Some Assorted Things Including Shortbread

This blog may soon be moving back to I’m not sure when, and what with exams taking up all of my time, I don’t know if I’ll be able to warn you, but if you find that you can’t find On The Brink where you expect to find it, that’s the link to follow. Or, well, memorise, to be honest. Leave a comment if you want me to email you that link again when the time comes and I’ll do my best. This is because the wonderful man whose server this blog is run from has other, better things to do with said server. Which is fine by me :).

In other news, I’m in a bad mood. Our boiler is going mad, and us all with it. I’ve given up alcohol while I revise, I’m hooked on caffeine, completely cabin-fevered, and craving a night off, a night out, a few hours where I don’t have to worry. No-one’s around – we’re all busy, after all – and our house is cold and I am lonely and grumpy and generally dissatisfied. Standard revision-time blues, I guess.

On the upside, this will pass, spring will occur, and I made millionaire shortbread the other day. Revision is a brilliant excuse for eating the most disgustingly unhealthy stuff.



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7 responses to “Some Assorted Things Including Shortbread

  1. Flix

    It sucks. It really does and I sympathise. But the days are getting lighter, and revision days are numbered, just keep swimming. And high five for deliciously unhealthy home-made treats πŸ˜€ xx

  2. Antony

    Tell whoever admins the domain name to write a CNAME record to DNS. It’ll basically make an alias to You can leave that setup in place for a while until people get the move. The other alternative is to host somewhere and have all routes (urls like /2011/…) return a 301 redirect to It’s remarkably difficult to get browsers to forget 301 requests.

    I’ve just whois’d you. Tell M. He’ll understand.

  3. Jenny

    M doesn’t own it any more, it’s James now. Other than that I literally don’t understand a word of what you just said…! So thank goodness that James will :). I can’t pay to host my blog anywhere else (well, I suppose I could, but I’d rather spend my money on, say, food) so I will just go back to James says he can export everything from here back to the archives at so that’s OK, I have no idea how that works, but it can apparently be done, and will be before this one goes out.

    Is your first suggestion saying that when people try to go to they’ll be redirected to Because that *would* be a good idea. I’ll talk to James about that :).

  4. I’m currently paying a pretty meagre fee for mine. I’ll check in morning if my host allows multiple domain name parking. Might be able to help out with at least redirection.

    That said, you might not need it. Ugh. It’s all so complicated.

  5. Clare

    mental. Ment-al.

    I’m not sure why, but computer-speak always melts my head.


  6. Antony

    Basically DNS (domain name systems) respond to queries that are roughly: I want to find, where is it? With which the DNS server responds with an A record (ADDRESS, see?) giving the ip address, which is how you get information around on the internet (roughly speaking. It’s slightly more complicated than that because on a lower level, devices need to know where to try and send information, but we won’t cover that here. See BGP). Now, there are other things that DNS can say. For example, if DNS says MX it then tells you which server can handle email for that domain.

    The final option is CNAME, which basically roughly speaking says actually, is in fact Hey presto, when browsers ask for one, they then find the other.

    On the other side of things, HTTP has a number of what’s called codes. HTTP is the protocol spoken by web browsers and web servers, so this implies that under DNS there is an A record for Now, you probably don’t know it but 200 means “OK, nice request, here’s what you’re after”. You might be familiar with 404 (can’t find anything at that location) or 403 (I’m not letting you find anything at that location). You might also have seen 500, which means I (the web server) fucked up and can’t do that.

    You’ll probably not be aware of 300 codes. If you ask for a resource and it has moved, web servers can respond as such telling the browser where the new resource is. 302 is a temporary redirect that the browser forgets instantly. So if you access the server might respond 302 /itsactually/here.php, for example. 301 means permanently moved. This the browser clings to like a limpet on steroids and every time you type it doesn’t even ask your web server, it just goes straight to the new location.

    Now, which you do depends on a few things. The first question is can you write DNS records somewhere? James should be able to if he’s using memset (a good host) in which case assuming wordpress don’t do anything to block CNAME you’re in business (I don’t know if it can be blocked, but domains are a paid-for addon to, so they might not be keen on letting you circumvent it more cheaply). However, if this doesn’t work for some reason, then you need to fall back to having a web server actually answer requests with a redirect, which means it needs some minimal hosting somewhere.

    Or, you could just do the move. We’ll know where to find you.

  7. Jenny

    Wow, I actually understood all that :). Thanks :). I’m not convinced about the last paragraph though – although you lot, who comment regularly and stuff, will know where to find me, and will know where I used to live, and obviously I’ve listed this address in facebook so any of my contacts there can find me that way, but looking at my stats I have a considerable number of readers who don’t comment often or indeed at all, and if they’re a bit more sporadic, or just don’t happen to make a mental note of the move, or whatever, then they’ll get lost. Now, I don’t think my writing merits anyone particularly caring if that happens, but you never know, someone out there might get a little miffed that I moved the party and never told them.

    However looking at all the various options you’ve outlined, it does look like whatever I did, I’d have to find a way of paying for it.

    Alternatively I move now, jump ship before she sinks, and simply leave an entry at the top here which tells people where I’ve gone. Might well do that actually.

    Hopefully James can help me haul the archives across too, I don’t want to lose those!


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