Friday, March 26, 2010

Site migration still underway

Still working on moving the comic archive into the ComicPress system. The first 250+ episodes are in there, as well as current strips backdating to late December of 2009. I'm hoping to have the rest uploaded and configured over the next two weeks. In the meantime the old archive page is still up.

Comicpress is a pretty neat Wordpress mod - it really does make managing the comic a lot easier. Instead of hand editing six HTML/XML files every day, I can just upload the comic in advance, set up any additional info that I need, and the system takes care of the rest. It's let me actually start to build up a bit of a head-start buffer for the first time in years.

Yeah, I should have automated this years ago. But when your day job is working with computers, it's tough to go home and seriously contemplate even more web design work. Y'know?

Guest Appearance at YOLT!

Looks like Wash and Mary Sue have found time to take a break from hunting Bilbo - they've made a guest appearance in the audience over at Ye Olde LEGO-Time Theatre. There are a lot of other LEGO Webcomic characters in the crowd - can you spot them all?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Still working things out.

Okay. Wordpress is being a bitch. So I guess I'm going to hybridize the site - the blog can stay here at blogger, and I'll use Comicpress to manage the comic (assuming I can get that to work right.)

Comic comments and updates will be from the front page of the site now, though.


Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Update Again

So....Reasonably Clever is now running from a new host. Things seem to be okay - the only thing that's forver borked is the old forum areas (only linked to in a couple of odd places). They're not coming back, so I really don't care too much about that.

If you spot any other major glitches, post a comment. I may or may not fix 'em, but it'd be best if I know about them.

The main reason for the move is that Blogger is getting rid of FTP support - the way I choose to host my blog. Fixing all the soon-to-be-dead links meant a major overhaul of RC - and if I'm going to do that, I might as well go ahead with a full revamp. (The last one was back in 2007, after all.)

As things stand, I can keep this blog (and this version of the site) as-is for a little longer. Meanwhile, I'll be configuring the new Wordpress version of the site. You might see occasional blips as I break things in the background. Pardon the dust. This will take a bit.

The end result will be much nicer for everyone - particularly since I won't be hand-publishing the comic HTML every day. (Yes, I've been hand coding pages for years. Yes, I'm insane.)
Since I have to go through the full archive page-by-page to move it into Comicpress there should be some incidental upgrades, too - stuff like a up to date character list, chapter tags, improved archive navigation, etc.

Speaking of the comic - I should have new episodes starting in a couple of days, Monday at the latest.

Anyway, that's what's going on.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Wonkyness on the way

I've decided to move Reasonably Clever to a new webhost, one that will run Wordpress. The migration will (hopefully) take place this week. The site will most likely be majorly broken for long stretches as I make the transition. I'll try and get at least a ghost copy of things up as soon as I can.

So...likely no comics this week.

Updates as they happen. Or don't.


Update: Site move now in progress. I'm re-uploading a copy of the current site...but it's going to take a while. I tried to put the more frequently used areas (Mizers/Comic/Blog) up first to minimize the hassle.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Photo Review: Luke's Landspeeder

Photo Review of LEGO set 8092 - Luke's Landspeeder

This one's been out for a while, but I just now got my sets from shop@home. (Limited Edition stuff makes me SO grumpy...)

traffic stop 2

There's one huge selling point for this set - minifigure updates to the classic New Hope cast. I broke out the "vintage 2000" figures for comparison photos. Click through for all the fun on Flickr.

Not the Droids You're Looking for?

Arecibo Message in Mosaic and 4D

Here's my latest building self-challenge - render the arecibo message in LEGO form.

Arecibo message as a 2d LEGO MosaicA basic mosaic (at left) wasn't much of a challenge. 23 rows by 73 columns is small for one of my mosaics, and the image itself is as basic as you can get. I decided to follow the Wikipedia article's lead and add some color to help showcase the various portions of the message.

Sure, it's interesting enough as projects go, but why stop there? I spent some time trying to think of a new way to show the message.

Eventually I realized that if I build the message studs-to-the side I could show the image two ways - in the 23x73 grid, but also as a continuous stream of data, allowing the viewer to walk along the length of the message and view it as it was beamed into bit at a time. I would capture the dimension of time...and show the message in 4D!

The first step was to rebuild the mosaic.

side by side

I used trans-clear plate for the "zero" bits - mainly because I had a ton of them on hand.

I decided to keep the false colors seen in the flat mosaic for the "ones". It adds a touch of visual interest to the long string...and also helps show where in the message you are. The proportions are bit squashed - LEGO plates aren't in a 1:1 aspect ratio. But The image is still legible, particularly with the studs-out mosaic next to it for comparison.

4d Arecibo Message - step 2

As you can see in this photo, you can disassemble the "compact" version of the message into the original data stream. The rows can be reconnected end-to-end.

4d Arecibo Message

This photo shows the start of the code. You can follow the full message by walking along the length of the model.

4d Arecibo Message

1679 LEGO plates were used to depict the message - each 3.2mm tall. The total length of the 4d-configuration is 5.37 meters, or 17.6 feet.

To see more photos, check out the full set on Flickr.

Episode 891

Read the comic here.