Cory Doctorow’s DRM talk to Microsoft

I have to be on my sixth or seventh time listening to Jason Kottke’s reading of Cory Doctorow’s DRM talk to Microsoft for a flash animation I’m working on. I’ve read it though a few times as well and I really feel I get a better sense of the talk hearing it aloud.

I’ve had a special place in my heart for the reading of texts ever since my family took long trips to Ohio from New Jersey and we listed to books on tape. We were early adopters of books on tape as a way to make all the kids get along and it worked so well that we never turned back.

Listing to Kottke’s reading really makes me long to hear Cory Doctorow give the talk. While Kottke’s reading does a good job of injecting some personality in to the text I really want to hear Cory read it with the passion that I’m sure he would bring to the reading.

AIGA volunteer

I have volunteered and been accepted to work at the AIGA conference in Boston this September. It was a short application with only a short statement about why you wanted to volunteer. I was happy but surprised at how quickly they accepted me. I had quite the laundry list or reasons they should let me volunteer and I know I am very well qualified to help run just about any event. Yet for the largest international design conference I was expecting for more of a rush and competition for the volunteer spot.

I really knocked the application out of the park though with my 150-word application. I have planed and run large events for TCNJ and know all about moving equipment around. This includes being an expert wire coiler, which the roadies are extremely picky about. I am also just graduating and as much as I would like to have a wonderful web design job in Boston, if I don’t this will be the place to meet people. I really want to be an acting member in the graphic design community and find as many ways as possible I can contribute more. Now I am limited to volunteered labor but I hope to graduate to organizing, planning, and perhaps even presenting at these events. Lofty plans I know but I’m going with the NNWM’s idea that if you tell enough people about the big ideas you have you will feel obligated to back them up. I look forward to your ridicule to help move me forward in my future goals.

In the end I really just look forward to finding a solid design community to be apart of. Today there are a core of blogs that really rule the community and I hope to find my own smaller tight knit community of blogs on a smaller scale. Livejournal really has a good feel for bringing smaller communities together and blogging really does seem to be more fun if there is a close knit community to interact with. As much as the large name bloggers hate to admit it with out people to interact with there is little point to keeping anything online besides a good account.

The good and bad of WordPress

After installing Movable Type for my web design 2 class here at TCNJ, I was a bit surprised at the effort it took to install it. Not hard but certainly took some care and editing of the config file. The documentation was clearly not as clear as it could be and was very long.

We installed it just before the switch over to Moveable Type 3 and the subsequent price change / fall out with MT supporters. Seeing the death of MT on the horizon I also thought I would look for another solution. A quick search for Moveable Type comparison brought up a good number of posts by people also looking to get off of the MT ship. I had hear a lot of good things about the Expression Engine (which I keep typing Emotion Engine like the PS2 chip set) but that also works on a play plan.

It became obvious very quickly that WordPress was the best option. Going in there were two downsides compared to MT. MT makes it easy to set up multiple blogs with one install of MT while WP only allows one blog per install. MT’s template system is also a bit more intuitive. WP uses a lot of php includes and can break all your templates to about 14 different files.

I had no need to create multiple blogs with one install and so that problem evaporated away. The templates remained a downside but I figured it couldn’t be too bad.

The install process compared to MT was amazing. WordPress press only needs 4 lines changed and it is clearly documented what needs to change. After those lines are changed you just upload to the directory you want your blog in and load the setup page. The set up page is two pages. Two pages! At the end of the second page it apologized for not being harder. It was an amazing install.

The templates are kind of a bitch. I didn’t know enough about them to start from scratch but editing 5 or 6 files just to make the main page look like your webpage is very annoying, but it’s obvious that it’s a very powerful system that allows for quick updates in the future.

Over all I’m very happy with how the WordPress experience is going. I definitely will recommend WordPress to Ricardo for the web design 2 class next time.

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