Last weekend, I restored a number of posts that had appeared
on the earlier dasBlog incarnation of this blog,
but had never made it to the Acrylamid version.
I added about another 50 posts this weekend,
taken from the Wayback Machine.
I think that this is all the posts that are missing.
That required further fixup.
I had to turn the HTML back into reStructuredText, which I did by hand.
Some useful tips will follow in future posts.
I started this blog 14 years ago, in February 2003,
on EraBlog, a long-defunct platform.
Many of my early posts expressed outrage at the imminent Iraq War.
Within a couple of years,
I had moved to running dasBlog on my own website, hosted at ihost.net.
I wrote a lot of posts over the next decade.
With rare exception, most posts were composed offline as reStructuredText
and saved in a repository.
There was no formal schema and most posts did not know their permalink.
In late 2014, I moved to the Acrylamid static blog generator
and I hosted www.georgevreilly.com at GitHub Pages.
I migrated most of the dasBlog content into a more …continue.
While researching yesterday's post about nested markup in ReStructuredText,
I finally learned how to use anonymous hyperlinks.
Hitherto, I used one of these three forms for hyperlinks:
1. The central conceit of the fictional `Flashman Papers`_ is that Flashy
2. besieging Breda_ in 1625.
3. my club, `Freely Speaking Toastmasters `_.
.. _Flashman Papers:
.. _Breda: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siege_of_Breda
The first, `Flashman Papers`_, is a named hyperlink reference,
which refers to an external hyperlink target, .. _Flashman Papers: URI.
Note that the reference name starts with a backquote, `,
and ends with backquote-underscore, `_.
The second, Breda_, is a simple reference name—the backquotes are optional.
`Freely Speaking Toastmasters `_,
is an embedded …continue.
I use reStructuredText for both this blog and the MetaBrite DevBlog.
This blog is built with Acrylamid, while the MetaBrite blog is built with Nikola.
Yesterday I used a link (~/.pgpass) that styled the link as an inline literal;
i.e., in the code font.
ReStructuredText doesn't support nested markup,
but you can pull it together with a two-step substitution reference:
Here you have |optparse.OptionParser|_.
.. |optparse.OptionParser| replace:: ``optparse.OptionParser`` documentation
.. _optparse.OptionParser: http://docs.python.org/library/optparse.html
This is tedious as you have to create a pair of directives
for every such link that you wish to style.
Nested inline markup has been on the todo list for 15 years—it ain't happening.
My DasBlog-based blog at http://www.georgevreilly.com/blog/
has been out of commission for months.
I've been meaning to replace it for a long time,
but I only just got around to making a serious effort,
as I realized that otherwise I would have no posts at all for 2014.
I received only a handful of complaints about its absence;
if there had been more, I would have fixed it sooner.
DasBlog is a fairly lightweight blogging engine that runs on ASP.NET.
It doesn't require a database,
but it does require the ability to write XML blogpost entries to the local filesystem.
That's a non-standard configuration for ASP.NET and IIS websites,
which inevitably causes …continue.
Vim has had syntax highlighting since version 5.0 in 1998.
It quickly became indispensable.
It's hard to go back to looking at monochromatic source code
after you've become accustomed to syntax highlighting.
The syntax highlighting is tied into Vim's support for colorschemes,
which define colors for the fundamental syntax groups
like Number, Comment, and String.
The syntax highlighting for a particular language
defines custom syntax groups for specific language features,
such as cppExceptions or htmlEndTag,
The custom syntax groups are linked to the underlying fundamental syntax groups.
Hence, if you change your colorscheme, your syntax highlighting is updated automatically.
The reStructuredText syntax highlighting in Vim 7.2
has some shortcomings, in my opinion.
For example, …continue.
I have a long-standing fascination with typography.
In the late '80s and early '90s, I became quite adept with TeX and LaTeX,
the well-known scientific typesetting system.
When I was at ICPC, I think I read the TeXbook cover to cover—twice.
I became the TeX administrator for the CS department while I was at Brown.
And then I moved to Seattle to work for Microsoft
and entered the world of Windows,
and I left TeX behind for more than 15 years.
I wrote the other day that I prepared the Bloomsday scripts in XML
for several years, using XSLT to generate HTML.
I used to send the HTML to the …continue.
I hate composing anything longer than a couple of paragraphs
in an online HTML editor.
Specifically, I hate writing posts for this blog online.
I'd much rather write in Vim and upload HTML.
But I don't want to compose in raw HTML either.
I use reStructuredText (reST), an unobtrusive plaintext markup language
popular in the Python world.
reST can generate HTML, LaTeX, native PDF, ODF, and other formats.
The picture at right shows a draft of this document in MacVim;
reST is, as you can see, quite readable
(though I work with a larger font).
I use restview to preview the HTML locally
and Pygments for syntax highlighting of code.
Vim has its …continue.