A Cause Not Worth Pursuing

A couple of days ago, I tackled a project to clean up the WordPress wp_options table. A bold move on my part would you say. I downloaded the wp_options tables using PhpMyAdmin to view the wp_option table entries. It’s a mess like I suspected. There are over 1000 entries. The default wp_options table for WordPress 2.1 only comes with 70+ entries. Why so many entries you may ask? Well, I guess it makes sense after running WordPress close to three years and installing more than three dozens plugins and hacks. So, I went through the entries line-by-line to determine which one I can delete. I was able to identify several entries of plugins that I no longer use. I can delete those entries. But, the rest? I have no idea what they are for, which means I can’t touch them without possibly crippling WordPress. Restoring the wp_options tables is easy as long as you have proper backup. In the end, I decided it’s a cause not worth pursuing. Leave it the way it is. A spaghetti mess. It reminds me of the old adage, “don’t fix it, if it’s not broken.”

About Performance

Have you ever practiced flawlessly before a musical performance only to screw up at the performance. Well, that happened to me. I was playing Passapeid by Claude Debussy last Saturday and I had a couple of practice runs that were just flawless. The notes were all there and timing was just perfect. I was feeling good — then came the performance. I really don’t know what happened. I played one note a bit too long. I had to stop. I missed two measures. It’s a good thing, there was a break after that. It was just lack of concentration on my part. Well, I played it off as if nothing happened. I talked to several people afterwards, and no one even noticed. If they only knew.

Black-Letterhead 1.3

Black-Letterhead 1.3 is now available for download. The latest version comes Widget ready just like the previous version. Version 1.3 uses the WordPress Tooklit Theme allowing authors to create Admin Menus for customizing their themes. The latest features include the ability to:

  1. Select sidebar location: left or right.
  2. Select between two page widths: narrow and wide.
  3. Select whether to use header images or no header images.
  4. Ability to support rotating or random headers.
  5. Ability to modify theme colors such as main text, links and titles.

All these features are available from the Theme’s Configuration Panel. Give it a try. Download the latest from here.

$150 Laptops

One feature I really like about the $150 laptops is the handcrank to charge the battery. I could use that feature now in my laptop since my battery only lasts for about 15 minutes. A couple of turns should be good for another 30 minutes. I also like the keyboard that switches languages automatically. One laptop per child is the goal. Some countries will not be able to afford them. I have a feeling the $150 laptops will end up in the wrong hands and not the children. Another possibility, people will try to make money by selling it in the black market.

Fujitsu S6200 Problems

If you own a Fujitsu S6200 Series laptop, you may have experienced a loose A/C connector problem at the back of the unit. The problem came after just a year of normal use. After a few tries, I was able to take the laptop apart. This is by far the hardest part of the whole repair process. I then re-soldered the power connector back to the motherboard.

Re-soldering the power connector will fix the problem, but only temporarily. A few months later, the problem resurfaced again. The second time around, I ended up applying Super Glue to the connector after re-soldering it to the circuit board. With Super Glue, the connector is much more stronger and durable. I wished Fujitsu designed it better.

Avast AntiVirus Software

If you use a product and don’t hear much about it, you’ve come to realize it does what it’s supposed to do. The product works transparently behind the scenes without any problems or hitches. And when it’s called upon to do something, it just takes care of the problem efficiently without a major incident.

Avast Antivirus Software from Alwil Software is one of those products. I have been using their Home Free Edition Antivirus software for the last two years. It has been nothing short of wonderful. The software is non-obtrusive. That means you forget the software is running in the background. It’s effective. I haven’t had a virus problem in more than two years. And most of all, it’s free. You can’t beat that price anywhere else in the world.

When I first purchased my laptop a couple of years ago, it came with the Symantec’s Norton Antivirus software. Based on my experience, the software seemed to just take over the control of my laptop like it had a mind of its own. I had problems running a few applications. The software was very active and it seemed to intervene with everything that I did. It was just out of control.

Buying licenses for the Norton Antivirus software was a sore subject to me. Don’t get me wrong. I would gladly play for a software as long as it works cleanly and efficiently. So, why should I pay for an inferior product if I can find a better one for free.

Alwil Software makes their money selling their Professional and Corporate Antivirus software to businesses and corporations while making it available for free to home users. If you haven’t tried Avast yet, give it a try. You can visit their website for more information.