How to use Tumblr as a web host for a blog you FULLY control, without paying anything

If you’re not a computer nerd, buying web hosting can feel like buying a house. Or, worse, like buying a car. Or, even worse than that, a new computer.

It doesn’t have to be painful. In fact, most people who want a simple blog or website don’t even need to buy web hosting in the first place. And, this is the kicker, if you do end up buying web hosting, sooner or later you’ll realize that you’ve invested your whole identity, or your business, or whatever’s important to you, in a place that you don’t actually have any control over, and can’t easily leave. Backups will become important, but they’re gonna be a massive headache. You may find yourself hitting resource quotas, or your credit card will be charged for hidden and contract “renewal” fees or some such bullshit like that, none of which you were told about when you signed up. And, worst of all, you could find yourself digitally gagged, censored, or even outright banned just because someone else on the same “shared server” you were assigned was behaving badly.

Fuck. That. Shit. And, more to the point, why on God’s green Earth would you pay to be subjected to such bullshit?

With just a little bit of patience, enough computer know-how to understand how to click a few download links and move files from one folder to another, and a willingness to read this post, you can avoid every single one of those frustrating web host experiences, all while ending up with seamless, automatic backups of your entire blog, the ability to legally dodge shitty censorship and corporate contracts alike, and the ability to easily participate in the ever-expanding social media frenzy without spending hours managing all your different accounts manually. And did I mention it’s free?

Read the full post, it’s worth it.

On Being a Social Cyborg: How iCalendar Helps Me Fight Loneliness

Here’s a topic I’ve been meaning to write about ever since I was deeply depressed last Fall and Winter. Back then, I was incredibly lonely, and despite my best efforts I simply found it damn near impossible to do anything to improve my situation. That’s because my “best efforts” consistently lead me to dead-end resources […]

HowTo: Use Rules to Automatically Manage Email in Apple Mail

After recently moving to San Francisco, I joined the San Francisco Freecyclers’ Network. Freecycle is a really cool set of local groups who prefer to give away items to people who want them instead of throwing them away into the trash. The group uses email to connect people who offer items and those who want […]

Are you missing the point of using a version control tool?

The other day I gave a brief (and overly-hyper) talk about git, the (very) dumb, (very) fast version control system. It was part of SyPy‘s Git vs. Hg vs. Bzr night. Rather than be flamingly competitive, however, I had a lot of fun that night learning about the differences between the DSCM tools, which was […]

Scrum-style Burn Down Chart in iWork ’08 Numbers.app

Ever since I was introduced to the Scrum methodology of software development, I’ve enjoyed my work so much more than before. Most of that enjoyment is due to a sense of visibility, of knowing what’s going on. I find working without an accurate awareness of the situation at large very disorienting, and software and web […]

Productivity: It’s not what you do, it’s how you do it, and twentysomethings do it better

I don’t believe I have ever before posted an entry that, for all intents and purposes, is just a link to another blog post. However, this blog post is simply so brilliant and yet so short and easily-digestable, that I have nothing more to say. Thus: Twentysomething: 7 Reasons Why My Generation Is More Productive […]

One Minute Mac Tip: Remove .DS_Store files from ZIP Archives

The Mac OS X Finder has some nifty features, one of which is an exceptionally useful contextual menu item to create ZIP archives of folders. Unfortunately, the Finder also has some really, really annoying habits, one of which is to create a file named .DS_Store in each folder a user opens (when not in Column […]

One minute Mac tip: Schedule off-hours downloads by enabling `at`, `batch` UNIX job scheduling commands

In a lot of places in the world, many people still have to pay for bandwidth costs. I’m one of those people who just can’t afford to download lots of stuff during peak hours when my bandwidth might quickly get shaped or, worse, I’ll get charged. Nevertheless, there are often plenty of legit reasons to […]

Quick ‘N’ Dirty Drupal Module SVN Tagging Script

In a (rather beastly) project at work today, I found myself needing to import a significant number of contributed Drupal modules into Subversion vendor branches to prepare for custom development. To do so manually would have been quite the hassle, so after downloading the appropriate tarballs and creating a module_name/current directory under my vendor/drupal/modules vendor […]

One Minute Mac Tip: Use the command line to edit the content of your clipboard

Using the pbpaste and pbcopy commands, you can manipulate the contents of the Mac OS X clipboard (or more formally known as the pasteboard) right from the command line. As a brief example, just select the text of this first paragraph, copy it to your clipboard (with -c), and then type pbpaste in a Terminal […]