New Database

Just a quick note for anyone who cares, the database server has been running on what the authors called a Gamma release. That is, it was mostly stable but they wanted to make absolutely sure before calling it stable… The latest release, which is now installed on the DearDiary server, is now the latest and greatest stable release…

Lets hope they’re not lying :)


The Great Search, part 2 ;-)

Ok, so i’m a dummy :)

The search thing mentioned above wasn’t actually working properly it seems and I should have spotted that before I even told anyone about it. Thanks to deepbluesea for letting us know I was being a plank :)

It’s working now, I just fixed it – and i’ve simplified the screen a bit when the username is specified in the URL (ie. there’s very little point in asking for a diary title when you’re fixed to one username :-) ).

If anybody experiences any issues with it, then as always, drop a note either here or at the support address below 😉


Searching your Diary

Hi Everyone,

A couple of quick announcements…

Firstly, after a user request for a facility to allow searching of your own diary (possible already with the Search engine) we have updated it slightly to allow you to put a link to it on your own diary. When you want to search a particular users’ diary just put their username in the username field and all results will be limited to that diary.

If you are a diarist, simply put the following link somewhere:

(replace USERNAME with your username).

When someone goes to that link, the username will be hard coded and prefilled in to your username so anything they type in will only search your diary.

You now have a search engine for your diaries! 😉

Second news, work on Dear Diary 3 has officially begun and work on adding subscription facilities to Dear Diary 2.1 begins either today or tomorrow. Dear Diary 3 is a complete rewrite from the ground up of the system taking into account all of the feedback that we have received to date that has been difficult (or impossible) to fix in the current codebase. A prime example is the customiser, I am happy to report that the new customisation facility will be very visual and extremely easy to use (it’s shaping up nicely already). All of the comments and feedback we have received has been going into a database and we’ll get as much as we can into Dear Diary 3 – although there will be a lot that has to wait until 3.1 (to give you an idea, Dear Diary 2.1 is currently around 20,000 lines of code, that’s a lot and it’s going to take a while just to get Dear Diary 3 doing everything that 2.1 does, let alone more…).

We’re aiming to get Dear Diary 3 doing everything that 2.1 does, add some of the more hotly requested features and then go live with it – once that’s out we’ll work on adding other features that are requested and doing reasonably regular upgrades to the system. This should mean that the system doesn’t go for months without an upgrade and then suddenly gets a mammoth upgrade in facilities, we’d rather do more rapid releases with a few in each. The new environment we’re developing for Dear Diary 3.0 should permit us to add new features much quicker as well!

I shan’t say much more about Dear Diary 3.0 :)

As always, if you have any suggestions that you would like us to incorporate into this rewrite (now is by far the best time to make suggestions) then please drop us a note at the support address below.

We estimate that the 2.1 release supporting subscriptions shouldn’t take too long to get online – once we have a more firm date, we’ll let you know.


The mysterious Unresolved

Or the Great Unwashed :-)

No, Unresolved, in the context of our ‘Show My Hits’ page, simply means that the system has not yet looked for the address, or addresses of the sites that have looked at your pages. That is, any address that the system has not yet tried to convert from an IP address into a name, will appear under the ‘Unresolved’ name.

This means that you may have 100 accesses from ‘Unresolved’ that actually, once the system looks things up turn into 2 hits from 50 different addresses. So it doesn’t (necessarily) mean that someone has spammed your diary.

The system should be looking up new addresses every ten minutes. It currently has around 5000 in the database, and once an address is looked up, its never looked up again.

Hope this helps the ‘Unresolved’ question.

Steve. (From his sickbed..)

To answer some questions

Many people have commented about the need for many people to keep their diary even though they may not have a credit card or bank account and that their parents would then have to pay for the account, something they wouldn’t want to do if they didn’t want their parents to even know they kept a diary.

The subscription mechanism WILL be voluntary, with some possible sweetners. But you will NOT be forced to subscribe to continue using the system and you will not lose any functionality that currently exists. The subscription will not be required from anyone. We would hope that those who CAN pay, WILL pay and will help support those who can’t. A bit like a Social Security payment in any community :)

To answer Damselita’s question about keeping track of who recommended who, we won’t need to. The system will do that for us :) At least, we’ll make sure it does because you’re right, we don’t need the extra work!

But please feel free to keep sending your feedback, so far its been very positive, and useful.