man people woman street

Inauguration

I just watched the inauguration. I admit I helped in the division. I was angry and frustrated with Trump supporters. But, if I am to help do my part I must refrain from vocalizing my frustration. I would like to rise to the challenge with compassion. It does me no good to continue to condemn people.

Perhaps it is better to just disengage. I can’t stop my friends from believe what they want. I can just have empathy and be sad for them.

Second Impeachment

Screenshot of CNN.com

I hope Trump is made an example. I hope the name “Trump” becomes a dirty word.

I am tired of the hate mongering from Trump supporters. I am tired of fear. I am tired of the talk of “defending ourselves from threats.” Cowards hide behind walls. Cowards blame others for their mistakes.

The brave have the courage to face their fears and go forward. The brave are generous in spirit and lift up others. The brave accept things as they are and build. Bravery is not the absence of fear but the courage to face fear and go forward.

white house

Attack on Capital

I understand the desire to reach out to Qanon and Trump supporters. It is natural to want to have everyone understand. After the attack on the Capital building, I am thinking there is no reasoning with these people. They are hell bent on believing what they want for their crummy narrative.

I have made it a point to disengage with Trump followers. There is no point in appealing to their sense of reason.

two NFL players

Too Much Blocking

I had speed issues with my WP installs for a while now. I could not figure out what I was doing wrong until now. I used too many plugins to block brute force attacks.

My default plugins for my WP installs are iThemes Security, Wordfence Security, and Jetpack. I use iThemes to change the WP-config and .htaccess files. iThemes has its own brute force protection. Wordfence is used a firewall and scanner. Jetpack has its own brute force protection. By disabling Jetpack’s brute force option, my sites sped up. I’m already protected with iThemes Security.

Sometimes I forget that a website suffers because of over-protection. When I overprotect my sites with a lot plugins, my sites suffer from performance issues. It is like doubling up on prophylactics… the effectiveness degrades because of friction. It is the same for plugins. Too many security plugins destroy the effectiveness of one security plugin.

Screenshot of a Child Theme CSS.

Biden Won

I am happy that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won. I believe they will return respectability to the Presidency. Trump was a joke.

Some of my red leaning contacts are claiming that Biden is a pedo. There is no proof other than Qanon theories. Trump, on the other hand, has gone on record as peeping underage girls. This is a narcissistic trait… blame others for your own sins.

No one is perfect. Biden will fail on some things. But at least he won’t vomit his random thoughts on Twitter. I can finally stop following politics as closely as I have these past 4 years.

person in spiderman costume

Being a Site Admin Sucks

In 2009, I purchased a domain called RealLifeSuperheroes dot org (or RLSHorg). I used WordPress as the Content Management System. I reposted articles about people dressing up as superheroes and fighting crime. My friend and I secured an advertising deal with Lionsgate for the Kickass Movie in 2010. To further the site’s usability (or UX), I added the BuddyPress and bbPress plugin. I also added a multisite function so people can blog on the site.

After watching the movie “The Social Network” I gave my site up to anyone who wanted to run it. I was done being the site’s webmaster. A guy named Watchman (from Milwaukee) said he’d run it. With no WordPress experience the install became severely infected with viruses. Watchman allowed anyone to register. I could not recover the website, so I closed it down. The site had over 800 spam users. I did not have the experience to clean the infected site. Nor could not I rebuild it. So I moved the old articles to a WordPress.com archive site. Watchman gave up the domain and the GoDaddy hosting account.

A screenshot of Geist complaining about site I do not own.
I don’t want to take this personally. This individual drunk posts and claims the FBI is hunting him.

There was a lot of backlash from RLSH people. One guy in San Diego claimed I did this on purpose to destroy the community. Another guy named Geist claimed I stole money from him. I guess Watchman asked for money to keep the hosting going. Even now, people complain about my mismanagement of RLSHorg.

I learned two things from hosting a community hub-

  1. Never let the inmates run the asylum.
  2. Develop a thick skin.

Visitors do not understand the hard work and dedication that goes in a website. I spent hours on site development and maintenance. A lot of my money went into the site. I learned about WordPress (which I am glad for). But the fronted users had no idea why I did certain things. Instead they complained about my management. They said that I had a bias or an agenda against other people. They wrote blogs about how I was like to Osama Bin Laden (with YouTube videos and Photoshop memes). It was a horrible experience in hindsight. I am not sure the Pros outweigh the Cons.

Site users have no capability to understand web development. It is not their job to know. Their job is to visit and consume content. Complaining about a website means they are visiting. My job is to build and maintain the site. They are the users. They are not the admins. It is their right to complain.

I have the right not to listen. It is my right not to believe their insults. I chose to listen to gather feedback. I failed to understand that there are bad opinions. Not everyone is capable of rational thought. Some people give selfish criticisms. Frankly, some people are stuck up jerks. It is difficult to discern what was positive feedback and what was not. I didn’t trust myself. The job of a web admin is to trust that they know what they are doing. Some users are not trained web development people.

I learned that a web developer will always be linked to a website. You can build the backend to be easy to maintain. But if the new owners do not understand why things work the way they do, the site will crash. This might be the reason why some classes I took recommends adding maintenance fees. No one wants to be the garbage man. Everyone wants to be the Mayor. A site owner is both the mayor and garbage person. And being a free website garbage man sucks.

I am building a new WordPress collective at https://thecomixscene.com. The plugins I am using are BuddyPress, bbPress, Youser, and Comic Easel. My intention is to create a Webcomics hub like Tapas or Webtoons. I want to teach indie comic creators how to build and maintain WordPress sites. There are some Indie Comic collectives that do not and their subdomains are lacking. Whatever I learned in college, I want to sharing with others. Revisiting my time as admin of RLSHorg may help me make smarter choices. I don’t want to make the same mistakes as before.

Skeletor T-Shirt Design

Busted

I knew I was flirting with danger. I used copy-written material to sell shirts on RedBubble. I designed a Skeletor shirt from the Masters of the Universe Movie. I received a notice of content removal. But the reason why is not what I thought it would be-

Hi Illya,

We’re sorry, but we had to remove some of your artwork from the
Redbubble marketplace because it may contain material that violates
someone’s rights. We identified this material in your artwork based on
guidance provided to us by the owner of those rights.

More information:

Rights holder: Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
Subject matter: Thundercats

Affected artwork:

The Loneliness of Evil :
https://www.redbubble.com/people/nakedmancomics/works/35581358-the-loneliness-of-evil

RedBubble

The image was NOT of Mumm-Ra but of Skeletor. I don’t want to dispute this claim because I don’t own Skeletor. So I got busted… for the wrong reason.

Skeletor T-Shirt Design
Skeletor T-Shirt Design

Unsplash logo

Unsplash for WordPress

Unsplash Test Image
A look at the Unsplash Block

Unsplash released an official WordPress plugin. For those who may not know, Usplash is an image repository for free images. Photographers donate their photos to Unsplash for others to use for free. Unsplash built a plugin that connects WordPress to their image library.

WPTavern wrote an excellent blog about the plugin at https://wptavern.com/unsplash-launches-official-plugin-for-wordpress.

The setup is easy. A user must have Unsplash account so the plugin can connect the site via security token. Click on the connect button in the plugin’s dashboard, and your all set.

Adding this powerful repository eliminates the need to search for royalty-free images. It is not fun activity unless you are creating your own images. The conflict I found is that this plugin will not work if you are using the External Links plugin (by WebFactory LTD).

Download the plugin at https://wordpress.org/plugins/unsplash/.