Archive for the “admin” Category

Also, I'll be taking a break from the blog, and indeed the Internet as a whole, for two weeks until the week of October 2nd.

This is not entirely by choice, but since I have to do this sort of thing every year, I might as well suck it up.

Apologies for the terse announcement. Lots of things happening in my life; apart from this Reservist call-up, it's mostly good, but it has kind of reduced my mental processes to a kind of soft mush.

And I'm still too overwhelmed by the K-On finale.

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Yes, I know.

Something went wrong again, and I think I've fixed the problem for now, but if the page is getting cut off halfway again, I'll have to start delving deeper into the issue.

At least I know it's not Post Teaser, since I haven't reactivated that plugin.

It's like this sort of thing happens whenever it would most inconvenience me. Very Murphy's Law.

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Yes, I'm aware that something broke in the blog since the last post. It's also way too late at night (or rather, too early in the morning) to deal with it right this instant.

Suffice to say that I will be spending a sleepless night (or morning) on the matter.

EDIT: Deactivating the Post Teaser plugin seems to have solved matters. I do not know why it broke in the first place.

I'll miss it, even though it gave no actual useful information. So it goes.

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From Nanatsuiro Drops.

I've been spending my time recently cleaning up my computer to hopefully forestall the inevitable complete FUBAR that happens quite consistently every year or so. I'm not due for another one until next year, but preventation is allegedly better than the cure and all that. Incidentally, this is one reason why I've not been updating as often, since it's hard to wax humourous about anime when even being at the computer sends me into guilt trips on what I Should Be Doing with regards to defragging or whatnot.

One of the annoying parts of this is that I had set my Non-Unicode Language option to Japanese. (If anyone's wondering and if it matters, I'm running WinXP Home. I update only when that little popup balloon tells me to.) This is necessary to play my various visual novels collected over many years, since for the most part they're not translated into English (fan patches or otherwise). This, apparently, plays utter havoc with the various Deep Applications needed for, say, my (nVidia) video card, my (Lexmark) printer, or my (Nero) DVD-burning. The details and long, involved, and arcane; I do not fully understand it myself. But suffice to say, I have been trying to convince various applications that I am not in Japan, and I am not in the US. Instead, I am in Singapore, and regional restrictions are my bane.

This entire post was prompted after the fourth system restart necessary when switching to Non-Unicode Japanese to Non-Unicode English (US) and back. This is what I have to deal with, people.

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Someone I don't know from Inakoi.

I hasten to assure one and all that I have not suddenly become some sort of tech guru, but merely that after eighteen straight hours of investigative file rearrangement, I caved and bought a new hard disk, reinstalling Windows XP, for the purpose of. Before anyone suggests it, I have indeed entertained the notion of switching operating systems, but always I return to the consideration that Windows XP is the only OS upon which City of Heroes may run without complaint or workaround. (Yes, I am aware of WINE and Boot Camp. Even so.)

Currently my old hard disk stands in digital and physical quarantine, as I cannot be bothered any more with trying to figure out which of the DLLs removed by that overzealous anti-Trojan utility are legitimately innocent, and which are truly pestilent. My files, which I have ascertained to be free from taint, I have transferred to another hard disk, roomier and separate from the Operating System disk. In theory, this should protect my data should Windows decide to Nice Boat on me again. Nevertheless, I have had far too many hard disks crash on me to be entirely sanguine about this state of affairs.

So it goes.

Download Day 2008 has been confirmed to be June 17th. Participate in the attempt to set a world record for most downloads in 24 hours, and there may be a foxgirl for you. No, not really.

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And I had, in hindsight, somewhat irresponsible and unreliable faith in the ability of anti-virus Trojan removal not to completely screw up Windows.

As of this moment, as I am posting on a library computer (which explains the lack of an illustrative header picture), I have what is essentially an expensive doorstop that was once a personal computer. As far as I believe, the data is still intact, but gated by an operating system clamouring for missing DLLs and refusing to boot up further.

I cannot even use a Linux liveboot CD to transfer my files, since apparently there is that odd but insurmountable difference between NTFS and FAT file systems.

In effect, I will not be able to update this blog, or my Livejournal (which this post shall be crossposted to, assuming that doesn't go wrong as well), until I get the computer fixed. The hardware is all fine, but that is small comfort if I cannot recover all my files, collected over the years.

Any advice on the matter will likely go unread, as I cannot check my email or comments either, at least not in time. All my efforts shall be bent towards reviving my computer, and I shall not rest until it is once again functional.

This is one reason why, despite my habit of naming my computers (and peripherals), I do not christen them with names of characters I really like. This is a policy borne from experience, considering that I seem to have a schedule of something catastrophic happening to my computer(s) more or less annually.

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From To Heart 2: Another Days.

You may have noticed something different about the blog.

The story behind the change is that somehow, for some reason, this blog was hacked, and while I can find nothing altered as such, it was deemed best that I upgrade both my WordPress installation and my password security. After making absolutely sure that there was no upper limit on the character limit for the password, I have some confidence now that this new password will be hell to crack. Along those lines, it will also be hell to enter without typoing.

Moe Check is now running on WordPress 2.5, and since I tend to be caught up in the dizzy flurry of upgrading, I also picked up a new theme, this one called Mandigo. I have yet to truly customize it, since that would require me to limber up my miniscule talent in image editing and actual design sense, but I assure you that this will be one of my priorities in the coming days. Tomoyo shall return to the header image, never you fear.

This blog is best viewed in a resolution 1024 pixels wide. I was trying to find the best colour scheme under Mandigo's included options that best exemplified "pink", but the pinkest of the lot was listed as "purple", with the actual "pink" looking somewhat rouge. Mayhaps I perceive it differently from most other people.

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Konata and Kagami on DSes.

For the most part, I'm not keen on having a fellow co-blogger, since I have such a formidable raft of criteria before I can even consider anyone else writing in this blog.

Oddly enough, there aren't even that many rules to follow. Be polite, be civil, don't snark at other people, have good spelling and grammar, focus on what you love rather than what you hate, and always remember that this is supposed to be fun. I'm sure that there will be some loophole in these six rules (which I've been trying to follow myself ever since I started blogging, sadly not without lapses) that would infuriate me into tacking on all sorts of caveats and addenda, but if one takes the general view, there's really only two things I'd demand from a co-blogger: Be coherent. Be nice.

When I outline this to other bloggers, they tell me that I ask the impossible. The thought that they might be right is depressing.

Having said that, I am sorely tempted to seriously consider asking for another blogger to share the burden, except that the burden I refer to is that of the technical side of blogging. In other words, someone to take care of all the stuff related to making sure the blog is actually there, before any content can be put in it. Someone who has an aesthetic sense which extends past my current "um, it looks good? I dunno, maybe it doesn't". Someone who doesn't need to actually write anything in the blog, but to whom I will be grateful to if they only keep the blog running.

When I started this blog, I thought that my greatest fear would be Blogger's Block, but now I know that few things hold as much terror as the little message when I check my blog informing me that I will have to update my WordPress installation again.

And after I do that, I have to look for a theme which looks good but not too crowded, easy on the eyes, simple to navigate, distinctive enough from other well-known anime blogs to be relatively unique, supports the current WordPress version, brings out a sense of peacefulness, so on and so forth. Then I have to actually update the installation and edit the sidebar and check that the plugins still work and see if any of them need updating and update those that do and disable those that died and come up with header images and suck horribly at image editing and throw it all together and GOOD GODS PEOPLE DO YOU SEE HOW MUCH TIME I'VE SPENT ON THIS I JUST WANT TO WRITE ABOUT ANIME DAMMIT and then I hide in a corner of my room curled up into a little ball weeping quietly for the death of my hopes and dreams.

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From Koharu Biyori.

In what may well be the beginning of the inevitable downward spiral into creeping featurism upon this blog, I've installed Gravatar support into the comments. For those as yet unaware of gravatars, and I admit to some ignorance myself as to whether it is a Proper Title which should be capitalized or merely a common noun undeserving of such, they are, according to the site, globally recognized avatars which presumably can be viewed on any blog which supports them.

I have to confess to some bias in this matter: I started out blogging, in the Public Diary kind of way rather than any actual intention of providing useful information to the masses, on Livejournal, and the second best thing about Livejournal in my rather subjective opinion is the availability of user avatars, which I have grown used to in a manner which is completely removed from any actual tangible benefit of the feature. Commenters transform from arbitrary names in my mind to equally arbitrary and yet reassuring images, tiny rectangles of indistinct colours and shapes recognizable at a glance.

The downsides of this arrangement are immediately apparent, of course: first on my mind is site load, which I have no way of checking in a systematic manner, and even if I did get some hard numbers out of it, playing MMORPGs has proven to me that numbers are insigificant compared to the User Experience of "it just feels weird somehow…" I am not expecting major issues to erupt due to gravatars, but I will probably be watching comments about it very closely, and I might pull the plug on gravatars if it comes to that.

And of course, to get a gravatar, one has to sign up for it. The inertia of apathy is difficult to overcome, and I've had several opportunities pass me by because I am just tired of having to register for yet another site or service of limited scope and use. Nobody is, by any stretch of the imagination, obliged to get a gravatar; this is mostly for those who have already obtained one prior. I signed up for one only very recently, mainly because It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time.

For now, the actual gravatar support has been implemented somewhat haphazardly, due to a severe lack of any sort of design sense on my part. I've provided a very standard default avatar for the gravatar-less, all while taking no responsibility for any headaches incurred from unravelling 436 petabytes of the non-reversed SOS Brigade logo squeezed into an 80×80 square.

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Surprisingly, this is not an actual official lifting of the two-posts-a-week restriction, as much as a warning that my posts from here until several weeks later might be a tad more surreal than strictly normal, due to influences from assorted painkillers and local anesthetic.

What may be of greater concern, or at least relevance, would be that I'm planning on upgrading the WordPress installation of this blog. Site strangeness may or may not result; I've done all I could to back up everything, but These Things Happen.

Also, I wanted an excuse to use this picture, because like Miyuki, I'm really scared of the dentist.

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