punt gun

Louisville’s Homicide Problem

Like most cities these days, Louisville is under seige by an abnormally high homicide rate. The theories for this phenomenon, which is happening in nearly every city in the US, are interesting, to say the least. Some are sound, some are stupid. Unfortunately, what’s being done falls on tiptoeing down the middle politically, which is resulting in no improvement.

Here’s a map of Lousiville’s homicides for the past 6 months. The prior 6 months are identical; the mapping system I have access to only goes back 6 months, for some reason though.

louisville homicides

See any pattern here? I do. The red line going down the middle is where most Louisvillians would identify west Louisville from East Louisville. And I have a feeling the homicides on the east side were perpetrated by at least a couple of people that came over from the west side and were involved in a robbery or other crime that went south. There just isn’t a lot of violent crime on the East end, which is where I happen to live, and was a consideration when deciding where to live in Louisville. West Louisville also happens to be predominantly black. (But don’t tell anyone.)

Unfortunately, the people that need to be able to see this can’t for some reason. This map’s a lot like the one you’d find of Chicago, or any city in the USA these days. The homicide rate has exploded since Ferguson and the uproar over Michael Brown’s death. People want to blame it on all sorts of things, but to me the most logical is that after Ferguson, and subsequent calls of violence towards police, in addition to an outward display of hatred for police by the very communities that need them the most, police have taken a more hands-off approach to policing those areas. West Louisville in this case. Who can blame them? They’re being gunned down execution-style as a thank-you, when they’re out trying to help people for a relatively paltry salary. Although I believe the police in Louisville are paid quite well, compared to the rest of the country. Not enough to go out and face a violent death every day, though.

evil elves

Add Another Log to the Fire

Like I have so much spare time, I just started another blog because of a sort of impulsive purchase of musgrove.blog. Automattic, which is a company owned by the co-founder of WordPress, bought the right to sell the TLD .blog and marketed it pretty well. And that’s about it. It’s been a frustrating experience, especially for the premium price tag. There’s no explanation of what he’s doing with regards to the customer, and the website isn’t designed to explain what’s going on either. It just tries to lead you by the nose. To log into your account for example, you have to fill in a form with your email address, be sent a link to log in, then after going to your email application and doing that, you’re taken back to the first site, where you can then click on a link to go to the dashboard. That’s a lot of clicking around in 2016 to have something you’d rather have at your fingertips.

So I set it up on @medium, along with a stable of other publications. In a move that seems more like something GoDaddy would do than WordPress, whose community hates GoDaddy, I can’t change the DNS settings myself. My “concierge” does it for me, which was a couple of days ago. I had her change 12 A records and a cname, and it still hasn’t propagated. It usually takes less than 5 minutes elsewhere, although you’re always given a standard disclaimer that it could take forever. I’m too lazy to research it, but I have to imagine medium is eroding WordPress’ market share. Even though it’s growing, it’s feeling some competition.

So I wait.

 

 

My Sweet Old Dog Annie

Annie and I have been together for a long time, even though I adopted her when she was 5. She’s a great dog, and her health is great, even though she’s about to be 15 years old. Even by human standards she’s well-travelled. She was born in Asheville, NC where I got her and we’ve been to the beaches to the mountains to the snow to the swamps and everything else. We’re inseparable, and I’ve made sure she’s had a terrific life.

For example, I sometimes like to surprise her with a treat when she’s asleep for when she wakes up.

annie dog

1954 match factory fire

The Old Website Switcheroo

Thanks to having my old domain hostage by my previous host, whom I won’t name, and a hosting account active with no domain suddenly attached, I dusted off mmusgrove.com and made it the primary domain at the active host. I’m already taking a massive SEO hit, may as well fix a few other things while I’m at it.

Harry Houdini - Melbourne AUS 2-18-1910

I change my entire website around every few years anyway, and it was getting to be time. It’s usually a cataclysmic event, but not to this degree. In this case, I just replaced everything. Including the domain name. I’d love to have musgrove.com, but some Canadian has it, not even using it, and won’t give it up. So this is the shortest it’s going to get going the last-name-route.com as far as my personal website goes. I’ve had mmusgrove.com sitting around gathering dust for a while, so I’m glad to be using it for something. And unfortunately for the many people that depended on my past version, this site doesn’t have a free version of my Bootstrap Development book posted. I guess I could provide a Dropbox link, which makes more sense anyway. (* Note to Self.) That thing generates a lot of traffic, amazingly.

I’ll say this: setting up a WordPress website properly from scratch has become a seriously time-consuming process. It’s been a while since I started with a vanilla site, and there’s a lot more to it than just not too long ago. I’m surprised I’m not getting more calls to help people with that. Not that it’s complicated, but a lot of people that start these projects are business owners, who just don’t have the time for it, and especially to do it right. WordPress is a lot of things but user-friendly isn’t one of them. I was just pondering the other day how WordPress has an obvious design problem when there are so many 3rd party firms thriving that exist by building software and training videos to help people build websites with WordPress. It’s become a cottage industry.

It’s a still a far cry from setting up Ghost(which I’m a big fan of), but far more complicated than just hopping on Medium and hitting the gas. Which I’m also a big fan of. Depends how dirty you want to get your hands and how much control you want. Medium gives you a surprising amount of options, when you consider that you don’t really need the millions of options many “general purpose” WordPress themes offer. You can create a menu, add a header and logo, change the layout, add and embed all sorts of media easily and quickly, and Medium’s integrating and introducing new apps regularly.

So, from now on mmusgrove.com is going to be my personal website. When my host finally takes michaelmusgrove.com off blocks and allows me to re-license it at Google Domains in about 43 days, I’ll redirect that URL to this domain. And I still have michaelmusgrove.wordpress.com which is a free website that I just throw junk up on every now and then for no particular reason.