Category Archives: Web

Personal Branding

A month or two ago, I came to the conclusion that I was sinning against one of the basic rules of modern communication by having a multitude of blogs, without a very clear distinction between them. I posted family-related news on this blog, along with news about my upcoming site.

Of course, that’s wrong.

If your goal is to build a brand, you need distinct and clear communication. You can be certain different people will want different types of information when coming to your site. People going to karekiet39 will do so because of family- or home related stuff. People going to the 3mension blog will want to know the latest facts about 3mension, but couldn’t care less if we redecorated the garden last weekend.

Continue reading Personal Branding

A Working Trac installation on Dreamhost

trac-dhIn this post, I’ll try to describe the steps I had to make to get a working Trac installation on Dreamhost. A few months back, Dreamhost started providing a one-click advanced installation package for trac 0.11.1 . With this package, you can get a working trac installation in a few simple steps. You can even use the Dreamhost panel to upgrade to the latest version, if a new release is made.

Trac is a very powerful package, but installing it (and getting it to work) on Dreamhost hasn’t been easy. Several shell scripts exist that provide a Trac installation, but they all need some manual tinkering.

In theory, the one-click installers at Dreamhost are just that : one click, and you have a ready-to-go setup. In the case of Trac, the installation you obtain by simply using the one-click install is not quite usable nor complete. Continue reading A Working Trac installation on Dreamhost

WordPress plugins get stamp of approval

It simply had to happen, with more than 6000 plugins on the official Extend site: the WordPress main developers are considering a way to lead the users of the popular blogging platform to the best-in-class plugins.

The plugins would be developed by the community, but there will be a specific category indicating that they are considered best-in-class, and that the compatibility with a new release is guaranteed.

The risk with this type of presentation is that the users will limit themselves to those best-in-class plugins, and that many developers Continue reading WordPress plugins get stamp of approval

trac : Missing or Invalid form token

trac-dhProblem description

When installing a trac one-click setup package on Dreamhost, you might encounter the error “Missing or invalid form token. Do you have cookies enabled?”. This isn’t an error that is limited to Dreamhost installations, as I have seen it crop up a bit everywhere.

This is an error in the installation of your .htaccess file. The url rewrite rules are not available for the javascript files. That is (fortunately) quite easy to solve. Continue reading trac : Missing or Invalid form token

Facebook Chat with Pidgin

Facebook LogoPidgin logoFacebook offers, just like Myspace in that regard, the ability to chat on their site. That’s a cool and easy way to keep in touch with your contacts as there is no software to install. However, once you start to chat quite regularly with your Facebook contacts, it becomes easy to forget to logon to facebook the moment you start up your pc.

Let’s introduce Pidgin, the multi-platform and multi-network instant messaging client. I call it multi-platform, as it works on Windows as well as UNIX-based systems such as Linux. Mac OS X support is provided by a separate tool based on the same foundations, called Adium. It supports many networks by using plugins : ICQ, AIM, Google Talk (Jabber XMPP), MSN, Novell Groupwise Chat, Skype and Gadu Gadu (a protocol very popular in Poland),  just to name a few of the most used. Pidgin was originally called ‘GAIM’, for Gnu AIM client. Some name disputes with AOL made the developers rename the project to Pidgin.

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Pidgin can be configured to startup when your operating system boots, so you are available for your Facebook contacts the moment your pc has finished its startup cycle. Pidgin has support for a multitude of different networks, and if you install an extra plugin, it’s also possible to get support for Facebook messaging. Under windows, just install the plugin, and you can add your Facebook network contacts like you would add Yahoo! Messenger or MSN or Google contacts.

Next time you start up your computer, your facebook contacts will automatically be able to chat with you even when you haven’t thought about checking on the website what they have been upto. Enjoy!

Gravatar in Thunderbird Mail

Some time ago, I generated a Gravatar for myself, a Globally Recognised Avatar. It’s simple, it has become free some time ago, and it’s easy. The idea behind Gravatar and its sidekicks is that you want to have something recognisable on the web, no matter in what forum or on what blog you are posting. On the internet, that’s done using an avatar: An image or a photo you choose to depict yourself. Without a similar service, using an avatar on multiple sites means registration on every site you want to post (which isn’t bad, mind you) , and uploading your chosen image to all of them.That’s not so hard, unless you start changing avatar image every few weeks or months (as many people do). Then you almost need an accountant to keep track of what you have been uploading where, and the fun is soon lost.

Enter . A nice idea, that simply links an image to an e-mail address.

Continue reading Gravatar in Thunderbird Mail

Xoops 2.3 final released

The Xoops foundation announced on October 22nd that the stable release version of Xoops 2.3 had been made available for download.

Even though this blog is running on WordPress, the Linux philosophy dictates that you need the right tool for the job. Blogging is done using WordPress, and site building is done, in my case, using the excellent Xoops. After some period of internal turmoil at the end of 2007, development seems to have picked up again, with some founding members returning to the community.

It shows. Instead of just updating the looks on some modules, the changelog is listing a lot of impressive and useful additions to the core system, both visible to end-users and some invisible ones that are there to ease module development. I’ve been trying to get the hang of module development for some weeks now (to get this DIF and DTS art site going), and I can see the additions and improvements will make my life easier, and shorten my development cycle considerably.

My verdict: Xoops is back. Development is going forward at a brisk pace, and the community seems to have stabilised. Now all that is needed are some more finished and well-maintained modules, and this will be again a system to be reckoned with.

Firefox 3 is slowly being downloaded


Firefox 3 has just been released! I subscribed for Download Day, where Mozilla tries to establish a world record of downloads in the 24 hours after release. And as I pledged, I’m currently downloading the file from Mozillas download servers. No Dutch version at launch, contrary to the previous release though. This download is coming from Brazil, but as long as it’ll install, I don’t have a problem with that. Nice download speeds too, considering the mass of people currently downloading.

The download is in. Let’s have a look at FF 3.0 now…

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Xara acquired by MAGIX

Xara has been acquired by Magix AG, a leading German software distributor for video and music applications. Xara, once distributed by Corel, has been in the news for its open source version of Xara Xtreme which was struggling to gain momentum, and then eventually stopped due to lack of developer interest.
It seems the acquisition by MAGIX will provide them with more funds to further development and to make distribution of their software easier.
MAGIX is distributor of MAGIX Music Maker and MAGIX Video Deluxe 2008.

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