HTTPS, finally

Thursday, June 28th, 2018 10:34

In further news of updating my personal web presence, I have finally set up HTTPS for As I write this I'm working on updating all the links to it that I control.

The thing I found underdocumented in Let's Encrypt/Certbot is: if you want to (or must) manually edit the HTTP configuration, what should the edits be? What I concluded was:

<VirtualHost *:443>
  Include /etc/letsencrypt/options-ssl-apache.conf
  SSLCertificateFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/YOUR DOMAIN OR CERT NAME/cert.pem
  SSLCertificateKeyFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/YOUR DOMAIN OR CERT NAME/privkey.pem
  SSLCertificateChainFile /etc/letsencrypt/live/YOUR DOMAIN OR CERT NAME/chain.pem of configuration for this virtual host...


  • /etc/letsencrypt/options-ssl-apache.conf (which of course may be in a different location depending on your OS and package manager) contains the basic configuration to enable SSL (SSLEngine on) and certbot-recommended cipher options.
  • You have to have a separate VirtualHost entry for *:443 and *:80; there's no way to copy the common configuration as far as I heard.
  • By "CERT NAME" I mean the name assigned to a multi-domain-name certificate if you have requested one. You can find out the certificate names with the command certbot certificates. For a single domain it will be identical to the domain name.

As of right now, I've imported my blog contents from LiveJournal to Dreamwidth. Everything older than this entry was originally posted on LJ.

I've been procrastinating doing anything for a long time, because of the feeling that I really should move to a self-hosted blog that I can guarantee is forever unchanged. However, I haven't found satisfactory software or put much effort into it at all, and I think it's well past the point that it's more important to me to have a place to write than that it be the perfect customized URL-never-changes-again solution. web and Subversion services are now running on a different server. Do let me know if you notice something broken.

I've got the notion to do an occasional Minecraft video series, mainly to show off my mechanism designs and otherwise increase the value (to other people) of all those hours I spend playing. I bought screen recording software just for the purpose.

However, I haven't gotten around to recording an “episode” yet (mainly because I wanted to start with a script to reduce the “um”s, and make sure I have a quiet environment, and that hasn't coincided with enthusiasm for the project). The following video is just a test of recording and uploading to YouTube; there's no voice-over and it's short.

Let me know what you think of this proposed endeavor. I figure to do tours of existing builds with a focus on mechanism, not playing on camera.

I think I have a problem with writing. Namely, that I find it difficult to get around to starting a project involving writing, when it isn't 100% straightforward “The answer to this problem is…” or a little link or tip. I’ve had several “blog posts I should write” queued up, and I’m not getting around to doing my homework assignments promptly.

I’m considering setting a “write something every day” goal, or similar.

I’ve got two new projects to blog about. Let's see how soon those posts show up.

I'm on Google+, but I am not planning to post anything important-and-public exclusively there. I might experiment with crossposting.

In terms of what I want out of the place where I post the stuff I post here, LJ is still the better option, in supporting HTML posts, decent archive browsing, and finding context starting from permalinks.

I'm still thinking of switching to a different platform, possibly of my own creation, to get additional features: style sheets for blog posts, embedding JavaScript-containing content in posts (tastefully, I assure you), even better archive browsing, no ads, and a visual design more closely connected with my non-blog site.


Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011 07:37

Should I get on LinkedIn? One hears far less about what they're up to than Facebook, and I recently received an invitation from a friend of mine.

Less subjectively: What does LinkedIn offer (given that it's a social network site), and do you find it worth your time?

Update: I signed up. No especially noticeable effects so far other than one newsletter sort of mailing and a lot of people I know wanting to add me as a contact^Wconnection; presumably LinkedIn notifies you when people in your address book create an account?

I've added a mini wheat farm to my Minecraft world, just for the sake of building one. If you're interested in looking, it's southwest, with underground access branching off the spawn tunnel.

I've published my Minecraft notes and bookmarks.

This is a slightly different sort of addition to my site; it is a page that is nearly all information and links I've gathered rather than my own work. I've been wanting to write this type of page on several topics for a while now, having them be a place for:

  • material organized in a non-chronological way (unlike this blog).
  • bookmarks, which when in my browser are (a) hardly ever looked at after being created, therefore not benefiting anyone, and (b) are not accessible to me off my own computer.
  • keeping non-bookmark notes and documents in the same organization as bookmarks.

More fuzzily, I hope that giving myself this organizational concept will get me to publish more of anything. Here are some topics I hope to write about in the future:

  • Android apps
  • LaTeX (this would also be publishing existing notes)
  • Webcomics and other serial fiction

I've also thought about adding to various pages of my site automatic indexes of related blog posts (via tags), but I'm not sure it's worth the effort.

I've been having a lot of thoughts lately I'd like to publish, but seem a little bit too short for A Blog Post. Some options

  1. Considered signing up for Twitter. Pro: short stuff is expected there; participating in the hot new thing; people interested in short-form will be on twitter and using the follow feature. Con: Reliability problems; YA thing to manage credentials and backup for; no hyperlinks; my favorite username is taken.
  2. I could post stuff here. Particularly, LJ supports titleless posts.
  3. I could use some other site, or build my own publishing system. [er, why?]

On reflection, I'm thinking to just post the stuff here and not have yet-another-distinct-place/site.

Readers, what would you prefer?

(This post is tagged “lisp” solely so that Planet Lisp will pick it up.)


Wednesday, March 25th, 2009 23:59
I just recently found out that LJ is displaying ads on my journal-or-blog-whichever — I hadn't previously noticed as it doesn't when I'm logged in (which seems a bit deceptive). I had previously understood that with a basic account there would be no ads.

Your opinion on the matter? Have the ads bothered you? Is there actually a way to turn them off that I haven't noticed? Should I find other hosting for my blog?

(I expect most of my readers are actually via feeds and don't see them...)

Hi. I don't know what I'm going to do with this yet.