The Pain of Switching Online File Hosts

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For at least six years now, I’ve stored a large portion of my publicly shared files on my Apple iDisk, which is basically online storage hosted by Apple’s .mac “aka Dot Mac” Service. While there were always a few drawbacks to that service, it was convenient and easy, so I stuck with it a little longer than perhaps I should have. A couple of months ago, I receive notification from Apple that they will be discontinuing the iDisk feature as part of their phasing out of “Dot Mac” and transitioning to their new iCloud service. Unfortunately, they haven’t given me the option of simply having the contents of my iDisk transferred automatically to an iCloud account, so I have until June 2012 to move my files to a new host. While that may sound relatively painless (simply upload my original files to one of the other online storage hosts I already have accounts with), the part that IS a pain in the biscuits is the process for updating the links on all of my blog posts.

Part of what is making this procedure so time-consuming is that Apple (as well as all other online storage hosts, as far as I know) doesn’t allow you to simply use the name of the file you’ve stored on the server as the download link address (the URL). Instead, they assign an encoded name as the URL, which means you cannot tell which file is which by just looking at the URL. For example, if name of file I uploaded was “MY_CAT_IMAGE.png” the url to download that image would look something like this:

http://files.me.com/my_account_name/6802eca119d8716bcaeb7ef68b0e017d

While I can easily figure out what the file named

http://files.me.com/my_account_name/My_CAT_IMAGE.png

contains without having to actually open the file and without having to switch from my blog-editor window to the published version of that particular post to see which image file is supposed to be posted in that location, the same can’t be said when the html code to download an image file uses an encrypted name.

To those of you who have never written a blog post using only an html editor, what I’ve been talking about is probably a bunch of gobbledygook and boring at that. But to my kindred geeksters, if you haven’t already experienced the pain of switching your online file host, beware. The process is not one you’ll want to procrastinate in doing and I highly recommend you have an organized plan as to how you’re going to accomplish the task before you start. I don’t know whether the way I’m going about is the most efficient but it should end up being accurate, meaning I replace all the anchor url’s and image url’s with the correct new addresses and don’t miss any of the links that need to be updated. If anyone out there has their own system for doing this that they’d like to recommend – or discourage its’ use, use the comment link below and share your story!

LAST MINUTE INFO: I just came across this WordPress.org Support Forum post, Updating Links in Old Posts When Things Change. Don’t know whether it’s more efficient than my method as it looks like, from a quick glance, that it really is intended for updating many instances of the same URL. It’s worth checking out if your blogs are self-hosted (i.e. NOT wordpress.com blogs) because it requires you to be able to access the SQL database for your blog.

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

On the freebie menu tonight are some random icons I’ve created recently. Let us know how YOU end up using them!”

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

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OFF THE TOP

WHAT’S NEW ON ZAZZLE

Autumn Flame
Autumn Flame Necktie
The brilliance of autumn colors expressed in this silky, woven necktie speaks volumes about your warmth, passion and creativity. Perfect accent with cool weather corduroy, herringbone, wool, suede, camel’s hair or leather blazers – for men and women!
Stack O'Elephants #1
Stack O’Elephants #1
Whimsical stack of elephants on a family jaunt is part 1 of IconDoIt’s series of Gift Bags that keeps on giving! Fill this with T-Shirts, Mugs or other goodies for that special holiday gift then use it for groceries, crafts, & more! Made from 12oz cotton twill, it has cotton-web handles which have stress-point reinforced stitching. Dimensions: 13″w x 15.5″h x 7″deep.
Stack O'Elephants #3
Stack O’Elephants #3
Whimsical stack of elephants on a family jaunt is part 3 of IconDoIt’s series of Gift Bags that keeps on giving! Fill this with T-Shirts, Mugs or other goodies for that special holiday gift then use it for groceries, crafts, & more! Made from 12oz cotton twill, it has cotton-web handles which have stress-point reinforced stitching. Dimensions: 13″w x 15.5″h x 7″deep.

What The Dormouse Said (The Art of Epilepsy)

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Recent events in my own life reminded me of a blog post titled, “What About Lewis Carroll” by Sadi Ranson-Polizzotti, that I’d found a few years ago concerning the role temporal lobe epilepsy played in the delightful imagination of The Rev. Charles Dodgson (author of such beloved classics as “Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland” that was published in 1865 under his more familiar nom de plume, Lewis Carroll). Finding out I had something in common with one of my literary heroes, Temporal Lobe Epilepsy (also referred to as ‘Complex Partial Seizures’ or ‘Psychomotor Epilepsy’), peaked my interest in finding out more about Dodgson personally and also about other famous authors, artists, and composers who have lived with this diagnosis, and whether medical science has been able to find a cause-and-effect between TLE and the vivid imaginations, mystical experiences, and profuse output of creative works of such persons. While I have not come across a research study that definitively proves or disproves a biological etiology for such traits, I did find an enormous interest among experts in the field of cognitive neuroscience and a plethora of research that appears well on the way to not only proving such a connection but also being able to map it out in the brain.

Is that cool, or what?

In any case, if you’re either a fan of Lewis Carroll, have an interest in Temporal Lobe Epilepsy in general or in learning more about the recent discoveries in Cognitive Neuroscience identifying the exact location(s) in the brain and the environmental and biological triggers that produce highly attenuated senses (visual, auditory, taste, smell and/or touch), out-of-body feelings, paranormal experiences, hyper-religiosity, déjà vu (a feeling of familiarity), jamais vu (a feeling of unfamiliarity), hypergraphia, altered states of consciousness such as euphoria and samadhi, and more, I’ve put together a selection of links that I think you’ll enjoy. At the top of the list you’ll find links to Sadi Ranson-Polizzotti’s blog where she has a number of scholarly articles about Lewis Carroll and Temporal Lobe Epilepsy. I recommend these as a good place to start.

Suitably apropos, this morning’s serving of artwork is built around my interpretation of one of Lewis Carroll’s hand-sketched illustrations that was included in the 1865 first publication of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”. (Special Note: While the images linked below are low-resolution (72 ppi), I’ll be sending off to the printer’s the 600 ppi original file later this week and making the image available through my Zazzle store in poster-size as well as a Greeting Card.)

Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Alice 600

Alice, Not Feeling Quite Herself (600 x 720px)

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Book It, Pops!

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I’m taking a few days off of the computer to enjoy my family and a few good books. I’ll get back to posting next Wednesday (June 23). In the meantime, I wish all you fathers out there (including my own plus me Hubby) a Very Happy Father’s Day! And I’ll leave y’all with this morning’s freebies – two original images sized to print out at 2” x 7” each, at 300 dpi (high resolution). Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art/Bookmarks of the Day

The following images are reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Downloads are 2″ X 7″, 300 dpi, in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Proust Groucho

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Can Art & Poetry Serve A Purpose Without the Story Behind It?

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When I was a young teen, I always kept a small spiral notebook and several Bic pens close at hand in the event I should get the urge to dash off some prose. Society was different back then. It was before “After School Specials” and was when the Victorian-Era attitude that “Children should be seen and not heard” was still pretty much the norm. Anyone who knew me back then would probably tell you I was this happy-go-lucky kid, always ready with a smile and some absurd observation geared to make people laugh and forget their woes. Very few, if any, had a clue what was really going on in my mind and my life. Of course, the same thing was likely true for the other kids at the schools I attended. It’s just the way things were back then. But keeping up the façade of “all is right with the world” was at times an unbearable burden and that’s where my poetry came in

Writing prose was a life-saving outlet back then in the same way that visual art serves me today. It allowed me to vent, to dream, to cry, to wonder, to argue and even to pretend. Early on, I discovered that I had the natural ability to assume the literary voice of any character I read about in a book, saw in a movie, or dreamed up from scratch and write about their feelings as if they were my own. It was really no different than what most authors and actors do, but because I recorded these creative ramblings in a book that had the word “Diary” on it’s cover, anyone who picked it up to read assumed it was all about me. Of course, I hadn’t intended for anyone else to read it but it happened nonetheless, each time causing great suspicion and worry or ruffled feathers or outrage on the part of the unauthorized reader(s). Had they only asked me what the poems were about or what inspired them rather than jumping to erroneous conclusions, a lot of grief could have been avoided. But, as I was still considered a “child” then, it never occurred to my elders that I could possibly have something intelligent to say or that my feelings mattered.

Thank God our society (for the most part) has finally woken up to recognize not only that children DO have opinions and feelings and that they deserve the respect to be heard, but also, most people today realize the importance of being able to share their feelings with others. As a society, we’ve still got work to do in learning how to listen to each other but it is getting better, one individual at a time. And as long as we’re moving forward in the right direction, regardless of how slowly, there is hope.

For tonight’s Freebies, along with a few empty frames for you to fill with your own content, I’ve mixed together a couple of my shorter prose, written when I was teenager with decorative backgrounds I created close to half a century later. These poems served their purpose for me at the time they were written and so now I hope they can serve some purpose for you. It really doesn’t matter any more what or who I was actually thinking about so feel free to interpret them in whatever way you choose.

Free Icons and Clip-Art of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Children Play

“Children Play Games” – 1973 by Leslie Sigal Javorek – (600 x 309px)

Nouveau-FrameNouveau Frame 2

“Art Nouveau Style Frames” – Download size: (600 x 763px)

Listen

“Listen” – 1973 by Leslie Sigal Javorek – (600 x 763px)

Book Opening

“Book Opening” (600 x 595px)

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Art Deco: Icons – or – Clip Art?

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An interesting comment was posted on the forums at MacTHEMES in response to a few previews I had posted of my Art Deco Series when I began noodling with it in 2007. While indicating that he liked my concept, the Poster felt that the execution was more conducive to Clip Art than Icons. I appreciated his comments and must say that when viewing my art at say 48×48 or smaller sizes, that I can certainly see his point. Guess I’m rather spoiled in working on a Mac PowerBook 17 with a resolution of 1920×1200, thus having the real estate to keep my icons at their full OSX 10.4+ size of 128×128 pixels so I can enjoy them and without them being intrusive. I suppose that’s the benefit of being “retired” and no longer having to create work that is acceptable to the general mass market to feed my family. 😉 At the same time, just because I’ve referred to my creations as “icons” doesn’t prevent you creative folks out there from using them as you might if they were advertised as “Clip Art”.

What’s your view? I’m curious to know:

  1. How many of you look upon icons purely as a functional interface element vs. as functional AND “eye-candy”?
  2. What size do you keep icons at on your desktop?
  3. Do you ever set a custom icon on a folder to serve no purpose other than to just enjoy looking at it?
  4. Do your preferences change if working on a Mac vs. Windows?

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered in the “Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day” section are free for your personal use, subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for Terms of Use) For commercial or any other use, please contact me for directly.

maltese_falconmirror

AuburnSpeedster2

Deco_Network-UPDeco_Network-down1

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My Adaptation of cover on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “ALL THE SAD YOUNG MEN” (original on right):

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