Look Ma, No Sidebars

Ninety five percent of the WordPress Themes out there have sidebars. So, I decided to make a WordPress Theme without any sidebars on it. What a great idea, Ulysses. Well, it has been a challenge simply because I didn’t know where to put all the extra information that once inhabited the sidebar world. I’m about 90% done. I still want to throw a couple of tweaks and features like a separate Search Page for example. So, here it is. A WordPress theme without any sidebars. Tada! What do you think?

SPAM

What would the world be without spam email and spam comments? Probably, a lot less expensive. Just look at the amount of email and comment spam that goes around the internet. 99.99 percent of the comments I get in this blog are spam. So far, Akismet has caught over 33,000 spams while my legitimate comments are less than 300. That’s less than 1 percent. Unbelievable. If I scrutinize it even more, I can probably throw another 10% of the 300 into the spam category.

Let’s turn to email. It would be safe to say that more than 90% of the world’s email is spam. Just think of the wasted time deleting them, just think of all the storage devices that are holding them, just think of the fat networks that carry them. Not to mention, the viruses carried by spam, but that’s an entirely different story altogether. If we get rid of spam, the internet would be a lot quieter place and probably a lot less expensive. With a 1.5mb link at less than $50 per month, should I be complaining?

Upgraded to WordPress version 2.1

Well, I’m now running WordPress version 2.1. I finally upgraded after laying off for a few days. The upgrade went very well without any hitches. I also took the chance to clean up the website for just a little bit. I removed several WordPress Plugins that I was no longer using. I also redesigned my theme for the umpteenth time. It’s much, much more narrower and without a sidebar. I thought I would give this look a try. About WordPress 2.1, it seems to be much more responsive particularly the Admin Menu. I also like the auto-save feature and of course, how could you not like the Ajax comments. That’s one down and four more to go.

WordPress 2.1

So another version of WordPress is out. More upgrades to do. Ho-hum. In reality, the upgrade is not that bad, but I’m getting tired of it. I seem to be doing WordPress upgrades every month. But despite my bad attitude, WordPress 2.1 seems to be a great improvement over the last version. Check out all the new features of version 2.1. My favorite new features are: auto-save, private pages, faster Admin pages and more Ajax. I played around with the release candidate version last week. It’s time to get my hands on the new release. Maybe, I’ll wait. I see a WordPress 2.1.0.2 release coming. Hehe.

PHP Register Globals Off

When PHP 4.2.0 was released, the REGISTER_GLOBALS directive went from ON to OFF. It was a controversial change since it caused older PHP scripts to fail. I had several scripts that were no longer working in the newer PHP default configuration. The good news is, there’s no need to do a massive rewrite of your older scripts. Just reassign your old variables using the new global variables of $_REQUEST, $_POST or $_GET. In the example below, we are reassigning the variables $id, $task and $name to make them accessible.

$id = $_REQUEST['id'];   // When passing variables within a script.
$task = $_POST['task'];  // When using a POST
$name = $_GET['name'];   // When using a GET

Apples to Apples

Has anyone heard of this card and party game called Apples to Apples? One website is boasting it to be the fastest growing party game in America. I played it for the first time tonight among friends and it was a ton of fun. The card game plays anywhere from 4 to 10 people. Each player holds 7 red cards at a time. One player plays a judge by drawing one green card. All remaining players deals one red card that best describes the green card drawn by the judge. The card picked by the judge wins the round. If you win 3 rounds, you win the game. Judges rotate. I love the game. It’s fun, fast moving and very witty. It’s the most fun I had in a while. Not bad for $30. It’s available at Target, Borders and Barnes & Noble.

iPhone

Another innovative product from Apple has arrived. Its called the iPhone. It’s a cell phone, an iPod, and an internet device all wrapped in one little package. It’s powered by OS X and comes with the Safari browser and a touch screen. Like an iPod, you can play music, videos and display photos. Like the cell phone, it has all the typical features such as SMS and Voicemail. The price is a bit on the high side at $499 in my opinion. This gadget definitely possesses a “wow factor.” It also has the “I want to have one” effect on people. Is it worth the try? Not me. Not for now. The price has to go down considerably for me to get one. In the meantime, I’ll just admire the iPhone from a distance.