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10 Years “dimrost.nl”

by Rob on

10 years

It almost slipped by without noticing it. By coincidence, I just saw it today: Our weblog on “dimrost.nl” was in October 10 years old! On 26 October 2007 the first article on this weblog was posted. And now we are more as 10 years further.

I remember well how at first the weblog was titled “Life is there to live again”. But at a certain moment I made the conclusion that I am living my life fully again, so the title was outdated. With some other titles in between, we ended up with “The Fellowship of Friends”. The name was based on the idea that during our holiday with our friends on Lesvos and we were walking along mountain slopes towards that high mountain and someone remarked that we were as the Fellowship of the Ring. And after I opened my weblog for my friends to write here, that was the perfect name for our weblog.

Looking back over some of the articles I wrote over those 10 years, it feels like a diary without really private stuff. But very good to bring many memories from over the years.

Oh, fun fact: The 3 most used keywords that leaded to our weblog?

  1. Kruidenbitter (herbal bitter)
  2. Sexmuseum (in Amsterdam)
  3. Lucifera (a soft erotic comic from seventies)

Why am I not surprised? Oh yes, most searches came from the countries where they “should” not come from *WINK*

I have many plans for our weblog. First thing planned is bringing the weblog to SSL, which will make it all more secure. But there are more (fun) things coming.

Well, up to the next 10 years! And special thanks to Marissa, Richard, Miranda, Jennifer, Sanne, Patricia and Marion, who all made this weblog even so much better, specially the last year. Thank you all!

Rob
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Offline

by Rob on

Out od order
As some may have noticed, my weblog has been for the last two days offline. Well, maybe offline is not completely correct. The site was running, but not in a proper way. Visitors only saw blanc pages.

So what happened? For a certain update I wanted (and needed) to do on the weblog a newer version of PHP was required. PHP (Hypertext Preprocessor) is the scripting/programming language that was used to create Word Press. And Word Press is the software package that I use for my weblog.
So I contacted the company that hosts my weblog what the best way would be to do this. They suggested to move the complete weblog to a new server in their data-center with the newest version of PHP and other software (as MySQL) installed. That sounded as a good plan.

My provider moved the site and mailed me that all the was done, but that it could take some hours for the site to be reachable again.

But sadly the site didn’t come available again. Well, it showed only blanc pages. It was Marissa who noticed it the first and sent a mail to me.

It turned out the a rather old plugin was not compatible with PHP v7.* and that caused any page to show as a blanc page.
Luckily this plugin that caused the problem was not an important plugin and could easily replaced by one that almost did the same.

The trick I used to solve it was renaming the plugin-directories (“askimet” to “askimet.old” as example. Renaming the directories will deactivated the plugins automatically. By renaming the directories one by one to the original name and reload the website in a browser will show fast which plugin caused the problem.

Anyway, all is working as normal again and now the weblog is running with PHP version 7.1.2 and MySQL version 5.7.17. And that was the goal I was after.

And oh, the new server that is running the website is really faster :-)

Rob
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A Fellowship of Friends

by Rob on

Fellowship, Life is better with friends
It seems that everyone agrees and “A Fellowship of Friends” will be the new name of the blog. Kudos to Mel and Marissa. Well done!

A nice step forward in the new structure of this weblog with multiple authors.

The “About Us”-page of The Fellowship of Friends.

With this please the request to the authors to complete their part on the “About us”-page. People visiting our weblog should have an idea who we are. And please keep maintaining the information on the “About us”-page. Often after such information is written down, people tend to forget about it. Lets not do that :-).

Search Engine Optimization

The coming time I will also focus on SEO… Search Engine Optimization. I have been reading into that lately and there is a lot more that then I thought. It not only about meta-data and such, but also about how the weblog (in our case) is set up and is used. Very surprising, but also very interesting.

For those interested: Last night I made the first change.
By default WordPress links to its post by post number. Every post has a unique number and be directly referenced by that number (like “http://www.dimrost.nl/WordPress/?p=123”). That is very nice, but those numbers mean nothing to us humans.
Now we can configure WordPress that it will work with more meaningful links like “http://www.dimrost.nl/WordPress/health/running-through-the-moor/”. So this post belongs to the category “health” and the name of the post is “Running through the moor”. This is something we can understand.
But there is more to it: Search engines like Google can also read these links with the category and the name of the post. And that will make the site shows up in more the search results of people.

I had so my concerns to do, because this links (or perma links as they are officially called) are the very base of the weblog. Luckily it all went very smoothly (and of course I made first a backup for doing it).

This was step one, there is more to come…

Rob
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Recently I had some remarks and comments that it can be hard to contact me through my blog, specially for people who don’t know me directly. Add to that I delete comments on articles that are off-topic directly.
And yet, so as some folks told me, it would be handy to have a way contact me.

I have been pondering about that and I had to admit that this was reasonable request. So I have been looking through the many and many plug-ins that are available for WordPress. And yes, I found something useful (which I am not really surprised about).

So now to the right on the main menu there is a “Contact me” option. This option will open a mail-form. The content will be mailed to me. To stop spam it is protected with a small “Chaptcha”.

Coming time I will look into if this plug-in has more nice options to me. Anyway, I hope I added something useful to my weblog with this.

Cheers,
Rob.


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Operation “Exit Flickr.com”

by Rob on

In the past I was very active on the photo-site Flicker ( http://www.flickr.com), which offers a great way to share pictures. I liked it even so much that I got myself a paid account on Flickr. In the beginning I linked pictures I wanted to have on my weblog here directly from my Flickr-account.

But things change during time… I got my own photo-site, which soon will get a major upgrade.
I started to store pictures, that I wanted to use on my weblog here, directly on the webspace of my weblog. Nothing faster as that and the pictures are stored in a secure way.

All with all, I started to use Flickr less and less.

This week I got a mail from Flickr that I soon have to pay my yearly contribution for Flickr again. I don’t mind to pay when needed, but not for things I don’t use anymore. So I decided to shutdown my Flickr-account.

So right now I am moving the pictures of my older postings from Flicker to my weblog. Sounds easy… and it isn’t indeed hard work. But it is a lot of work and something that needs to be done very precise.

Anyway, it has to be done :) Well, now you know what I will be doing this weekend :p


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Subscribe to comments….

by Rob on

Today I have added a new functionality to my weblog here.

You can now subscribe to a thread, which means that you will be notified by mail when there is a new comment added. When you go the comments part of a post, then you will see a checkbox that you can use to subscribe to the thread. You don’t need to be logged in to use this feature, but of course you have to enter a valid mail address (which will not be visible on the weblog). You will be notified for every new comment on the thread.

This is something I would love to see on every weblog. How often do you not comment on something and only be visiting the weblog again you can see if someone replied to your comment. Many replies on comments are lost this way and that is a pitty I think. So I was very happy with this functionality and I would like to urge other weblog/blog owners to add this kind of functionality to their weblog or blog as well.


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