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Permission to break the blog?

In a thread below, Deborah HH opined that she missed the “recent comments” blurb in the sidebar. I do too. Without it, you can’t tell if somebody has revisited an old post with a new comment.

So I roused my lazy ass and had a look at the innards and, sure enough, a plugin I was relying on for the function has died. There are other ways to do it, but my blog is so old and eccentric that I can’t use them.

The layout of WordPress blogs relies on Themes, which set everything from column width to header graphics. There are thousands of them. If you have an orthodox website, you can swap themes all day and everything will fall into place. If you’ve done a bunch of weird, ignorant things to your Theme, it won’t.

I went looking for a WordPress Theme that was anything like the current three-column layout I have to use as a starting point for a clean new Theme and discovered something scary: about half the Themes out there won’t work with my outdated version of PHP (a scripting language for the Web). And my version of PHP is old because…you guessed it. My Theme is too eccentric for a newer one.

Meaning, I gotta modernize or, sooner or later, I’ll be forced to update PHP “for security reasons” and everything goes boom.

All of this to say I’ll be breaking the blog at some point. I can do a lot of tinkering without switching entirely, but I have to jump eventually. Things may look weird. Color might sneak in. A sidebar might disappear for a while. But I should be able to replicate everything eventually.



Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 28, 2024, 6:56 pm

Most of the tinkering I did was in aid of fun things I used to do in the sidebars – remember when this blog was fun? – like animations or weasel-themed calendars.

I have no idea what Creepy Robot Version was, though.

Comment from Gromulin
Time: May 28, 2024, 7:19 pm

As long as you are under the hood, I tried to steal some of your art recently. The link past the button on the sidebar gives an ominous Permission Denied!! 403 error.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: May 28, 2024, 7:35 pm

I’m getting the same message, Grom. When I tried to download CREEPY ROBOT VERSION. You used to be able to link directly into the WordPress graphics folder, but not no more.

If you know what you were looking for, I’ll fetch it for you.

Comment from Gromulin
Time: May 28, 2024, 8:13 pm

I was looking for some Zombie Reagan and Billy. I’ve decided my online avatar should be Billy.

Comment from The Neon Madman
Time: May 28, 2024, 8:33 pm

If you ever think that your stuff is old and clunky, go talk to the COBs over at Ace’s place.

Comment from Allen
Time: May 28, 2024, 8:38 pm

I hope you don’t lose too much. I was just wandering around in the archives, yes alone with no light, and it was well, somewhat baffling and hilarious. I didn’t recall such gems as “Dead kittens and five assed monkeys” but it’s a keeper. Has it really been that long?

You would have gone to that museum if it was still there, you couldn’t have resisted.

Comment from Deborah HH
Time: May 29, 2024, 3:18 am

Thank you, Stoaty. I look forward to the new and improved sweasel.com

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