Installing the Movable Type "nofollow" plugin from Six Apart will automatically update the built-in tags MTCommentBody, MTCommentAuthorLink and the container tag MTPings. The use of the MTPings container should serve to update any URLs contained within, such as those produced by the MTPingURL tag and surrounding template code.

Denise and I have been married for very nearly two years, and in that time we had never bothered to update her name on her Social Security card. I'm sure this is probably something that we could be fined for doing, but we just never got around to it. Everything else? Absolutely. But not that little blue card.

So we went to the web site of the Social Security Administration to find out what we needed to do. We found a very helpful page that gave us all the information we needed. What's more, it sounded like a relatively painless process. That would be a nice change when dealing with the government. Alas, it was not to be.

We filled everything out, and then went to figure out what to do with it. We could mail it in, or drop it by the local office. Since the local office is maybe a mile-and-a-half away, we decided to drop it off. Going to the local post office would actually be further (and I didn't want to put the envelope in the mailbox, what with it containing a couple of "official" documents).

Denise had to work, so I waited in line for about 30 minutes, told the gentleman that I wanted to drop things off for my wife, he looked at them and told me that I couldn't. I asked why. He said because I didn't have a letter or anything authorizing me to do it. I asked why that was necessary, as I didn't have to have any such letter to mail the information in my hand. Why should it matter if I'm there in person? Anyway, had I known that, I would have written one. I certainly had enough time in line to do it. Anyway, I decided not to ask him for a pen and paper, as that would have been opening another can of worms, and left.

I quickly came home, stuffed everything into an envelope, and returned to the office, where I asked a helpful security guard if I could hand them to someone, rather than having to mail them. He pointed me to a mail drop on the wall, where I deposited the documents and left once again. This entire trip, including the round trip back home again, took maybe 15 minutes. And the only thing different about it was that I put things in an envelope and dropped them in a mail slot instead of handing them directly to a human being. What sense does that make?

While a previous entry explained how I managed to get the address bar working for my needs, it didn't help on anything else. So I found another tip in this article that explains that you can right-click on any search box on any page and choose the "Add a Keyword for this Search" option, which allows you to create a keyword search, usable in the standard address bar.

For instance, I visited the Internet Movie Database, right-clicked the search box, and added one called, appropriately enough, "IMDB". Now when I type imdb, followed by some text in the standard address bar, the query is submitted and I'm taken directly to the results. Very cool. According to the tip, you should be able to do this on any page. If you'd like to try it out, visit my search page. Right click on the box where you enter the text, then add a keyword for it ("DBD" might be a good choice). Now, when you enter that keyword followed by something, it'll search my blog for a match!

Update: Because it's working rather well, I've added an "MSN" keyword search to Firefox. This allows me to quickly and easily search MSN Search.

Unfortunately, this isn't the title of the same name from Lemony Snicket. It's not even a book. It's a great deal of hubbub about someone who has decided that they don't want their RSS feed to be available in Bloglines. This is an interesting decision, and you will find many opinions about it.

I must admit that I haven't really received much from my wish list lately, but that's okay. Some of you have sent monetary donations or even just a note of thanks. I'm not trying to make you feel bad. Though it's probably worth nothing that, if you do, I've got plenty of things on the list. Head over and check them out for yourself.

Once I got started tweaking Firefox, I really wasn't able to stop. Not that I was looking for anything - I just managed to stumble upon a few things while I was browsing.

The first tip allows you to enable an extra tabbed browsing option. Firefox allows you to open new links requested from other applications in new tabs, but what about those on web pages? Not possible without installing this line in your user.js file:

  // Reveal more tab/window options:
  user_pref("browser.tabs.showSingleWindowModePrefs", true);

Once in place, you can go to the Tools > Options > Advanced screen, where you will have the option to change the behavior of opening new links from a web page. If you do this, you might also be interested in this tip:

  /* Force New Windows Restrictions
  0: Default - Divert *all* new windows to current tab/window or new tab
  1: Don't divert *any* windows spawned by JS
  2: Don't divert JS windows that include size/placement/toolbar info */
  user_pref("browser.link.open_newwindow.restriction", 2);

This setting allows you to divert those new windows. The value 0 means that all windows go to the selection, while a 1 diverts all but Javascript windows, and a 2 diverts Javascript, but not those that include size/placement/toolbar information. Very sweet. I've found that a setting of 2 here works well.

One other tip has to do with the rendering of the page. By default, Firefox will wait 250 milliseconds (a quarter of a second) prior to displaying anything. Change this value to the value you like and you should see some speed gains:

  // Last value in milliseconds (default is 250)
  user_pref("nglayout.initialpaint.delay", 0);

Each of these changes goes into the user.js file, which you can find in your profile directory. If you can't find it there, just create a new one. You will need to exit and restart prior to seeing the changes take effect.

In each case, the comment (the part inside the /* */ marks) isn't really needed - it just helps to show you what values you can use and what the option does for you, for when you look back in a few months and have no idea why you added it.

You may notice that I have all sorts of metadata in my page headers, and this (theoretically) helps the machine processing of this data, so that it will be more accurately indexed, at which point it should be found more readily when needed. I've always tried to provide clean metadata. The problem is that much of it isn't documented particularly well. At least, not in one place. So I did some digging and made some changes. Here are the results, in case you're interested in doing the same.

I removed the http-equiv meta tag for Content-Type. Mostly because I was confused. I didn't understand why it would be sent with the page itself through the HTTP session, then set again in the header. Apparently I'm not alone. I found this page that talks about the subject, and specifically it recommends dropping it. Apparently the only really useful reason for the tag is compatibility with HTTP 0.9. I'm sorry if there are some out there using this, but I'm not, so it shouldn't be an issue here.

Next I moved on to the DC.Format tag, which incidentally created similar thoughts to me. Why do we keep sending this value? So I searched and found this page which includes a guideline recommending that you "Do not create <dc.format> metadata for resources if they form part of an HTML page". That's what I'm doing, so it's dropped too.

I then went through the rest of the Dublin Core elements, and realized that I only had a partial understanding of what they did. So I did some more digging. I found this excellent guide to different tags, and it helped immeasurably. Here's a brief summary of the changes.

I removed the DC.subject lines, as they are really like keywords, and with all the talking I do, I don't know if they are really necessary. I removed the DC.publisher information, because it didn't really make sense to duplicate it all over again from DC.creator. I added the DC.date.modified tag to indicate the last date that the site was changed. I added DC.creator tags for fax, phone and postal, so if you want to contact me, you don't have any excuse.

The last change to the Dublin Core elements was to the DC.language tag, so that it uses a scheme of Z3953, which indicates the use of the NISO Z39.53 Language Codes, which is recommended for compatibility with MARC. I really don't know what that means. It has something to do with libraries and reference data, and it sounded like a good argument.

I still need to do some work on DC.identifier, because it always points to the root. And I'd really like to implement the DC.relation.ischildof tag on things, to really build some structure. But that will take some doing, so it's not done yet. For now, check out the pages at Everitz Consulting for some examples of what this means.

Finally, I added the no-email-collection tag to the header, which is used on all pages, so we'll see if it works. I picked up this tip from Project Honeypot (though I can't find the exact page right now). I'll enable some more stuff from Project Honeypot along the way, but I'm not ready just yet. Have to save something to do tomorrow!

I've been trying to clean things up today, and a part of that is trying to get rid of a few things about Firefox that annoy me. Maybe "annoy" is too strong of a word. Inconvenience might be a better one. Anyway, I figured I would play and see what I can find out.

First, extensions. I've installed fireFTP. I like it, in that it's got an interface right there in my browser, but it is not quite right. I can't put my finger on it. Part of it is that keyboard navigation doesn't seem to quite work, and part of it is that there seems to be a delay that I can't seem to time just right. Since there is no real notification when something completes (a sound perhaps), I find myself sitting and looking at the screen. I'll use it some more, but I'm leaning towards dumping it.

I also installed FoxyTunes. This is a very sweet extension, though I'm not sure that I listen to music enough to use it. Still, the design and interface is awesome, and I'll likely use it to enhance the interface to the Bloglines Toolkit when I get the chance. I really like FoxyTunes because it gives me quick access to volume and mute - something that was annoying me about the Windows volume control. I think it likely that I'll keep it.

Finally, I decided to do some tweaking on the UI.

I use Google a dozen times a day. Probably much more than that. It's always a pain for me to run a Google query while I'm in the middle of something on another page. I usually use CTRL-N to open a new tab, then click on the address bar and enter "google", then the search string. Blech. I rarely use the "feeling lucky" search, so I have had to go to the site itself, not just type the search string in the address bar.

So I tried using the search bar in Firefox, but that wasn't doing it for me either. Then I stumbled upon this tip that seemed as if it would work. Nope. Didn't seem to do a thing. I had almost given up when I found another link (now dead), which tells you how to do it: Type about:config in the address bar, find browser.search.defaulturl and set it to the value you want. Bingo. Now I just CTRL-L to get to the address bar, type the query, and it takes me to Google. Sweet!

Update: After this last step stopped working, I had to go hunting again. This site held the answer. Instead of changing browser.search.defaulturl, change keyword.URL. This may be a change in Firefox 1.5 (though my earlier version worked okay without it) or it might be something else. Regardless, this should fix you up.

Though I haven't been particularly vocal about it, I have been slowly building up the web site for Everitz Consulting, and it now actually contains some reasonable information on it (instead of the one-page placeholder that had been there for months). I'm also going to try to do a better job of keeping up with it in the future. If you have a few minutes, take a look around and let me know what you think.

It's very simple, because I'm just a simple guy. I'm not very good with colors (you should know that by now). I don't like animation, be it animated GIFs or Flash, I don't like massive amounts of options that aren't really necessary, and I'm not even really much for images. I want a simple, to-the-point site that looks reasonable across browsers and conveys some basic information, allowing interested parties to then contact me if they need more.

I doubt that I will ever really be interested in soliciting business through the site, but I would like people to be able to visit in case they would like to find out just a bit more about the company. Please keep that in mind.

Update: It turns out that my friend Ben Franklin (yes, that is really his name) has put together - or rather, resurrected - his own company that offers consulting services. If you're in the Nashville area, look him up! I would tell you to tell him that I sent you, but he might charge you extra.

I recently read a story that makes absolutely no sense to me. Apparently the parents are staying outside while their (misbehaving) kids get the house. I think they have this backwards. I completetly understand the frustration, and even support their decision to not do the work themselves if it comes to it. But why not put the kids outside and let them deal with that for a while, instead of inconveniencing themselves?

I was reading through MT Plus Comment Spam Equals Dead Site again (an interesting read), which prompted me to consider many of the points within. For those who don't know, this post, along with the activity that generated it, was a big part of the reason behind the development of MT-Approval. I was doing it anyway, but that forced the issue to happen a bit faster.

So I'm trying to watch Joey, one of my guilty pleasures, and the tornado watch stuff starts scrolling. No big deal. It's annoying, but at least it's relatively minor. Then they switch the whole thing off and show me the meteorologist drawing with his graphics pad. So far it's been on for 15 minutes.

Now if the event was a warning, and it was closer than 50 miles away, I might say that you could argue that it's worth the pre-emption. But it's not. Chances are that it won't. So why do I have to put up with this sort of thing?