Crystal Ball

I wanted some feedback from people as far as how the site was doing. I’ve noticed a few things I’d like to address, and I also wanted to open the forum for suggestions, and show you guys something really cool I found.

First and formost: The RSS Feed. I know it’s new, and of the couple of you that read this, even fewer use it, but let me know how it’s working! I just recently changed the format from the “Entry- Title” to the “Entry (Date)” template. I realized the labling each of them ‘entry’ is sort of redundant, and that the date would be a far more useful use of that space instead.

For those of you who’re not on board with the RSS and would like to give it a shot, I posted a little tutorial in the FAQ. I highly recommend it as something you should just try. If you dislike it you can always make it go away quite easily.

Another thing I’m sure you’re wondering is why the hell this site loads so slow. Two reasons have been identified:

1. I’m Stupid
I saved all the navigation images at the top at really high quality settings, so they’re pretty hefty images. They were constantly living in my browser’s cache (images that are saved temporarily by the web browser for easy access) because I looked at the site daily when I was working on it.

2. You’re At College
Think about it. One connection shared by several thousand kids who all download music, images, videos, programs, etc. The more people using it the slower it goes. Like the library during midterms or the dining hall at dinner, the huge volume of traffic tends to cause problems. Consequently, the internet seems quite akin to cold syrup.

I know exactly what I’ll do to solve this problem, so it’s now so much a question ‘how’, but far moreso as to ‘when’. It simply means re-saving all the images at the lowest setting possible without a noticeable drop in quality. Finding that happy medium could be a day or two’s work. Saving all of the images and replacing them on the server could take longer than that.

Please be patient with it for now. I’ll do my best to have the site ‘Collegiate Compatible’ by the end of October, but no promises. Like a lot of other personal projects, it might get pushed back to winter break. We’ll see.

This is due largely to my other technological obligation, which is the Truman Student Senate Website. I was recently appointed webmaster, and I’ve just begun to make some early tweaks. The problem is that the site is dated, and the organization of the server is… chilling. Finding stuff there is a bit like ‘Where’s Waldo’, where you keep finding that one idiot wearing a Waldo Hat.

We’re going to be doing a lot of work to just get it useable again, so that it functions. However, at this point I’m really hoping for a complete and total redesign before semester is out.

Sidenote: I was listening to my iPod just now. I wanted to know how much of the song was left. I grabbed my GameBoy Color and was confused by its blank screen. …what is wrong with me…

The last tech related thing before I sign out is the Optiums Keyboard. It’s a keyboard where each and every single key is a teeny-tiny screen. What use is that, you might ask. Well, expecially for interpreters or foreign relations people, the ability to change what characters appear on the keyboard itself could be extremely useful.

They’ve also shown it used as displaying the functions of shortcuts in applications like Photoshop or commands for games like Quake. My personal favorite is the shortcut keys. I can pull the few icons I have on my desktop, and put them on my keyboard!

I don’t know if this thing will actually ever see the light of day. I have hope becuase the ‘Mini 3’ derivative product actually came out and then subsequently sold out. I’m sort of dreading when it actually comes out though, becuase that’ll confirm my initial suspicion that it’s several hundred dollars out of my hypothetical price range.

If I got that keyboard though, maybe others using my computer would stop complaining about the ergonomic split-key one I have now. Then again, they’d probably just whine that Optiums was ‘too distracting’.

I just can’t please you people.


  1. I take offense at the keyboard comment, because I know it’s directed, at least partially, at me

  2. me too, lizz. and because, in a democracy, the marketplace of ideas leads to the discovery of truth, tom’s an idiot and his keyboard sucks.

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