Back Up Your Database
What a pain it is to lose your entire database of 3+ years of blogging and commenting. Recently, while playing around with my server, I managed to do just that. Unbelievable. So not characteristic of me. I am usually extremely cautious and the one time I was not … stress set in!
For the last week or two while taking a breather from projects and such I would poke around my external drive and backup directories on my Macbook Pro in search of database archives only to find a single poorly formed text file I created at some point as an experiment in which most of my blog entries and comments were present. The problem with the file being the dates for every entry and comment outputted as the year 1970 and my links table was omitted entirely. Again, stress.
Another wonderful effect to losing your site is that with it go your visitors. All of my friends from Google, referrers and frequent visitors went poof. I never thought I would really care as this site serves more as a hobby/outlet than a professional interface to potential clients (hence the lack of portfolio) but I must admit it pains me slightly to lose you all. Let’s see if I can get you back.
Good Times Coming
In addition to scraping every bit of my hard drive and various sites around the Internet I was granted the opportunity (ho hum) to rebuild this site from scratch. As a fan of technology I frequently experience the compulsion to rebuild this site and thought this the perfect opportunity to do so; Rails and Django were major contenders so off I went to read up on and play around with them. I built a site with Django for a client at work (the only website I have built at MAYA) so I felt comfortable with it though in the end felt it unnecessary to build a site as simple as this in a framework such as Django or Rails.
I will spare you the details but in a two-day period I built versions of this site in Expression Engine, Wordpress, Symphony and ended up with Textpattern (with which the previous incarnation of this site was built). Each publishing tool offers advantages though I feel Textpattern is fundamentally superior in the way its templating system is architected. My familiarity with it and the fact that a plugin most likely exists to meet a functional need made my decision to once again go with Textpattern final.
To Do List
A majority of my content is present on the site at this time though I have yet to:
- complete the links section.
- correct the dates of all my “Daily Bits” entries.
- add some portfolio work.
- add some visual and interaction experiments.
Slowly but surely these items will come to fruition. I am also thinking of entertaining things to do with the interface as I literally threw this layout together in html then added a few details afterwards.
So welcome back friends and do take my advice and maintain a backup of your database for should you loose it you will suffer the pains of stitching it all back together. It is not a fun process.