Imported From Epistula Projects


This is what it will do.

Every day, it will download and process the information for every TV channel I recieve, using XML-TV and store it in a website. It would then display this information and allow you to select items that you want to watch. So far, so normal.

Every five minutes, a cron job runs that checks to see if anything that anyone has registered as wanted to watch is going to start in the next five minutes. If so, it will send an email, or IM, or SMS to the person/s who requested such.

This will stop me missing Jonathan Creek and Walking With Cavemen every bloody time.

2003 Imported From Epistula Personal


There are many things you might expect when you wake up on a spring morning.

Today, I was going to go out and get LC’s birthday presant.

Now, It’s snowing.


In mid-april.

Can’t get a white Christmas this year? How about a nice white April?

The world is conspiring against me. I’m going back to bed.

Imported From Epistula intertwingularity webRPG

Please stop hanging around

So this is what we find.

In the last days of March 2003, nobody could have imagined that forces beyond the imagination of average were conspiring to make Aquarion Kael D’Blue’s life more complicated than necessary. Necessary, in this case, being… well, at all would be nice.

The house hasn’t happened. I’m still homeless, still staying with Pol & Supermouse in the wilds of Aylesbury, still trying to get back the deposit for the old place, still recovering the extra rent they took by accident, still trying to resolve the new flat before I wear out my welcome here.

I hate, with a passion unholy, this, because I should have moved in last week, I should have sorted my life out, and even with the crap at the end of last month, I should have moved in by last weekend. To be fair, this isn’t all my fault, but it’s still annoying.

The results of this are severalfold. Not only has it resulted in the creation of Point First d4, quick and painful replacement for the dead 2d10 site – in three days flat, but also a number of minor (mostly internal) additions to Forever (Including the RSS feed, and the ability to add new users, which has apparently been dead since December) but also a bug & suggestion tracking system (Not written, but installed, in the form of Anthill, a PHP Bugzilla-like) for all the various Aquarionic systems (Epistula, Afphrid, Aqcom & PFd4) and I’ve also started on a redesign (You can act all suprised now) which, whatever it ends up being, will be less orange than Simon’s.

In less technological news, I’ve been helping Pol & Supermouse do such things as put up fencing, trellising and posts. Also clearning out server rooms, putting things into lofts, and watching copious amounts of really, really bad TV curtosy of my first detailed exploration of the anchient art of having hundreds of channels of bad TV at my summoning.

In conclusion, Samuri Jack is quite good, but most of them should have been shot at birth. Oh, and Graham Norton is So Very Annoying. Conclusion ends.

Oh, and we appear to have succeeded in invading Iraq, leading to lots of incredibly cinematic pictures of US Troops – ably assisted by grateful residents – destroying statues. I mean, you couldn’t arrange for such cinematic footage. Sorry, I’m being cynical again.

Does that mean we can get back to the important things, like new XML specs, Grad school, Personality Defects and the value of scemantic markup? apart, of course, from those who never left it. I tell you what, I’ve got this great idea for how to communicate between weblogs, and it involves carrier pigeons with the evil bit set

Imported From Epistula webRPG


I did it. I went from zero to a fully functional, reasonably complex RPG system in three days, including a day of database design and design docs.

It doesn’t have private messaging yet, though that’s coming soon, but that would be the only major thing it’s missing. I have to make the interface a little more intuitive, make the system explain itself more, and add the nice fripparies like ESF/RSS feeds of games (And also the game archives) and stuff, but the basic RPG system is there. Woo-hoo.

On top of that, LoneCat is in Aylesbury for a bit, Yay, and Vanderpumps are being annoying about the flat (boo).

epistula Imported From Epistula webRPG


I’ve given up on the cross-referencing thing until I’m less busy and the world is less caught up in Other Events. In the meantime…

2d10 went down last weekend. 2d10 was a generic message board type site designed for online RPGs. In this, it didn’t do badly, though the interface didn’t like Mozilla very much, but it sucked in many small yet annoying ways. I never used it, though several of my friends were involved in a game on it, so I got to overhear them discussing which bits worked and didn’t, and over time an idea for a better but similer system came about.

But, as I say, 2d10 went down last weekend, and doesn’t look like coming back any time soon. The GM of the game my friends are in mentioned that if it isn’t back by Monday, he’ll find somewhere else, and at that point my plans kicked into overdrive. From a borrowed laptop somewhere in the depths of Aylesburyian suburbia, Aquarionics Industries is bringing you Point First D4, a quick and painful 2d10 replacement which will get more features (and a better name) as it develops.

It’s being done in – you’ll be suprised at this – PHP with a MySQL backend and because my nice database libraries are all in storage the code is going to be a little dirty and kludgy until I get them back. Currently I have a design document and a lot of ideas, but first we must make basic functionality work, which will be Fun.

Observant readers my also have noticed the brand new addition to my increasingly cluttered right-hand bar in the shape of the return of the “New & Cool” box that has been on AqCom since feb2000, but got lost in the design about a year and a half ago. The data has been migrated, the box renamed, the archive coded, now I just have to add new things.

computing Imported From Epistula


Oh well, apparently the fast moving world of commenting on other ideas appears to have moved on to Javascript. RSS and talking to other sites is _so_ last quarter.


Maybe I should compain about the war that I can’t do anything about, that’s all anyone else seems to be doing nowadays anyway.

Imported From Epistula intertwingularity

Crossreference Theory

This is what I want to happen:

I write an entry on Pingback and how good it is compared to Trackback. I crossreference it (Like the links in the entry below) automatically to the Trackback weblog and Pingback spec using the respective technology, manually link it to pingback v trackback and also file it under the Intertwingularity category here, and give it the added keywords “Pingback”, and “Trackback” So far, so manual.

Epistula then automatically links to the last couple of entries I’ve made in that category over the last few months, as well as any document in the category that appears to be popular (In this case, the ESF spec).

At this point, Epistula has done everything it can to crossreference things internally (It could, optionally, add some things that are relevant to ESF, but deciding what is relevant is a little complex) so we move one step forward and do a websearch (using the “Google <acronym title="Application Programming Interface>API) for “pingback”, “trackback”, and “pingback trackback” and publishing the first few results, priority given to any link that appears on both or all three of those lists. This would also crossreference the entry to 0xDECAFBAD and some others. Also, I’d do the same thing with Feedster results (Though the keywords would have to be better) and possibly Daypop, once again prioritising things that appear in more places. That has to have a user input, though, since the results aren’t always relevant to the article, though always to the keywords.

Again, so far, so internal, and very much an automatic thing, a global thing, rather than any kind of prioritising towards people whose views I respect and/or care about. Nothing, in other words, that is directly relevant to my opinions or articles. Better would be the ability to join categories together, which is why everyone should export as XFML. That way I could say Simon’s category on Webservices is roughly equivalent to my category on “Intertwingularity” and so I if he’s been taking about the same sort of things I have in the last week they’ll be linked. Then I can also decide that anything with the keyword “Floz” is equivalent to Sarabian’s category Web Coding and Design. Should I want to. Well, I could

The problem is that all this requires other people to have XFML feeds, and they don’t. So do 😛

epistula Imported From Epistula


I have a connection thanks to the unceasing efforts of Pol, so stuff is happening.

Well, would be. I’m currently still waiting for the references to come though for the new place (V&W have said “Soon”. I am failing to hold my breath over the prospect) whilst staying with Pol & Supermouse and avoiding redesigning Aqcom.

I was halfway though a April Fools thing for this place, where I redesigned the entire site to be pink and bright green with animated gifs for all sections and the titles and the most deeply horrible colour scheme my fevered mind could come up with, but four days of moving boxes, getting places, tidying houses and generally being stressed has put paid to that idea. Photos of the move and the rest of the March 03 Photo Collection will be up as soon as I have my scripts that will do it nicely back, as well as the rest of my life, spread currently between Kent, Bedford & Reading (Two locations therein).

Wednesday/Thursday, as I said, ccooke moved out, Friday my dad came up and we moved one load of stuff to the storage place in Reading, Saturday my mum & brother joined us and dad & Ben wandered to Reading whilst mum & me cleared out my room. Adrian O, star that he is, volunteered to look after some stuff too, so we filled up all three cars (Ben’s, Dad’s & Adrian’s) and sent them to their various homes. Then on Sunday LC’s parents arrived to rescue her stuff, we delivered stuff to the tip before they escaped too, and then Pol volunteered to pick us up (To take her home and me here). Supermouse and Pol both helped us do the final cleaning up bits whilst I was being shattered and LC was being ill (allergy to dust is terrible, and moving everything wasn’t helping) and then we left the Geekhouse in Cambridge for the final time ever.

So, once again because of circumstances completely within my control but which I screwed up anyway, I am of no fixed abode for a little while. I really should have got organised better this time. Anyway…

Whilst sitting here temporarily connectionless (Actually, whilst sitting in Cambridge between the server going offline and me doing so) I had a couple of Epiphanies on how I should do crossreferencing of external sites and stuff, but which is going to take a bit of work. In the meantime, I should document a couple of things before they go online, like the new RSS2 module I’m working on. Blogiters should hear about it soon…

In more “Parish Announcements” stuff, the Misc section is back online after a three month absence, including fully working versions of the Timecapsules – Aquarionics as it looked in 1999 & 2000 – and the blogite archives. And Epistula’s caching appears to have a bug where it doesn’t wipe article name cached pages when they are updated. Case issues, I suspect. Ah well, something to fix…