Print Story Not OSHA-approved
By BlueOregon (Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 04:43:30 AM EST) (all tags)

Not everything here is safe for work, but it is the weekend, albeit a cloudy and somewhat grey one, so you shouldn't be working anyway ... but since it is 3:45 p.m. and the birds are chirping, what right do I have to complain?

Harriet, ‘Darwin's tortoise,’ dies, age 176 ... truly an evolution icon.

I - In other news

  • Man who fought Playmate for inheritance dies: “E. Pierce Marshall, who feuded for years with former Playboy Playmate Anna Nicole Smith over his father's oil fortune, has died, his spokesman said Friday. He was 67.” ... what I learned is that her real name is Vickie Lynn.
  • Man wins $400K for 10-year implant malfunction: “A former handyman has won more than $400,000 in a lawsuit over a penile implant that gave him a 10-year erection.” ... I guess he is no longer hard up for cash. Sucks to be him, though.

Sports Illustrated “talked” to Danica Patrick recently, and as part of that talking, they had to do a photo shoot. Color me unimpressed. We all know that she is the wrong Danica (I would say “you do the math” but that is just a bo-bad with no setup).

Somehow I have been missing out on Platoon ... it is around here somewhere.

II - A picture is worth a thousand words

Now for the ‘technical aside’ and NQSFW bit (meaning, you've been warned).

A couple years ago I realized, while looking through my AWStats reports, that folks were hotlinking images from my site for use as their stupid web forum avatars and such ... 5000 hits/day is not that much, but since I was serving my site off my home DSL connection, I considered it not just rude, but a bit of a nuisance as well. Naturally I edited httpd.conf and/or .htaccess to block and/or rewrite such requests, and edited robots.txt to keep my image directories from being indexed by polite bots.

When I decided to move to Berlin hosting my own domain was no longer an option, so I went for a wonderful service known to many a husite, transferred the domain, and promptly forgot about it ... at least after my scripts and database were up and running. That is to say, I forgot about hotlinking.

And since I ignored my logs and stats for a long long time, I failed to notice that the hotlinking had picked up again. There is no reason for a boring site like mine to do 30MB of traffic a day, which, I admit, is not much, but when over half of that is jpg traffic and a) I used very few images in general and b) the most-requested pages contained no images, I thought to myself, I should do my host a favor and reduce this.

A couple years ago it was primarily forum avatars, but since then, myspace has become a force with which to be reckoned. I figured it would be rude to just block requests with the improper HTTP_REFERER ... all those broken images! Thus a redirect was in order so things could degrade gracefully.

I feel sorry for juliet4ever, who seems to be a lovely young woman (Juliet “Jacqueline Danielle”), as well as for brendahannabrendahanna (“Brendie”), a 40 year old whose choice of background design/image disturbs me, and for timyarb, who was looking “for something completely different.”

By the time you view these pages, if you choose to do so, they might have changed their profiles, entries, etc.

I must also admit that it was in poor taste and such for me to use that image, not so much because of its content, but because I, too, am linking to an image that I am not hosting ... my only “excuse” is that a) my current .htaccess setup seems to break replacement images from my site for some reason and b) this is temporary and I'll soon switch to a simple refusal or redirect to a document on my site. I feel so immature.

III - Questions

1. What is your preferred method of dealing with hotlinking? ... philosophy, method, and code are all welcome.

2. Danica or Danica?

3. When you create documents for the web, do you care about the proper use of quotes (smart quotes), n- and m-dashes, etc.?

4. 5 p.m. (Central Europe) ... Germany vs. Sweden and 9 p.m. Argentina vs. Mexico ... watching either or both?

< Blobby blobby blobby | BBC White season: 'Rivers of Blood' >
Not OSHA-approved | 11 comments (11 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
That is both cruel and excellent. by blixco (4.00 / 1) #1 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 05:05:00 AM EST
I don't think they pay close attention to their pages...and I'm fairly certain the myspace folks won't be able to figure out hwo to get rid of the picture.
Taken out of context I must seem so strange - Ani DiFranco
when ... by BlueOregon (4.00 / 1) #2 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 05:15:44 AM EST

... it's just pimply 17 year olds, frat boys, and whiny goth girls it amusing me ...

... when it's attractive enough 21 year old women and well-intentioned 40 year olds I almost feel bad about it ...

And then I realize ... double standards = bad ...and I just laugh at them all, and realize I've been a bit of an ass, and plan to make ammends ... sometime next week.

I was bored early in the morning, I must admit, and when it first took effect I was laughing my ass off ... the drunks walking by my open window might have been a bit confused (more than usual, at least). Anyway, too much rambling.

As for the myspace folks and not altering/getting rid of things ... metew has caused over a 1000 hits in June alone, whereas kate_sandow, responsible for another 580 hits in June, and mynecropolis, aka Tori, was only responsible for 2, *but* she was already hotlinking her background, and that guy/gal changed it to read "Quite Stealing My Bandwidth!!!" (and his domain) ... but she still hasn't done anything.

[ Parent ]
Well, by blixco (2.00 / 0) #8 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 09:17:36 AM EST
I think it's an excellent idea.  These myspace folk don't know much, it seems, about the outside world.
Taken out of context I must seem so strange - Ani DiFranco
[ Parent ]
Answers by Kellnerin (4.00 / 1) #3 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 06:58:59 AM EST
  1. I don't have any content worth hotlinking to.
  2. Danica, I guess, if those are my only choices.
  3. This is the only reason I'm actually replying. On the Web, I'm all for stupid punctuation: straight quotes, apostrophes, hyphens instead of en-dashes (except just the once) -- double dashes for em-dashes. I've used browsers that don't handle the entities well (yeah, standards, whatever) and most of the time I'm typing in a text box like this where I can't be arsed to type the entities instead of the typewriter version.
    On paper, however, I am merciless about the proper use of quotes vs. primes, and the correct dashes. And though you didn't ask, I follow house style regarding spacing around em-dashes, but online my dashes always have spaces around them for friendlier line breaks.
  4. No.

"later" meant either "when you walk around the corner" or "oatmeal."
I should add ... by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #4 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 07:02:20 AM EST
regarding the wording of your poll, a right-quote in my book is distinct from an apostrophe, in that an apostrophe is curly but single, while quotation marks are double. What you call an apostrophe in the second poll option is a prime, kthxbye.

"later" meant either "when you walk around the corner" or "oatmeal."
[ Parent ]
quotes ... by BlueOregon (2.00 / 0) #5 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 07:39:21 AM EST

... usually double, but single when within other quotes (or single when outer if British), no?

As for your answers to question:

  1. That's a simiple solution.
  2. I think of a combination of Konica and Dannon ... colorful yogurt, if you will.
  3. When I changed my DTD on my site a number of years ago, and after I noticed fewer and fewer Netscape 4.x generation browsers hitting my pages, I started the process of using and/or switching to smart-quotes, first with ldquo and rdquo, and then #8220 and #8221. I use #8212 for m-dash, since mdash and #151 are poorly supported. In any case, this got carried over to some but not all of my husiaries (and almost none of my comments), but rather inconsistently. Back when I was at the journal, our house-style was basically MLA with one or two differences. One of our biggest "issues" had to do with German vs. American quoting styles (such as sentence punctuation inside or outside of the quote). In short: lax punctuation online, strict in my non-web documents ... and for a while I more or less used LaTeX-style (``'', ---) in an ana-esque move.
  4. You're not missing much.

[ Parent ]
#8212 by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #9 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 10:38:17 AM EST
That's excellent. It's the ISBN prefix for an imprint I used to work for, so easy to remember (easier than mdash, because I can never remember whether it's spelled with an "em," which is how I spell it in English). The fact that it's better supported is a just bonus.

I've become more strict when writing online about whether punctuation should be in/outside of quotes, and italicized next to italicized words, or not (though no doubt I'd become more flexible if I were working with competing standards). But as for the quotation marks themselves, they do come in single and double varieties, but as I'm in USia the default is double. You have to specify if you mean single quotes, or ‘inverted commas’. But I guess what I'm trying to say is that apostrophes in print are curly in their own right, which is independent of their close resemblance to a single closing quotation mark.

I also have to say that online, with a sans serif font, straight quotation marks and apostrophes don't bother me as much, and the "smart" versions don't seem like much of an improvement.

"later" meant either "when you walk around the corner" or "oatmeal."

[ Parent ]
I am certain ... by BlueOregon (2.00 / 0) #10 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 11:13:48 AM EST

... (I hope) that we can agree that substituting l for 1 and O for 0 (or vice versa) are grave sins. I recall dealing with a couple submitted articles and book reviews that made these errors. I still encounter them online on occasion.

In comparison matters of m-dashes and such are relatively minor. As for #8212 ... the whole early #82xx run is pretty useful.

David Wheeler's page on Curling Quotes in HTML, SGML, and XML is pretty good. The *one* thing that causes me problems (but on a not-to-frequent basis) is the set of proper escape sequences / Unicode codes for characters I find in Croatian, Hungarian, and Romanian. For Western European / Latin-1 things I can just use "acute" and "circ" and "uml" ... auml, ouml, uuml, eacute, acute, etc. But I cannot do the same with a hacek/caron, for example, so I need to memorize a bunch of UTF-8 entities.

[ Parent ]
fear not by Kellnerin (2.00 / 0) #11 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 01:02:45 PM EST
We can safely agree on that. I have been lucky enough not to have encountered those substitutions professionally, although I've seen it on many house style sheets or "instructions for authors" so I suppose it must still happen.

That page on quotes was quite interesting, as well as being proof that no matter how much you think you obsess over something, there is someone who cares more, and has written a web page about it. I particularly liked the link to the demoroniser script (and the rant! The guy used "nugatory"!)

I'm still gonna use the "dumb" versions of punctuation online for the most part, though. But this has been very educational for those times when I might want a slightly more polished presentation.

"later" meant either "when you walk around the corner" or "oatmeal."

[ Parent ]
I have a few images by yankeehack (4.00 / 1) #6 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 08:08:47 AM EST
and a few myspace xanga linkers.

The most popular one, however, is this a girl on myspace who linked to a breast cancer ribbon image I had. I was going to be all obnoxious with the redirect, until I read her site and she made it after her mom died of breast cancer. I let her hotlink.

My other popular images seem to be farm animals. Who knew, sheep amuse everyone.
"...she dares to indulge in the secret sport. You can't be a MILF with the F, at least in part because the M is predicated upon it."-CBB

In this case ... by BlueOregon (4.00 / 1) #7 Sat Jun 24, 2006 at 08:52:20 AM EST

... most of them are linking a little "Monty Python" image/logo that I used on a page years and years ago (late 90s) as part of a webpage writing tutorial for my students. In fact, it is one of a couple pages that I've created over the years that have taken on a life far removed from their original intent.

The most shameless hotlinker was a Madison, WI real estate agent (or their website developer) who linked to my scan of a postcard for their page ... they really deserved an obscene response ... it's not as if they didn't have their own storage space available.

The breast cancer ribbon ... yeah, I can support your response to that ... doing otherwise would make you feel like shit.

And sheep ... well, mostly New Zealand, but anyway.

[ Parent ]
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