Dougal Campbell's geek ramblings

WordPress, web development, and world domination.

Monthly Archives: March 2005

The WordPress/HotNacho SEO Debacle

Debate is raging over the “WordPress SEO Spam” issue. Please pay special attention to the disclaimer at the beginning of Andrew‘s post (emphasis mine): Disclaimer. I’m hesitant to even write about this, knowing the web’s fondness for angry mob justice, but I feel like it’s an important issue that needs to be addressed. My one request: please be calm and rational. WordPress is a great project, and Matt is a good guy. Think before piling … Continue reading

Plugin: SpamForceField

SpamForceField is my newest anti-spam plugin for WordPress. This one does a couple of interesting things: All connections via pinappleproxy are denied. Every connection’s Referer is checked against your blacklist keys. If a match is found, the connection is denied. If a comment is flagged as ‘spam’ due to the normal spam checks, the client receives a 403 Forbidden HTTP status. This also occurs for connections denied in the other two checks above. When connections … Continue reading

Old wine in a new bottle

The topic of Ajax is pretty hot right now. And some people are getting a little hot over the naming. As I pointed out yesterday, and as Ian Hickson and Dare Obasanjo have also said, Ajax is not a new technology. Web developers have been doing this stuff for years under various names. JavaScript Remote Scripting, Remote Scripting with IFRAME, JPSPAN. But for whatever reason, the name “Ajax” has stuck. So, what is Ajax? It’s … Continue reading

Ajaxing the Rails

If you’re a web developer, then hopefully you’ve already heard of Ruby on Rails and Ajax. If not, you’re behind the times, and you have some reading to do. New in Rails is built-in Ajax support. I haven’t had time yet to play with Rails yet, but I’m itching to do so. Rails is a web application framework written in Ruby, an odd, interesting programming language (probably only ‘odd’ to me because I haven’t used … Continue reading

IE7 to support standards?

According to Eric Meyer, it seems that there is hope that Internet Explorer 7 may have improved standards support. He’s got a list of “Top 10 CSS Fixes” that should be made. I would definitely like to add “proper support for PNG transparency” to the list. It’s not CSS-specific, but it is a browser bug that requires many site designs to implement IE-specific work-arounds. And of course, there are many other bugs listed at the … Continue reading

Recursive Virus

I’m sick again. So is Susan. It seems like this illness just keeps going in circles through our family. First the kids had it, then Susan, then me, then the kids got sick again, now we’re sick again… It’s like a recursive function that hasn’t met its exit condition yet. Somebody make it stop! All of this while we’re still trying to get the rest of our stuff moved out of the old house and … Continue reading

WordPress 1.5 Themes Competition

There’s only one week left in the WordPress 1.5 Themes Competition. You might want to start on the Submitting a Theme page for a good overview of the rules and some good guidelines. I’ve seen several outstanding entries so far (out of 48 submitted!). And for more sweet, gooey, themey goodness, check out this list of over 115 WordPress 1.5 themes!

Theme Preview Plugin

Early in the development of the “themes” support in WordPress, I bugged Ryan Boren for a “preview” feature. Instead, he wrote a Theme Switcher Plugin, which wasn’t what I wanted (but was still a cool thing to have). Now, he’s finally written a Theme Preview Plugin. The thing is, I had already given up on him and written my own, weeks ago. I just never got around to documenting it and writing it up. Differences: … Continue reading


Bleah. I’ve been sick for about a week or so now. I thought that I was fighting it off okay until a few days ago. On Tuesday night, my throat was sore, and my nose was particularly stuffy. Which resulted in very little sleep. So I woke up feeling like death on a cracker. A stale cracker. A stale cracker that’s one of the last in the package, so it’s all broken and crumbly. Anyhow, … Continue reading up for sale

The popular weblog update tracking service,, has recently announced that it is up for sale. The sale announcement notes that the site currently operates at about a $20/month loss, which doesn’t sound bad at all. I wonder why it’s up for an outright sale, rather than attempting to add more revenue? Anyhow, is a very useful service. I use it myself just about every day. Hopefully, someone will step up to take it … Continue reading