blogging

Blog revamp!

Since I expect to blog a bit more often in the future, I put some time to make changes to the blog, hopefully in the right direction =)

  • New design originally made by me! The base design was from Basic Presentation theme.
  • Removed some cruft such as Twitter stream, not-so-primary primary links, and some backend stuff.
  • Updated Drupal and all the modules to latest version. I did not upgrade to Drupal 7 yet as some modules I used are still not available in Drupal 7.
  • Adsense ads under posts are now only displayed for posts older than 6 months, because I realise that it does not give much money anyway and makes my blog look very cheap. However I still want to deduct the balance from Google  so I will still keep and let it slowly die... (The minimum withdrawal amount is USD 100! So I'll keep it until I have that amount.)
  • Relicensed content to CC-BY from CC-BY-NC-SA, just for fun :)

I still want to polish the about page but I guess this is it for now. Hope you have a good time here!

Blog Updated

Aaaah... it has been a while. Yet I have not written much.

But hey, I still (want to) take blogging quite seriously even after going to university - see, I even updated the blog back-end! (Technically speaking, I upgraded from Drupal 5 to Drupal 6 which is not as easy as upgrading Wordpress, for example. Nevertheless there were quite a few fundamentals that I changed -- most notably the input formats and image handling, as technical as they sound.)

The original appearance of the blog did not make it past the upgrade however, so I put up this quite nice theme made by somebody else. Personal touch is waiting for a free slot in my timetable. The former theme was my own creation so nobody would want to upgrade the theme for me. What a lazy dumbass I am... (by the way, I know about The Secret and suggestion but the world is not a perfect place.) Read more »

What a Bad Month for Blogging!

In the last month things were going against this blog. The readership of Leap On! dropped significantly from about 2000 visits a month to only 1100 or so visits a month, which was a huge 40 – 50% drop!

Looking into the statistics, I found out that the real culprit was Google: the search engine cut the traffic to about a third of its usual level. Add to the fact that Google search comprised a huge portion of traffic to my blog (about 50%). Seeing the graph gave me the impression of drilling down a hill… oooh T.T

The graph for traffic from Google over the last month (which was April 2008) Read more »

The Purpose of Blogging for Me

Now that the blog becomes permanent, I would like to have a say about the purpose of this blog; or, rather, the motivation for me to blog. Perhaps my write-up here could motivate you to start blogging (for non-bloggers), or blog better and happier :)

Practice English and Writing

This is important for everybody, even for native speakers of English. By blogging in English, I am forced to write in English all the time. However, it doesn’t feel very dreadful because I am free to write about anything. Nobody collects and marks my work (except you blog readers!).

Contrastingly, being active in forums or social networking sites do not help much for your English. Either those sites permit you to communicate with your mother language, or they require very little typing. Replying a topic, writing on a person’s Wall or adding up a testimonial does very little impact to your English writing compared to writing a blog post this long, for example. Read more »

Akismet Failed to Fight Spam... a Little

I noticed that lately Akismet is getting more and more unreliable. Its job is to analyze comments and determine whether or not it is a spam; but some days ago I noticed new comments (more than one!) that was clearly spam. There were a lot of links to crazy websites, and some even only gives a stream of endless text!

I suppose those were meant to fool programs that check whether a website is legitimate or not (by exhausting their time and bandwith), but I can’t see how Akismet marked it as non-spam; it was too obvious. Akismet’s fault or not, I had submitted the spam to Akismet to teach it a lesson ;)

Drupal Gets Pingback!

UPDATE: project now hosted in drupal.org. Thanks Andreas and Dennys!

Good news for bloggers using Drupal: pingback module is here, at last. It is a pingback user agent as specified in Pingback 1.0. I have tested the module in my offline server, but I need real-world tests, so I installed the module in my own site.

Download the pingback module (the files have DOS newlines).

Pingbacks generated by this modules closely resemble the ones that WordPress generate. In fact, I “stole” the code for receiving pingbacks from WordPress. Since WordPress and the module is in GPL it is not really a problem. Read more »

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