Danger: Publishing

Let’s see if I can post from my handheld, or hiptop, or Sidekick II, or whatever Danger is calling them these days. On my WordPress 1.5 blog I can save a draft but it won’t go into Publish status until I use a regular browser or update the database entry.

I am standing outside right now, enjoying the sunny Kentucky day and looking forward to a 5-day trip to Vermont to see family and, I hope, friends. I am really looking forward to martinis with my grandfather.

WPMU Day 2

It’s true: when I don’t have anything to tweak, I have no choice but to publish.

I asked someone last week at a coffee shop, “do you publish?” What I intended by that was to find out if he blogged. The word “blog” is so ugly and faddish, I can’t bring myself to use it in public. In fact, I don’t ever want to use it as a verb for the rest of my life. I could be alone in this feeling but I doubt that I am.

I started bl publishing on Blogger about fourteen months ago. My condition in life was pretty poor and the people I knew were not receptive to discussion about it, so I found other channels. When the inspiration to write would ebb, I would delve into the Blogger templating system and try to do tricks with my blog. When I ran out of template tags to play with, I looked around for a more complex blogging tool.

Enter WordPress, stage “hell yeah!” Here was a tool that led me to learn PHP, MySQL, some Apache tricks and a fair amount of Linux. Today, I operate four publicly accessible WordPress sites (personal, testing, BOTD and this) and a few local copies for development on my laptop. Scripts I have written or hacked (especially this) are downloaded several times daily and if I ever saw how many times they ran each day on different servers, I would probably have to go outside and lie down in the grass.

Today I am working on several projects, some new and some old. The older scripts and plugins need maintenance, optimization and new features. The new ones get more ambitious each time. Right now I’m trying to wrap all of PHP into a secure, form-based package so that non-programmers can customize their sites without risk of corrupting data or exposing critical system functions to untrusted users.

I haven’t even mentioned the best part of this whole story: I get so much pleasure out of what I am doing, I can hardly tear myself away to sleep after a 16-hour day of it. The downside is that because I fend for myself at home, I must find time for things like folding laundry and cooking meals. One day I’ll find someone to watch over me.

Being a Multi-User user

I am not the first person to write on this topic but it bears attention. Moving from WordPress 1.5 Strayhorn to WPMU is like moving from a stunt plane to a locomotive. Where before I could tweak and break any part of my blog, now I am barred from editing any PHP: the theme, the plugins, all are out of my reach. Some folks might not like that but for me, it’s a blessing. My Strayhorn admin pages would dance around my screen like little devils taunting and tempting me to tweak one thing or another. Now it’s “out of sight, out of mind.” Now it’s all about blogging and it’s full steam ahead!