Monthly Archives: August 2008

WordPress 2.7 Thoughts

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If you haven’t seen it yet, WordPress 2.7 changes the Admin interface again.  While it seems many people don’t care for it, I like it a lot better than the existing interface.  I don’t care for the terminology they used for the main headers on the side bar though.

I was on the road this week so spent some airplane time working on my wp-SwimTeam plugin and decided to see how it would work under WordPress 2.7.  I have actually started moving my development around a bit and I think it will turn out to be a good thing.  Yesterday and today I was running 2.7 under Linux with PHP 4.4.9.  Last week I was running under Windows with PHP 5.2.6.

2.7 exposed a few things in my plugin which I have fixed but like I said, I am not happy with the new terminology being used.  I had changed my implementation recently so the end user chose the Swim Team menu off the Users menu in the Dashboard and the Admin would choose Swim Team from the Manage menu.  In 2.7, the Users menu doesn’t exist so there isn’t a logical place to put the functionality exposed to the end users.  I’ll figure something out, in the meantime, there is plenty of work to do on the plugin itself.

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wp-SwimTeam demo up and running

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I have spent quite a bit of my free time lately re-working my wp-SwimTeam WordPress plugin in a quest to get a demo site up and running.  In the process I changed quite a bit, some because I had no choice, some because I was knee deep in the code and decided it was time to fix some things I wasn’t real happy with.

A lot of the work involved working with Google Maps API.  The Google APIs are really pretty cool, if you need to do some work with AJAX or Javascript, they are worth looking into.  I ended up using the new Google AJAX API (which can load the Maps API) and the new syntax.  There seems to almost no performance degradation from loading Google’s JS libraries as compared to loading them directly from the host site.

A bunch of the work was neccessary because GoDaddy, the provider hosting the demo site, doesn’t support PEAR which I was using to access the database.  I needed to migrate to the WordPress database abstraction layer.  As opposed to just hacking up the plugin to do this, I decided to do it right and enhance phpHtmlLib with a new database abstraction layer specifically for WordPress.  I also made the changes to phpHtmlLib to make it into a WordPress plugin.

All in all, a lot of work behind the scenes which isn’t visible to the end user but in the long will make using wp-SwimTeam by other people much easier.  There are quite a few posts on my wp-SwimTeam development blog if you are interested in all of the nitty-gritty details along with my frustrations with GoDaddy Support.

Hanging Rock State Park

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Last weekend we took the family up to Hanging Rock State Park in north central North Carolina.  We had planned to camp for two nights in the park but when we arrived about 4:30 the camp ground was already full.  Uh-oh.  Now what?

We had passed the Sertoma 4H camp on our way in the Camp Host told us there was a small campground as part of the 4H property which we should try.  So we headed back down the hill and found Camp Sertoma.  It doesn’t look like much when you pull in but considering we didn’t have many options, it met our needs.  It turns out, it is actually a pretty nice campground as long as you don’t mind fairly primitive camping (we don’t).

A small storm moved in just as we arrived and we ended up setting our tent up in the rain on a site near the stream.  This turned out to be a great site as the kids played in the stream constantly for two days whenever we were back at camp.    We picked up some firewood from a local resident down the road a mile or so and were ready to make dinner.

On Saturday we hiked three trails – Hanging Rock, Upper Cascades, and Hidden Falls/Windows Falls.  Of the three, the kids liked the Hidden Falls/Windows Falls the best as there was lots of rocks to climb and they liked following the stream back up the hill.  The Hanging Rock trail is a nice hike, it is fairly long and some of the steps up are tough for smaller kids but our four (ages 6-13) all made it without any problem.  The view from the top is impressive.  After about 6 hours of hiking, we went back to camp for a while to get something to eat and drink and veg out.  We then went back to the park to check out the swim lake.

On Sunday we hiked the Lower Cascades and the Tory’s Den / Tory Falls trails.  The Lower Cascades is well worth doing, the falls are the nicest we saw in the park and there are some smaller, less traveled paths up and down the falls area that are worth exploring.  The Tory’s Den/Falls trail was disappointing as there was very little water flowing and what there was, was hard to see.

All in all, a great weekend, it was nice to get away before every weekend is consumed with soccer games for the next 3 months!

How far is it from 91 to 89?

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How far is from 91 to 89?  Turns out a 4-putt ultimately kept me from breaking 90.  There were other shots which didn’t help either but a 4 putt on a par 3 after hitting the green from the tee really, really hurts.

I teed it up Ronnie, a co-worker and one of our customers this morning.  I played my best round in a long time – shot 91 and really hit the ball well.  Ahhg, so close to breaking 90!  I hit the ball well off the tee all day which makes a huge difference.  I had a few other shots which were poorly executed which also could have gotten me under 90 but that 4 putt is what sticks in my brain.

phpHtmlLib

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I have been putting some cycles into phpHtmlLib as part of getting my wp-SwimTeam WordPress plugin in shape for other people to use it.  I found that PHP5 and GoDaddy’s PHP configuration, phpHtmlLib wasn’t very happy.  After a couple days work I have it put back together so it will work with both PHP4 and PHP5 and can deal with GoDaddy’s PHP configuration.  Now I need to commit all the changes and get back to work on wp-SwimTeam.

Stinkin’ up the joint

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Last Friday Ronnie and I played 18 and were paired up another member and his old neighbor who happens to be a player on the local high school team and a scratch golfer.  Nice kid and he can hit the ball a mile!  I have played with a couple people who can really hit it but none were in the same league as this kid.  Not sure what he shot but it was around par.  After his drive on #18 he teed up another and tried to drive the green which is about 350 yards away.  He was about 20 yards short!

Of course, I played like crap.  Started out okay but then I started pulling the ball left which I never do.  I have struggled with a slice and if I get careless, it creeps back in.  But a pull hook?  Every once in a while but Friday I must have hit a dozen.  Needless to say I was hitting from all sorts of odd places.  My short game was ok and I putted well, no 3 putts at all.  The highlight of my round was on #18 where once again I pulled my drive into the lake.  From the drop area I hit a 3 hybrid to the fringe of the green and then hit a wedge in the hole for par!  It may have been the best wedge shot I ever hit.  It was a nice way to finish what was otherwise a terrible (101) round.

Saturday I was hoping to get out and see if I could hit the ball a little better.  I concluded that on Friday in an effort to hit the ball farther, I was swinging much too quickly (bad tempo) and hitting the ball poorly.  My daughter (who is 8) and I played 9 holes late Saturday evening and although I didn’t score very well (50), I hit the ball much better and was much happier than I was on Friday.  I didn’t putt well at all and some of that I attribute to making sure we weren’t holding up the group behind us.