2008: Week 1 Down, 51 To Go

Break has been busy, That “little” project from before the semester began is consuming most of my time now. Grades finally came in, made the Dean’s List, third semester in a row. With that semester behind me, things should be getting better from here on out.

My ZEN gets much better battery life than my Zen Micro does now, it about a 3:1 battery life ratio. In the office I’m getting about 2 to 3 days worth of continuous music play, which equates to about 20 hours, add in the hour of Family Guy videos that I watched, I’d say the 30 hour estimated life for audio is achievable. The Micro was giving me fits while on campus, not even lasting the full day on the longer days near the end of the semester (cold weather was partially to blame).

Speaking about that “little” project, coming soon will be a list (yeah I know lists suck) of bad programming practices and why you should never follow them. Let’s just say words can not describe my hatred for global variables in C/C++ that has been aroused by this project’s old code. If you excessively use global variables you should be shot, plain and simple. I hesitantly give thanks for Visual Studio every time I come across one of these globals (the find all references command is very useful when it works), without it things would be taking much longer than they already are.

-John Havlik

[end of transmission, stay tuned]

The Berry Experiment

Originally the concept was to be highly modular, allowing for flashy yet quickly loading design. This concept still has yet to be met, mainly due to a lack of time. Blu-Berry, a rather bastardized version of the vision for Berry, remains the incomplete theme powering this blog. Its introduction was a stop gate measure as WordPress 2.1 had some changes that broke the blog with the theme it replaced. Some have inquired on the link to download the theme. When the time comes Berry will be released to the masses.

Despite the incomplete implementation of the vision, I admire Berry (sounds awkward doesn’t it?). When messing around with a few of the images for the holiday season, with the transparencies and such, the thought crossed my mind about the future of this blog and what it will look like for the majority of next year. Nothing new will surface until the end of April, but a three column layout may not be out of the question. Those ugly “date badges” will receive much needed tweaking.

The crib will undergo some much needed organization in the meantime in preparation for changes present in the next Berry. Its a big task, and between other projects time for doing such things is scarce at best.

-John Havlik

[end of transmission, stay tuned]

Iframe-B-Gone 1.0.0

As Christmas approaches one bears early gifts. The first is the release of Iframe-B-Gone 1.0.0. It should greatly help in identifying and removal malicious code that is contained within the wp_posts database table.

This is the first plug-in that one’s written that utilizes the official WordPress way of localization, included in the zip archive is a .po file that can be used in writing translations. If you have created a translation and would like it to be included in the main distribution please leave a comment. Iframe-B-Gone can be downloaded on its project page.

Note that even though this software has been tested in a testbed, it may not be fully ready for production use. Before utilizing the cleaning functions please backup the infected posts, as if any data is lost, or erroneously removed one can not help in restoring that data. This plug-in comes with absolutely no warranty. Use this software at your own risk, and report any bugs that are found. Unless a serious bug is discovered no updates to this plug-in will be released until the first of next year (Breadcrumb NavXT needs some loving).

-John Havlik

[end of transmission, stay tuned]

One Regular Expression

i.?[:punct:]?.?f.?.?.?r.?.?.?a.?.?.?m.?.?.?e

That should find most iframe phrases when used in a SQL query, which I won’t lay out here (fairly easy to do with phpMyAdmin, it’s literally a copy and paste procedure in the “search” form just change the mode to the proper setting). I tested it against over a year and a half of my archives with some purposely planted and obscured iframes and it has no false positives. This will find any iframe obscured via methods found in attacks on Weblogs.us and it’s users. It may be advantageous to remember this for when Iframe-B-Gone is ready.

-John Havlik

[end of transmission, stay tuned]

Breadcrumb NavXT 2.0 Beta 2

No bugs were reported for Beta 1, but I did find a problem with the way the breadcrumb was build for pages. Beta 2 fixes that and not much else. I need feedback and translators. There is now a SVN repository for Breadcrumb NavXT, its over at wp-plugins.org. This version also has a slightly different file structure, the main folder for Breadcrumb NavXT is now breadcrumb-navxt instead of breadcrumb-navigation-xt-2. The change corresponds to the assigned directory in wp-plugins.org.

-John Havlik

[end of transmission, stay tuned]