Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

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Stonewall
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Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Feb 12 12:26

Beckonwood ...

I notice that you attempted to post a YouTube clip. It failed because you used the ENTIRE url rather than its short ID. There are three ways to post a YouTube video:

BEST WAY: Enter only the 11-character ID part of the URL, highlight it, and hit the "youTube" button to make

Code: Select all

[youTube]ChaNEmJFFrg[/youTube]
which causes the following to appear
[youtube]ChaNEmJFFrg[/youtube]

SECOND WAY: Enter the full URL, a space, a description, highlight both, then click the "urls" button to produce (the green part) of

Code: Select all

[urls]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChaNEmJFFrg Funny video of chicken[/urls]
which will display like this: Funny video of chicken

THIRD and WORST WAY: Just enter the full URL, as
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ChaNEmJFFrg
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Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Feb 16 12:14

beckonwood wrote:This spell check on the Fire fox is good but it doesn't come up with the correct spelling as the Microsoft office does. Guess we can't have it all.

Do you realize that right-clicking on the red underline presents you with correct spelling options from which you can choose? And if a word is not in Firefox's dictionary, you can add it so that it will be there the next time you need it?

:typ:
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Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Feb 16 14:37

Nice way to enter References and URLs, using the urls button in the Forum's message editor. It neatens the appearance of links and references in your postings.

Examples:

  • The best way is to copy the URL, a space after it, and a Description. Highlight both, and click on the urls button to create an entry like the green part of this:

    Code: Select all

    [urls]http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/Groucho_Marx He was funny.[/urls]

    which displays like this: He was funny.
    This is neat and easy to read, blue to indicate it is clickable, and opens its own window so you don't have to hit the back button to return to the Forum. Just close the referenced window and you're back.

  • The simplest, and worst, way is just to copy the URL, like this
    http://www.quotationspage.com/quotes/Groucho_Marx
    While easy to enter, it is ugly and takes the reader away from the Forum so that he has to click back to return.
Thanks for your posts! Stonewall, your administrator ... just an "empty suit."

resigned

Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby resigned » 2009 Feb 17 07:29

Hey Stonewall it took me several tries but I got it and it worked. Thanks for the tip. You are one great stone :turn:

resigned

Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby resigned » 2009 Feb 18 06:37

Ok got a new one for you Stonewall. How can I embed a Microsoft Power point slide show in the forum? Or is that possible. Just wondering. Thanks

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Stonewall
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Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Mar 14 01:38

  • beckonwood wrote:How can I embed a Microsoft Power point slide show in the forum? Or is that possible.
    Thanks for this question! I learned that file attachments had been disabled, so I re-enabled them. Use the "Upload Attachment" tab at the bottom of the editor, using the "Place inline" button if you want more text to follow the attachment label as in this example.
    PowerPoint.ppt
    (71 KiB) Downloaded 255 times

  • another user wrote:How does one go about uploading video clips?
    For YouTube video clips it's fairly easy. Select one of three methods described here. For other types of video, you can't embed them so treat them as external links. (Note. I just added a new embedded video type, for Comedy Central video clips.)

  • another user wrote:Displaying pictures?
    Pictures found on the web are easy. To embed them within a message, copy the full URL, highlight it, and then click the "Img" button so that you see code that looks something like the green part of this:

    Code: Select all

    [img]http://images.fanpop.com/images/image_uploads/jessica-rabbit-childhood-memories-216194_301_520.jpg[/img]
    which will display like this:
    Image
    Note: Sometimes, if rarely, a web site hosting the picture blocks this kind of reference, for copyright reasons or to reduce traffic to their site.
    If the picture is on your own machine rather than the web, then follow the procedure (above top) for uploading attachments.

  • another user wrote:How do you link an entire article behind a single word or phrase?
    Please refer to these instructions. Examples would be: Here's a Glenn Greenwald column, or here's an alternative way to refer to the picture above.

PS. To peek at the detailed code in this message, just hit this message's "Quote" button and all code will be displayed in the editor window.
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Re: Forum Usage Tip from Stonewall

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Apr 17 13:57

FYI, your mild-mannered Administrator has been at war with Russian spam bots for the past 3 days.

I've squashed about 20 Russian spammers, after they registered and before they posted anything foul.

They're now permanently blocked, but somebody may sneak in. Give me a shout if you see anything odd, and be patient if I don't crush them immediately.

:toothy:
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Re: Stonewall's Forum Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Jun 15 13:18

Here's a little update on my continuing war with Russian spambots. Some will find it interesting, some will find techie stuff like this boring.

These bastards sign in to the Forum using spambots on machines/accounts all over the world. They tend to pick a time when they think the Administrator is asleep, so I have been waking up most mornings to find garbage splayed on the Forum.

Assuming that my esteemed participants are not particularly interested in drugs, Rolex watches, Russian brides, getting yet another $10 million from Nigeria, or enlarging certain parts of their anatomy, I've been deleting these things as fast as they appear.

It's tiresome. So I re-did the Registration screen, with the following changes:
  • The captcha symbol is dropped, as simply annoying and providing no real barrier to spammers. People have trouble reading those distorted and jumbled letters/numbers but spambots breeze through them. I hate captchas.
  • Instead, the registration screen now asks how many noses a human has. We'll soon see if this stumps robots, or if I have to adopt another stratagem.
:beatdead:
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Re: Stonewall's Forum Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Uji » 2009 Jun 17 10:44

Hey, Stonewall, thanks for doing battle with these digital Zombie's. I for one would be interested to hear reports from the front. Do these bots have some sort of nefarious purpose beyond the digital vandalism?

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Re: Stonewall's Forum Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Jun 17 13:46

They surely have only nefarious purpose, if we don't always understand exactly what. Usually it is to separate people from their money, but who knows what evil lurks in the heart of bot?

Most of the spambot registrations and postings here were from IP addresses tied to ISP's in Russia, Ukraine, China, and a few African countries. But we don't really know where the criminals reside, since they splay bots onto servers around the world. The bots make hundreds of millions of attempts each day to post their trash.

So far so good ... not a single spambot has entered since I started asking "how many noses does a human have." Spambots are evil but dumb. So far.
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Stonewall
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Re: Stonewall's Forum Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Jun 18 09:53

Here's a tip that is just neat and useful ... whether it's used here or not.

Don't you hate long URLs like

Code: Select all

http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/0,28757,1888728,00.html

You can convert it to a short one using the web site bit.ly , in this case producing the compact
bit.ly/Sr5g6 or the custom bit.ly/timegorill for example.

All three URLs go to the same place, but the bit.ly ones are a lot shorter and less likely to be mis-typed or fractured by email programs that choke on long URLs.
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Uji » 2009 Jun 20 12:28

Very cool, Stonewall. Thanks.

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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby fangz1956 » 2009 Sep 03 08:32

What are the chances of accomodating larger avatars? I would like to change mine but all of my favorite things are far too large for this site. Most other sites accomodate avatars of at least 100 x 100 pixels.

Halloween is coming soon and I need a new vampire just for the occasion.

Fang-ks to you.
Ever looked at someone and thought "the wheel is turning but the hamster is dead"?

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Stonewall
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Sep 03 10:38

Your avatar is 48x48 pixels at the moment and the allowable size is 55x55.

Yes I can increase the size but confess to being repelled by the visual appearance of sites with large avatars, often occupying more page space than the text of the message.

Let's compromise ... I've re-set the avatar maximum size to width=104 x height=78 pixels. I hope you can re-size avatar(s) of your choice to fit; if you'd like assistance, send the raw image to me and I'll re-size it for you.
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby fangz1956 » 2009 Sep 03 11:57

Fang-k you ver-r-r-r-y much. I was rather fearful that squeezing a favorite basically in half would destroy the artistry of the image.

By the by, I have a couple of friends who have forums powered by Proboards. They accomodate avatars of up to 100 x 100 and seem to have just about an equal amount of posting space as does this forum. As I was adding a new avatar to one of those forums earlier today, I wondered why the ones here were so small and was saddened that some of my favorite vampire buddies could not be used here.

I appreciate the compromise and hopefully I can re-size without losing the artistry.

:wink2:
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Sep 06 09:36

The Rockbridge Forum gives participants the option of using their names or aliases, a good policy for many reasons.

One hopes that American government will never stoop to this level. Pity the Chinese people who must suffer under it.
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby fangz1956 » 2009 Sep 27 10:27

I finally followed your suggestion and switched to Mozilla Firefox ( after taking a nerve-wracking beating from IE8).

I absolutely love it!!! Dang, it makes life on the net so much easier.........and faster!


Thanks for the suggestion.


:pat:
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2009 Sep 27 12:10

Glad you like it! Firefox is much more secure than Internet Explorer (IE) and has always been speedier, also offering the advantage of a huge number of specialized plug-ins if you want them. Everybody loves the built-in spell checker. I haven't yet looked at IE8 so don't know if it is catching up.

I can't tell you how many people I've encountered who say the same thing as you. Most of us use Firefox for everything except the one thing Microsoft will not allow it to work on, Microsoft Updates. So everybody must keep IE installed for that purpose alone.

PS. A Microsoft scandal. Remember, many Firefox users choose Firefox to avoid Microsoft's security vulnerabilities. Recently Microsoft pushed out an update which installed Microsoft's ".NET" framework as a Firefox plug-in, thereby introducing Microsoft vulnerabilities into Firefox. They told nobody, installed it without permission and, get this, disabled the "uninstall" button! Well, the tech world exploded in rage and so Microsoft released an update to that plug-in now allowing an uninstall. I uninstalled mine immediately.
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Re: Stonewall's Techie/Help Chatter

Postby Stonewall » 2010 Apr 23 09:59

Here's a reminder Tip. The default order of message listings is in the order they were posted, that is, newest last. This is annoying because it means that, by default, the user has to scroll to the end of all the messages under a topic.

You can easily reverse the order of listing so that the newest messages always appear first, by doing the following:
  • Click This and then
  • Select "Descending" for both "Display post order direction" and "Display topic order direction"and then "Submit"


PS. The procedure above is a fast and direct equivalent of the longer manual alternative:
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Stonewall's Feeble Protest

Postby Stonewall » 2010 Jun 15 10:25

Who isn't unhappy over Chinese censorship of the internet and police-state requirements it places on internet companies? Google closed its China operations in protest.

Your humble Administrator cannot do this, unless the Chinese border is closer to Rockbridge than I think. So I've blacklisted all Chinese IP addresses.

This will prevent Chinese participation on the Forum, too bad, but of no importance since we have no such users anyway.

But it will also block Baidu (the government approved search engine that replaced Google) from crawling and indexing this Forum. (I have actually caught Chinese crawlers frequently on the Forum.)

Take that, you Chicoms!
Thanks for your posts! Stonewall, your administrator ... just an "empty suit."