New and Improved

August 31st, 2004  |  Published in Uncategorized

MovableType 3.1 came out today. Did the upgrade, feel chipper about it. Flipped the comments over to default to Markdown syntax and added a brief guide to the most common tags people use. Fixed a nag along the way regarding formatting not showing up correctly in the comment preview.

New stuff in this version:

  • MT Blacklist and Markdown are part of a plug-in pack.

  • Dynamic templates are part of the package now. I thought I wanted that feature really, really bad because it’s soooo painful to sit around waiting for MT to rebuild a whole site, but then I thought about it now that I have it and I remembered back to when I wrote:

I look at what they’ve all done and I think “Why am I putting this three column lipstick on this mule?” Except Puddingtime isn’t a mule. She’s just fine. She’s also overdressed, and it’s driving me to distraction. Like Mal says to Kaylee: “You’d look like a sheep walking around on its hind legs.”

Which triggered this whole simplification kick that has resulted in me not even looking at an MT template until today, when I decided I’d turn on Markdown for the comments and might ought to include a handy reference for people who might like to know about that. And when you’re not changing something every day, you don’t CARE how long a rebuild takes because you hardly notice it… it’s just two or three pages that get updated.

So, “Yay, I know people will like them; but meh, because I’m so over screwing with templates. I’ve got an aquarium to tend.”

Also there’s some stuff to do with categories being sub-categorizable, and the unfortunate phrase “community management,” which means what it says, and good luck to you if you’re a stuffed-shirt ignoramus jackass out to “manage” your “community” too much. Oh, and “future posting,” which means a lot less people are gonna get fired for compulsive blogging at work if they can just remember to use that feature.

So all in all, it’s like Christmas in August:

  • New MT

  • New BBEdit

  • Gus is plugging away at VoodooPad 2

  • NetNewsWire 2 draws nigh

  • I’m typing this up using a tool that’s ostensibly still a secret, but rocks, and which comes for free with something else I’m not going to name because I don’t know what sort of beans would be spilled by naming it.

Also On the Catchup Tip

I haven’t done any writing, processing, thinking, or obsessing about workflow in weeks. The simplest sorts of organization have worked out pretty well:

  • I keep a daily to-do list on a nifty pad I bought at Powell’s. At the end of the day, I move my undone stuff to a fresh sheet and shred the old one.

  • I’ve been on a cleaning/decluttering rampage that has left all but one small closet shelf on the main floor of the house as organized as I’ll ever be without a gun to my head. Sometimes I stop and look at the kitchen counters and the bill-paying desk in the living room and admire them as testaments to my iron will.

  • I maintain all the declutteration with zealous use of a revamped recycling setup and a paper shredder that makes a satisfying and violent noise when shredding its maximum load of seven simultaneous sheets. I make twice-daily patrols through areas I’ve likely messed up. There are other housekeeping tips I could impart, but I’m not really up to it right now, and it’s all very much rooted in a pretty simple idea: Don’t procrastinate: Stop when you think to do something and ask why you wouldn’t. If you have a good reason for not doing it, then you’ve still at least got the time to put it on the to-do list.

  • Bills are slowly being moved to autopay when they allow it (hard habit to get back into after 18 months of freelance living and its not-entirely-regular paychecks).

  • I got DragThing and used it to make a very simple row of tabs across the top of my screen that put me within two clicks of anything I ever need during the day.

What else?

The t.v.’s coming back tomorrow. Having spent a week away from it, I’ve noticed a few things:

  • I only missed one show with any real intensity: “Six Feet Under”. I’m glad the TiVO probably caught it. Otherwise, whatever. Al misses “Reno 911”, which is a good show to miss, too.

  • I’d rather be watching movies than most television programming. Including news. Just talking about CNN with a visitor this weekend made me irritable.

So we’re rumbling to ourselves about killing the dish when our compulsory year is over. Our visitor reminded me of how much I loved NetFlix.

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