Can this work?


As anyone that knows me could tell you, I have strange views on what is appropriate technology. I do not have a Facebook page. I don't Twit, whatever the heck that is, and I don't really trust any technology that does things automatically. I also hate batteries, but that is another story. What I DO have, is my own website.

Almost all my pages are Static, meaning they don't, and cannot change unless I manually make changes. Most websites are set up where each page will change for each viewer, with ads and possibly other things changing. They usually use a database and PHP or some other programming language. Plus, Photos and other info might be in a database or some other program.

I have never liked any of these things. I like truly static pages. This works pretty good for articles and text etc. It is not as good for BLOG or Journal type entries but it can work. It is not the best, generally, for photos and such.

A few days ago, I was working with my photos. I was using a program called ZenPhoto. This program works pretty well. You just put your pics in a sub-folder in the Albums Folder, and Zen Photo automatically adds it to the list. If you want special access, passwords, or hidden pics, you need to log in and change these things. I can easily dump my pics to this and anyone can see them. This works well from my tablet, or computer or anywhere. Well, usually. I tried doing an update, but did not do it correctly and screwed things up. It was not hard to fix, and I did. BUT.... It reminded me that I don't like these kinds of programs.

I also use Wordpress for my Blog/Journal. One of the better programs out there. Simple, but lots of options if you like. Easy to edit from my tablet or anywhere. The problem is, it is NOT static. Sure, it works awesome and is easy to backup, but still, I don't have total control. Maybe I am a control freak.

So.... I went in search of ways that suited me better. Many photo viewers, such as Picassa and IrfanView, have an option for making a quick photo page, or slideshow viewer. I can do this manually as well. I like IrfanView because the code is Stone Knife Simple. I can create pages, then edit them later. So..... I updated my site, getting rid of (hiding) my ZenPhoto area and just creating static pages. I like the way it worked out. I had a page with a list of links to my photos, but decided to just keep them with my stories as I have been for quite some time. I still have ZenPhoto and will use it when it makes sense, but it will not be my main way of showing photos.

For my blog, it is so hard to beat Word Press I was not sure if I find something I liked better. I know I can easily create my own posts, I do that for all my big posts. As for Blog like posts, that is easy too, but how to display them? I already put ALL my posts at the bottom of my main menu. This includes copies of my Wordpress Posts, at least any that I feel are worth saving. With wordpress, I can create a way for folks to sign up for notifications via e-mail and have easy commenting ability for my readers. I modified a super simple Blog Theme to be so simple that it does not really meet the specifications, but I don't care. WP also automatically creates RSS feeds that can be used in Google Reader amongst other things. I found a few blogs that use only HTML, or basic web code, that do most of what I wanted. I did not like any of them. They were not, in my opinion, better for me that WordPress. BUT.... I found out how to create my own RSS feeds. It is a bit cumbersome, but I have complete control. I can create automatic e-mailing notification as well, but MIGHT just go back to using my e-mail to send out reminders. Then I am in complete control.

I looked at a few different ways of modifying my posts to make them more readable on tablets and phones without resetting anything. I was able to do it easily, but every phone is different. I like to leave it up to the reader to set their device the way they like best, so I plan on keeping my pages with NO forced settings. If you don't like the way my site looks, it is the fault of your browser and the settings you have.

How will all this work out? I don't know. For now I will keep the WP blog, and just play with my own text style blog. Later, I might make this my real blog. Everything so far is here, along with other articles.

Maybe I should just go back to Smoke Signals.