Our audience is our most trusted asset, more important than even our authors.
I consume a lot of other peoples stuff and happily feel that if I can in any way give back, I should. So the blog is creative common licensed to make other peoples lives easier should they choose to use any of my ramblings.
I went for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 as that seems pretty lenient and used by a number of people I respect and trust – if it’s good enough for them, then it’s good enough for me.
The first thing you notice about the book is the restraint. It claims to only tell the dear reader exactly what they need to know in the physical book, leaving us to use the internet for the rest . The book reminds me of the highway code. The restraint is purposeful and even mentioned in the foreward by Jeffrey Zeldman:
..only as many words and pictures as are needed
It didn’t take long to read and with ten or so other books waiting to be read I am thankful. I was very happy with the subject matter covered and the chosen level of depth – saying no more than the author felt was required for our brushes with HTML5 in 2010. If this book was to be published in say 1-2 years time, I bet it would leap-frog of all of the topics here today and just tell us what we need to know.
Curious about HTML5? then this is the book for you to give you the lay of the land. Off the back of reading it, I switched from old school to new school HTML5. Enjoy.
Ethan Kaplan shares his upcoming home networking plans with us. I merely thought about this stuff when we purchased our house a year ago. Ethan has actually planned the infrastructure and will soon execute it. Very impressive.
Photo set in the nytimes that caught my eye called ‘nights in Ghana‘
I have just got the xbox SEGA Mega Drive collection which has transformed me back to the late 1980’s, sore thumbs and brotherly butt-kicking for hogging the controls.
I can see how this pans out. I now spend all of my time, energy and money on recollecting all of our old games. Who needs a VLE or iphone with the music and gameplay of these beautiful works of art.
Like most people, I rely heavily on my computer, yet I had a flagrant disregard for backups. I didn’t care much for backing up any of my stuff that I had on the computer, telling myself that it would be fine and to pay those bad thoughts no mind. Then I lost a piece of work that I really couldn’t afford to lose during my a-levels and lost a lot of sleep as a result re-writing it.
Ever since that fateful time I have been plagued with spreading the message to others that backups are essential in preparation for the inevitable. Its like that voiceover in a scene from the film ‘Goodfellas‘ where Ray Liotta is talking about getting whacked;
“If you’re part of a crew, nobody ever tells you that they’re going to kill you, doesn’t happen that way. There weren’t any arguments or curses like in the movies. See, your murders come with smiles, they come as your friends, the people who’ve cared for you all of your life. And they always seem to come at a time that you’re at your weakest and most in need of their help.”
(except the crew are your devices).
It used to be that I backed up to multiple floppy disks, then CD-RW and later USB sticks and external hard-drive. None of which was painless, fool-proof or seamless.
However these days this need not be the case and I’d like to share my current and hopefully robust methods. If you have a better solution I am willing to give that a whirl.
Before we start, a ‘top tip’ regarding what a backup actually is:-
“Simply put, unless you know that you can reliably do a restoration of your data, you don’t have backups”
bulletproof-backups-for-mysql, Chris Lea
Say it with me, “a backup is only a backup if it can be later retrieved”.
I have a need to backup all of my computer data that I use on my computer, I am not so concerned with losing the operating system and have it restored to the exact state it was in pre-pop so i’ll be ignoring that. Also I will keep my advice on backing up the stuff I create on external web services another time (my websites, delicious and others).
My secret is to use ‘dropbox‘ and use the dropbox folder as my primary working folder and save everything to this location. It is also possible to re-direct other folders such as itunes to capture that data too. Dropbox will immediately backup my data to my account online and “hey presto” all is saved and I can relax. The secondary benefit of using dropbox is that all of my files are available online anywhere and this feature has saved me on a number of occasions as I have a resources folder with all sorts of useful bits. I used the free 2GB dropbox for quite some time but due to my freelance work I make many versions of the same project (don’t ask) and needed a tad more – to date I have used 7GB of my 50GB $99 per year limit.
Next, although trusting dropbox, I backup all of my computer data onto an external hard drive using a hard drive dock I nicknamed “the toaster” and keeping this offsite. This Apple macbook has some free software called ‘time machine’ that automatically backups everything when the toaster is connected. Most hard drives from seagate come with software to do the backing up – manually copying folders is a bit risky and normally involves you having to think about what stuff you need. Plus the software only sync’s new changes, making the backup much quicker.
So there you have it: dropbox, my hard drive dock and one or more hard-drives lets me sleep well with both online and offsite backups that I have tested.