Looking at Technorati this morning, I realized that none of the entries on my hand-coded weblogs are showing up there, presumably because I haven't been sending update pings to weblog notification services like Weblogs.Com, Blo.gs, and Ping-o-Matic. For a weblog to be a properly firing neuron in the information-gathering nervous system that Jon Udell describes on InfoWorld, tools like Technorati must learn in real time what's being linked, and by whom. To fix this, I'm writing a PHP class library to ping ... read more

I'm winning the war on comment spam on Wordzilla, my homebrew weblog software, thanks to PHP code that rejects link-heavy comments and submissions from banned IP addresses. I'm losing on Movable Type and Manila. Both programs are being flooded with spam that has to be hand-deleted, a chore that's miserably time consuming in each. Six Apart enhanced Movable Type's comment-management features in version 3.1, but it can take up to five minutes to delete a group of spam comments on the Drudge Retort, which has 107,000 ... read more

Workbench has been under attack lately by a comment spammer linking to dozens of cheesy .info domains. The sites sell drugs like Cialis and Phentermine, offer Texas Holdem poker, and pimp a bunch of other get-rich-click schemes. I'm writing my own software here in PHP and MySQL, so I'm trying to deal with this abuse as painlessly as possible. For several hours at a time, a new comment spam is being posted every 1-2 minutes on the 2,300 weblog entries on this site. In a comment management tool, I added a Delete ... read more

The Drudge Retort was hammered yesterday, serving 10 gigabytes of traffic as thousands of people looked for exit polls and early election returns. The unit of measurement for traffic here is Janet Jackson's right breast, the exposure of which maxed out the shared SDSL connection on my old server. For seventeen straight hours, it served 144 kilobytes per second of traffic (1 Janet) to people on a fruitless search for celebrity mammary. Since that time, I have moved to dedicated server hosting with ServerMatrix. ... read more

Because I wrote the book on Radio UserLand, my decision to stop using the software on Workbench has raised a few eyebrows.By tradition, the first thing a weblogger must do with new software is publish a vicious excoriation of the old software, warning others to keep away, like a courageous relief worker marking a land mine.Textbook example: When Mark Pilgrim concluded that a Movable Type licensing change would have cost him $535, he declared the software a dead end, switched to WordPress, and donated $535 to its ... read more

One goal in the move to new software on Workbench is to salvage incoming links from other sites. When you break weblog entry permalinks, you break links on every site that referred to your entries. Because I use weblog archives as a research tool often in my programming, I don't want to hose permalinks switching from Radio UserLand to my hand-coded LAMP software.I thought I could write a short PHP script to redirect each old Radio-style link to its new link -- just grab the anchor portion of the URL that follows ... read more

This entry represents the culmonation of several weeks of work moving Workbench from Radio UserLand to software that I am writing for myself on a LAMP platform (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP).This has been an eventful month. I was the first person to evacuate Florida for Hurricane Frances, taking my family all the way to Northern Virginia almost two full days before it made landfall. My excessive caution was rewarded by a drive home through South Carolina as the storm hit that state, spawning more tornados in one ... read more