Difference between revisions of "User talk:Bob M"

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==Copyright status of logo==
==Copyright status of logo==
PH - copyright status of logo.  Hadn't thought about that. Presumably it's under the same copyright as the rest of the wiki.  It was created by both you and Nx I think.  Perhaps you should put a special disclaimer on the page stating it was created by and you relinquish your rights to Teflpedia?  (If you want to that is.)--[[User:Bob M|Bob M]] 19:43, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
PH - copyright status of logo.  Hadn't thought about that. Presumably it's under the same copyright as the rest of the wiki.  It was created by both you and Nx I think.  Perhaps you should put a special disclaimer on the page stating it was created by and you relinquish your rights to Teflpedia?  (If you want to that is.)--[[User:Bob M|Bob M]] 19:43, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
== I have sent you an important shilling ==
to put in teflpedia's meter. For allowing us to play in your classroom. [[User:Totnesmartin|Totnesmartin]] 20:25, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

Revision as of 20:25, 5 September 2009

User talk:Bob M/archive1

User rights

Are we all unwelcome guests, or do we all get banhammers? Theemperor 01:20, 20 August 2009 (UTC)

I think we are tolerated guests so long as we don't impede the normal running of the site, which appears to be an actual teaching resource unlike other certain wiki-blogs I can name. As BobM and Trent appear to be the only crats and there is only one other sysop, I suppose they will only hand them out as needed like most normal wikis. Pi 03:18, 20 August 2009 (UTC)
You are all most welcome. If your presence here attracts vandals then I'll start making sysops.--Bob M 07:00, 20 August 2009 (UTC)
Thanks (?) for the sysopperisation. I've put everything & everyone that I can find into cat:RW (use {{RW}} to do it)>
Totally without any offence (I hope): you remind me of a friendly house gnome, the type that would fix the cobbler's shoes for him while he slept or would be good company on a journey to Mordor. Toast 10:42, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
Hi Toast. Thank you. (I think.) It's certainly the most tolkienesque complement I've ever received.--Bob M 16:39, 21 August 2009 (UTC)
Ah, so that's why I can't find my shoes you added the RW template onto my talkpage. Thanks. SuperJosh 12:04, 21 August 2009 (UTC)

Phantom Hoover was incorrect. The wiki doesn't get the logo from the file uploaded here, it gets it from "/skins/common/images/wiki.png" Recommend you change $wgLogo to the url of File:Logo3.png (or any other image), that is "/images/2/2d/Logo3.png", as the skin file will be overwritten by an upgrade. In that case, protecting Logo3.png might be a good idea. Nx 08:52, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Ah OK. I remember when I set things up that I had a hell of a job getting the logo on. Got to go out now, I'll get on it when I get back in. cheers. Bob--Bob M 08:55, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
While you're at it ;) how about making a favicon out of that mortarboard? Human 09:19, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Let's wait for the final version of the logo. Nx 09:21, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Eh, let's just do it! I'm bored, I need to see change! I hope. (PS, I'm kidding, let the site owner make final decisions. But sites without favicons are lame) Human 09:28, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
I've uploaded a favicon candidate here. Phantom Hoover 09:48, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
I tried to adapt the drawing a bit so it looks better as a favicon, but this really needs some editing in a bitmap editing program, rather than just rendering the svg in 16x16. Also, a 32x32 size icon is needed. Nx 10:02, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Inkscape only seems to allow PNG exports; I used GIMP to export mine. Phantom Hoover 10:03, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Yes, gimp can export an ico file containing both sizes. You have to create two layers, that's all. I was just too lazy for that. Nx 10:09, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
I tried using two layers here, but I'm not sure if it worked. Phantom Hoover 12:44, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
(EC)Basically you make them as a gif, then save or rename them as .ico. Anyway, the one at PH's link looks pretty good, actually very good, to me. Human 20:44, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Gimp can export icos with multiple size images in them, has a nice interface too to select all kinds of options. It even supports high color icons (gifs can't do that many colors), but those are not supported by ancient Windowses Nx 20:46, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Note from the Tech Unsavvy

Bob when I to go to Gallery of new images I get:

"Warning: escapeshellarg() has been disabled for security reasons in /home/bobmudfo/public_html/teflpedia.com/includes/GlobalFunctions.php on line 1830" and on and on (total 11 lines).
Being totally not tech savvy I don't know what it means but thought you ought to know. Toast 16:57, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Well, deleting the svgs solved one part of the problem (it's trying to execute an external program to render them, but can't because the server doesn't allow it), but there's also a memory problem, probably too many images. I don't know the solution to that, aside from increasing the memory limit. Nx 17:03, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
More info: [1] Nx 17:04, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Oooo. That's new. Thanks for the ideas Nx. Looks like another blindfold trip into the innards of Mediawiki is on the cards. :-) Unless it's causing a big problem at the moment I'll gt on it tomorrow. Thanks for bringing it up.--Bob M 17:26, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Btw, it doesn't recognize PNGs, that's why they are not displayed on their preview page (you can see that it says text/plain there, which is incorrect, as it should be image/png). This might help. To find the magic file, try
php -r "phpinfo();" | grep mime
Nx 17:36, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Sadly I don't fully understand this.  :-( Equally sadly I've got to run. I'll have to get back to this later.--Bob M 17:41, 26 August 2009 (UTC)


Is it only me but Recent changes never finishes loading. Any other page, any other wiki the little circling dots (ffx Ubuntu) are replaced by the default favicon thing when the page is loaded. On Tefl recent changes it just keeps on going ... and going ... and going. Toast 20:42, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Doesn't do it for me, also Firefox on Ubuntu. are you using 3.0 or 3.5? Phantom Hoover 20:30, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
That's strange, it doesn't happen for me. One reason can be an image or a javascript file from a site that's inaccessible (e.g. RW), though you don't have any custom javascript. Nx 20:35, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
FFX 3.0.13. I've left a Rc tab up for 25 minutes & it's still loading. Toast 20:42, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
View source and search for rationalwiki Nx 20:43, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Oh and, does the status bar show something useful? 20:44, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
It tells you what domain it's loading data from. Phantom Hoover 20:50, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Thank you Captain Obvious. Nx 20:55, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
Did someone do something? It suddenly started loading OK. Toast 21:17, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
No. Maybe it was the paypal button, the image is loaded from paypal.com, it's possible they went down. Nx 21:19, 26 August 2009 (UTC)
That's on all pages. It was only Rc that stuck. Never mind, if it was only me & it's no longer happening. Toast 21:26, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

A suggestion

Bob, on my travels I often see oddly written signs in "minglish". Do you think that a gallery of poor English might serve as a useful teaching aid - asking students what they think is wrong with the pictures? I have already uploaded one. If you get enough of them it might even act as an entry point. Genghis Khant 22:34, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Good timing. Toast 00:49, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
That's quite a good idea Genghis. For some reason such signs seem to be (or are said to be) more common in Asia. One of the more popular names is Engrish, but there are many other local varieties as well. Our local Spanish newspaper sometimes produces its own stories in Spanglish, and having my students rewrite them in English is often an instructive activity. This is a very good exercise as the authors will have made exactly the same mistakes as my students.
But I must confess that it had never actually occurred to me to use these misspelled signs in class. There are, in fact, websites dedicated to listing such things, but it would be great to have some that were unique to Teflpedia. So great, if you find them I'd be delighted to have them. --Bob M 06:31, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
You want me to post the best emails I get from my Chinese business partners as well? Actually, they're not as good as what we used to call "Japlish" in user manuals for hifi equipment. Oh, nevermind, I'm sorry. But yes, Genghis' idea is a good one. Maybe you can rename the site "lost in translation"? Human 06:45, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
Why not just find a terrible computer translator and feed a phrasebook into it? Phantom Hoover 07:31, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
I doubt they would be as good as real mistakes PH. If I can find examples of things relevant to my students complete with mistakes that tends to be better. This is a sort of example, but it's not really "bad enough" to use.
Speaking of phrasebooks they sometimes contain examples of postilion sentences - sentences which only exist in phrasebooks. If anybody has any examples of these they would be most welcome.--Bob M 09:20, 27 August 2009 (UTC)
You need an article on English As She Is Spoke - the classic 19th century Portuguese-English phrase book (translated via a French-Portuguese phrase book and a French-English dictionary). Ⓖⓔⓝⓖⓗⓘⓢ 10:21, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
You are quite right I do need an article on "English as she is spoke" - a delight on every page. In fact, I spent quite some time writing one a couple of months ago, but something weird happened to my PC before I posted it and I lacked the motivation to write it again. But I must get onto it.
How about:
  • "My hovercraft is full of eels"
  • "Do you want to come back to my place, bouncy bouncy?"
  • "My thighs explode with delight!"
  • "If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me? I am no longer infected"
SuspectedReplicant 10:38, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Some of the above may be postilion sentences, though "My hovercraft is full of eels" is, sadly, an invention of Monty Python. Can you source any of the others to phrasebooks?--Bob M 10:49, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
They're all Monty Python phrases - all from the English-Hungarian phrasebook. Sorry - I thought everybody here was a Phython nut. SuspectedReplicant 11:00, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Really? Well you learn something every day. (Which is quite cool actually because now I've learned my thing for today and can stop thinking.) :-) --Bob M 11:54, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Here you go. Curses - it's "My nipples explode with delight". Serves me right for not having watched Python in so long. And I'd forgotten the Sir William line. SuspectedReplicant 12:02, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Ah yes, that takes me back.--Bob M 12:41, 1 September 2009 (UTC)


Bob: Humanist manifesto 1: 1933(!); 2 "So stand the theses of religious humanism." (sorry for using valuable bytes but I can't edit there myself & he's really getting up my back.)Toast 23:32, 29 August 2009 (UTC)


I've copied this to the root of your ftp as favicon.ico, so you now have an icon. I might try tweaking it a bit later. Nx 08:40, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Cool. Thanks.--Bob M 09:34, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Neat! Could do with a bit more contrast though. Ⓖⓔⓝⓖⓗⓘⓢ 10:15, 1 September 2009 (UTC)


It was hard enough to lose a day. I appreciate, truly appreciate, your hosting our silliness on your site. Human 11:01, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Definitely seconded. Also sorry for bringing down the site with our rabid posting and refreshing... *bows head slightly and hands you a "My server was brought down by people mocking Conservapedia - and all I got was this lousy shirt" t-shirt* --Sid 11:12, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
That's cool. It's nice to host the party.--Bob M 12:41, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
How much band width did one silly block use up? On reasonable wikis they have a rule that you don’t do ‘’friendly blocks’’ against users who can’t block back. Proxima Centauri 13:15, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Correction: That wasn't a friendly block. Nx 13:40, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

What Human said. I'm sure that you did'nt expect to overload when you offered RW a home. RagTop 13:34, 1 September 2009 (UTC)


Here’s how I dealt with spammers and here’s a typical example of how I discouraged spammers that try to sell drugs without prescription, Note the link to a Wikipedia article saying why the drug can be dangerous. Ma Ha Ha! Proxima Centauri 14:22, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Sorry to shout, but SHUT UP! You have used your stupid spamfighting methods there; don't take them here. Phantom Hoover 14:25, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
A much better idea is to stop the pages being created in the first place. ISTR RW uses this to block at least the "\d{3} buy .*" pages. SuspectedReplicant 14:27, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Thank you Proxima, but we believe that removing the garbage that is inserted onto the wiki instead of keeping it and thus making it pop up on searches and Special:Random is a better way to deal with spam. I'm quite sure though that the spambots creating those pages have been thoroughly discouraged from ever posting spam again, and are shaking in their virtual boots at the very thought of crossing paths with you again. Nx 14:31, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for your concern PC but spam isn't really a big problem here. Trent's vandal brake makes life difficult for them and so does this extension what does turn up is easy to fix. I also agree with those who suggest that deleting it is the best option.--Bob M 14:45, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
Are you going to update the vandal brake? Phantom Hoover 14:51, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
I've got the original version of the brake with Trent wrote. He had to bodge it a bit to get it to work with this version of mediawiki. There are no plans to upgrade it at the moment.--Bob M 21:32, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
I assume, Nx, that that means to redirect to special:random so that basically the spam pages are removed from being viewed effectively? Although an interesting idea to leave a message on the spam page, I don't think it will work. Advertising (and I assume even adverts by spam) work primarily on brand recognition, so it doesn't matter if you put up a scrawl saying that "oh, this is spam, how horrible are these people" because it will be filtered out and the association won't be made. Scam-baiting, or that time a friend of mine tracked down a spammer and repeatedly left messages on their answer-phone, are done for the laughs, rather than the effectiveness. Armondikov 15:44, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
I don't really understand what you're saying, but what I meant was that if we don't delete spam from mainspace and instead leave a page (like this), it will show up on search results (not Google, internal wiki search), and has a chance of appearing when you click Random page in the sidebar (which is the same as going to Special:Random) Nx 18:21, 2 September 2009 (UTC)


"when on to become the mainstream view." → "went on ...". (can't edit myself). Toast 17:10, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

While you're there

Listener just quoted (without source reference) Guy Consolmagno in Influence of creationism. this is possibly a better quote & it's sourced: "Guy Consolmagno believes in the need for science and religion to work alongside one another rather than as competing ideologies. In 2006, he said, "Religion needs science to keep it away from superstition and keep it close to reality, to protect it from creationism, which at the end of the day is a kind of paganism - it's turning God into a nature god."<ref> Scotsman article at news.scotsman.com</ref>" from Wp. Woot! Paganism!! Toast 20:02, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Flashcard programs and the like

Might as well make myself useful...

Here are a bunch of flashcard programs and things you might be interested in:

  • Anki, a highly customisable one, has many downloadable decks and cards are easy to add.
  • Twinkle Flashcard and Mnemosyne, other programs I heard were good.
  • Smart.fm, a website. It's easy to use, has many lists (decks) and most of the time they include audio and a sample sentence, but is not very customisable. Very useful for learning vocabulary.

So there, I thought they may be good for the Flashcard article so... NightFlare 21:32, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Sounds good, but if you have some actual experience with (or knowledge of) these programmes perhaps it would be best if you added them to the article along with some suggestions about how they could be best used?--Bob M 21:36, 1 September 2009 (UTC)
You mean technical information? I've used Anki and smart.fm before but not for learning english, so besides how to (barely) use these programs I don't know to properly learn with them. NightFlare 21:46, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

Stumblin' around

Came on this: (18 Great Sites to Learn a New Language) Toast 02:18, 2 September 2009 (UTC)


for letting us run around your wiki, whilst we were homeless. I do apologise for the muddy footprints on the carpet and the sticky fingers on the walls. And I know nothing about the broken window out back. -- PsyWhut? 15:51, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

It's cool. Glad to have been of help.--Bob M 16:09, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
Very nice of you - you were a life-saver to allow us all to meet here. Thanks! :-D Refugee 16:29, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
I express an equal amount of thanks for your hospitality and apologise for the annoying yellow boxes. SuperJosh 17:43, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
I also offer thanks, and a query about the copyright status of the logo. Need anything be done about that? Phantom Hoover 17:53, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
Mmmm. Thanks again for your thanks all.--Bob M 20:12, 5 September 2009 (UTC)
So long and thanks for all the fish! Ⓖⓔⓝⓖⓗⓘⓢ 19:55, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

PH - copyright status of logo. Hadn't thought about that. Presumably it's under the same copyright as the rest of the wiki. It was created by both you and Nx I think. Perhaps you should put a special disclaimer on the page stating it was created by and you relinquish your rights to Teflpedia? (If you want to that is.)--Bob M 19:43, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

I have sent you an important shilling

to put in teflpedia's meter. For allowing us to play in your classroom. Totnesmartin 20:25, 5 September 2009 (UTC)