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Comments April 23, 2015

phpBBDoctor Closing

Filed under: blog, phpBB Doctor — Dave Rathbun @ 11:20 am Comments Off 

I first started working with phpBB2 in June of 2002. Over the years I have met some wonderful people, had an opportunity to travel, brushed up against some famous folks (Richard Pini of “Elfquest” fame) and even made a few dollars based on my interest and involvement with the project. As evidenced by the lack of blog posts, my participation in the phpBB user community has waned quite a bit.

It was a great run, and fun while it lasted, but other interests and family life have become more important. Therefore, as of today, I have decided to close up shop. My blog will remain online as an archive of sorts, but I don’t expect to post new material, and I am no longer accepting php programming / contract work. Comments on existing blog posts have been closed.

So long, and thanks for all the fish. 8-)

Comments May 2, 2011

How Time Flies…

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 9:39 am CommentsComments (5) 

Wow. Just. Wow. It’s been so long since I’ve posted here, I’m wondering if it will echo when I publish this? :lol:

Things have been really busy in real life, which I suppose goes without saying. I have two boys that are growing up and going through cub scouts and sports and school and everything else.

Yet, here I am. I am back to reconsider whether I need to upgrade from phpBB2 to phpBB3 for my main board (which as I write this is very close to collecting it’s 700,000th post, and is running almost one million page views a week). I am back to see if I can figure out how to integrate FB “likes” into my board, and how to allow folks to add Linked-In to their profile. That last one, at least, should be easy.

Things have been humming along quite nicely, although the spam frequency has started to go up. Seems that my Checkbox Challenge is either less of a deterrent, or human spamming is on the rise. For that, I guess I need to look at my server logs and see how long those folks are taking to get through the registration process. Fortunately there is still no answer for the Spammer Hammer, which makes it easy for my moderator team to quickly and easily eradicate all traces of the spammer from the board.

And gmail? Is it still the number one source of spam attempts? It would be interesting to check. I have not looked at those statistics in months (years?).

And I missed Libertyvasion. :-( I had intended to go, but all of a sudden August was here and I had not made any plans, so I stayed home. I have watched some of the sessions posted to Youtube, and it did look fun. I will hopefully be ready for the next one. Anyone know when / where that will be? ;-)

Comments September 13, 2010

Cobwebs: Do You Have One?

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 2:11 pm Comments Off 

Note from author: ironically I started writing this well over a year ago. Given the amount of attention given to this web site for the past year+ it seems to be a good point to finish and release the post. 8-)

I read a great article a few years back that – at least to me – had come up with a great term to describe dead web pages. Any page – blog, board, or otherwise – that had not been updated in quite some time was called a “cobweb”. :lol: I found it funny.

Tonight I was browsing my way around the blogosphere and happened upon a blog that I have not visited in over a year. Guess what? No updates, not one, in that entire time. But it gets better… in this particular bloggers blogroll (a list of blogs that this blogger, at least in theory, has some interest in) not a single one of them had been updated in over a year. :shock:

I currently maintain five blogs. This one has been running for several years. My first blog is just for family members and has been running since December of 2004. I have a blog related to my professional work which has been very active and in fact has been quoted in industry magazines. I have a photography blog that seems to be last on the list for updates, and I have a “manly” blog which is where all of the “cool gadget” posts have moved to rather than being posted here. Do I update all of them all of the time? No, unfortunately I don’t have the time. But I do try to update those that seem to have an audience (as made evident by the fact that there are comments on posts).

Why is this important? A blog, like a discussion board or any web community, needs to have a pulse. The pulse can be slow as long as it’s regular. A blog that does not have regular updates, or a discussion board without community involvement will soon die.

Not long ago I was chastised for not logging in to the phpBB2 Refugees site for quite some time. As a member of the community it should not be important that any single person logs in every day. At least that’s my opinion. However, as the administrator / owner of the community, it was a problem. There were a number of spam posts that had built up and I had not taken the proper steps to select a team of moderators. That, certainly, was a problem. I felt like the board activity was low enough that I didn’t have to check in every day. Every day became every other day, which became once a week, which became one a month, which became… well, not much. I had created a contact form, but the contact form went into the moderator private forum on the board and to an email address that I forgot to set up when I moved to a new server. So that didn’t do much good.

Long story short, there were (quite understandably) some upset members on the board. I get that. As such, I have taken the following steps. First, I promoted a regular member of the board (who I have known via this blog and the phpbb.com community for a long time) to a moderator. Second, I set it up so the email notification of spam works again. Third, (actually I did this first) I logged in and cleaned up all of the spam using the Spammer Hammer. And fourth, I have logged in more regularly on that board and have tried to start writing on this blog once again. We’ll see if it lasts, or if it’s a momentary disturbance in a cobweb.

Comments December 9, 2009

Happy Holidays

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 10:23 pm CommentsComments (2) 

I haven’t been around here for a few weeks, and probably won’t be for the rest of the year. I’m closing out the books, getting some projects completed, and trying to prepare to relax some for the holidays.

See you next year. 8-)

Comments November 11, 2009

You Know You’re A Web Geek When…

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 9:58 am CommentsComments (2) 

… you see a car license plate that reads “666FEE” and wonder to yourself what color that would be. :lol:

Comments August 27, 2009

Wordpress Updated, Post Revisions Turned Off

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 9:42 am CommentsComments (3) 

I updated to the most recent release of Wordpress this morning. One of the features that had caused me to delay my upgrade was the post revision feature. I do a lot of revisions as I work on posts, and I really don’t care about keeping notes along the way. It just clutters up my database with unneeded content. I am not an editor. :) I don’t want to keep a history of changes made over the life of a post. Some of my posts exist as drafts for months and go through dozens of writing sessions before they’re ready to be published.

So as I was going through the upgrade I did a bit of reading on the web and found an article that discussed an option named WP_POST_REVISIONS that can be added to the Wordpress configuration file. The setting cannot be configured via the Admin panel which I think is an oversight. However, it is quite flexible. More…

Comments July 17, 2009

Browser Statistics By Audience

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 11:20 am CommentsComments (2) 

Firefox has a lot of fans. :) That’s not a problem. I have tried it, and personally I don’t care for it. I’m not looking to be converted or convinced, so don’t bother leaving comments making the attempt. ;) While I was on the phpBB team I took a lot of grief for using IE, and that’s fine. I always said that I use IE because it’s used in the corporate world where I live and work.

To digress a minute… I have Urchin statistics installed on my server. I had the package before, and ultimately I disabled it because of the amount of server horsepower that was required to keep up with the processing. It seemed that my log files were not being rotated properly, so when they got really large urchin started to choke on the volume of data. Since moving to my new server, I have been trying to get urchin started up again. I finally got it going this week.

As a result I thought it might be interesting to see browser statistics and how they vary from one site (audience) to the next. More…

Comments June 21, 2009

Resigned Team Position

Filed under: blog, phpBB — Dave Rathbun @ 4:53 pm CommentsComments (1) 

In an effort to get some projects back on track (including this blog) I have resigned my position on the moderator team at phpbb.com. I have nothing but fond memories of my time on the team, especially the trip to London last summer to meet folks and get the opportunity to discuss anything and everything.

I have also completed my spring/summer conference season (which this year included trips to Orlando and Sydney, Australia).

The first project this summer that I have planned is to rewrite the PM system for phpBB2. It has been requested as a feature at phpbbrefugees.com and – believe it or not – after seven years of not having it, it has been requested on BOB, my largest phpBB2 board. So I will be able to write something up and use it for both boards. I will probably start that project in early July, and hopefully finish before going on vacation in August.

Yeah, life is busy. :)

Comments May 7, 2009

Extended Leave…

Filed under: blog — Dave Rathbun @ 6:30 pm CommentsComments (3) 

I have not been able to do much of anything related to phpBB for the past month and a half, and I apologize for that. I am only now getting back to things and expect to ramp up activity here and at the Refugees site shortly. My apologies. :oops:

Comments December 22, 2008

Happy Holidays, See You Next Year

Filed under: blog, phpBB Doctor — Dave Rathbun @ 10:42 am CommentsComments (1) 

No more blog posts from me for the rest of the year, as I will be taking some time off. See y’all next year! Happy holidays, and wishes of happiness and success to you and yours in the new year. 8-)

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