Programming Note: WordPress Scheduling

The secret to publishing something good every day is to get ahead, find more interesting stuff and stack it ahead of schedule. This way you don’t feel like you have to post every day, because you don’t. On the other hand, WordPress has a bit of a janky scheduling function that likes to default back to today half the time you use it. So, occasionally, I’ll try to get ahead a bit, or take a week off, or whatever, and you’ll see something briefly on the main page and then see it again several days later. That’s what’s going on my friends. Now, with the next week or so queued up, I’m taking off.

The next few days, and previous few now that I think on it, are heavily indebted to a backlog of WebCurios emails, which is excellent although maybe with the front image you should check it out when you aren’t at work.

Email & Tool Choice

Like everyone, I get more email than I really want. Most of it is newsletters. I usually use Thunderbird for email. It incorporates most of my email into one interface. It uses IMAP to pull the information from the email providers’ servers, so I don’t have to use some janky, javascript laden website for email. It also has a calendar integrated in with it using WebDAV, which is nice.

But, when I start getting to around 50 emails in my Inbox, I start getting a little twitchy. It’s too much. I know most people have thousands of emails in their Inbox, I am not them. And, the way I keep from becoming them is my secret weapon, Mutt. For reasons I don’t quite understand, I’ll see an email in Thunderbird and think, “Oh, I might want to read that later.” When I see the same email in Mutt, I’ll want to delete or file it it – and almost everything else too.

The Convivial Society Newsletter in Mutt

As you can see from the above, the newsletter is still readable. But, it adds more work because HTML is not what Mutt is best at displaying. And while I think The Convivial Society is great and would like to read every issue, Mutt asks a simple question: if not now, when? Which means you become much more likely to delete it. It’s also much easier to delete email in Mutt, just hit the D button, and it deletes the email and takes you to the next one. It can take you less than a minute to delete 100 emails.

Reflecting on this fact makes me once again think about how the tools we use influence our behavior. If you are using web email or even a computer application like Thunderbird, their user interface invites you to procrastinate and the emails pile up. Mutt, with its focus on free text, cuts through that dynamic. I’ve also noticed something similar on WordPress, where there is a significant difference in the kinds of posts I write using the WordPress web interface versus the kind of post I’ll write when I’m using emacs and org2blog.

So, moral of the story, be careful about the tools you use, and there may be advantages of using a less feature-rich application than may be apparent at first blush.

Disabling Facebook and Other Social Media Tracking in WordPress

I realized yesterday that the default sharing options in WordPress enabled tracking by Facebook and Twitter. I don’t want advertising or tracking on my site. I found that you can turn these “features” off in the Dashboard.

Simply click on Enabled Services and drag and drop into Available Services, and vice versa, for services you want enabled, such as Email or Print.

Fixing a Broken org2blog Configuration

I used to have a working set-up of org2blog. Somewhere along the way, it got borked. I couldn’t login. I tried fixing it a few times, but I couldn’t get the problem resolved. Today, I finally got org2blog working. Key piece is setting the gnutls-algorithm-priority.

Use the instructions at the org2blog site:

Do everything it says, such as install the dependencies, create a ~/.netrc file with wordpress as the machine name, and so forth. After creating .netrc, limit access by doing: $ chmod 600 ~/.netrc. Then, replace the blog credentials .emacs code with the following:

;; org2blog  
(require 'org2blog-autoloads)
(require 'netrc)

;; With Emacs 27.1, the following line borked configuration again, remove
;; (setq gnutls-algorithm-priority "NORMAL:-VERS-TLS1.3")

;;; org2blog hydra hooks (defun my/org2blog/wp-mode-hook-fn () (local-set-key (kbd "M-9") #'org2blog/wp-hydra/body) (local-set-key (kbd "M-0") #'org2blog/wp-complete-category)) (add-hook 'org2blog/wp-mode-hook #'my/org2blog/wp-mode-hook-fn)

;;; org2blog authentication (require 'auth-source) (let (credentials) (add-to-list 'auth-sources "~/.netrc") (setq credentials (auth-source-user-and-password "wordpress")) (setq org2blog/wp-blog-alist `(("blogname" :url "" :username ,(car credentials) :password ,(cadr credentials) :default-title "Insert title" :default-categories ("comments") :tags-as-categories nil))))
(setq org-src-fontify-natively t)

I posted this using org2blog with this configuration.