Merging and Revitalizing

Today I started the process of trying to merge my two WordPress blogs. The older one, from 2005 through 2008, and this one, running from 2010-2011. I have the SQL dump from of the original blog. I think I have the original blog setup: WordPress version and all the plugins. So I loaded the SQL dump and started playing with that. I also had hosted version of the data on a hidden URL. I was able to export the blog data as a WXR file. But I am not sure that this really exports all the data that was in the SQL dump. So I am going to have to try revitalizing the old blog with the old plugins. And then replace the main domain location with localhost or something.

I decided to use MAMP and pull all development to my local machine. I have run into a few challenges.

  1. I have some sort of SQL error in the syntax of my Gallery 2 install (it was a parallel install to the WP install where I posted all of my photos linked to in my posts.) I think I can get by without fixing this error. So this is not really a big deal.
  2. All of my links in my posts have my old domain name in the links. I need to either:
    • Change the old domain to my new domain
    • Change the old domain to new shortcode looking like /?=123 so that the interconnectedness of the posts remains on may new blog where ever I host it.

    Obviously I would prefer the later. But I have two questions:

    1. How would I do that technically? It would require a massive search and replace through the whole SQL database.
    2. What will happen to the new items which come into the altered blog. By this I mean if both blogs have post IDs which start at 1 and go to some higher number. How do I perserve the interconnectedness of the second blog? because the second blog will be connected with short links like /?=123.

MiniCard Review

I have been looking at the WP Theme, MiniCard. It is really cool. The design follows a Tim van Damme style layout.

Tim van Damme's Famous business card layout

I have been playing around with Minicard for some time. I have used it as my splash page for about a year. (I have been using K2 since 2005 so any change in theme is a big step). There are some things I really like and some things I think could be improved upon. (Granted I am using and looking at the free version.) I really like the minimalist business card design. However, one of the things that I find difficult is separating what is too much info from what is just enough. Right now I have quite a few social networks loaded on my front page so, even though it is Minimalist, it is almost not business card. as I had from 2010-2011

Most of my suggestions have to do with the options page, but a few have to do with layout.


  1. A place to store a Child Theme.
    K2 has a really cool way of selecting where the author wants to store their child theme so that when the theme is upgraded the child theme is not written over. Because the Code is GPL’d, I think this code could be copied from K2 into the GPL’d version of MiniCard. Being that the whole Tim Van Damme (TVD) idea is to be unique with style, it seems that Minicard would benefit from embracing child themes by providing a user the option to not just use a child theme, but also facilitate where to store that child theme.
  2. More Networks.
    It seems that it would be really easy for users of MiniCard to use more or some Social networks which are not on the list provided on the options page. I think it is crazy for any user to expect a developer to have anticipated all the possible social networks out there. I went through TVD’s wall of fame just to get some inspiration and noticed a few networks that minicard does not offer out of the box:


    In one of the past revisions to the Minicard theme there was released, an easy way to add a custom social network. This is much improved over earlier versions of this theme. (I think this is still the case in the current 2011 release.)

    The Plug-in Find Me On has an interesting interface for adding new network. It is sort of Drag and Drop. I use this plugin on

  3. A Contact Info page separate from my social networks page.
    One thing that might be helpful too is separating Messaging and Contact from social networks. “Messaging and Contact info” is usually treated differently from “social networks”. That is social network info like skype, aol, google chat, IRC, etc. are not really conceptualized in the minds of the people on the TVD wall of fame as “social networks”. If this information is provided then it most often falls under the “contact” section rather than “my social networks” section. Out of the box MiniCard does not have a contact section, so I can understand how this info is lumped together with the users social networks.

    Perhaps one solution to this is add an optional (included in the theme by default but not active by default) template page that could be added to MiniCard for contact info and pull data from the hCard data as well.

    This contact info page might also display Online Status of Messaging information. One caveat suggestion pertains to aim v.s. iChat. That is the syntax to open these protocols is a little different if the website admin wants ichat to open… it just aint going to work on a windows machine… I am wondering if a little javascript magic might be able to sniff out a OS X machine visiting the site as apposed to a Windows OS and put in the proper syntax for opening up iChat.
    Interesting enough Themeforest had a theme much like MiniCard.

    MiniCard like Theme displaying Contact info

  • Add direct color and background pattern.
    There are more color options “out of the Box” on the pro version of the theme. However, the color options are not as user selectable as they could be. I have seen color wheels and a palates for suggesting associated colors as option panels for selecting css values. A color selector for the background, and the various parts of the theme would be nice.
  • More hCard options:
    MiniCard does support hCard, but as I was looking over the format of hCard I think that more can be embedded in hCard content than what MiniCard allows for out of the box. That is I think that MiniCard could be improved with more fields in the admin section for the site admin to input their data. There is an hCard creator on the Microformats website. It shows the supported values in the hCard speck.
  • Importing Youtube Comments to WordPress

    When I uploaded my first YouTube video, I got some comments and I wanted to reflect them on my blog where I was also displaying my video. Traffic to my blog is important as well as is the permanent record in my database of these comments. However, I need a two way solution. If someone comments on the video on my blog I want those to appear on my YouTube account. I need to Sync comments between my blog and Youtube.

    The Genki YouTube Comments plug-in works well (I use it on my site now.) for pulling comments from YouTube to a WordPress blog:

    However, this is only half the sync. I have yet to find a solution for when someone comments on a WordPress blog that the comment is then sync’d over to YouTube. If someone knows a solution for this then please share.

    Dictionary term markup on Wiktionary

    I have recently been looking at dictionary entries across the internet and have been surprised at the unused status of the xhtml elements
    • <dt> Definition Term
    • <dl> Definition List
    • <dd> Definition
    So I thought I would take a look at what the people at Wiktionary are using in their Mark-up. I went over to the English entry for language and took a look at the Wiki Syntax for input and at the xhtml output for the page. Continue reading


    This past weekend I had the opportunity to play Agricola for the first time. It is an interesting game. I have played it a few times now. Twice with 4 people and twice with 2 people. It takes a while to wrap one’s head around the game play. But once I got it I had to evaluate it. The verdict is in. I would rather play Ticket to Ride than Agricola. Agricola is a great game, don’t get me wrong, it has many intricate plays, and a lot of variety. It is completly a different game as a two player game than it is as a four player game. – it is just that it takes too long to put the pieces back in the box.

    Seriously though for the brain strain that it causes (and I enjoy brain strain) I would rather play Ticket to Ride.

    Interoperability of online dictionary data: 
 A test case using WordPress as a CMS

    Linked data is an effort to enhance applications and thereby lives with structured knowledge. This structure at its core is developed by human interaction. The challenge to consumers of linked data is to convince holders of unstructured data to structure it into actionable, manipulatable knowledge. Continue reading

    The British Kerfuffle

    I was rather shocked when I heard about the Riots in the UK. The UK‽ Really‽ That’s different. Kind of disturbing really.Jamie Oliver’s Restaurant was burnt. Why? This is perhaps the saddest news out of England in the last 48 hours. (Not that the BBC’s Photographs don’t make the situation look like a scene from V for Vendetta.)

    BBC Map of UK Riots

    UK Riots

    I got to thinking about some of the implications of the reporting coming out of the BBC.

    Officers believe some rioters have used BlackBerry Messenger – a service allowing users to send free real-time messages – to organise violence.I often see the words gang and masked youths used in reporting. One must keep in mind that gangs in the UK do not mean the Crips and Bloods, rather a more generic idea of swarm of people. Also keep in mind that the UK has more street video cameras and video surveillance than any other country, so wearing a mask is logical for this kind of activity.

    And I was told that there was some use of social media platforms like FaceBook and Twitter. In particular, Facebook groups. Allegedly, locals on Facebook were reporting the groups as fast as they were being created. An interesting social dynamic as opposing social forces collide. I got to thinking about these alleged locals using social media and wondered: What if someone who was not in the UK was organizing or creating the Facebook groups. That would be something. It would be a way that sympathizers who were not local or in the UK could lend a hand to people on the ground. This lead me to think about how would law enforcement react to this sort of help to the rioters.

    Law in the U.S.A. is different than in the U.K. But none the less if it were in the U.S. and people were to lend a hand then those lending a hand might be considered to be Terrorist. Using the definition preferred by the state department, terrorism is: “Premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant* targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence an audience.” [Quote taken from The definition of terrorism]It seems though that this definition agrees with what I read in the Patriot Act some years ago. It also agrees with Wikipedia and One thing that I see in the current news is that there is no political motivation. So some might say that this is not terrorism because it lacks motive.

    But if it were terrorism, and the individuals were known through FaceBook, would the UK ask for their extradition to the UK? – to put them on trial as terrorists? Would UK law apply outside of the UK? If the person is creating a FaceBook group and is doing from outside of the UK and several blokes join a group does that make the creator of the group a terrorist? and also guilty of breaking UK law? Can someone break another country’s law without leaving their current country – even country of citizenship? What gives the UK legal rights prosecute?

    The other thing which is disturbing in this social media business is the global social reaction to the difference between what is happening in the UK right now and what happened in Libya, Morocco, Egypt, and Syria earlier this year. Social media was part of that unrest as well, however, political motivation was definitely part of that. Yet the rioting was deemed to be for a “worthy” cause. Yet if the same actions were taken in the U.S. we would call it Terrorism. I think The Guardian really points out some of the idiosyncrasy of the U.S. definition and the application of the term Terrorism as it relates to crime.