Well, after more than two years of silence, I am taking a tentative step back into the world of blogging.
Part of what made me lose interest before was the hassle of dealing with the Mambo content management system I had been using. So I have done away with that and moved to WordPress. So far I am pretty impressed. WordPress is designed specifically for blogging and its back end is noticeably easier to use than Mambo’s (I’ve also used its close relative, Joomla, and the same opinion applies there).
Creating a custom page design was also not too difficult – just a little CSS and modifications to some PHP code (eek!). This one is based on the standard WordPress Twenty Ten theme, with a few tweaks – margins, fonts, drop shadow effect etc. The current banner image is a Pohutukawa flower – the iconic symbol of summer in my native New Zealand.
I have also changed my hosting service. I was previously using aplus.net and, although I’ve had no real complaints about them, in the meantime I had also been using slicehost.com for some other projects that required full access to a bare linux server. So it made sense to move the blog there as well. I’m running on a virtual Ubuntu 8.04LTS platform (yes, due for an upgrade sometime) with nginx 0.5.33 as my web server.
I have moved the old blog content over to WordPress as well. It is accessible at http://markmthomson.net/old/. This was accomplished using Azeem Khan’s very helpful Joomla2Wordpress script, which I modified to support importing of images as well as text.
Let the blogging begin!