Politics Continued

I got quite a few emails regarding the comments on Governor Vilsack’s campaign website. Most supported my postition that the Governor should have kept the website contract within the state of Iowa. It was far from unanimous, though. As evidenced by today’s GnomeVOICE, some thought that picking the company to build the website based on where they’re located was a wrongheaded approach. I do understand that logic, and respect the opinions expressed. If, in fact, any consideration had been given to Iowa companies, I’d also agree. But, this looks like an “old boy network” job. As far as I can tell, no companies from Iowa were even given consideration. Then again, I haven’t yet gotten a response from the Vilsack campaign, so it’s tough to tell.

There was also a considerable amount of email on the new haircut. I laughed out loud at most of the comments. One thought Hunter S. Thompson had kidnapped me. That, of course, led to a thread about “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” Another noted the resemblance to Morpheus of “The Matrix” fame. Perhaps the funniest was:

I am out of work and out of money. I gave thought to doing my own haircut to save money, after seeing your photo I’ll find the money for a haircut somewhere.

How funny. Some even made reasonable guesses as to whether the picture was altered in Gimp, and suggestions as to how it might have been done. It’s real, I assure you. Initially, I thought about keeping it smooth. That is, until I realized it was going to take shaving it every three or four days. I’m neither that handy with a razor nor too inclined to give it that much effort. So, it’s growing back in. For now, I’ll just call it a glimpse of things to come.

As I noted last week, I’m using the computer at home for some other development work that’s unrelated to the Lockergnome stuff Jake and I are working on. Despite my newfound love of Debian, I needed to get up and running quickly to catch up on lost time with these projects. I landed on Mandrake 8.2 as the distribution to use. Again, it was simply a matter of expediency. The install routine was everything you’d expect from Mandrake. All the fru-fru stuff was probed and configured properly, and I had a working install with MySQL and PHP4 within an hour. Sometimes I’m still amazed at the advances in Linux installs over the past few years. I had an easier time with the Mandrake install than I had with the last Win2k install on the same machine. There was a time when I, among many others, never thought we’d see that day.

With that done, I managed to spend most of the weekend writing PHP code and MySQL tables and connections. Somewhere along the line, I’ve managed to lose most of my PHP library, which was pretty considerable. Even though I feel a bit handicapped by starting from scratch, there’s something to be said for good old fashioned hand coding. I love the power, logic and simplicity of the PHP/MySQL combination. It’s almost a rediscovery to write some of this code again. With my obsessive nature and lots of coffee, I managed to get caught up and, in some areas, a bit ahead on the other projects. The next big one will be a complete redesign/rebuild of my company’s website. The state it’s currently in just supports the old saw, “The cobbler’s kids never have new shoes.” Sometimes, the stuff that’s closest to the heart takes a back seat to the stuff that pays.