I recently read a great article designed to let aspiring developers teach themselves Javascript in 5 months, and in July I decided to give it a shot for myself. The curriculum seems sound, and useful, but completing the curriculum as it is listed would require subscribing to like two different online course providers for 2-3 months, so I’m actively trying to substitute free resources and resources I have already purchased through StackSocial for the classes that are described each month, with the possible option of going back at the end and subscribing for one month to each service and taking all those classes at once.
Continue reading

I had a great time at WordCamp Kent in June, where I was inspired to do new things with this site and other websites that I run. This WordCamp was quite affordable (just $40) and included plenty of speakers presenting on great WordPress topics, great conversations between sessions and in the hallways with presenters, vendors, and other attendees, and plenty of great food. As an alum of Kent State University, it was also wonderful to be back in Kent, see how some parts of the downtown and the campus has changed and grown since I graduated, and visit some of my old stomping grounds again. Continue reading

I’ve been interested in setting up my own instance of the open-source social networking analysis tool ThinkUp for awhile now, but I have tried a few things without success:

  • I have a shared hosting account with Dreamhost, and I tried to install ThinkUp as a subdomain there, but unfortunately the shared hosting plan is known to be incompatible with busy ThinkUp accounts (and the initial crawl is a pretty busy process).
  • I tried installing ThinkUp on a LAMP stack on a VPS, but apparently I missed something in the setup process and MySQL would not allow ThinkUp to connect. (I’m sure I was making a noob error somewhere in there – probably skipped a simple step – but I couldn’t figure out what I was missing despite extensive Googling.)
  • I also tried installing ThinkUp on top of a Docker-based LAMP stack, but something timed out in the initial crawl there again.

Yeah, I’m a bit of a hack at this. But even a hack like me was able to find something I could get to work:
Continue reading