Kurt McKee

lessons learned in production

Articles tagged with website

Friends with robots | 5 March 2020

I added a robots.txt file so that a common request won't be greeted by a 404 page.

Redirecting www | 1 March 2020

I've set up HTTPS and redirection for www.kurtmckee.org, and I've enabled automatic certificate renewal.

Upgrading the site's HTTPS and TLS | 11 December 2019

kurtmckee.org now uses HTTP/2, HTTP Strict Transport Security, OCSP stapling, and TLSv1.2. Also, I've set up CAA on my DNS.

Moving, part 9 | 9 December 2019

Yikes, it's been almost five years since I last posted about moving my blog back to a self-hosted site! Time really flies.

Anyway, my site is up and running again! I've got a lot of important things handled already:

  1. The site is encrypted using Let's Encrypt certificates.
  2. Entries from LiveJournal …
Moving, part 8 | 9 February 2015

With basically ten lines of code and a trivial template modification I've added support for multiple categories to Pelican. I'll make the code freely available soon. I expect to finalize the migration soon.

Speaking of which, perhaps I should have called this post series "migration" instead of "moving". I've gotten …

Moving, part 7 | 4 February 2015

Good news! I have almost 200 blog entries spanning eight years "imported" into Pelican (really, I have almost 200 text files on a USB drive). I've even written code that automatically converts in-blog links from LiveJournal URL's to the new URL scheme. I really need multiple categories, though, in part …

Moving, part 6 | 1 February 2015

I misspoke, apparently: the Unicode problem in the first tool was stemming from something weird going on with the xmlrpclib.Binary.decode() function. Extracting the raw utf-8 data and decoding that gets me the data I expect. New problem: some of my entries are not fully HTML. The paragraphs are …

Moving, part 5 | 1 February 2015

Apparently Python-based LiveJournal softwares think they're special snowflakes that don't have to deal with Unicode. The first library created severe corruption and truncation. The second tool immediately crashed because it assumed I was using a Cyrillic locale that was compatible with characters the library's author introduced in the output (and …

Moving, part 4 | 25 January 2015

I've gotten the site to a decent visual and functional state -- pagination works, categories work, feeds work...it still feels like it's missing something, either a functional or navigational element. Maybe it doesn't feel right simply because I'm unaccustomed to a single-column blog.

Things to improve but that take more …

Moving, part 3 | 20 January 2015

I'm creating a theme basically from scratch. I have hated web design with a burning passion for over a decade. Bootstrap makes it easier but it is still easily the single most miserable programming I've had to suffer through in years.

At least pagination works. Mostly. With problems. With hard-coded …

Moving, part 2 | 18 January 2015

It appears Pelican has made a stand against supporting multiple categories. There are two bug reports that I've found where somebody requested support for multiple categories and was told no. This is something I applaud and encourage. Happily, Pelican is open source so I can modify it to support multiple …

Moving, part 1 | 18 January 2015

This past week I set up a web server and started customizing Pelican, the blog software I expect I'll use to generate the site. I am making some changes to the theme, but after it's functional enough I will begin working to import over 10 years of content.

Don't just trust: backup your data | 18 November 2010

Having wiped my computer recently and reloaded everything I know now the relief that comes from having good backups of personal data. However, for a few years I've been using online services such as Blogger, LiveJournal, and Tumblr to host my online posts. Over the weekend, I was shocked to …

Migrating back to Wordpress | 14 February 2010

I've started working to migrate my online presence back to kurtmckee.org; it's been two-and-a-half years since I self-hosted my blog, and in that time I've fragmented my identity across LiveJournal, Blogger, Tumblr, and a smattering of other services including YouTube and Flickr.

Thus far I've upgraded my Wordpress install …

A header mockup | 25 July 2007

I've been looking at various websites' designs and working to come up with a design that I can call my own. It's slow going, but I've got something that I like just a little bit. Here's a preview of the header:


    A mockup of a header that I kind of like. It features a dark navy background,
    with my name in lowercase in bold yellow on the left and a search bar on the right.

It kind of reminds me of Half Life, which …

Header design | 24 February 2007

I've been thinking about website design, and what kind of header I would want to have for my website. In the process of doing so, I've worked to identify what I think looks good on other websites, and how I could work to create a similar design.

Here are some …

The front page is modified | 13 February 2007

I've updated the front page of my site. It's still bland, which is fine with me, because I enjoy simpler designs. The big difference is that the information is simplified and consolidated, in addition to adding several icons, courtesy of the wonderful Tango Desktop Project. I also tried to make …

Pressuring myself | 5 June 2006

I'm pressuring myself to implement the site-wide theme.