Review: Doctor Who S06E03: The Curse of the Black Spot

Okay, why are the black spots on the palm of the right hand, and in the episode before the recording gizmo thingies were punched into the palm of the right hand? Yeah, you noticed that too, eh? What do you think is the reason? I haven't a clue. Leave a comment below. Anyway, I want to write about the episode, The Curse of the Black Spot. First thing is - it's not a deeply twisted story arc thing, it's an adventure.

Thoughts on The Silence (Doctor Who S06)

In Matt Smith's first season it was the Cracks in Time which was the puzzle. They appeared in every episode and we were told that "Silence Will Fall" the "Pandorica Will Open" etc. Part of the Pandorica/Big Bang episode was the destruction of the Universe and silence (as in no noise) throughout the Universe. Indeed the ending of Vampires of Venice had the Doctor go "shhh" and ask Rory to listen to the silence (no noise). It was fair then to assume when they talked about Silence Will Fall that they meant no noise silence.

Review: Doctor Who S06E02: The Day of the Moon

Okay, that was a rubbish prediction on my part (Connections between Silence in the Library and Impossible Astronaut / Day of the Moon (Doctor Who)) so let's just try and forget about that. And it seemed like such a great idea. That's why The Doctor Who Podcast has that segment for Kooky Theory of the Week, eh?

Potential and fix for Drupal xmlsitemap module to not index nodes

I want to share the solution for a problem I (and it seems others) have had with the Drupal xmlsitemap module. The problem results in zero nodes being indexed in the sitemap which, of course, is an undesired result because the purpose of xmlsitemap is to reliably inform search engines of the nodes on your site so they can more easily index your site. Telling the search engine "I have no nodes" is a kiss of death in terms of getting traffic, that is until the search engine spiders your site and finds everything that way. But they don't spider sites every day.

Connections between Silence in the Library and Impossible Astronaut / Day of the Moon (Doctor Who)

Season 6 of "new Who" opened last weekend with an enigmatic story (the Doctor dies!) containing an enigmatic murderer and many references back to prior Doctor Who episodes (see: Review: Doctor Who S06E01: The Impossible Astronaut). To me the contents of An Impossible Astronaut point strongly to Silence in the Library. Inside the astronaut's facemask is the face of a little girl who we briefly see who, to me, looks like the little girl from Silence in the Library.

Review: Doctor Who S06E01: The Impossible Astronaut

We were rewarded for our long wait since the end of Doctor Who's last season with an inscrutable episode title: The Impossible Astronaut. The episode does feature a strange astronaut character but leaves us with a zillion questions. Of course that's to be expected for the first part of a two-part story, because we are clearly in the throes of "all h__l breaking loose". It was an excellent episode that's also a huge departure from the norms of Doctor Who.

Make your own tiny URL service in Drupal with Shorten or ShURLy modules

Short (or tiny) URL's are great for sharing links on various social media services. Twitter's 140 character limit places a premium on bytes better used for words than URL's, e-mail clients get hinky with long URL's, and so on. It's possible to use services like tinyurl.com or bit.ly to create your short links, but as Drupal users we have a powerful platform at our fingertips. Maybe it can do the short URL natively or maybe it can be programmed to automatically retrieve short URL's from the existing services.

Lulu makes it easy to publish e-books and printed books

I've been looking at e-book publishing and am turning my attention to lulu.com. They've been in business quite awhile and the first I'd heard of them was as a service to help authors put together print books for sale through amazon.com. However they've grown quite a bit and for example now sell books directly on their own website.

Their publisher services include all sorts of printed books, e-books, photo books, calendars, CD's, DVD's, Cookbooks, Poetry, yearbooks, etc.

Re: Google AdSense ad serving has been disabled to your site

Dear Google, this morning I found an email with the subject "Google AdSense ad serving has been disabled to your site". It said that a review of my account "found that you are currently displaying Google ads in a manner that is not compliant with our program policies". What a way to get my attention. Unfortunately you offer zero methods for me to respond to you leaving me very unsatisfied with you as an organization. It leaves me with one resort for making any reply, and that is this open letter to you, in the hope that you will see it.

Dramatic performance effect of enabling the Block Cache Alter module on Drupal 6 websites

I have my websites hosted on Dreamhost VPS's and the other day decided to consolidate some of my sites onto one server. Using the Munin monitoring I've installed (see Use Munin to monitor a Dreamhost MySQL VPS) I could see the CPU utilization on the server was very low - below 15% - indicating that the server had CPU capacity. But a different performance issue showed up after consolidating the sites on one server. Namely the memory allocation had to be increased to 3GB when that server previously ran well at 1.2GB of memory.

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