The Boston Diaries

The ongoing saga of a programmer who doesn't live in Boston, nor does he even like Boston, but yet named his weblog/journal “The Boston Diaries.”

Go figure.

Monday, September 04, 2017

Cleaning up the cobwebs

As a holiday project, I decided to make a few changes to the old website (why yes, I have an actual website in addition to the blog, in case you didn't know), as it has been a few years since the last major update. The big changes were redirecting the “Software” section to my github page, removing the merchandising link (yes, there was one—and no, I never made any money from that) and cleaning up the “Projects” section.

I also went over the entire site (excluding the blog) and either removed or updated any links. It was amazing at just how many of them were dead (actually, the domains still existed, but were now owned by squatters wanting to sell the domain at an exorbitant prices). Especially in the “Metasearch Engine Years” section. Yes, I probably could have made links to The Wayback Machine (like Armigeron) but the issue there is when current owners of the domain put up a restrictive robots.txt— The Wayback Machine will then make the archive of said domain unavailable.

Why take the risk of potentially breaking the site? It's probably best to just remove the links and let the past be the past.

It was also a bit sobering to think that “Project: Brainstorm” (aka “Project: Brainstem” as it was called around The Office at the time) is far enough in the past that, if it were alive, it could legally drink! I still recall writing the software, using a text editor written in 1982 for MS-DOS 1.0 and a version of make from Microsoft. This was pretty much about six months after Java was officially released and there were no IDEs for it (not that I use IDEs as I'm a language maven, but the one time I tried using one, it crashed hard). The one problem I had not mentioned was writing myself into a circular dependency with the Java classes where you couldn't compile the code solely from source—class A required class B to be compiled first, and class B required class A to be compiled first. It's all too easy to fall into that trap with incremental development, and not quite so easy to break the cycle once one finds out.

There were some other minor changes I made, but they will probably go unnoticed by most people.

What can I say?

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