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Guest Blogger Bill Clinton to Give Endorsements in Coral Gables Election

I am very pleased to announce that due to my winning a lottery sponsored by the Clinton Global Initiative former President Bill Clinton will post one item on later today, in which he will reveal his endorsements in the upcoming Coral Gables election.

Gables-watchers may recall that Mr. Clinton provided a robo-call endorsement in the 2011 Mayor’s race for Tom Korge. I do not know what prompted his interest in the 2013 race, but the former President is known as an avid follower of political races around the country, and Florida would be an important swing state were Hillary Clinton to run for President in 2016.

Check back often — I will approve President Clinton’s comments as soon as he sends them to me.

Creative Commons photo by veni markovski. Some rights reserved.

Posted in Completely Different, Coral Gables, | 8 Comments

Special Feed for Coral Gables-Related Posts

If all you are interested in is my Coral Gables-related posts, I have a special RSS feed just for you: RSS feed for Coral Gables-related posts only. Of course, I’d rather if you came by and sampled the whole thing, but I understand that some readers are only interested in the (very erratic) local political coverage.

Similarly, if you don’t use an RSS reader, you can bookmark my Coral Gables archive page which, despite the name, will always have the latest Coral Gables-related post at the top.

(Unfortunately for those out of town I don’t know how to make a feed with everything except the local stuff. Sorry about that. The election is soon, so just bear with me.)

For those who came in late, here are the main posts so far

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Top 10 Reasons Why I Didn’t Write About It

People sometimes ask me why I didn’t write about something. This happens more often than I would expect, be it in comments, in person, or by email. But not being a professional pundit, and indeed having long given up promoting the blog, I feel no obligation to weigh in on everything.

So here are the top ten reasons I didn’t write about that thing you asked about, more or less in order of frequency:

  1. I had nothing original to say that wasn’t being said on lots of other blogs.
  2. You’ve got the [law/economics] backwards in your comment, but it’s clear that no amount of facts or explaining will get through to you.
  3. Even I can tell that I don’t know enough about it, and I don’t have the time, energy, or inclination to find out what I’d need to know to write about it sensibly.
  4. Drafted something, but didn’t like the way it sounded.
  5. I don’t agree with [law schools’/U.Miami’s] critics, but anything I write is too likely to be dismissed as partisan pleading for my [profession/employer].
  6. I had deadlines for real work.
  7. I’m writing about that topic for a law review, and it’s too hard to compress an article into a blog post; I’ll link to the article when it’s done.
  8. It would make UM look bad without sufficient justification (most often applicable when I have nothing original to say).
  9. I was out of town while it happened.
  10. Beats me.
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–via the awesome Pulp-o-mizer.

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Civilized Discourse Construction Kit

Jeff Atwood, of the great Coding Horror weblog, writes about his new “next-generation, 100% open source discussion platform built for the next decade of the Internet.

He’s calling it “Discourse“.

As much as existing forum software is inexplicably and terrifyingly awful after all these years, it is still the ongoing basis for a huge chunk of deeply interesting information on the Internet. These communities are incredibly passionate about incredibly obscure things. They aren’t afraid to let their freak flag fly, and the world is a better place for it.

The goal of the company we formed, Civilized Discourse Construction Kit, Inc., is exactly that – to raise the standard of civilized discourse on the Internet through seeding it with better discussion software:

  • 100% open source and free to the world, now and forever.
  • Feels great to use. It’s fun.
  • Designed for hi-resolution tablets and advanced web browsers.
  • Built in moderation and governance systems that let discussion communities protect themselves from trolls, spammers, and bad actors – even without official moderators.

Our amazingly talented team has been working on Discourse for almost a year now, and although like any open source software it’s never entirely done, we believe it is already a generation ahead of any other forum software we’ve used.

Love the ambition, love the name. Not so sure yet about the interface, though, which seems very busy with all those avatars and stuff.

Posted in, Software | 3 Comments

Upgrade to WordPress 3.5 Far Too Exciting (Updated) (Further Update)

I’m not finding the upgrade to the new version 3.5 of WordPress to be an easy matter on any of the blogs I run or maintain. This one is no exception. So far, however, the problems here seem mostly relating to comments. Please email me if you have troubles, quoting any error messages.

Note: the error message I’m currently fighting is visible only from the dashboard comments page and reads:

Warning: Missing argument 2 for wpdb::prepare(), called in […]/ wp-content/plugins/akismet/admin.php on line 332 and defined in […]/wp-includes/wp-db.php on line 990

If I find a solution I’ll post it here.

Update1: This ticket seems to have something to do with it, but given that in the error message I’m getting I’m being pointed to two files that come with core wordpress (akismet/admin.php and wp-dp.php) and not some outside plugin, I really don’t know what I’m supposed to do about it. Similarly this site is built on child theme over a stock wordpress theme, so I don’t see how this could be a theme issue.

Update2: Here is the line of akismet that is causing the trouble:

$waiting = $wpdb->get_var( $wpdb->prepare( "SELECT COUNT(*) FROM $wpdb->commentmeta WHERE meta_key = 'akismet_error'" ) );

I don’t think I’m going to have the guts to play with this critical anti-spam module on my own.

Update3 (12/12/12): I think if there’s an answer it likely will appear on this support thread.

Update4 (12/13/12): Akismet team says:

This will be fixed in the next release which should be today.

Akismet’s performance is not affected and there are no security issues.

Apologies for not catching this earlier.

Posted in | 1 Comment

Hello Europe

A quick trawl at my latest billing statement for hosting services from Amazon Cloudfront (they serve all the graphics for this blog) reveals that I’m sending about 2/3 as many bytes to the EU region as to the North American region. In comparison Japan + Asia Pacific together make up only about 10% the volume of Europe.

That EU traffic cannot all be bots. There must be human readers in that group. If you happen to be one of them, I invite you to tell me a little about yourself, if you are willing. Please feel free to write in languages other than English if that would make you more comfortable. (This standing invitation also applies of course to readers from everywhere else also.)

I was drawn to look at the usage report because the cost of Cloudfront seemed to have increased almost 50% this month — all the way up to 60 cents.

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