Archive for February, 2012

Web Developers Do it on the Internet

Tuesday, February 28th, 2012

According to Google, there is no other instance of “Web developers do it on the Internet” on the entire internet. I had to rectify that.

If you’re perplexed, allow me to introduce you to an ancient meme that is so old, it predates the internet. Expressions of this meme follow the format: [professional or hobbyist title]s do it [thing relating to that profession]. For example, “Swimmers do it in the water”, “Nuns do it out of habit”, etc.

Freelancing is hard: How many web sites do I need?

Friday, February 17th, 2012

I’ve lamented before about separation of online identities, but now I’m wondering how many web sites I need.

I have about two web sites: and this one. This one is exclusively for my own enjoyment. If it stops amusing me, I’ll stop maintaining/hosting it. The purpose of is to sell myself as a skilled web developer.

My business license is under the name KJ Coop Web Development. I didn’t come up with something more creative for the same reason I don’t have any tattoos: I couldn’t think of anything I wouldn’t be sick of in 2 years or less. My Facebook page is KJ Coop Web Development. In the interest of covering all my bases, I bought and a couple variants on it. Now I find myself wondering if I should develop it separately than

In short, I’ve developed a learned form of schizophrenia wherein I ask myself if I-the-human am acting, or if I-the-business-owner am doing the acting. I-the-human have a portfolio. I-the-business-owner have services. Code samples might apply to both. Both might have some kind of “about” section, but they’ll contain different things.

As much as I enjoy freelancing, I-the-human may someday seek to return to stable, nine-to-five employment. I’ll still want to impress potential employers with my portfolio and code samples. I-the-business-owner will be mostly dormant, maybe coming to life on the odd occasion that freelance work finds me. Maybe I will let lapse, maybe not.

Meanwhile, I have only so many hours in my day. It means one more web site to maintain, one more ongoing project on my list. Having one more web site sounds like a great way to be busy without being productive.

I don’t have a conclusion. I’m still going back and forth in my own head. I suspect that it’s not hugely important which way I choose, which means it’s probably not worth the effort. Maybe some day, when I-the-human and I-the-business owner have grown apart, the need for separate sites will be obvious.

Silly spam

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

I’ve currently got 3 spam messages in my Yahoo spam box, and they’ve all got pretty hilarious senders:

Senders include ErectGrow™, FBI Director Robert Mueller II! and FROM CAPTAIN ANTHONY, AMERICAN SOLDIER

In order to be taken seriously, I always include my profession and extraneous punctuation after my name: KJ COOP! AMERICAN PROGRAMMER™

I also how I could the first one indicates the upper limit as 3+. So, 4?

Links for the week – I want to want a tablet, but I don’t.

Monday, February 13th, 2012

After missing last week, I was determined to get this published Sunday night. I consider myself successful, because for me, it’s still Sunday night, even though most of the other people in my time zone are arriving at their Monday workday about now.

Twilight Brain Dump #1: Introduction and Links

Saturday, February 11th, 2012

For a while, my favorite hobby was embarrassing Eric when he had friends over by telling all his friends how much I love Twilight. There are three major components to my love for it:

  1. I enjoyed it as a brainless romance novel.
  2. I enjoy snarking on it, because despite my sincere enjoyment of it, there are quite a few areas one can legitimately poke fun at
  3. Analyzing the messages presented in the book.

This whole post is full of spoilers, and if you have any intention to read the book, you should go do that before you read this post.

The most salient of the many criticisms I’ve read of the series is the way it idealizes abusive relationships. I would think long and hard before I’d give this to a tween or any impressionable person. It also glorifies the failure to (as cleolinda so charmingly put it) put on your big girl panties and deal with things.


For the lulz

Serious internet

How to never again see WordPress’ update nag – no plugin necessary

Wednesday, February 8th, 2012

One reason I like WordPress is because they come out with frequent updates. When you run a WordPress site, it checks periodically for new versions. It reminds you with a helpful little yellow bar at the top. It feels great to install a new version, be up to date, and get rid of the nag. However, because of their awesome frequent updates, it also means you’re only ever free of that annoying reminder for a couple days.

A screenshot of the annyoing yellow bar

While it’s important to keep software up to date, I do have a life beyond updating WordPress. I wanted to get rid of that yellow nag once and for all. There are a couple plugins to disable it, but I don’t see any sense in adding more code (and more plugins to update) when I can just add one line to a stylesheet. So, here is how to rid of it at the cost of 13 characters per page load*:

Open wp-admin/css/colors-fresh.css. All newlines and extraneous spaces have been stripped from the file in the interest of speedier loading (this file loads anew every time you load a page in your Dashboard). Search for: #update-nag

In my version of WordPress, it starts on line 11593 of 34572. Expanded, it looks like the following:
#update-nag, .update-nag {
    background-color: #FFFBCC;
    border-color: #E6DB55;
    color: #555555;

Add the following after the opening curly bracket:
    display: none;

When you refresh the admin page, the update nag will be gone forever.

However! With great power moustache CSS comes great responsibility. The WordPress developers made such a prominent prompt because keeping software up to date is important. There are often important security improvements between versions. If you turn off the nag, you still have a responsibility to yourself, your users and The Internet at large to keep WordPress reasonably up to date. Put a recurring item in your calendar to update about once a month.

*You could also eliminate all the other styling applied to the now-invisible element and end up with fewer characters than you started.

How people perceive California

Sunday, February 5th, 2012

After a friend posted this on Facebook, I was moved to create this graph that has been bouncing around in my head for a while:

Northern California = San Francisco, Southern California = LA/San Diego, Central and East San Diego don't exist.

In contrast with reality

Also, can we all realize that San Francisco is in the middle of California and stop using using “San Francisco” and “Northern California” as synonyms? There are 300 miles of California north of San Francisco.

Similar to My Little Pony

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

After hearing many good things about the latest My Little Pony incarnation, Friendship is Magic, I looked it up on Netflix. It offered some unexpected similar titles: Suggestions shown are The Border and Charlie Jade