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State of Society?? I am offended.....

I just watched a video on Facebook that showed a teacher getting reprimanded for telling a child that 2+2 = 4.

Instead the child responds with 22. While the video is obviously meant as  a joke and a spoof, the part that scared me is I could see it happening.

I think that society has gotten a little out of hand over the last few decades.

At what point is enough enough?

Everyone is worried that someone will be offended by something that is being said. Everyone is all too worried about being "politically correct" and we are living in such a litigious society that people are suing each other over the stupidest of reasons.

Let's take for a moment this thought:

The only person who controls my thoughts is me. The only person who controls your thoughts is you the reader.

At any point within the process of reading a person has the choice to stop reading. No one is being forced to read this blog or any other for that matter.

People want to have the freedom of speech but only as long as someone else doesn't get to say anything that is offensive to them.

While this mentality is neither fair or correct, it will eventually lead us to places where people are not likely going to want society to go.

A few weeks back there was a television special discussing the atrocities that are happening within the borders of North Korea.

I would suggest that everyone watch what is happening there and then discuss openly how bad they truly think things are in the rest of the world.

Anywhere in the rest of the world most people enjoy tremendous amounts of personal freedom. Whether it be freedom of religion, free speech or just the freedom to be an absolute prick, does not entirely matter.

The point is that with freedom comes certain concerns that should be dealt with on a person to person level while remaining civil to one another.

If someone says something that offends you, well, they have the right to free speech. You also have that same right to free speech. What you don't have the right to do is to hit or assault someone for saying something that you disagree with.

As a society we need to be willing to take responsibility for our own actions AND the actions of our ancestors.

I am sure I might catch some flak for this, but to be honest I don't really care.

I have a daughter. As a parent is is my job to make sure that she learns some very basic things about life. Here are a few of them:

  • She needs to get an education - regardless if she decides to be a doctor or a street sweeper, having an education gives her the options that she can explore as she gets older. You just are not likely to find an uneducated doctor, and if you did would you let them operate on you?
  • The value of hard work - Life was never meant to be easy. She needs to understand that there will always be a certain level of work that needs to get done in life. She needs to learn that life is not all play and fun and games. Doing a good job on projects can be quite rewarding and satisfying. 
  • How to make good choices - She is learning that her choices not only affect her, but also those around her as well as her future children and grand-children. 
  • Taking responsibility for herself - This goes hand in hand with making good choices. Our daughter is learning that she is responsible for her own actions, feelings and emotional state. She has been taught that other people do not control her. If she gets mad at something then she has to address that internally to her own mind, body and spirit. She has had to learn to deal with the crap that other people can push on her and rise above it. 
  • Taking responsibility for her Future - As a parent I already stated that it is my responsibility to see how well she is raised. It is my job to make sure she becomes a well-educated, functioning member of society. It is my job to make sure that she knows how to defend herself against the things society can throw at her. But she also has learned that she too will be responsible in turn for the generations that come after her. She will have to pass down her beliefs to her children and to her grandchildren some day. 

All too often this last point seems to be missed in our society. 

Parents need to take responsibility for their offspring. You brought them into this world, it is your job to teach them, take care of them and give them the tools to survive in the world. 

It is not the televisions job to babysit. Children learn as they grow up. Children learn first and foremost from their family at home. 

Parents need to understand that they are either being an good or a bad influence on their own children. If the parents are angry, abusive, drunks, or are displaying any number of other detrimental patterns, then their children will likely continue that pattern. 

Several years ago when our daughter was only 6 a neighbors son, also only 6 attempted to "play with her" in a non-acceptable manner. The problems was that this child routinely saw extremely unpleasant and tremendously destructive behavior patterns in the home.

His mother would routinely date aggressive, abusive men. These men were often violent with her and her some. In addition to this the mother was a drug addict, whom having lost another son some years earlier, would only use drugs even more heavily to forget.

In addition to this, the mother often could not even remember the living sons name and would often refer to him by the deceased child's name. Can you imagine your mother not remembering your own name?

This child is likely a predator waiting to happen and he is only 9. While he does like to play violent video games, it is not the games fault for how he is turning out. He has learned from day one that his mother has no self-esteem, that women are for abusing, and that if you want sex just take it.

How many of you parents out there would like to have that child growing up near your young daughter? There are reasons she attends a martial arts training every week.

Problem is the parents are not taking responsibility for themselves, let alone for the child. What will his kids be like when they grow up? Will they even care enough to bother to change the cycle?

It is sad to be able to look at a 9 year old boy and already see that the life in front if him is likely going to be one of violence, jail or death.

But this is where our society is going, right?

Should I go out and sue the parents for turning their child into a potential rapist?

Should I contact social services and have the kid taken away from them?

Many foster care systems are turning out children just as bad, so would it be an effective solution?

Should a simply be offended because as parents they have the right to raise their child how they see fit?

After all, they are adults. They have their own freedoms.

However we as a society pay the prices for their actions. How many people have lost loved ones do to someone who slipped through the system?

If this post were given to the entire planet I am sure someone out there, generally some parent whose child fits this description, would likely write back and tell me they feel offended by what I wrote. Which truly sucks because I do not control their feelings about it.

However before anyone decides to write back saying how offended they are. Take this into account:

I was offended to have a 6 year old attempt to molest me 6 year old daughter.

I am offended when some 10 year old brings a knife to an Easter egg hunt and stabs another child just to get the "golden egg".

I am offended by a Police officer accusing me of abusing my dog without proof.

I am offended when a man won't be a gentleman and open a door for a lady he claims to love.

I am offended when people want everything for free, handed to them without doing any work for it.

I am offended when people can't state simple truths without causing an argument.

I am offended when people "tell me I am wrong" based on opinion not facts.

I am offended when people assume things about me.

I am offended when people stereotype me.

I am offended when people mistake a post on Facebook that has actually nothing to do with them and begin yelling at me because they felt offended.

I am offended when people can't sit down and have a civil discussion.

I am offending when people argue just to argue for arguments sake.

I am offended when people can't use proper English or grammar skills.

I am offended by people walking around with their pants around their ass crack. (I don't need to see that)

I am offended by stupidity.

I am offended by people nearly causing accidents on the roadways because they can't put down a f-ing cell phone for their 3 minute trip across town.

I am offended when people think I should like their music, movies, or just about anything because they do.

I am offended by people pushing their own ideals, religion or beliefs upon me.

I am offended by things being offensive.

I am offended by actually giving a damn enough to be offended.

I am offended when people think I should like their music, movies, or just about anything because they do.


Ohhh, really I am not offended by any of that shit.

Because in truth I am an adult and I am emotionally stable and do not find the need to be offended by any of it.

I take responsibility for my own self. I am in control of my own beliefs, my own opinions and my own emotions.

If you don't like me or what I have to say, then get the hell off my blog and just don't come back. In truth we will both be better off.

If I offended someone with this post, then instead of looking to what it is that I did to offend you, perhaps you should look into why you feel offended in the first place. Chances are that it really has something to do with your own internal issues and not with anything I truly did.

But I digress as that statement might be offensive to someone.

Wix Ad Bashes WordPress

I think that it is kind of funny when one company puts itself above all the rest and feels the need to try to make themselves superior to another company.

Why not simply create an outstanding product and avoid the trash-talking?

Recently I saw a Wix commercial bashing WordPress. I am not sure if this was intentionally to bash WordPress or simply meant to be a joke, but in truth it doesn't entirely matter.

While I have not used Wix in the past, I believe I am never likely to ever in the future.

Why is this?

Because I am now and have been a long time web-platform developer. This means I use WordPress. I mean I use it all teh time, every single day, all day, and would likely never want to live without it.

While I have used many Content Management Systems (CMS) platforms in the past, WordPress has always been one of my go to favorites. Especially if I am not writing custom coded websites.

This is not just a "fanboy" attitude speaking but comes from years of practical experience.

I have been working online since 2003, and over the years I have made hundreds of websites for both myself and clients and depending on the needs of the site in question is when I decide which CMS is going to be used.

I am a Enterprise Application Engineer by training. This means I can create, build, code and troubleshoot all levels of programming languages. My jobs in the past have included Java development for a financial brokerage firm, managing a webhosting company, and developing mission and life critical software systems for emergency response services.

For me and those jobs having custom built software was often the rule not the exception. But when it comes to creating a website less can sometimes be more.

Doing custom software using C#, C++, Java, or any number of other programming languages is time consuming. It can literally take years to troubleshoot millions of lines of coding written by a predecessor.

So why for heaven sake wouldn't you want to use a platform that makes things easier on you?

In the past for websites I have used other CMS like Drupal or even Joomla. I even have had several of my own personal sites on those platforms.

But why would I choose a simplified option like WordPress?

Well, to be honest, because it is simplified. As a programmer I find that there is almost always some aspect of a site that will need to be changed at the basic coding level.

For WordPress this means knowing PHP, MySql, and HTML. These three skills have pushed me far in my endeavors with building websites.

While the other platforms do offer the same level of coding requirements, I often find that WordPress is just easier to actually use.

In the past I have often found less support for many items that I might want to implement on other platforms. Joomla sometimes has just too many moving parts so to speak.

Don't get me wrong. I love all those platforms, but there are also other factors involved with this decision.

Some of the websites I create are going to "non-technical" clients. This is sad to say but true. Not everyone out there has the same skill levels. If the site I am creating for someone is going to be managed by someone who is less technically skilled then I find explaining WordPress to them is easier then explaining Joomla or Drupal.

While Joomla does have a more robust level of functionality I think, and it does not default to the normal "bloggish" feel of WordPress, I have also found that there is very little that you can't make WordPress do if you plan it out right.

WordPress does also have the "Lions Share" of the market. The developers of WordPress would love to the the "Word Wide WordPress" and in truth it might just happen someday.

There are so many features available to the WordPress community that one can easily find multiple ways of doing whatever functionality they might need.

In the past those sites that I have used Joomla for have often become a greater hassle to work on. The complexity of the menu system and modules can increase quite dramatically if you are not paying attention.

As a web developer my job is to create websites that work based on the criteria (and pocketbook) of the client. If I can accomplish that goal in a few weeks on WordPress, while keeping costs down, build times quicker and maintain the same level of quality as another platform, then WordPress often wins because it will just be easier and simpler for me to implement, not to mention building hundreds of websites on the platform give me experience.

To see a site like Wix bashing WordPress, whether lightheartedly or not, kind of gets under my skin. If you are going to bash a program that millions of developers use every single day to run their businesses, how would you expect the community to feel about it?

While I am sure Wix offers a great service. They too are simply a type of CMS. If the sites Wix creates are not custom, one-off builds then I find that their system would likely have many of the same concepts going for it as WordPress.

Each system likely uses "code blocks", which is exactly what plugins are. All good programmers will understand the benefit of re-usable code. If I write a Java program that does inventory management for one job, why shouldn't I be able to reuse that code to create another inventory system in the future.

I guarantee large software developers are reusing code blocks. In fact you can'e really program without them.

Why wouldn't you use a "blogging system" after all Google, the big boy on the block for web SEO, loves the WordPress blogging community. Google is all about the user experience. They want sites that load fast, offer frequently updated content and have key SEO features like user-friendly urls.

Using plugins to extend WordPress functionality can have adverse affects on your site, but these can generally be mitigated simply by removing the plugin and swapping it for another one.

Some systems like Drupal, while they have a great community, the number of competing plugins is quite a bit lower. This means there is much higher and greater level of competition within the WordPress community is well.

As with any market there are always some people whom have less then stellar quality products, such as a bad plugin, but there are also other vendors out there who might have better options. This can't be said of all other CMS options out there.

Wix is a website building platform. You pretty much get whatever they allow you to have. This means that the admins and system decide what you can or cannot really do.

Much like this Blogger platform. There is only so many options available to me for editing, tweaking or adding features. Compared to what I can do on any other platform this is quite limited. This is done to prevent massive numbers of users running scripts and bots that could adversely affect their servers.

Hell, this is a free service and they have the right to limit my functionality. However if I was paying for this blog you bet I would want greater control over what I can do with it. This means I am willing to make those changes based on my own skills as a programmer and software engineer.

I have extensive practical experience with Unix systems,  databases, and software troubleshooting. Even I do my share of correcting errors, even on WordPress sites, but those are often template issue, occasional plugin conflicts, or something I screwed up by accident.

I like having control over what I do with a website. That's what I get paid for.

I find Wix's bashing of another long-time powerhouse application such as WordPress only doing a disservice to the millions of loyal fans that abound within the WordPress community. We are professional developers and hobbyists alike working with a platform that we love and enjoy using. Taking a shot at WordPress is taking a shot at all of us.

Tasks to Accomplish This Holiday Week

Looks like the holiday is upon us. 

For those of you out thee celebrating the 4th of July please take extra care to avoid heat exhaustion, sun-burn, or accidentally blowing off a finger with the fireworks. 

I'll be sitting home with a cold drink trying to get some work done. I might take some time to bring the family out to our local parade, until I melt. 

It's always great to take a little time off as well. But once that is done it's back to work. 

This week I have a few projects to get done and think I might do write ups for if anyone wants to see them add your comments below..

This week's tasks:

  1. Building a computer for our daughter. 
    1. As part of her educations I was going to let her help in the building process to put together a pc. Let here learn about the technology that goes into making a PC. Kids need to learn that not all computers are IPads.
  2. Getting daughter ready for summer programs.
    1. This year she is attending a 2 month long day camp. She is looking forward to it. At the age of 9 I hope she will enjoy it and not run into any problems. Kids in camps can be such a pain sometimes. You never know which ones will be "too rowdy". 
  3. Setup a NAS system:
      1. Been looking for a decent, viable, personal Data Management System (DMS) that I can use at home. After dozens of options I still haven't really found one I like. Tons of great products out there but none really appeal to me. Not entirely sure what I don't like about them, just nothing jumps out at me. If anyone has a must have suggestion let me know in the comments below. I would prefer Windows or Linux, Open source would be nice too.
  4. Another Niche project coming up for my wife. Looks like wifey is finally looking to start a non-traditional business. I love the Internet. You guys out there are awesome. 
      1. Without giving away the niche. Looks like I will have some work ahead of me to get her started in the right direction. 
      2. Brainstorming Ideas:
        1. Niche selection - already known (plus she has a passion for the industry, already has high level contacts in the field, been offered jobs in the field, and has a large potential following already. 
        2. Keywords - Will need to determine what she wants to specifically rank for within the niche. It can be highly lucrative, so buyers kw are great. This should be a fun project. 
        3. Viability study - The niche is gaining ground everyday. Tons of material, its evergreen as green can be. Tons of great products, material to write, and professionals to interact with and interview. 
        4. Pick a platform for website (most likely WordPress, we just love WP around here) ;)
        5. Design and layout. will have to find her several options for design of her new site. I like to take into account many factors. Such as imagery, color palette, fonts, you name it. 
        6. Domain name for the new site - This will likely be the hardest one to come up with. Already thinking of brandable names for this. But as it will be her project I will have to let her decide and see what we can come up with. 
        7. Content creation systems - Will have to decide how she wants to get content generated for the site in the beginning. Guest posters will likely be a great first option. With the contacts she has this should be relatively easy to accommodate. She's not the fastest typing (hey, me neither), but she will probably want something to use that is better then an IPhone keyboard. Sure phones are great for Twitter but who really want to write 5,000 word posts on a phone? This likely means putting together a computer for her as well. Perhaps she would prefer a laptop? will have to see what option she likes better.
        8. Pre and Post launch check lists will have to be created. This is always a great idea to have in place. How else will you know if you get it all done? my last website has taken several weeks to get hundreds of steps done. There are always a ton of minute tasks that come up during a new website / business. Better to flesh everything out. 
          1. A Pre-lauch list - I create a list of those options that must be done so that a site may launch. This means domain name for instance has to be in place before hosting, so it can be accessible. 
          2. Post-launch list - Just what you think. Stuff that can wait til after the site is live. This can be tons of stuff. New plugins, email address, forms, new pages, etc...
        9. Competitive analysis - will have to spend some time looking over the competition she will face in her chosen niche. One of my favorite task is finding sites that can be outranked using simple SEO tactics and great content. 
Well that should be enough to fill up most of my week. These are just the tasks that I added to my schedule recently. As always I will continue to write about and blog stuff, find useful links and suggestions for my readers, continue to read a little every day and continue to work on my own sites and business. Thank you all for reading.

21 Secrets Behind Viral Infographics

Ever struggled to create that perfect info-graphic??? Going from one website to another trying to find the right creation tool to use?

What if you had been doing the entire process wrong?

If your trying to make inforgraphics, especially ones that go viral, then make sure to catch this post below:

21 Secrets Behind Viral Infographics: It’s no secret that infographic marketing works. Here are 21 secrets behind viral infographics that grab attention and get your content shared like crazy

Does Distraction Free Working Exist?

Have you ever hard to edit something that took you forever to do? Was that paper really written that bad or were there just too many distractions to keep pulling you in different directions?

Is there really such a thing as distraction free work?

I spent the better part of yesterday editing a single WordPress template. A recently purchased WordPress template did contain some errors. While these have been a little annoying lately, as they do trigger my php log file to record them, they have been relatively easy to fix.

But yesterday I decided I was going to update and change a few items with the template. So I wanted to comply change the main button for clicking "view more details".

As a software developer I was hoping it would be a simple fix. Just edit the file and change the link reference for the image, right?

Nope I was wrong. Turn out the PHP code was far from as clean as I am accustomed to writing. In addition to the lack of white space the code contained several section of coding that was confusing.

What made things even much more complicated was the level of distraction provided by my daughter. She is 9 and now home for the summer. She is completely bored out of here skull and since I work from home she feels this is carte blanche for her to bug the heck out of me.

Editing someone else's code can be a considerably hard thing to do. ( know I have been doing it professionally for over 20 years. My first ever programming job was to "fix" a Java program that someone else developed for 2 years.

It is hard to put yourself into the shoes of the other developer and have an idea of what they were hoping to accomplish. This could have been greatly avoided with some simple fixes.

I appreciate that PHP is a very flexible language, but this should not prevent PHP coders from learning and implementing basic and common programming practices.

There is no shortage of available whitepsae in any PHP editor that I have ever seen.

There is also a button on the keyboard called the "TAB" key.

A common practice is to tab (indent) when you are entering control statements (at the minimum).

Structures like this:

Do some thing here;
                    if these code
                             some other code;
                    end your if statement

         do your next code block

are so much easier to follow and read then having it all mushed together.

If your a new or younger programmer that has not been formally trained in many of these concepts then please I implore you take a few minutes to read through the links below so that you too can make better coding part of your programming repertoire.

Top 15+ Best Practices for Writing Super Readable Code - Code Tuts

Best coding practices - Wikipedia

13 Simple Rules for Good Coding (from my 15 years of experience)

ESET Firewall is blocking a device or application in Windows home products—ESET Knowledgebase

ESET Firewall is blocking a device or application in Windows home products—ESET Knowledgebase: ESET Firewall is blocking a device or application Not sure if ESET firewall is causing your connection issues? To troubleshoot your connection issue, pause the ESET firewall for troubleshooting to determine if the firewall is causing your connection

WARNING - Your Website Needs an SSL

WARNING - Your Website Needs an SSL by Oct 2017: Are you wondering if your website needs SSL certificate? The short answer is "Yes!", but read this post to find out why & swipe our free HTTPS checklist!

Also check ou the other posts regarding the need for SSL:

SSL Certificates Needed In 2018 - Let's Encrypt Project