Category Archives: As Per Whatever

Random items that don’t necessarily fit in all that well with the rest of the group.

Fun With Analytics

I’m in the midst of reworking my blog, and any good reworking starts with a hard look at statistics. While I definitely don’t shoot to be any sort of traffic maven A-lister type, I do like to know that at least some of what I’ve written is being read…and boy, is it interesting to see what people like to read and how they find it. How they read it is a big deal, too, as statistics tell me what the trends are for browsers, screen resolutions, etc., and this plays a huge role in redesign decisions that I’m currently making.

The report I’m running is from January 1st to today, a little over seven months of traffic. Continue reading

A random jumble

I torture Twitter so much with my rapid-fire randomness these days. It’s amazing that I have as many humans as I do actually following me because I get so random and off the wall there with things. So, I feel it’s only fair that I take some of this randomness to the blog for a change.

  • I should’ve gone out singing last night. Wild Wing downtown does a pretty good karaoke night on Thursdays. Only problem? They don’t have any songs by Tantric. My range is right between Hugo Ferreira and Todd Whitener, so Tantric is pretty much perfect. On my birthday, I settled for Days of the New, which I do pretty well with, but Tantric has an energy you can’t deny.
  • Had a pretty decent severe thunderstorm roll through West Ashley earlier, and of course I snapped a few photos of the onset. The cloud was wild as it approached (didn’t get my camera in time to get that shot) — it was very much like those spaceships in Independence Day.
  • I’m slowly chipping away at a new look for this place. I’ve started over about three times now. That work won’t be wasted, though, as I usually find a way to take the best aspects of each design and meld them together. The goal in the next revision of the site is simplification: I’m cutting a lot of deadwood, recategorizing every post (that will take a while), and a lot of other stuff. It’ll be nice, though; I suspect it’ll be the biggest revamp we’ve seen here in a long time.
  • Not sure who to vote for in November now after the FISA Obamination. My tirades against telecom immunity are well-documented here, and it just blows my mind that Obama voted for that bill. It’s a complete breakdown in principle that I wasn’t expecting from him at all, and this is really teetering on the edge of deal-breaker for me. Barack Obama’s just another politician now, and you know, I’m looking for more than pandering and broken promises for a change. He’s going to have to work very hard to win my vote back. (No, I’m not going McCain, either.)
  • A lot of people have brought up how Clinton voted no on the FISA bill. While that’s admirable, Obama was still the better pick for the party based solely on Clinton’s baggage. However, I can’t help but wonder what John Edwards would have been able to do had the media given him 30 seconds of attention.
  • Regardless, part of me feels a little had. This episode is a good reminder that with very few exceptions, there is very little separating the Democratic and Republican agendas. How much more do we have to take before third parties become viable in this country?

Enjoy your Friday, folks!

Purgatory

So I’ve been in the equivalent of moving purgatory for the last few days, taking up a dwelling at my parents’ house. Relocation to the new place starts Friday, and will continue at a gradual pace through the weekend. The weather’s going to be oppressively hot — unusually warm for this time of year — so the moving process will probably be a gradual one that lasts through the weekend. I’m definitely looking forward to living in my own place, where I have a much higher degree of freedom and control (read: I’ll be able to spread my computer equipment out with zero objection).

Living with my parents has been cool for a few days, though. I’ve been getting those home-cooked meals, the laundry is done, and it’s not like they’ve put a curfew on me again (I am 24, after all). It’s been a nice visit. In some ways, it’s been a trip down memory lane — late night visits to Sonic happened on a regular basis in high school, and it was a little weird to go back there and see the parking spot where I’d show up every Friday during my senior year of high school to think. (I wrote a series of tweets about this Sonic experience; see [1], [2], [3], [4], and [5])

I’ve been running at a real limited operating capacity, though. I’m primarily on my work MacBook Pro until I move in and get the more permanent desktop setup going. Unfortunately, that’s left me without GRLevel3 at home, so no SuperDeeDooper Doppler updates when there’s severe weather (and, as luck would have it, that happened this past weekend). That’s been kind of a drag. Oh, and my music — or lack thereof. That’s been an issue, too. I haven’t had any of my gigantic music library available to me, ’cause that machine’s disconnected still.

Oh well. Friday will begin to right the ship once more into a stable pattern. For now, I’m starting ROC for sleep!

I am a Facebook Spammer

Facebook says I am a spammer

I saw the above screen after writing on my friend Trevor’s Facebook wall, wishing him a happy birthday. I apparently need to stop doing that, as I am clearly abusing their system…because the only time I have to write on walls these days are to write people and wish them a happy birthday. That’s what you DO on Facebook. (I even suck about that, and I know I’ve missed some peoples’ days, and for that, I humbly apologize.) For reference, here’s my wall post frequency, per my News Feed.

I hit my profile a couple times a day, and largely lurk. I don’t use Facebook chat, and I generally lay low regardless. I only come out of the woodwork for birthdays. Something is seriously wrong here. Two of my followers on Twitter have also had issues with Facebook labeling them as abusers, so I’m wondering if their detection mechanisms have gone out of whack. (For the record, I was able to make a different wall post to another friend with no problem.)

Two things here have struck a serious nerve with me. One, the outright “you are spamming Facebook” line. That’s ludicrous. The wording is combative and doesn’t offer the user much hope of reaching a resolution, as it deposits you on an FAQ page that just says “stop spamming” without giving somebody the opportunity to clear their name. Second of all, their rate limits aren’t advertised. I’ll take some of the mystery out: it apparently is sending more than one “Happy Birthday” wall post to more than one friend every two weeks. This is very Comcastian in nature, where you can be shut down for hitting an arbitrary rate limit that they won’t put in writing a la Dave Winer.

The “guilty until proven innocent” crap just has to stop. I understand wanting to shut down spammers, but some of these measures have put a real chill in how I’m going to use Facebook from here on out, which is to say not much at all. The tendency in society to put a serious chill on things has really gotten on my last nerve, but that’s a post for another day. I’ve definitely taken a decentralizing approach with much of their services: Flickr for photos, FriendFeed can help me keep up with what people are up to, and I have Twitter for far better status. Oh, and good ol’ fashioned e-mail is much more effective than the Facebook messaging system. Yeah, I don’t have “walls” to write on but I suppose that’s what good ol’ fashioned phone calls are for. If Facebook is going to continue to try to chill usage of their service with a wayward abuse detection system, then I have to say, my repeat traffic numbers are going to go way down. This is Shark Jumping 101 right here. It’s about as effective as suing your customers (see RIAA); it doesn’t work.

The Game of Relay

This was a gorgeous weekend, save for the severe thunderstorms that roared through Charleston at about midnight Saturday. We’re now in that window where it will be absolutely gorgeous for about three weeks before things take a turn for the humid and miserable, so folks, go outside while you can. To take advantage of it, Duke, Ale, Chris, and I went out to a random park near Colonial Lake Saturday to play some wiffleball. The winds were prohibitive to this, though, and we needed more outfielders. Then, we lost the ball…and that was that.

Luckily, there was a tennis ball hanging around. Ignoring where that tennis ball may have been, we continued to play. We quickly realized that my dazzling assortment of changeups, fastballs, sliders, and sinkers was virtually unhittable, so we decided to change things up a bit…and we eventually came up with Relay. Continue reading

Crunch Time

Well, it’s April, which can only mean one thing: end-of-semester lunacy. This blog has been eerily silent, I know, and that silence will probably continue through Tuesday or so. I have a gigantic pile of e-mail that I am well aware of, but I’m just not sure when I’ll get to dig out. Apologies in advance. I go up Twitterscope occasionally but that’s even been less frequent as of late. I’m glad this is the last April that I’ll have to deal with this (at least for now).

In the meantime, here’s a report about the College’s Geology Club fundraiser that I did for today. Pardon the opening sequence…I swear, the next place that I get, I will do much more to the lighting so that stuff I do at home won’t suck. That, and I need a much better camera.

My poor, neglected blog…

I’m dusting off the cobwebs here in my WordPress administration panel…been a few days. These are busy times — and they’ve been largely chronicled on Twitter.

Last night was our regularly scheduled blogger/tweeter meetup at Gene’s Haufbrau just west of the Ashley. Great times as always. Eugene and I kicked some butt in pool, and he did all the work at shuffleboard last night. Was great seeing the lot of the gang out once again. I’m hoping to make that next floating meetup. I think it’s pretty rockin’ that we have TWO monthly meetups now.

The weekend is, as usual, packed — I’m going to a baseball game Sunday for my sportswriting class. Going to watch baseball for class is pretty friggin’ cool. It’ll get me into the swing of things this spring; I’ve caught maybe an inning and a half of baseball so far this year, and need to improve upon that.

Again this year, I will be a Bad Young South Carolinian and will miss Carolina Cup. A friend photoshopped me into last year’s Cup festivities (and set it to Tarzan Boy by Baltimora) but locating that photograph and associated song will be left as an exercise to the reader. I was somewhat hoping to bring a decent video camera of some type and do some sort of video production, but not this time — I’m not sure when I’d get to it, and quite frankly, I could see myself being brutally assaulted by armies of pastel and plaid for some of the inevitable comedic twists that I would capture on tape.

On a closing, musical note — Angels & Devils, Fuel’s fourth album and first without Brett Scallions, has really started to grow on me. I’ve listened to it non-stop all week. Clearly, I’ve lost it.

A wonderful day to be out and about

I always joke on days such as today, with highs in the mid-70s and light-to-medium cirrus at 33,000, that it’s a great day to stay inside and work on code and stuff. Well…today, I finally tossed that mentality aside and left the house. It was friggin’ worth it. I made the trek to Marion Square and kicked a soccer ball around with a buddy of mine, threw close to 100 pitches, and just generally soaked up a very nice day with a pretty nice view of…um…the city. ;)

I hope you got a chance to get out and about today. This is one of those days that makes it truly great to live in Charleston.