Friday, December 24, 2004

Latest Chat Transcript

— Matt Harris @ 6:24 pm

I have posted Wednesday night’s chat transcript. There was no chat the week before.

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Mirroring Launchpad Zero At Home

— Matt Harris @ 5:59 pm

I do all of the development work on this site at my home computer. The home system is where I test whether posts will look right, etc. When it is sufficiently formatted to my liking, I’ll copy the post to my production website (this one). Occasionally, though, I will post from work or elsewhere to the production site, causing my home database to be out of sync with the production one. It can be a pain to have to cut and paste each post into the local version whenever I got home.

Fortunately the One-Click Backup plugin creates an easily downloadable SQL file that I can run on my home machine and update my local database. It does have a downside, though – it causes the Siteurl for the local database to point to the production website, and all of the WordPress scripts reroute everything there. This makes it impossible for me to edit or post to the local version of my site.

I did some snooping around in the WordPress tables today and found where the site URL is stored. It is stored in a table called “lz_options” (“wp_options” for default installations) as the option “siteurl”. This option is conveniently located as the first entry in the table. The following SQL updates it so that the local version of WordPress admin scripts point to my local version of the website:

UPDATE `lz_options`
SET `option_value`='http://lz/Weblog'
WHERE `option_id`=1 AND `blog_id`=0 AND `option_name`='siteurl'

If I just run the above SQL each time after restoring from the production site, everything works wonderfully.

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Wizards Have No Social Skills

— Matt Harris @ 4:48 pm

I have been thinking for a while about the Wizard class in Dungeons and Dragons. There had been something about the class that just didn’t feel right to me. I figured it might be their skill options. I went and put together a table cross-referencing class skills with the various classes and then I realized – Wizards are the only class without any Charisma based skills.

There are eight Charisma based skills in the Systems Resource Document: Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, Gather Information, Handle Animal, Intimidate, Perform and Use Magic Device. Every class except wizard has at least one Charisma based skill:

Class        # Of Charisma Skills
Barbarian           2
Bard                6
Cleric              1
Druid               2
Fighter             2
Monk                2
Paladin             2
Ranger              1
Rogue               7
Sorcerer            1
Wizard              0

This just seems wrong to me…in much of fantasy literature wizards are wise counseleors and diplomats as much as they are spellcasters. If there is a heavy emphasis on role-playing in a campaign, I think the fact that Wizards lack Charisma-based skills is a serious handicap.

In my campaign, at least, I am adding Diplomacy to the Wizard class skill list.

If you are interested, I have placed the skill breadown on the D&D section of my website, in OpenOffice.org spreadsheet format and and in PDF format.

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Thursday, December 9, 2004

Updated Campaign Log

— Matt Harris @ 9:38 pm

I have updated the campaign log for last Saturday’s game session.

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Posted Wednesday’s Chat Transcript

— Matt Harris @ 8:31 pm

I have posted the transcript for last night’s Succubus Club IRC chat.

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Monday, December 6, 2004

Multiple Header Rows In OpenOffice.org Writer Tables

— Matt Harris @ 9:01 pm

I was working on formatting the 3.5 Magic Items SRD yesterday in OpenOffice.org Writer. There are several tables in the document that span more than one page, so I wanted to set them up so that the multiple header rows would repeat on following pages. This is very easy to do in Microsoft Word.

While OpenOffice.org allows repeating of table header rows on multi-page tables, the only row it considers a “header” row is the first row of a table. That makes it technically impossible to have multi-row headers repeat.

Fortunately, I came across a partial work-around. One can split the cells in a header row horizontally, so it looks like there are two or more rows. Apparently OpenOffice.org considers these split cells still part of the first/header row and they will repeat on following pages when “Repeat Heading” is checked.

This works fine when there are the same number of cells in each row, example:

-------------------------
|           |           |  Header Pseudo-Row 1
-------------------------
|           |           |  Header Pseudo-Row 2
-------------------------

Unfortunately, I can’t seem to find a way to have multiple rows repeat and have the rows have different number of cells. OpenOffice.org won’t allow the cells to merged – it gives a “Selected table cells are too complex to merge” message.

-------------------------
|                       | Header Pseudo-Row 1
-------------------------
|           |           | Header Pseudo-Row 2 
-------------------------
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Thursday, December 2, 2004

Posted Latest Chat Transcript

— Matt Harris @ 10:41 pm

Yesterday’s Succubus Club IRC Chat transcript has been posted.

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