Uh… so you may have noticed a slight change in the website 😉 Ok, so you might of thought you entered the wrong site for a minute there. But look closer. My name is still here, the posts are still here. (uh.. we’ll get to that in a minute) and the site is generally cooler now. What’s changed? Everything. If you read my site at all, you would know i’ve been working on a redesign for a long time now. I worked on a new site design in .asp for a good year. I created a custom content management system from scratch. I could log into the site via the browser, say i want to add a new item and type up what i wanted and pow! it was put on the site. I could then later go back and edit the item like i wanted. It would store every post in separate text files and store them in a database. I did all that. Really. But that’s as far as i got. Plan was to make it searchable. Make the old news available easily. You could put in a date and see the news from that date. You would get email updates when i posted something. It would handle RSS feeds. You could comment on posts. It would even incorporate the photo galleries. Somehow. That’s where i got stuck. I could never decide how to work files such as my pictures and my music. But, alas, i searched for another option.
Since my site was running on a Windows 2003 server, i looked for .asp or .net content management systems. I looked at dotnetnuke, .text and even tried them out. I installed them on my test server. The installation was a horrible process. I never got any of them to work. I didn’t try too hard though, I shouldn’t of had to. So, i decided to look at .php systems. And found plenty. I decided on wordpress and read the docs about it’s 5 minute installation. So, i gave it a try and damn if they were’nt right. 5 minutes and my site was going strong. A year’s worth of coding (part time mind you) was resolved in about 5 minutes. But, there were problems. wordpress relys on certian ways to bring you the archives, individual posts and things of that sort, which are basically incompatible with windows servers. they require a valid .htaccess file to redirect pages for the techies of you. Only apache supports this. So, i even broke down and almost hired someone from guru to make a vbscript 404 page to simulate this .htaccess page. I decided not to do it. I broke down and moved the server to a linux based one with apache. After some data manipulating, the 5 minute install, and various other modifications, i had the site running with wordpress on linux while not losing the few news posts i already put in. Then i customized the site with my own css. I already had a great design from the custom .asp code i had written so i used css to customize wordpress to duplicate that. So, this is in no way a standard wordpress installation anymore. I then decided to get a photogallery where i could upload my pictures and things for the masses to see. I decided on coppermine and have now (by the time you read this) uploaded all my convention pictures to it. It looks very sweet.
“Con reports” have been moved to the picture gallery. Click on pictures on the left hand side there. Even existing visitors may want to check out the nekocon 2001 gallery as it has never been fully offered before. I started work on on a complete con report with pictures, but i didnt get far. Only to page 3. Now, you can view all the pictures from the trip! I also included pics from the ferry ride to the convention across the James River, and our short trip to the beach where we proceeded to write “U Suck Bin Laden” in the sand and point in his general direction. These nekocon 2001 pictures were taken with a regular 35mm camera, and when i had them processed i had them made onto cd’s as well. So, the quality of them aren’t as good as the other’s and they also have a date stamp on top.
Some of the pictures have been renamed. A lot of the url’s have been changed. But, I made a custom 404 page that will help most people find the new place for what they’re looking for. Not everything’s on the site yet. The archive doesnt go all the way back to the site’s beginning, but it will eventually.