Thursday, September 30, 2004

Note To Self: Web Links

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Tuesday Kali

We had another good Kali class last night. This time we worked on defending against multiple attackers. We were only able to do 2 against 1, but that was enough. We all had weapons. I think I did okay, except for the fact that I have the conditioning of a lazy housecat. Oh, that reminds me. I had a dream that I befriended two mountain lions that came to my apartment for food. What the #&*! was that all about.

Anyway, after our initial exercises where we used several defenses for the 1 strike we got down to business. After us students had our turn, Gura went against all 3 of us. My lesson for that day was that if anyone ever traps her in a corner while she has a weapon, don't be the first to attack. I think I got stabbed at least a dozen times. Next class: Thursday.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

4000 Sites

With another 48 links, we will have posted 4000 of the best-looking sites on the net since was launched at the beginning of 2000. That's a lot of good sites. There's probably a good 20% of them that point to dead links now, but damn that was a lot of work. Big thx to all of the admins!

Monday, September 27, 2004

Back From Portland

It was a fun trip. Shab's students placed in the top 3 of the categories they competed in. I even got an award for my "Big Hair" performance. I might have some pictures a little later.

I got to visit the Multnomah Falls at the Columbia River Gorge, and the Japanese Garden in Portland. Most of the people out there are extremely nice for some strange reason. Almost to a car, whenever I approached a driver from behind, they would pull over to let me pass. That rarely happens in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Anyway, I'm glad to be home. I had to expose a little skin to a bunch of belly dancers to win my big hair award, so it's kind of a relief to not have to be known as the "Big Hair" guy every time I leave the room. They're all nice people though. Can't complain too much.

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Note to Self

Wings of Isis CD - 5th Track

Belly Dancing in Oregon

I didn't think I'd have internet access while traveling to Oregon to see Shabnam's return performance at the competition she won last year, but it looks like I do. It looks like a nice place to visit. It's green everywhere, parks all over the place, big mountains, rivers, and there's even a great bread place that gives out huge samples for free. That probably wouldn't last too long in Oakland. The place would be packed with homeless folks.

Shab's performance last night went pretty well. She got a great reception after she finished, and her costume was kickin'. Today I'll get to see a few of her students perform. Good luck Mandy and Doretta. :-)

While at the hotel, I've started playing around with a couple of different design directions for None of them seem particularly interesting. I think I've been programming too long. It takes my design flow a while to get going. That's enough for today. I'll be back when I get bored with bellydancing.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004 Design Direction

Over the past year I've been slowly building up the backend for the new version of Moluv. Until yesterday, though, I hadn't really put much thought into the design direction. Mostly because it's going to take a lot of energy to come up with something as simple, arresting, and low bandwidth as the current version.

Maybe I'll start that process now. If anyone has any suggestions on design direction, I'm all ears. The requirements, for now, are that the list of the most recent 25 sites, the blurbs, featured sites, forums, and banner space will continue to appear on the main page.

Tuesday Kali

Yesterday we got to do a lot of long-range numerado. I'm slowly starting to pick up the timing for the counter strikes. Unfortunately, there was someone on the receiving end of my learning curve. Sorry B.

Fortunately we have to master sticks before getting anywhere near bladed weapons (guys at least), so I'm safe for now. So is B.

Using weapons are kind of tricky. It's like learning how to walk. You have a different range of motion that your body isn't used to. The big difference is that you can practice walking anywhere. Numerado requires someone else with at least an introductory level of proficiency in the use of weapons.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004


I'm building some code now that will automatically generate multiple columns of checkboxes. Of all the HTML form elements, checkboxes are the most devious. They are intricately tied into how a database is built. They offer so many variations that handling them all in a class, method, or function has become extremely complicated. But, I will get you Mr. Checkbox. I will get you and make you into my pet, then I will deploy you at my will. Bruh ha ha ha!

"The Race Card"

It seems no matter where I go, what I write about, or what I'm interviewed about I get someone that sees what I look like and claims that I am using the "race card" for something. I'm not sure what it is, but it seems to put a lot of fear into some people.

Just so I'm clear, race should not be a big issue. Fairness and justice should be. No matter what your skin color is, being treated equally should be of primary concern to all of us. It just so happens, that the inequitable treatment in the US has historically been drawn along racial lines. In other countries people are persecuted primarily because of their religion, their sex, or their nationality. Here, it's skin color.

If bringing up an issue that's been a problem with the US since its inception seems frustrating or scary enough to get mad about when someone brings it up, then welcome to my world. It seems to me that those people that make accusations of bringing up "the race card" are themselves very adept at handling it. Is that a good or bad thing? You decide.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Using Flash

Should I continue using Flash in the next version of Moluv? Probably. Although, the deeper I've gotten into Flash, the more I've learned respect the simplicity of pure HTML.

To me, the best use of Flash is when it's being utilized to perform a function that can't be done using any other tool. The new Amplifier site is a great example. Zoom, audio, and video are all used to great effect.

What's even better, is when Flash is being used to do something useful that most other people haven't thought of yet. That's what I did initially with the searchable center column with descriptive mouseovers, and my friend Steved did with the mouse-following shadows in the main logo. This time around, my use of flash will require something just as compelling, if it's going to be used at all.

ASP Classes: Handling Checkboxes

I've been writing classes that allow faster ways to add, update, and display data in SQL server databases. Now, I'm at the final stage, creating checkboxes. In an HTML form, checkboxes have a lot of different uses, and therefore are probably the most complicated form element to deal with.

Last week, I finished a lot of characterization work on checkboxes that will allow me to start putting some code together. I think I can manage to put together a function or method that works with my existing classes so I don't have to create a brand new class. This is a much needed feature for the future administration area.

Busy Weekend

I guess I'll have to rest today, because I definitely didn't get any this weekend. Saturday I got to be a part of Guru Rocky's class at Lake Merritt. I don't get to go as much as I'd like, but it's always a worthwhile session. This time, after years of stumbling, I finally figured out how to do the osoto gari, and ouchi gari judo throws, only it was with kali footwork. It makes perfect sense now, but I see now why it's so easy to do, but so hard to explain if you don't know the footwork.

On Sunday I had my housewarming party and Shab performed some top notch belly dance routines with her students in preparation for her return trip to Oregon as the Double Crown champ. Of course, preparing for all of this meant a full day and morning of cleaning.

I also found out that my next door neighbor Duane has been studying Brazilian Jiujitsu for 10 years, and actually studied with the Royce Gracie and the Gracie family while he was instructing at his own school. Also, Duane sells martial arts equipment. He brought over some beautiful ebony escrima weapons. If it were a little longer I would have bought it on the spot.

Friday, September 17, 2004

Speeding Ticket

I just got back from paying for my speeding ticket. It's always demoralizing when I have to pay for one of those because there are always a very high percentage of people of color. If the the police handing out the moving violations were held as accountable for their actions as they hold us, I think the distribution of races and nationalities in US courthouses would be more balanced.

So, I got to do a little more fighting yesterday with one of the other Kali students. I have to stop giving out all of my fight tips, because yesterday he did really well. I guess it's time to learn something new. Rest will come first, though. A lot of it.

I finally got the upload utility working for Now I can start doing more stuff with the new database, and we'll be able to update the featured sites images.

A special shout out to my angry friend Constant, who seems just as upset as I am about the country being misled into war.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Kali Seminar

Last night I got to learn a little about knife fighting. We used rolled newspapers instead of knives, though. The women eventually got to use real knives. Men have no control once the hormones kick in.

We did a little open-hand sparring too, which was fun. I got to go against Guru Rocky for the first time. That guy is like lightning. What's scarier, though, is how he started to get my timing down. Fortunately, Tuhan had him fight a dozen other matches before he got to me.

Then there was Guru Rocky against Gura Michelle. That was a match for the ages. You could cut the tension with a knife when they went at it, and both of them were so good. This was better than watching a UFC DVD.

Oh, then Tuhan pulled a shovel out of the shed and Guru Rocky had to defend against it. Outside, at night, with so-so lighting. That was pretty cool to watch too. I luv this stuff!

Now it's time to rest the bruises.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Upload Utility

Much luv to my homie Erik "Radio" Noise for putting together that ASP upload utility that'll let me admin my site through firewalls.

Now that I have a little more space for writing, I'll be using this page to track my progress for the development of the new version of I created this site to see how the Blogger administration works and was pleasantly surprised to find one of, if not THE, best administration tools on the web. Big typefaces, buttons, and icons. Lots of complementary colors. Super easy to understand. If the new version of Moluv get's anywhere close to this, then I've achieved something.

I just finished documenting all of the ASP/VBScript objects that Erik and I put together. Now I can start getting used to using them. Maintaining tables, columns, and report pages within VBScript should be pretty simple from here on out.

With these tools, I'm benchmarking a few sites. The first is now Blogger, or course. Next is Archinect. I like the navigation. After that is Styleboost which I keep forgetting to add as a resource at That site has really come a long way in interface design.

The new version of the site will be a lot more focused on commerce, so I've been playing around with Google's Adwords as well as Amazon's Associate program, Paypal & Ebay, and I've been putting together code and database tables to handle banner placement and statistics. Even if none of this works, it should be a good learning experience I'll be able to share with all the site's visitors. More later.

Kali Class & Housewarming

Last night's Kali class was cool. We worked on 3, and 4 defenses with a little numerado. Can't ever get too much numerado. It's always fun watching Gura's precision strikes though. One day I'll be able to do those too.

The housewarming party is coming up on Sunday. A few last minute invites went out yesterday, and I'll be passing out some today. With a lineup of Shab's belly dance students performing, this should be good.

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

My First Blogger Blog

This Blogger stuff is sweet!!! Tuesday is Kali day. Time to whip out the sticks and act dangerous again. Hopefully we'll get some warm-up sparring for Wednesday's fight seminar. The last thing I want is to be rusty if I have to spar with new folks.

I just bought another Hot Wheels online. Damn, I hate when I do that. But, I can't stop myself. I love Hot Wheels. Cars and fighting, can't get enough.