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BlueWolf's Howl

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November 14, 2005

RSS Madness

Okay...so tonight was proof that I am, indeed, trying to drive myself a little batty...

Maybe it was because I was tired of this page as my 'default' home page when my browser opens. Maybe it was because such a setting continued to remind me that I haven't posted in a while. [Guilt will do that ya know] But, regardless of the reason, I got the idea in my head that I was going to create a page of RSS feeds so that I could open a browser and have everything I might need to see on that page.

I started out by using lastRSS - which is PHP code to read/parse RSS feeds. Naturally, it doesn't work by itself. So then I had to use the RSS Aggregator to send the list of feeds to the lastRSS code to process and then back to the Aggregator to display.

Funny thing... that was the easy part. The feeds showed up and Wolfie howled with delight -- until I saw how the page would not use what I wanted on the style sheet. Arrrrrgh!!!

First the sidebar moved. Then the font went big. Then it went too small. Then the sidebar moved under the content (again). I got so frustrated that I made an emergency call to my lucky charm and CSS guru - which helped somewhat. Well...she helped *and* pointed out that my page looked a little bit caca in Firefox. I spent the rest of the evening tweaking the style sheet and php page. [And yes, I finally downloaded Firefox and gave an attempt at cross-browser compatibility.]

So the new "Morning News" and "Evening News" links on the sidebar now lead to those new pages. The first link leads to RSS feeds of tech-oriented items. The second link leads to blog and news feeds. The results of the blog feeds turned out to be pretty interesting. Apostrophes in the blog name or post title tend to show up as the code itself. Posts without a title become just little line item dots. And feeds without items show up as just a default error message.

Oh, well... I *did* manage to procrastinate on everything else I was supposed to do this evening...

Oh - and the Firefox compatibility is not completely fixed, but it is readable now. So just pretend that the banner graphic is supposed to be some kind of 3-d graphic angled towards you. It was one of those things that the more I tried to fix it, the more broken the site became... So I'm leaving it with 'a kiss and a promise' that I'll get back to it someday.

Posted by BlueWolf on November 14, 2005 02:29 AM