Firefox Moving to Chrome’s Dev Model

Firefox is moving to Chrome’s development model of rolling releases, getting away from the large, cumbersome release schedules that have been the norm for the project for a very long time.

Of course, the first thing they need to do is release Firefox 4, finally, and then ramp up the new production model to try and release new features as they are ready instead of setting milestones and rolling them into large releases.

I welcome the change and hope it will push Firefox ahead as fast as Chrome has been moving.


Update to WordPress 3.1

This site has been updated to WordPress 3.1, so if you see anything strange, just let me know and I’ll try and get it fixed.


On Wording for Webpages

I frequent the¬†University¬†Web Developers social network and try to keep up with what is being talked about there. Mainly this has to do with my current work as a webmaster/web developer/web person at Martin Luther College, but it doesn’t take much to take some of the discussions going on there and expanding them to the web as a whole.

One recent discussion has focused around the wording for a particular part of the website that has to do with student housing. The question boils down to this: do you use the name of the department or something that more generically points to the purpose of the area of the site.

The two phrases being tossed about were “Residence Life” or “Housing.” A third term was brought in by someone else, “Dorms” later on, but my thoughts are the same regardless: go with what a person would actually be thinking of when they come to your site. I don’t know of anyone who is going to come to the site and think “I really need to find out more about residence life.” However, I can imagine (because I did this myself) that people would come thinking about “student housing” or “dorm life” and both of those would fall under the simpler terms.

When presented with options on how to word things, try and go with what is the more clear and will speak the clearest to your intended audience. Sometimes trying to be consistent (with department names) can cause more confusion and ultimately lead to more problems than was intended.

Clarity for the user should trump almost everything else.


No Snowblower

I vainly hoped that the snow would hold off for the rest of the winter (or at least the major stuff) after we moved into our home, but sadly that did not happen. We’ve had a fair amount of snow over the past 36 hours and without a snowblower it has been a pain to try and remove it.

A shovel is not the right tool for major snow removal, even with the decent shovel that I am in possession of. No, a snowblower would be a much more effective tool right now but is not going to be purchased at the moment.

Luckily, when you move into a house in a town, you don’t just gain a house, you also gain neighbors. We have probably the best two neighbors a person could ask for and one of them owns a snowblower. He also likes to use it. A lot.

So, a snowblower is on “THE LIST” for next winter so that I can help the neighborhood out when we dig out of these 12+ inches of snowfalls. Right now I am just very thankful for wonderful neighbors who are watching over my family while I am gone to work.


Two Days After

It has been two days since we moved into our new place and things are going pretty well. The move itself went well thanks to the help of my dad, my brothers and one of my coworkers. Without their help I would still be moving boxes back and forth or caught under a sofa asking for someone to help.

The weather was perfect, in the forties and not too windy either. Closing went smoothly with all of the signatures taking less than 30 minutes to accumulate and then pleasantries were had between us and the prior owners.

We are so happy to finally be in the place, but now the real work begins. We were able to get the bed and crib set up on Monday night, but that was about it. Yesterday we unpacked most of the kitchen and took care of those boxes so that we have some more room in the dining room to stack stuff while we continue to work our way through the boxes and boxes of stuff.

Kids don’t sleep very well when they get to a new place. It is getting better, but bedtime is a chore at the moment (especially for moms) when the screaming ensues as soon as you leave the room. No, not leave the room, but when you actually start to just close the door … a tiny little bit … even after you have been out of the room for a couple of minutes. Don’t ask me, I just live here.

My office is nothing more than the place where boxes are being kept and the cable modem and wireless router are pumping internet. I’m hoping to get down there to hook up the Mac Mini tonight and maybe get started with the Windows 7 installation on the PC desktop. That might have to wait a couple of days, however.

We were able to finally pick up our dog from my parent’s farm last evening and she is happy to be back at home. I’m planning on taking her for a walk tonight and get into a habit of doing that for both her benefit and mine. I need to get more active.

The entire second story and attic was rewired yesterday. New outlets, switches, plates and wiring was put in and it all looks a lot better. I feel better without having the old wiring sitting in the attic against the insulation. Now we get to start compiling a list of things we want to do to the house and then actually do them!

Those are the scatter-brained thoughts at the moment. So far everything is going really well and we are just trying to get settled into our new home and get unpacked.