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Weblog Bankruptcy

June 18th, 2009

This blog has become woefully out of date as I desperately try to keep our house build on schedule (and help out with our young son, and try to hold down a job, and maybe, just maybe: sleep). Interesting and/or exciting new things are happening all the time that aren’t getting discussed here because I’ve been trying to find the time to fill in the older entries first.

That effort has been underway for over almost two months (!) and its simply not happening. So…

By this post, I hereby declare weblog bankruptcy. I will resume current coverage of the build starting today. I’ll be covering the past aspects of the build through discussion of current events.

Posted by Colin

Horror Stories

February 27th, 2009

Sadly, today I have added a new category to the site called “Horror Stories” because of everything that has happened with the demolition/excavation company. I’ll be filling in stories behind this one with what’s happened over the last 3 weeks when I have time. Hopefully on the weekend.

Stay tuned folks — it’s getting interesting.

Posted by Colin

All homebuilders should have a private blog

November 29th, 2006

Even if you don’t want to go to the trouble of having to write up your building experiences in syntactically correct detail, you might want to setup a blog for your own private use.

While building your own home, you will only have about 15,000 decisions to make before it’s done. Organizing this much information can be quite daunting. But blogging software such as WordPress and others have the ability to classify your posts into different topics, as you see in the sidebar. This can be a great way to save the myriad little ideas and discoveries you make while working on your project.

I’ve created a second WordPress installation elsewhere just to track all our bits of information in a self-structuring, searchable format. And since it isn’t for anyone’s consumption but our own, it doesn’t take as long to keep up to date as a public blog, like this one.

So when it finally comes time to, say, buy a refrigerator, I’ll be able to quickly search through and find everything I’ve found out thus far about fridges before making a final decision. Handy!

Posted by Colin

New site design

November 18th, 2006

We’ve finally broken away from the default wordpress template to give the site a little more style.

There are more changes to come (e.g., different images to top the pages, different colour scheme, etc.) but I think the basic structure is here to stay.

Posted by Colin

How we got here (technically)

November 4th, 2006

I would be remiss if I didn’t start this blog by commenting on the incredibly useful services that allow you to see this page (and which you may want to use if setting up a site, yourself).

  • We registered the domain with DomainInvestigator. They’ve been my primary registrar for many of sites over the last 5 years. They have decent technical support, good domain administration tools, and excellent pricing.
  • This site is hosted with pair Networks. Pair isn’t just a great host; it’s a great company. The web hosting industry is overrun with horrible companies that are only surviving because of the huge demand for web real estate, and customers who don’t realize their host isn’t supposed to go down from time to time. If you want to host a web site, you want to host with pair. They offer: insanely reliable service; incredibly knowledgeable, fast and efficient phone and email support; very good pricing (incredible pricing, considering what you get); and they only run freeBSD UNIX, so security isn’t nearly the big issue it is, as when your host chooses to run Windows.
  • And the entries you are seeing were all entered, managed, sorted and displayed using WordPress. Their claim of a ‘5-Minute’ install is entirely true! And it’s only taken me about 30 minutes to get this first post live (which included time playing with slogans, titling, colours, setting up users, learning the WordPress interface, and actually writing this post).

One of the hats I wear is as software engineer for the Mac and a variety of web technologies. The first two recommendations above come from years of professional experience with several different providers. But I settled on WordPress after about 10 minutes of research. I had heard it was good, checked it out, and found it was very good. We’ll see if it trips me up over time, but so far it’s been fast and easy!

We’re still using WordPress templates for the site. There will likely be many style changes over the next few months but we really wanted to start documenting our process (we’re already months behind).

More information about how we got here, philosophically, is available in the ‘About’ section on the right.

[Edit (Nov. 18, 2006): It’s now on the left.]

Posted by Colin