HTML vs. Moodle, WordPress, etc.

Okay, so this isn’t 1990 anymore.  Websites are dynamic, not static.  No one uses .html (hypertext markup language) anymore.  Instead, modern websites use https, .asp, databases, interactivity, splashy advertisements and pictures that fly across the screen, areas of the page that stand still whereas others move around … all that is terribly impressive.

But, after fidgeting around with with WordPress, Moodle, Joomla!, add-ons to those, databases from MySQL and Microsoft SQL, and various other CMS packages made for teachers & students & school admin, I’ve decided they all suck.

Read moreHTML vs. Moodle, WordPress, etc.

server hardware upgrade – SSD

It seems my server is getting old.  It typically runs Windows 7 64-bit with a non-raid cloned (redundant) OS disc, 1.5TB storage disc (pics, videos, teaching material, etc.), and 3TB redundant backup of everything.  Just tonight I switched over to a Solid State Drive (SSD) for the OS.  Can you notice any speed difference?  Hope so.  Been eating up HDDs the past year – 3 in total.  So hopefully this will help.

Surface Pro 4 replacement parts

I had to replace the pen on my Surface Pro 4.  I lost it.  Don’t ask me where.  Somewhere between here and the college, I suspect.  I’m a boo-foo.  $120 for a pen.  Wow.

Then came the power supply.  It packed it in somewhere in Manitoba.  The only way to charge it was with the car charger.  Luckily, the machine works on 12VDC, not some weird number like 18 volts or 21 like one of my old laptops.  Why not make 12 volts a standards?  Oh, wait, it already is.  Then why not use that standard?  I tried ordering a new one from a computer shop.  No go.  Online only – that is, if I didn’t want to pay double.  Finally, long after returning from Manitoba, it came.

Then … the machine quit.  Well, it didn’t really quit.  The keyboard (Type Cover, they call it) stopped working.  Several hours over several days chatting and talking with Microsoft later (once actually being transferred between and chatting with seven different people), they found out several things were physically damaged on it, making the type cover and USB useless.

So, the long and the short of it is, everything but the keyboard is actually replaced.  <sigh>  What a world we live in.

To combat the idea of disposable electronics and dwindling world resources, I made a cover out of jeans.  I can see that I am winning the war against waste.  Yay.  …  Yes, that was tongue-in-cheek. 

goodbye Firefox, or on Edge

I’ve given up on something I’ve used for … a long time.

Firefox.

I have my replacement Surface Pro 4 tablet and am setting it up the way I want it.  I installed Firefox ver. 64.x.  It stole half an hour yesterday and 45 minutes of this morning’s time out of my life to figure out why CtrlTab and CtrlShiftTab was not working.  I went through the web trying things like nVidia / GForce, antivirus, and other software that this tablet does not have.  I finally found a blog somewhere that said I needed to go back to an older version of Firefox to get this feature back.

Well why the hell did they change it in the first place?

Good bye, Firefox.  Last straw.  I’m on Edge now.

privacy policy needed, apparently

I was about to put another entry onto the ongoing letter.  I got a message from WordPress, the software that runs my ongoing letter, saying that I should probably have a ‘privacy policy’.

Personal Data and Privacy

Personal Data Export and Erasure

New Tools have been added to help you with personal data export and erasure requests.

Privacy Policy

Create or select your site’s privacy policy page under Settings > Privacy to keep your users informed and aware.

Bloody hell.  I clicked to view the next page.

Read moreprivacy policy needed, apparently

driverless cars – seriously?

I saw an article by BBC on autonomous taxis.

Why you have (probably) already bought your last car

I wrote on Twitter in response:

17 seconds ago

How about RV drivers who take their rigs camping? Driving 14 hours from Calgary to Vancouver on mountain highways, dead of winter, 3 feet of snow? How about family trips, stopping at a roadside historic information sign? Not all travel is commute. This utopia does not compute.

I pile camping crap into my car and head off into the hills.  How would that work with an all-electric, self-driving car?  I go off-road in my little Kia, climbing up a mud and gravel hill on a logging road for excitement.  The Kia performs well.  Could an autonomous electric taxi replace my car?  Don’t think so.  I’m accident free since 1987, driving in large cities, on long highways, through blizzard conditions, daytime and at night.  Long time.  Loooong time.  No way in hell an autonomous car will take my license away.

Now if you’re talking about a car that can drive by itself, with the driver taking over at any point he / she wishes to, I’d be into that.  Sure, why not?  But, in a city the size of Lethbridge, I really can’t see how it could be useful.  Downtown Seoul?  Sure.

later

Just curious – Google (advocates of self-driving cars) collects a lot of data from lots of people, like our travel habits.  Does it know how much travel I do that isn’t part of my daily work commute?

Google Console and searches

It occurred to me a while back that my websites were not searchable in Google, Ask.com, Yahoo!, Duckduckgo, or anything else.  Why?  Didn’t people search for seaweed soup or ESL classes?  Weren’t people interested?  I was hurt!  Not really, but it was weird nonetheless.  Back in the day, when static HTML pages ruled and students logged in, my website was searched for many times.

Read moreGoogle Console and searches