. This was a 'quickie' job using Arles Imagemaker (it creates thumbnails and pages in a flash). The photos come mainly from the 'Horses' night, but there are a few of Jeff Beck as well from Sunday's gig (including a snatched shot of him leaving after the show).

July 3rd 2005 Some minor updates to report. There are some additional photographs in the fox gallery, and I've restructured the page so that the need for javascript is limited. The fourth gallery page now opens the full images into a new page via a standard thumbnail link. I've included a 'close' button on each photo page to ease navigation. There are a couple of reasons for this change. Firstly, browsing with javascript disabled is becoming more common so the use of javascript to launch the pages could have caused problems. The other reason is that my page stats don't pick up bare jpegs, so I've embedded the full images in their own web pages. I could have still used javascript to launch them, but this is actually proving speedier to do. So that's an additional gain. I'll go back over the previous gallery pages in due course to get everything consistent.

July 4th 2005 A new page to report. I've added a third section to Fox Watch! with some pictures and some video clips. The video is in .wmv format, which is the only file format I can compress video in at the moment without hideous watermarks appearing across the images. The files load in Windows Media Player, and the links seem ok on the main test browsers.

July 17th 2005 I've just updated the Site Statistics page and thought I should mention the significant spike in access recorded a couple of weeks ago. They're the result of the addition of the Patti Smith Meltdown photos. At it's peak the logs recorded 1,996 accesses in a day. Beyond that, the fox gallery continues to grow, and a photo-story of sorts has been added as well.

Finally, an apology for the lack of activity elsewhere on the site. That should be rectified soon.

July 28th 2005 Just some minor maintenance to report. I've tidied up the links on the Temple Press links page. This was mainly removing dead links. I suspect that page will shrink to nothing over time, which is a fine example of the impermanence of the web. I've also updated a couple of changed URLs on the Process Philosophy Resources page. There's a new video on Fox Watch! 3, and my favourite page of the moment is Fox Watch! 5 which has photos and video of our fox climbing high into the shrubs at the edge of the garden. Oh dear, I just realized I'm calling it 'our' fox now. This obsession is getting the better of me.

August 22nd 2005 I've been busy over the past few weeks. Lots of new content added. First there were the photos from Patti Smith's show in Brighton. Then - glory of glories - Opera Mini appeared from nowhere, and was ported to a Palm version. So I now have Opera on my Palm as well as on my desktop. There are more fox photos in the Fox Gallery, plus new video on Fox Watch! 3. And to cap it all I managed to get several photos of the fox clambering around i the treetops. If you don't believe me take a look at this page.

On top of all that I've tidied up the news page a bit and slightly adjusted the portal to the site so that fox fans can skip the rest of it. The direct link to the foxes is: www.permuted.org.uk/fox.

Just updated the site stats. It records a huge surge following the upload of my Patti Smith photos.

September 7th 2005 A few minor updates here and there, but the real change is over on my Blog which has undergone a major overhaul. It means I can add new content more easily and so it can start to act as a real adjunct to this site. I'll have to see how it goes, but it certainly looks much better than it used to and once teething problems with the servers are sorted out it should be pretty good. If you are running a feed off the blog, you'll need to reset it.

October 1st 2005 I've been somewhat neglectful of the site over the past few weeks. That's partly because of the time I've spent on the new Blog set-up. I have managed to update the news page a couple of times, and make minor updates to the computing pages to cover software updates, including a quick reference to the latest version of Opera, which is now completely free. I've also added a new fox gallery page, plus a new video clip.

The latest site stats show that I've now had over 200,000 accesses since I moved servers last year. That's not 'people' by the way. Web statistics are pretty misleading. The 200,000 reflects calls for files (other than images / scripts), but of course won't count any files that are called from caches or proxy servers that are in between the end-user and the site. It does tell me roughly how busy the site is, as do the stats (not published) on bandwidth usage. It's helpful for spotting trends in usage. Bandwidth usage has also moved significantly up. The visitor stats (shown on the home page are set up to work by 'session' which means that they only count '1' however many pages are visited in a session. At current rates it's approximating at about 3,000-4,000 visits a month.

November 5th 2005 In addition to tidying up the news pages and adding the latest site statistics I've completed fox gallery #9 and started work on gallery #10. The other main area of work has been updating the EiP Opera Mini page following the release of version 1.1 (available free). Just to remind you what Opera Mini does, it's a java based application that will allow full web-browsing on a huge array of mobile phones. Check out the official OperaMini pages. Instructions on how to install to a Palm device are on the EiP-Opera Mini page.

I'm also testing out the latest technology preview of Opera (version 9). Most of the changes are under the hood, but the user interfaces are getting an interesting overhaul and will make tweaking much more straightforward. The preview is not yet in full beta, but it feels robust enough for me to be using nothing else.

December 15th 2005 It's been a while since my last entry. This is partly due to more regular postings over on my blog. That said, I've updated the news pages a couple of times, tweaked some entries on the Computing pages, and added pictures to the fox gallery. Mainly though I've been working on restructuring the fox video pages. I've finally figured out how to embed the video with a plug-in, so that the clips play within the page. There's quite a number up there now.

Other news is that during November I past 50,000 visits for the site, and a related milestone of 250,000 page accesses. Details over on the Site Statistics page. I was also honoured with being a 'Member of the Week' over on the Opera Community pages! Fame at last. It also goes some way to explaining the 10,000 hits my blog took in the last month... now slowly returning to normal ;-)

February 19th 2006 A number of changes since I last checked in on this page. I've added more photo galleries, and made minor updates to the news and technology pages. I've also started removing some of the code that forces new windows/tabs to open, especially when jumping between this site and my blog. They're not all updated yet, but I'm getting there. Photos on the gallery pages will continue to open new windows/tabs.

I've also finally abandoned maintaining the guestbook on my old ISP space. It was getting spammed very regularly (multiple times a day) and it was becoming too much of a chore to keep cleaning it up. So for the moment I've created a completely new guestbook over on the Opera Community space. It's actually blog space, but should do the job adequately, and at least it won't have any ads on it. I can also theme it with the rest of the site, and clear out any spam without having to be near my own machine. As far as I can tell, all guestbook links here now point to the new space.

April 8th 2006 Apologies for the longish break. The most recent content changes on the site have been mainly in the news page, plus some additional photos over in Gallery 11. That is, apart from some video files I've been hosting which have been hammering my bandwidth somewhat. The videos aren't linked from here (they're work-related), but they resulted in record bandwidth usage during March when I clocked up almost 10 gigabytes of traffic. The full stats are on the Site Statistics page. As a result I had to upgrade my hosting package. In theory that means I can run some extra services, but I'm not sure I can face the learning curve.

My blog has also been taking up a good deal of my time. As well as numerous photos of the vixen we've been treating for mange, there are plenty of photos of local birdlife. I've now passed 50,000 hits on the blog, while the site here has around 75,000 visitors to date and well over 400,000 pages served.

The other main change in terms of computing is that I've been testing out the latest version of Opera (version 9 will be released in beta soon). I've been using the weekly builds, and there are some fab new features to look out for. As well as 'widgets' (small web-based applications), there's been great progress on ad-blocking and site preferences. You can keep up to date with developments on the Opera Desktop Team blog.

May 25th 2006 Various updates over the past month including the addition of more video and fox cub photos. But the big news is that as of today the site has achieved 500,000 page accesses. Thanks to everyone who has contributed. Here's to the million!

August 21st 2006 I can't believe I've not updated this page since May, and I can't pretend to remember what I've done over the past few months although there's been more video and fox cub photos. During the past few months the site has also exceeded 100,000 visitors (and over 600,000 page views). So thanks for that. Most of the action though is over on my blog (now also in excess of 100,000 visitors).

I've also upgraded my system this month. The old machine had become far too slow for working with photos and video, plus it suffered from a severe shortage of storage (256MB of RAM and a mere 20 gig hard drive). Details of the new system are below and I've now got the set-up more or less as I like it. I'm still running a lot of my old software, and still keeping the PC looking like an out-take from an old movie. None of the XP visual nonsense here... I like the classic mode with most of the colour scheme removed. The way I see it is that I don't want to see it. The interface should be functional and discreet, not flashy and obtrusive.

April 8th 2007 Another huge break in this page, but I needed to update my equipment details as I've spent the morning installing a new router. My other one was beginning to fail (i.e. it wouldn't connect hard-wired, only wirelessly!). As for the site, there are plenty more fox photos and videos, but other than that little change. Most of the regular activity is on my blog, although I plan to start adding some general wildlife photo galleries along the lines of these pigeons.

The other news to report is that this website has now exceeded 1 million page views!. That occured at the end of March. And regular readers of my blog may have noticed that I've upgraded my camera again. I'm now using a Canon EOS 400D, with the following lenses: an EF70-300mm 4.5-5.6 DO IS (for mid to large zoom), an EF 24-105 F4L IS USM (for landscape and near views... also useful in the garden), and a Sigma 105mm F2.8 DG EX macro (still getting to grips with that one).



I run Opera version 9 as my main browser. I use Pegasus (4.41) for e-mail, alongside Opera. Notepad++ is my text editor (on which most of this site is written). I upload with Filezilla. And when I'm in the mood, I use Agent (v3.3) for checking out newsgroups. I'm relying on Opera's built-in M2 package for email and newsfeeds. I just love the integration.

My PC is a Dell Dimension 9150, with 2056 MB RAM and 500 gig hard drive. Visual aid is a 19" tft. All operated under XP Home Edition. Internet access via a NetGear DBG111G router (replacing an old Linksys WAG54G router). Mobile computing via a Palm Tungsten C (wifi enabled). Security courtesy of F-Secure Internet Suite.


The site has been tested on Internet Explorer, Firefox and Opera. The site works best on Opera, by the way!

For more on my excursions into the technical visit my Blog hosted on the Opera site (button-link below). I explain more about how I'm developing this site, and occasionally talk about other concerns.


This page now supports RSS newsfeeds which allows you to receive live updates direct to your PC. To add the feed to your RSS reader simply click the button:


If you have any technical questions or spot any dead links please use the email link below.


email
Blog


Home|Temple Press|Process Philosophy|News|Fox Watch|Reading|Computing|Contact|Links|Miscellaneous|About|Site map


back all text copyright Paul Cecil, 2002-2005