Archive for the 'Weblog' Category

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Troubles and Blogulations

After almost a week, I somehow managed to make it back online. The files, mailsettings and all other stuff except the database were simple to move to the new cluster. Since WordPress, Mambo and other scripts I had running on the server used utf-8 for character encoding, the migration proved somewhat difficult. With the old version of phpmyadmin, I couldn’t set the collation of the database, and to be honest, up to this week I didn’t even know databases had a setting for encodings. It turns out the old collation was latin1 (surprise, surprise), and setting the new one to utf-8 and importing the tables in utf-8 didn’t work for me, all characters were kaput. It turns out, that databases have their internal encoding which creates the whole problem. For wordpress, either using a wp-plugin or find a way to issue a SET NAMES ‘latin1’ command right after WP is done connecting. The easier option for me was to create a new table which is set to latin1 as the old one. Problem solved and blogged, hopefully others will find this hint useful to circumvent character set encoding problems.

On another note, today is the day. My wife’s due, but the little guy seems to be comfortable enough inside. We might have to wait for a few days, but there’s no need to rush. We bought everything we need, the name is decided and people are calling in the whole time and ask whether “it happened” or not. Stay tuned.


My provider is getting in shape with new server software and a relaunch of their website. I’ll need a few days to move my domains over to the new hosting cluster, so there won’t be any news until Tuesday.

Hello WordPress

Back online – at last. Moving to WordPress actually wasn’t as simple as I hoped it would be. After importing all postings I had to assign categories and add titles to older posts, several plugins messed around with the content, display or other functions behind the scenes and freeing myself from thirdparty services turned out to be difficult. I won’t use “Hello/Blogger” to post images anymore, but Gallery2 in the future. I also won’t use javascript anymore as a target_blank ersatz (the latter is deprecated anyway), if you want a link to be opened in a new window, please use the middle mouse button.

what doesn’t work yet (sorted by importance):

  • Internal&Dashboard: posts can’t be searched
  • Internal: gallery2 needs to be configurated and set up
  • Display: images formerly hosted at Blogger/Hello aren’t always displayed
  • Internal: xhtml plugin causes all kinds of errors (currently disabled)
  • Internal: multiple languages within a posting and text formatting (TextControl) at the same time doesn’t work
  • Design: the upper part of the right border disappears if the number of horinzontal pixels is uneven
  • Listings: all bloglists, catalogues, etc. need to be updated to the new url
  • Design: post titles in archives are not displayed properly
  • Internal: the post preview doesn’t refresh
  • Dashboard: (save&editing) “save” posting and return to overview doesn’t work sometimes
  • Design: smilies under IE have no real transparency (I’m waiting for IE7)

P.S.: If you wonder what the countdown is for, click here.


Alright, this is it. I was working on a WordPress installation elsewhere, a different layout and lots of other stuff. Now, the new location is all setup, I’ll start moving this blog away from Blogger. Don’t misunderstand me, it’s a great service, but far too limiting.
Keep your fingers crossed. 馃槈

Goodbye Google, and thanks for the fish.

On Hiatus

I’m sorry I have to focus on other stuff until mid August, so there might not be much or any blogging at all during that time. Since I postponed things I have to take care of for weeks now, it leaves me little time to continue writing regularily. If you want to read something interesting during the break, try Hugo Dobson’s Japan and United Nations Peacekeeping: New Pressures, New Responses. See you after the summer.

Blogroll addition: The Marmot's Hole

The Marmot’s Hole added to Blogroll. It’s a group weblog centered around all things Korean, including news, events, culture and history. Writing since January 2003, the linklist to other Korean blogs is extensive – if you want to participate in the discussions though, you have to register (an extreme, but safest way to prevent spam in comments). You’ll notice the absence of a design or any colors with the default theme, so nothing’s going to distract you from the content.

update: Firefox with enabled adblock blocks their weblog’s header image…

Blogroll Additions

Jamie Talbot’s weblog added to blogroll.

Meet the Staff

I have to apologize, I’m a little bit slow with posting since I’m working fulltime on the new weblog which is going to be based on WordPress The layout for the blog is going to change too, the themebrowser at is a real time-saver.

Nevertheless… on thursday evening, we went to a seminar at Marien-Hospital in D眉sseldorf, our first choice when we started comparing local hospitals in regard to number of births, episiotomy and Caesarean rate, support by midwives etc. – also, since my mother works there and lives in an adjoining building we quickly reached a decision. The head of the maternity clinic, Professor Diemer and two staff members talked with about three dozen future parents about… well, about everything. We also had the chance to take a tour in the labor rooms, which were smaller than I expected. The adjacent room was currently used so we heard a women shouting extremely loud and penetrating – one of the people in the group remarked this reminded him of a music school with singing classes.

Blogging under Pressure

Buzznews reports that Hossein Derakhshan from decided to return to Iran to watch the upcoming elections. Since his critical reporting about the Iranian government, it is probable, if not likely, that his plan will get him into jail as this was the case with Sina Motallebi, an Iranian journalist. Hoder asks for help on his website for his trip and in case he gets into trouble. Keep an eye on his weblog, publicity is one of the things that could keep him safe.

Behind the Curtains…

This weblog is going to get a new home soon. I reserved the domain, since my internet provider, 1 & 1, supplies its customers with one free top-level domain. I’m also thinking about using WordPress, NucleusCMS or Serendipity in the future. Blogger is a great – free – service, but it’s too limiting.

The Blogosphere At Frankfurter Rundschau

German newspaper Frankfurter Rundschau regularily posts about the blogworld’s reaction to current world events, politics, journalism, changes in society and its relationship to technology:

Frankfurter Rundschau online

Anonymous Blogging

Since people have lost their jobs over blogging, I thought I look around and see what you can do to protect

  1. your privacy
  2. your basic right of freedom of speech

I found two websites that explain in quite simple terms how anonymous blogging can be done:


The latter has a few other interesting links. In some countries, weblogging can even lead to people being put into prison. There’s a list of webloggers who have been detained, freed or threatened in various countries. If you speak German, take a look at Teheran Bytes, a blog written by Nahid Siamdoust, reporter for TIME Magazine in Tehran.

Here are two more useful links…

Private Blogging Wiki Anonymous blogging made simple

Job ahead

Blogging will be a little bit light until Friday, since an unexpected opportunity came up – I’m applying for a job that could feed my family and allow me to write my doctoral thesis at the same time. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

New Layout – Enter Kubrick

I used the Kubrick for Blogger template for the page (original template by Michael Heinemann, the old one was too dark and uninviting. Still some stuff to do though, but right now that should be enough. I had to relearn some programs I used to design with in the past, also, since I didn’t really code for ages modifying was difficult enough. Too bad there won’t be time to learn CSS properly.

Working on it…

Today I decided to move big parts of the homepage, we`ll see how it works out.