Mountebank Blog

"There is nothing so impossible in nature, but mountebanks will undertake; nothing so incredible, but they will affirm."

Test post

This is a test from vagablog–a small program to allow blogging directly from the palm (in this case the new Treo 650).


In the spirit of unceasing fiddling, I’ve implemented Spam-Karma, in addition to AuthImage, for a try at getting rid of comment spam, and trackback spam, and still keeping the option of having trackbacks turned on. Let’s see how it works. (And while I was at it, I installed a one-click plugin manager, too.)

Close one door and another opens

Just when I was feeling so proud that by using a captcha I had eliminated any bit of comment spam, I got hit with a new one….trackback spam.

And I’ve never even had a real trackback! 🙁

So for now, I’ve just turned off trackbacks. Who needs them.

WordPress bug

Thanks to LissaKay, at GA, I heard about a serious flaw in WordPress 1.2.1 (and 1.3), which could have made this blog completely broken…even worse than I could have broken it myself.

Luckily there’s a not-too-hard fix, here. Hope that took care of it!

Disappearing Blog

Thanks to Cyd for pointing out that this Blog was sort of invisible for a while! I think that the problem was when I eliminated the blogsnob script from the template (it was throwing some script errors that bugged me). Somehow I screwed everything up, and I didn’t even know it–because my bookmark points to . It was /index.html that was screwed up.

In any case, it’s back and working again–basically I just eliminated that index.html –I hope I didn’t really need it!

What’s my Humour?

I tried some of the cute little quizzes at Quizilla to give my Intensive Writing class a break from practice exams today (we met for four days this week–we’re all pretty sick of each other). They enjoyed them, and posted their results on their blogs, so I thought I’d add my own result from the “Which of the Humours Are You” quiz. I think they got me absolutely right!

phlegmaticYou are Phlegmatic. You have a peace-loving nature, and make a good listener and a faithful friend. You do have a tendency to be selfish and stubborn in your worst moments, and your worrying can lean towards paranoia. Phlegmatics should consider careers as accountants, diplomats, engineers, and administrators. You are a somewhat reluctant leader, but your practicality and steady nerve under pressure makes you a natural choice for leadership roles.


I feel very clever to have figured out, not only how to use that hack (AuthImage) to eliminate the comment spam (I hope), but also how to have a cron job go in and delete the little images it creates once a day in the middle of the night.

(Luckily, my totally excellent webhost TotalChoice Hosting provided some easy tools, but I still feel a lot geekier than I used to!)

Avatar Maker

A fresh breezeIn salute to Patrick O’Brian, I’ve generally used this little animated version I “derived” from a Geoff Hunt print as my avatar in any online forum where I was allowed to use one. It’s a nice little picture, and I enjoy looking at it, so I assume others do, too. I don’t know how much it really represents me, but I got very accustomed to it, and it seems at least as appropriate as most of the other avatars I see around.

Me?Really Me?But in setting up my own Xanga blog, as part of the experiment of having my 095 students do the same, I decided to use an avatar (they call it a “profile pic” at Xanga) that would maybe look more like me. I remembered that I had seen this fun Portrait Illustration Maker linked on the Scribbling Woman blog some time ago. The students had a great time creating their own pictures, although (of course, as recommended) not all of them used them on their blogs. But now, from walking through it with the students, I’ve got two of myself. Which is Jekyll? and which is Hyde?

And now, in joining a new forum or two, I’m wondering whether to use one of these new, but more traditional, portraits, or my old familiar ship of the line.

Word Press Post by Email

I just can’t seem to get it to work. There’s a way to do it, and some cool features in one of the versions (inline image attachments, no access for users not in the database), but I keep getting these errors (Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in blahblahblah/wp-includes/template-functions-category.php on line 90 ) and if I keep trying, the email account I’ve set up for this totally stops accepting email at all. This is way beyond my php ability, and I see others having the same problem, too.

Maybe in a while somebody will figure it out!

It seems WordPress is working on it–it’s bug #0000167 on the wordpress mosquito.

I’m Valid

xhtml valid! css valid!Finally got the page to be valid with both xhtml and css (as the cute little icons demonstrate). How proud can I be!