Category Archives: Web/Tech

Downloading your images from Typepad

The transition from Typepad to WordPress has been a bit haphazard, but I should have finally removed most of the references.

One of the things you need to move over are the images Typepad hosts for you. Unless they are in a photo album, they will be in the <your user id>.typepad.com/.a/ directory.  To get them, export the contents of your Typepad blog and save it.  It will be saved as Unnamed_Comet_Asset.txt.

Once I had that file, I used this Bash script (on a Unix OS) to generate another script to get the files. Be sure to replace <your user id> with your Typepad id.

#!/bin/bash
sed -n ‘s/.*\(http:\/\/<your user id>.typepad.com\/\.a\/[a-z0-9]*-[0-9]*si\).*/wget \1/p’ Unnamed_Comet_Asset.txt > wget.sh
sed -n ‘s/.*\(http:\/\/<your user id>.typepad.com\/\.a\/[a-z0-9]*-[0-9]*wi\).*/wget \1/p’ Unnamed_Comet_Asset.txt >> wget.sh
sed -n ‘s/.*\(http:\/\/<your user id>.typepad.com\/\.a\/[a-z0-9]*-pi\).*/wget \1/p’ Unnamed_Comet_Asset.txt >> wget.sh
chmod 755 wget.sh

It is possible that there are other types of files whose filenames do not end with -*si, -*wi or -pi but those seemed to work for me.  Search through Unnamed_Comet_Asset.txt if you want to be sure.

Once wget.sh is generated, look it over and make sure that it looks right, then run it:

./wget.sh

It will dutifully download all of your images.  I copied them over to a .a directory on my hosting provider then updated the references to in the blog posts.  Ideally, you should do it in a copy of Unnamed_Comet_Asset.txt, then import it into your site.

You will need to run this script for each blog you have hosted at Typepad.  Be sure to have a different directory for each blog so that you don’t overwrite either script.

I have a script for getting all of the files from your Photo Albums that I will post about in the future.

SSL Migration Progressing (Updated)

Update: I have installed SSL certificates for all of my sites which have images on this site. All of the side bar images are back up.

One of the reasons I migrated from Typepad to another hosting provider, was so I could enable SSL on my site. Making sure your site supports SSL is the one of the basic efforts you can do to support encrypting the web.

I set it up for my main domain a few weeks ago, but since some of the images I use are on sites that didn’t use https, my blog did not appear to be completely secure.

I have adding SSL to two of my (sub-)sites, and will finish the rest tomorrow. I have removed the non-SSL widgets so the site shows a nice green lock and will add them back then they are all set. As an added bonus, I removed a bunch of tracking javascript that Typepad adds to their photo galleries that I don’t need.

One up shot of this effort is that I have a nice set of instructions that work for my setup which will help speed the process in the future.

How to kill standalone social networks

Yasssu has an interesting interview with Eben Moglen about a variety of topics including government surveillance, privacy, and sharing:

The topic that drew my attention to the video was his contention that Facebook would only last for about ten years before the open web and open alternatives to it won out. He cites Diaspora, GNU Social and other efforts as the tools that are leading the way to that change and I generally agree with him. However, the flaw I see with that approach is that the variety of social services that are available is increasing at a rate that a canned aggregation service will not be able to keep up. What is needed is an api for:

  1. who is your friend or who you follow and thus who you trust;
  2. the different services to share updates you make on the service;
  3. the different services to talk to talk to an aggregator.

Item 1 can leverage OpenId and OAuth and there are projects such as Portable Contacts, DiSo, FOAF and XHTML Friends Network that can be built upon (or rebuilt) to provide the secure social connection information.
Item 2 requires a defined api and a willingness for social services to support it. However, RSS is pretty prevalent, so building off of that shouldn’t be a complete jump into the dark.
I am not convinced that Item 3 is desirable even on a local level. Rather, the only thing I think we need to host is our public and private connection information. Once we have that information, it would be possible to use a javascript browser plug in that pulls in our connection information and builds a status page of what our friends are doing.
With these tools in place, we won’t need Facebook, Google+ or other specific social network services to act as a man in the middle to our social lives on the net.
I do like his suggestion that we all have our own plugin computers running a server like FreedomBox that act as VPN, host our website, etc.
He touches on a wide variety of other points that I find useful and his quotes are direct and pithy, so please to take the time to watch it.

I’ll be at the Liquid Feedback Hackathon this Sunday, 3pm

The German Pirate Party created Liquid Feedback over a year ago to allow party members to debate and decide on their platform and other issues. They have been using it successfully. Here is a video explaining it (in English):

On Sunday, 7/1, I will be helping with the Massachusetts Pirate Party’s hackathon to get our own copy of Liquid Feedback running. We will start at 3pm and will go until we are done or until asked to leave, whichever comes first.  The hackathon will be at 45 Bromfield #2, Somerville 02144.

Please sign up if you want to help so we know who will be there.

If you cannot make it in person, then you can join us on the #masspirates irc channel at pirateirc.net.  We will also post our progress at the #masspirates twitter hashtag.

Links 6/25/2012

Slides of my copyright talk available. Comments welcome.

I had a great time presenting my talk at the Play-jurisms conference this last Saturday. I stayed up late until 3:30 am to finish the slides for the talk.  Considering that I was typing away in bed while my wife slept, she was very understanding.  The talk didn't suffer for the fact I was up so late writing it, but no doubt I can improve it.  I did end up changing the title from what I had originally envisioned, but I felt the new title better matched the spirit of the conference.

You can view the slides as a pdf if you want.  Comments are most welcome.

HP announces the TouchPad months before it will be available

As a long-time Palm user (though not for over a year – anyone want a used Verizon Treo 600?), I am happy that HP will be releasing a new webOS tablet computer, the TouchPad, and two new phones.  The articles on it look positive, though none of them mention the devices' battery life. 

With any luck the TouchPad is faster than the Samsung Galaxy Tab, which was increadibly slow when I tried it at Bust Buy.  However, the phones are not out until the Spring and the TouchPad won't be out until the Summer, so my guess is that HP's plans to be the next Apple will get dashed when Apple releases the iPad2 in the next few months.

 

I think Steve Jobs got this one wrong

I was showing my five year old daughter panoramic photos of different cities when she started to touch the screen to make it do things, ala my iPhone.  Her efforts only put finger prints on the screen, but had no measurable effect on what the computer did of course.  I think Steve Jobs assertion that no one would want to use multitouch on a laptop/notebook screen is one that will get reconsidered in a year.