So I set up an NNTP server (ie one that serves usenet-style newsgroups) on my host, mostly as an experiment but that doesn’t mean I’ll object if anybody else feels like posting to any of the groups on it (you could even get your own newsgroup on the server if you ask nicely enough!).

For those with a newsreader, here is a news link to the feed.

For those without (which will be most of you), I have setup a web frontend with a funny random headline (currently with about 8000 headline combinations available) at:

Thanking you, that is all for now!  I know, it’s too short; I’ll post again soon don’t worry!


PHP and SQLite

So I whipped up a quick chat script today, nothing fancy but a little more stable than facebook chat so that’s something.  It was a bit of a wrestle getting SQLite to work, but only because Ubuntu decided to ship PHP with SQLite 2 but the gui admin tool is SQLite 3 only (not backwards compatible with SQLite 2).  Ok, so there’s an SQLite 3 library – but I’m not going to recompile PHP for a gui tool which I’m rarely ever going to use.  No, I instead opted to learn SQLite2 (which differs remarkably from MySQL, I can tell you!) and use the command line tool “sqlite”.  Problem solved.  The chat script is slightly prettier (in my humble opinion) than my old chat script, not much more functional (yet) but a lot more expandable and scalable.

Anyway, techie garbage that most readers of this blog care even less than me about (and I don’t care that much for it) out of the way, let’s move on shall we?

So I applied for a job at the DWP about 3 weeks ago, and it was left that they’d get me CRB checked (which takes 3-4 weeks) and I’d be good to start work 3-4 weeks after then.  I’ll post back when I hear anything about that job.

What else have I done… oh yeah, I got a new mail client called Claws, which has more dials and switches than the USS Enterprise.  Just how I like my software, then!  I’m very pleased with it so far, and will later be recommending it to certain members of my family who are still using OS X’s “Mail” program, which to be quite frank is apallingly ill suited to the simple task of sending and receiving email.  Surprising, because Apple are usually pretty good at bundled software.  Still, at least they don’t have the user locked in to using their application (like they who shall not be named do) so it won’t be hard to replace Mail with Claws.

Anyway, I also set up a family email address which I plan to persuade the whole family to regularly check (hopefully you won’t see any mail coming -from- that address though).  Use it to send funny stories or notices which the whole family need to read (like the twitter page you just set up for your cat – and no, I don’t know Jason Scott, I just googled “twitter cat”).

Oh, one last thing – feel free to stop by my brother’s blog; he has fulfilled his pledge and produced his first weekly song!  I personally think it sounds very professional, and shows off his recording skills well.

Artsy Fartsyness, web design and all things Linux!

My first blog post, and I actually have something interesting to talk about!

You may notice the address and (unless you know me well and have figured it out or have already been told) may be wondering what it means.  Quite simply, it is the first letter from each member of our family in age order.

So the last few days I’ve been playing with this new domain, as a bit of a proof of concept that a modern family can all be online with blogs and email without paying through the nose for some web hosting package on a host with a T2 connection when they really only need a standard residential broadband connection and a linux host.  I’ll later prove the concept further by pre-packaging the whole thing and writing scripts for the tech-noob so I may even be able to sell the entire bundle to joe bloggs as a way to get with the times and get online easily, quickly and fairly professionally.

Today, Mike and I designed header images for our blogs – a part I’m dreading making foolproof – so do let me know what you think of mine (and if you pop over to his blog, let him know what you think of his) – the default blue headers are on the rest of our family (who are rather less enthusiastic about the idea, apart from daniel who is just a little preoccupied at the moment).

So here I am sipping wine and blogging for the first time in what seems like an age (and the first time using this quite frankly wonderous software which I am kicking myself for boycotting in the past – why did I boycott it? well, I thought it was just another fly-by-night CMS/blog and it really isn’t, it’s in the same league as PhpBB3 and Roundcube).

Apart from the blogs, I started writing a generic family website (which I will probably use as a bit of a template for when I’m prepackaging this bundle) and popped some forums up on there – so feel free to drop by and say hello on those.