New Footer, Phase 1

I’ve been working on a new footer for this site. For a while I’ve wanted a fat footer with more information. Today, you’ll see, I have one. It still needs a lot of work, but at least it’s there.

Areas for improvement:

  • Remove the stupid 1px border
  • Put in some social media icons

Cheerleader CSV Parser

The other week we decided to send out a mass email to our cheerleading team in order to get information from each cheerleader. The problem was that we didn’t want to send sizing data about other cheerleaders. This meant a custom written emails for each cheerleader. We had an excel spreadsheet, I exported it to CSV and then wrote a ruby parser to generate custom email files for each cheerleader.

https://gist.github.com/2568583.js

There is some room for improvement:

  • Parameterize the inputs. Pass in the CSV, destination folder, a template file
  • Use a template file for emails. Instead of manually including the message

Changes

This site is undergoing some changes.

Firstly, you may notice that I have changed the homepage to have a static home page. It allows me to introduce myself to people who may want to just find out who I am without forcing my current thoughts on them.

Secondly, I’m working on consolidating my Categories and reducing them. There are way too many. I’m going to keep putting information in the tags, but categories will probably start to shrink to a more reasonable number.

Thirdly, I’m hopefully going to start writing more again. I don’t know if it will be only on this site or across the web at all of my blogs (yes, I have too many).

Hope you enjoy the changes.

Bookmarks

These are my links for April 22nd from 21:01 to 21:01:

  • Deaths, injuries raise alarm at cheerleading's dangers – The Boston Globe – This post talks about the importance of Cheerleading safety especially in the state of Mass. It is an interesting piece, but I feel that people who advocate safety for cheerleaders sometimes go to the extreme and over regulate the sport. My classic example is the double full, which used to be legal in college, but due to safety restrictions has now been made illegal. Many people were landing it fine, some weren't. Better training would be a better solution than complete restriction.

Github and Gists

Github is a web site for common git repositories. It has been around for a while, and I have been a member since before they became public. Basically you can create your git repos on the site, add code and whatnot, branch from other repos and then sync up. I use it mostly as a backup for my current project, which is a private repository.

Anyway, I wake up this morning to see that there is a new little item on the Github dashboard, “Gists”. I click on the link and get brought to a page that looks like Pastie. I’ve always been confused about how long the code stays around at Pastie. I would have like to post some links to Pastie stuff in the blog, but honestly, I haven’t trusted it to be around. So, maybe Gists existed on a more permanent basis. I started hunting around Github for some documentation on Gists, with no luck.

After doing some Googling, I landed on this video about Gists. It’s pretty informative. Basically, a gist is a simple way to create a small repo directly from the Github website. Looks like they are permanent, but don’t quote me on that.

Chop Sticks and Their Effects on the Food I Eat

This is just a brief aside, but it occurred to me today that often times I will pick which restaurant I like based on the quality of the chopsticks they offer. Safeway, for example, gives out really bad chopsticks that never break cleanly. I end up with one huge nob at the end of one stick, and the other stick is a mini stick. The chinese food restaurant, on the other hand, gives out great chop sticks. They always break cleanly and are of good solid build that feel comfortable in your hands. Many of the Japanese restaurants also have good chop sticks.

I think it funny, yet sad, that I will enjoy a restaurant more based on their selection of chop sticks, but really, can you imagine eating a Michael Jordan’s steakhouse rib eye with a plastic fork and knife? I choose the place with better chopsticks.

Shoulders, Knees and Ankles

Cheerleading has really taken its toll on me over the years. I can no longer tuck like I used to. My body is getting even older and stuff that was easy just six months ago is getting harder and harder on my joints. So I made an appointment to go see a Sports Medicine doctor. The results:

  • Possible tear in the right rotator cuff, will need to get an MRI to confirm
  • Possible tear in the meniscus on my left knee (though both of them are hurting), will be following up with Physical Therapy on them
  • I need to see another doctor about my ankle

The good news is that the doctor didn’t feel that any of the issues I’m suffering from should prevent me from cheering in the near future, or make me more likely to end up in a wheel chair any earlier than could normally be expected.