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New Home

You may have noticed a new look and feel around the site. Yes, after just 5 years I’ve finally updated the theme for the site, changing entire hosts and blogging platforms in the process. The whole thing went so smoothly that it still feels wrong.

  • Hosting Providers – I switched from HostMySite.com (still one of the best hosters ever) to Dreamhost. There were two reasons – I’m doing much more Ruby, and Dreamhost supports that. And Dreamhost has shell access. Besides, I host our other 12-15 sites on Dreamhost, so may as well move it. HostMySite has been so awesome through the years, and rock solid (only one unplanned downtime in the 6+ years I’ve hosted with them).
  • Email – HostMySite uses SmarterMail, which, again, has always been rock solid. The switch meant all of my email moved to Google Apps Hosting. So far I’m not totally satisfied, but I am receiving and sending email. I just don’t particularly like the way Google does things for it. And their use of non-standard ports made it difficult to get everything working on my phone – and I still don’t think it’s working right
  • Blogging Platforms – This was another biggy. I switched from Blogger to WordPress. To make it more difficult, my Blogger account used FTP Publishing. But here’s how wonderful it was:
    • I used Blogger’s Export Blog feature to export my whole blog
    • I then used the Google Blog Converters blogger2wordpress to convert the export file to a WordPress import file
    • I then imported the WordPress import file
    • And all of my posts, comments, and dates showed up
  • Permalinks – Because I switched from Blogger to WordPress, all of my Blogger Permalinks were going to break. So, I made sure WordPress was setup to use the similar structure (date/post-title) as the permalink. Then I took a directory list of my Blogger pages, and sprinkled some Ruby to output a .htaccess file which guessed that the default redirect was basically to remove the .html from the Blogger permalink. I then walked that list with Ruby and open-uri to find out which one’s weren’t that. To my surprise, 75% of them were, so I only had to manually add the redirects for 1/4 of my posts.
  • Other Redirects – I also had to make sure archive pages were redirected, and that users subscribed to my feed got the same thing. So I added redirects for those.

All in all it has gone very smoothly so far. There are some known issues – code-intensive posts seem to not always have come across cleanly, and anything XML related seems to have dropped the tags, so I’ll have to fix that. But for changing hosting platforms, operating systems, email engines, and blogging platforms, I’m pretty happy.

But, if you see any problems, please let me know, and I’ll be happy to fix it right away. Enjoy!