I’m working on an existing registration page which included a gender selection option: male, female, undisclosed. Since the site is going to Transport Canada for approval, I asked if they accepted the undisclosed option. My client then proceeded to give me a brief history - with sources - of why it should be wrong to include gender selection on registration forms and the difference between ‘gender’ versus ‘sex’.
Magento just told me to royally go fuck myself. Luckily I take snapshots of everything before trying anything and was able to restore everything. Hopefully I’ll have better luck migrating this website next time.
( I work as a freelance designer and developer for my previous employer. I still maintain their clients' websites. I received the following emails to replace some images on a client's website. The client and my employer's tech apparently had a phone conversation of what exactly needed to be done. I was never in on that phone conversation. )
Client:As per my phone conversation with Tech, please replace these pictures.
Tech:Client would like this work done [ forwards client email ]
Me:Could I get a transcript of your conversation between the two of you?
Client:I'd like to get this done soon. [ forwards their original email ]
Tech:[ forwards their original email forward ]
Me:I still don't know what to do... Could you tell me what images need replaced on what web pages?
( Tech doesn't responds. The client doesn't respond. During this time, even my employer tells me he's as lost as I am. A week later I get another email. )
Client:Has the work been completed on our website and pictures?
In six seconds, you’ll hate me.
But in six months, you’ll be a better writer.
From this point forward—at least for the next half year—you may not use “thought” verbs. These include: Thinks, Knows, Understands, Realizes, Believes, Wants, Remembers, Imagines, Desires, and a hundred others you love to use.
The list should also include: Loves and Hates.
And it should include: Is and Has, but we’ll get to those later.
Until some time around Christmas, you can’t write: Kenny wondered if Monica didn’t like him going out at night…”
Instead, you’ll have to Un-pack that to something like: “The
mornings after Kenny had stayed out, beyond the last bus, until he’d had to bum a ride or pay for a cab and got home to find Monica faking sleep, faking because she never slept that quiet, those mornings, she’d only put her own cup of coffee in the microwave. Never his.”
Instead of characters knowing anything, you must now present the details that allow the reader to know them. Instead of a character wanting something, you must now describe the thing so that the reader wants it.
Instead of saying: “Adam knew Gwen liked him.” You’ll have to say: “Between classes, Gwen had always leaned on his locker when he’d go to open it. She’s roll her eyes and shove off with one foot, leaving a black-heel mark on the painted metal, but she also left the smell of her perfume. The combination lock would still be warm from her butt. And the next break, Gwen would be leaned there, again.”
In short, no more short-cuts. Only specific sensory detail: action, smell, taste, sound, and feeling.
Typically, writers use these “thought” verbs at the beginning of a paragraph (In this form, you can call them “Thesis Statements” and I’ll rail against those, later). In a way, they state the intention of the paragraph. And what follows, illustrates them.
“Brenda knew she’d never make the deadline. was backed up from the bridge, past the first eight or nine exits. Her cell phone battery was dead. At home, the dogs would need to go out, or there would be a mess to clean up. Plus, she’d promised to water the plants for her neighbor…”
Do you see how the opening “thesis statement” steals the thunder of what follows? Don’t do it.
If nothing else, cut the opening sentence and place it after all the others. Better yet, transplant it and change it to: Brenda would never make the deadline.
Thinking is abstract. Knowing and believing are intangible. Your story will always be stronger if you just show the physical actions and details of your characters and allow your reader to do the thinking and knowing. And loving and hating.
Don’t tell your reader: “Lisa hated Tom.”
Instead, make your case like a lawyer in court, detail by detail.
Present each piece of evidence. For example: “During roll call, in the breath after the teacher said Tom’s name, in that moment before he could answer, right then, Lisa would whisper-shout ‘Butt Wipe,’ just as Tom was saying, ‘Here’.”
One of the most-common mistakes that beginning writers make is leaving their characters alone. Writing, you may be alone. Reading, your audience may be alone. But your character should spend very, very little time alone. Because a solitary character starts thinking or worrying or wondering.
For example: Waiting for the bus, Mark started to worry about how long the trip would take…”
A better break-down might be: “The schedule said the bus would come by at noon, but Mark’s watch said it was already 11:57. You could see all the way down the road, as far as the Mall, and not see a bus. No doubt, the driver was parked at the turn-around, the far end of the line, taking a nap. The driver was kicked back, asleep, and Mark was going to be late. Or worse, the driver was drinking, and he’d pull up drunk and charge Mark seventy-five cents for death in a fiery traffic accident…”
A character alone must lapse into fantasy or memory, but even then you can’t use “thought” verbs or any of their abstract relatives.
Oh, and you can just forget about using the verbs forget and remember.
No more transitions such as: “Wanda remembered how Nelson used to brush her hair.”
Instead: “Back in their sophomore year, Nelson used to brush her hair with smooth, long strokes of his hand.”
Again, Un-pack. Don’t take short-cuts.
Better yet, get your character with another character, fast.
Get them together and get the action started. Let their actions and words show their thoughts. You—stay out of their heads.
And while you’re avoiding “thought” verbs, be very wary about using the bland verbs “is” and “have.”
“Ann’s eyes are blue.”
“Ann has blue eyes.”
“Ann coughed and waved one hand past her face, clearing the cigarette smoke from her eyes, blue eyes, before she smiled…”
Instead of bland “is” and “has” statements, try burying your details of what a character has or is, in actions or gestures. At its most basic, this is showing your story instead of telling it.
And forever after, once you’ve learned to Un-pack your characters, you’ll hate the lazy writer who settles for: “Jim sat beside the telephone, wondering why Amanda didn’t call.”
Please. For now, hate me all you want, but don’t use thought verbs. After Christmas, go crazy, but I’d bet money you won’t.
For this month’s homework, pick through your writing and circle every “thought” verb. Then, find some way to eliminate it. Kill it by Un-packing it.
Then, pick through some published fiction and do the same thing. Be ruthless.
“Marty imagined fish, jumping in the moonlight…”
“Nancy recalled the way the wine tasted…”
“Larry knew he was a dead man…”
Find them. After that, find a way to re-write them. Make them stronger.
I host an Ubuntu box on my home network. I use it mainly as a NAS and host all of my media and backup files. This includes personal files that I don’t want others to access.
Originally I would remote into my server, change the Samba config, restart the service, access files, change the Samba config to re-apply the veto attribute, and restart the service again. It worked, but it was a hassle. Now I’ve got something even better!
[end-of-line] comment = Media drive path = /media/end-of-line veto files = /media/end-of-line/Private browseable = yes guest ok = yes read only = no
[private] comment = Private data path = /media/end-of-line/Private browseable = no guest ok = yes read only = no
This setup hides the Private directory on my media drive so no one can see or browse to it from there. The second share which accesses the Private directory has the ability to be hidden and user / pass protected. Right now I only hide it so I have to browse it by specifying \server\private in my explorer navigation bar.
Given no one else on my network knows how to use the navigation bar, or know how I’ve set up my shares, or the password to my server, I’m rather safe.
I stumble upon this today when writing some code that would manipulate the session super global. $_SESSION requires a key when pushing values into it lest it throws a Notice: Unknown: Skipping numeric key 0. in Unknown on line 0. What does that mean? You can’t do $_SESSION = "value";.
A great reply on PHP.net’s bug report by aerosox which enlightened me as to why I was encountering this:
Just to elaborate a little bit on why this didn’t work for future readers. register_globals. PHP 5.4 has removed support for register_globals, so going forward you can in fact use numeric keys with $_SESSION.
$_SESSION is a super global variable and they were treated “special” with register_globals. One of the things that makes a super global special is that it exists in all scopes without needing to use the ‘global’ keyword. With register_globals the other thing that made it special is that it creates variables for all of the child elements automatically… again in all scopes.
$_SESSION['username'] = 'Test';
The above would also set a variable $username = ‘Test’; So if there was a $_SESSION = 'Test'; It would attempt to set $1 = 'Test' which is not allowed. So when jani said it was not possible to change, what was meant was it was not possible to change without 6 years of planning to remove register_globals support.
I think I figured out why this mouse has been discontinued.
It uses 2.4GHz frequency to connect to its receiver. What else uses 2.4GHz? Wireless N. So what..? It means there’s interference when transferring data on a wireless network and the mouse will lag/not respond all together.
I noticed this a year back when I needed to transfer large amounts of data from my laptop to my network. All of a sudden my mouse was lagging. I instantly knew what was going on. Unfortunately there isn’t much you can do. Especially when you can’t administer the network. It was an inconvenience but rarely happened. I only remembered about it now since I did a large transfer.
Despite that, the MX Revolution has been the best mouse I’ve ever used. It works well on any surface(even detects glass though poorly) and the battery..! The battery is the most incredible aspect. It charges in 20 - 30 minutes and lasts for a week. And this is still after using it for several years.
Another big downfall — although not hardware related — would be the drivers. Logitech completely borked them a couple years back and now I can’t map the buttons properly. I originally bought the mouse because it had five addition buttons to use in gaming yet now I can’t bind those five buttons what so ever.