Tuesday, September 22, 2009

On Focus, Confidence and Building a Business

My daughter has been sick with a persistent cough that has kept all of us awake at night. After getting about four hours sleep, she woke us up. After my wife finally got her asleep, I was still awake. Every time I dozed off, I immediately woke up. I kept thinking about my Tai Chi school and what I need to do to get it rolling.

Lately, I've been struggling with what I need to do. When I was laid off over a year ago, my plan was to take on project work because I wanted to be my own boss. It never materialized like I wanted it too. When I got my certification to teach Tai Chi in February, I started to plan my Tai Chi school.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

New Twitter Goodies

I was trying to find a new twitter widget for Blogger to show my Twitter updates. The one I'm using now, which is the same that is included in WordPress as well, is plain and boring looking. I came across a new widget from Twitter. Not only did they update the look of the original widget, but they added a new widget to show updates based on search criteria!

You can find the new widgets here: http://twitter.com/goodies/widgets

I tried the new widget on this blog, and it didn't look quite right. The header was too tall and the updates didn't scroll properly. So I had to revert to the original.

I tried the new widget on my Rivyoohoo site and it looks great. There are a few parameters that you can modify. The author of the widget Dustin Diaz has a blog post that explains some of these options.

Showing twitter updates based on search criteria is really cool. I can't wait to find a place to use that functionality.

Twitter also updated the widgets for Facebook and Myspace.

If you need to revert to the old widgets, you can find them here: http://twitter.com/badges.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Blog Mods

For the 6 readers and 1 friend (I had 7 readers, but one dropped out, probably because I post too much :-)), you may have noticed a slight change in how my blog posts are displayed. I've been doing a lot of work in WordPress lately for several projects. One of the things I really like about WordPress is the ability to show an excerpt on the main page with a link to read more. This helps to keep the main page clean (as long as you don't overload the sidebars with widgets).

Blogger does not support this feature natively. By editing the HTML of your template and some optional "magic" tags in each post, you can mimic the excerpt functionality. This isn't for the faint of heart and requires some technical skill. I found the following post very helpful:


To get it to work properly, I had to translate the & tags to the proper character.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Time Is An Illusion

My daughter starts school next week and my thoughts (as incoherent as they are) turn to what I'll do with all the "free" time I'll have. Since being laid off last year (exactly one year tomorrow), I've spent most of my days taking care of my daughter, surfing the web, making lunch, doing the laundry, helping my wife with the technical side of her jewelry business, looking for freelance projects and starting up my Tai Chi school I suppose my days won't change too much, except my daughter won't be here, but they do need to change.