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More updates

Sunday 23 May 2010, 13:24

I've upgraded to a new beta version of PivotX - not that that'll make much visible difference in itself, but I took the opportunity to make some other changes. New image plugin that handles thumbnails in a more rational way than before, so now instead of polluting your feed reader with huge images, there'll be small images you can click on to see the entireties of. Test of that below. I was getting a lot of trackback spam advertising prescription drugs, and occasionally having even my own comments rejected as spam for silly reasons, so I hacked in new spam-protection code of my own to replace PivotX's insufficient system. Now trackbacks get handled separately, and a lot more strictly; and I cleared out the keyword blacklist and will re-populate it based on only the spam I actually see. More work in the short term, better results long-term.

But best of all: now there are star ratings on entries, so you can vote for your favourites.

Let's rid of spam!

Tuesday 30 March 2010, 14:27

Well, the comment spammers sure showed up fast. I have enabled "spam-quiz" authentication, much like what worked well on the old site: you have to enter "bonobo" in the anti-spam field to post a comment, and there's an explanation saying so right next to it. This software also supports what it calls hash-cash, which involves a piece of obfuscated Javascript that does a calculation on the client side to prove that the user is running some approximation of a real Web browser instead of a robot. I'd prefer to avoid that, though, because both obfuscated Javascript and Javascript in general are instruments of the Devil.

This is it

Monday 29 March 2010, 12:28

I've gone ahead and made the switch to PivotX. The old site remains more or less up, at the "Old site" link in the left-hand bar, but things will steadily disappear from there and appear here. Reasons behind the switch are discussed at length in this posting.

I created a section for Japanese-language entries because the software made it easy to do that, but don't get your hopes up. After a year of lessons my Japanese is still pretty rudimentary. Some day, though, I'd like to write and post entries in that section.

PivotX annoyances

Sunday 28 March 2010, 22:24

I am typing this into a local installation of PivotX on my home machine. My plan is that if I can get it whipped into acceptable shape, I will upload this installation to the Web server and have it replace my existing Web site. At this point I think it's likely I will go through with that; however, there are some annoyances I'd like to mention.