End of 2014…bring on 2015!!

Sydney
77

Some of me won’t be sad to see 2014 end- it has been a somewhat challenging year for me. I say somewhat because I feel that anyone who lives in the west with an income greater than $15,000 is pretty well off compared to many people in the world.

I have received messages over the last year for my views on my personal facebook page stating things like “you must be a joy to live with” etc and the truth is if you don’t know me personally, which many of you don’t, you may get the impression I am just one big, gigantic, rant machine. Thankfully, that couldn’t be further from the truth and while many of my posts are political / environmental ranting in nature, I do post things about my kids and family and I have a wonderfully ‘normal’ life.

I really do appreciate having Heather and my kids and friends in my life and I am very grateful for the life I have, don’t get me wrong. I’m lucky to be able to write my thoughts freely and that brings me to one of my 2015 dilemmas: Should I become more politically and environmentally active? Should I take more time away from my kids to help ensure they have a planet to grow up on?

Working while raising kids has been no small task and parenting has proven to be one of the greatest challenges of my life so far. I am determined, however, to do right by my kids and allow them to be free-thinkers who know how to look at all angles and make an informed decision using fact and reason.

Before I move forward in 2015 I want to remind myself of the things that worked and the things that didn’t in the past year and learn from them. I want to remind myself of the wonderful feelings of parenting and the joy of rediscovering old friends and talents. I want to be reminded that the human race DOES have a chance.

Like many of you, I also hope there will be more peace and joy in the world. However, for me to be true to that statement I feel I need to do much more to make as much of a positive change in everyone’s life as possible, including my own. I hope that there may be just a little more light in the world if I am here and for that to happen it takes action, not words.

I am determined to accomplish this by co-operating with reality and providing a platform for people to be informed that allows them to make important decisions on their own, confidently. I want people to be able to research things on their own and I hope to provide that little spark of understanding that may make them seek out more knowledge.

I also don’t feel like I have thanked enough the people here who have interacted with me and supported me, so thank you all for your kind messages and encouragement and for making me believe there is still a light inside of all of us ready to shine. I apparently have many lurkers on FB who enjoy reading my rants and that’s great- I would also encourage you to voice your opinion more often and louder.

The world we all share is changing very fast and the old way of doing things is again adding significant barriers to humanities progress- this is not a new story. This time, however, humanity has enough knowledge to destroy the only planet we have and there are some people that seem intent on doing so. At the same time we have an unprecedented opportunity to share love and hope with every single human and animal on this planet and sometimes that just has to be enough.

Again, thank you all. I can’t express in words here how much your support has helped me. There is much more to say and with a new media platform on the horizon, I plan on saying it!

You know your old when…

I have to admit that in-spite of it’s drawbacks, WordPress (WP) has a special place in my developer heart. I guess I’m showing my age when I say I remember when the image uploader was introduced in version 0.9 and it was VERY buggy…I can remember actually saying to a client at the time “I wonder if WP will ever have a reliable media uploader?”. Little did I know that it would take MUCH longer than most developers expected. It seems they have finally got it right since around version 3.0.

So let’s go back a little further: I got into web development and found the .NET Microsoft Framework around 1995 – 96 and at that time, like everyone else, I only knew about the Windows operating system and had no idea there were other options. It wouldn’t be until 2 or 3 years later when I discovered programming and PHP / MySQL that I realized there was a better way than being locked down to a company- it was called open-source. This was ground-breaking for me as I was starting to lose faith in my own computer that I had paid over $3,000 for just a few months before. I also didn’t like how Microsoft had a stranglehold on the PC market (and their system was SO buggy) so I was relieved to find out there was an entire movement based on the free and open sharing of information- PERFECT!

FUCKING PERMALINKS: How do they work?

I’ve been having a son-of-a-bitch of a time getting permalinks to work on my new blog your reading right now, StanGuy.com.

Now, I’m no regex (Regular Expressions) expert mind you but I’ve searched a few strings in my day (OK, that wasn’t funny). For those who may be unfamiliar with regex, you can think of it as a pattern recognition language that allows us to search for specific types of strings in code. There are probably hundreds of tutorials on regex around the web and this isn’t the place for a detailed lesson anyways. Google is your friend.

Of course I tried the standard WP .htaccess file:

# BEGIN WordPress
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
</IfModule>
# END WordPress

But once I save this .htaccess file in the root folder as above it produces a 404 on all pages (except the homepage, of course). Frustrating.

More to come…

Huh. Turns out you CAN teach an old monkey new tricks!