A quick technical update

  • It will take us a few days to do some profiling on the site and optimize the interaction among Drupal, PHP, and MySQL. Until then, you may occasionally have to put up with a slow server or an incomplete page load. Please be patient while we tweak things!
  • I've noticed there's a problem with listing a user's comments (e.g., http://www.theoildrum.com/user/Super+G/comments)--not all of them are showing up. Don't worry, the comments are all in the database and they show up in the stories, but they just don't show up through that particular view. I plan to address this soon.
  • There have been a lot of requests for the feature that enables you to slice out a single thread from story's comments. This feature is in the works.
  • [UPDATE] Some people have told me that they've requested the password reset email but haven't received it. Some filters are flagging it as spam, so please check your spam folder before emailing me.

After seeing the miracles you've worked in the last month, I think we can be assured that if it's on your list, it's going to get there.

A lot of us are breathing much easier now.

Super G, thanks for what I'll bet is a heroic amount of work! So far the new format seems to be much more easy to use, and I see improvements by the hour. Please don't take the negative comments to heart from our very own trolls .

Technical glitch:  I uploaded a spreadsheet as supporting info for "Sustainability" but it no longer shows up among my uploaded files.  I don't know if it isn't visible (software glitch) or just wasn't carried over.

A warning.

While I was/am still unsure as to whether I will post on TOD in the future(I gave a small version of a 'swan song') due to upcoming changes in my lifestyle, I would like to note that I did perform the requested change to my password on the AIRDALE user account.

I did this because in the past on other internet forums when a UserId becomes available, what ever the method, then unsavory characters or those who have nefarious goals will and do take your old USERID and pretend to be you and in many cases trashed your reputation or made ridiculous statements pretending to be you.

This has happened to me and others on what was considered to be a board with many professionals and people of good repute. The board was literally trashed to the point of being worthless due to the actions of a few. Even subtle changes to current UserIDs resulted in great confusion.

There are evil people on the net. They would love to trash this site, IMO for business or just personal vendettas.

To any users who wish to keep your current UserId I would suggest that you take steps to do so and not wait too long.

Granted the owners/maintainers might have taken steps to ensure this cannot occur. If they haven't I again issue the warning. Best to play it safe and thats what I did.

Best regards and keep up the good work,

Super G: thanks for a super job on a nearly seamless transition!

The "[new]" function is having problems. It does not stick unless you reply in a separate window.

But forgetting about that for a moment can we go to a reverse time and date notation system like this:

User at :minutes of hour: am/pm date month year

Example: step back at :58 of 7 AM 26 December 2006


Because then we can search for the latest posts in the last 24 hours by pasting a copy of the "26 December" part into our browser's Find window. ... Because then we can search for the latest posts in the last 1 hour by pasting a copy of the "7 AM 26 December" part into our browser's Find window.

See what I mean?
(and thanks for a continuing great job.)

Surely you can do all that with the current format? Your format looks too weird to catch on.

I'd appreciate if you allowed <table>, <tr>, <th>, and <td>, so that we can post facts and figures more easily.

You raise an important point. It would definitely be nicer to have a way to load tabular data and have it be readable (and able to be copied/pasted).

Unfortunately, I suspect Drupal uses tables for layout. Consequently tables inside of tables can mess up the page layout. So if SuperG says no, this is probably the core of why.

Well, looky there. I was responding to your post and it does offer tables.

production consumption
not enough too much


Tables work, but you have to use the advanced or HTML input format when you post.

NY Yankees9765
Tampa Bay61101

The "advanced" option is only for TOD staff!

What about HTML?

Would it be possible to have the table tags and such added to the "Full HTML" input option? Call me old-fashioned, but I find it hard to get things properly formatted with the auto-format options.

The tags have been enabled.

Super G (and the other Admins):

Thank you for your Herculean efforts in initiating, maintaining and upgrading TOD.

As to enabling editing, I appreciate the opportunity to correct typos or add updates, as I did for a recent post. I understand the concern of commentors that if the comment to which they are replying is changed, their comment may be affected. In this is perhaps an opportunity. If a replied to comment is changed, is it possible to notify the commenter in some fashion so that they might respond, such as by revising or removing the comment? Several options could appear, from the poster of the original comment setting a flag for the system to notify the replier to the replier setting a flag to be notified or not if the comment is edited. If a poster abuses editing, perhaps the privilege could be removed by the moderators.

IMO, to accomplish appropriate shifts in worldviews and paradigms a critical need is to increase the value of our information flow across all disciplines and all dimensions (geography, scale, time, cultures). If used appropriately, editing improves information, as anyone who has published a paper or read a poorly edited book knows. Information has gone from a scarce resource, held by a few lucky enough to be near a library containing carefully selected and vetted (anonymous peer review prior to publication) resources, to an almost overwhelming resource of widely varying value, available to almost anyone anywhere almost anytime. IMO anything that increases the value of this information stream is a good thing. Now we are needing an almost entirely new set of skills (to most of us, anyway) to both locate the relevant evidence or information and to evaluate its strength, discovering the wheat among the chaff.

Change comes hard to us humans, particularly once we are set in our ways and probably for evolutionary reasons, whether it is our society's exploitation of low-cost energy in the face of its future scarcity or participating usefully in TOD. To have survived and to survive, we have to balance our acceptance of with our resistance to change, both individually and collectively. Some change too quickly and others not quickly enough. The diffusion of innovation is a studied phenomenon - wiki1 , wiki2 as are change management, paradigm shifts, worldviews and perhaps consilience or unity of knowledge. How do we escape the limitations imposed by our inherent cognitive biases? To paraphrase Einstein, we have to adopt a higher level of thinking than that which got us into this situation and we must understand the complexity before we can simplify; to do otherwise is to error.

What actions trigger these cognitive biases (list) or enhance their negative effects? Over the long run, triggering these most likely doesn't move us forward, on this list or elsewhere.

[Update - and a spell checker / grammar checker would be nice. :-)
Also, it appears that any departure from a page, including to check commentor's info, removes all the {new] flags.]

Maybe it's time to have a mandatory preview before posting?

Big table test:

Country Roads: Meters Per Capita Rail: Meters Per Capita GigaJoules Per Capita MegaJoules Per $ GDP
United States 21.36 0.76 7963.53 194.07
Switzerland 9.48 0.61 1654.93 51.69
Japan 9.28 0.18 2608.95 82.62
Mexico 3.25 0.16 1933.77 195.28
India 3.52 0.06 96.27 28.76
Brazil 9.17 0.16 446.8 54.71
Russia 6.10 0.61 10455.5 943.2
Sweden 47.13 1.27 487.88 16.4
New Zealand 22.73 1.01 4415.79 176.46
Norway 20.06 0.88 3446.78 80.92
Finland 14.95 1.10 3649.96 117.94
France 14.64 0.48 2734.06 92.78
UK 6.40 0.28 5872.07 195.77
China 1.38 0.06 105.03 15.54
Malaysia 2.94 0.08 4375.49 371.78

The ability to use tables (tables!) is terrific!

I agree.
This is a huge advantage over TOD 2.0

With TOD's migration to Drupal, it looks as if Drupal is becoming the de facto standard for peak oil websites.

It would be helpful to the peak oil community to know why The Oil Drum chose Drupal, what problems were encountered, what you learned during the process. Would you advise other groups to adopt Drupal?

My guess is that individuals should probably stick with blogging software, since the complexity of Drupal is overkill for them. But for groups and more ambitious sites, Drupal would be an excellent choice.

Super G., might you consider an article that would talk about these issues?

Good tools and instrastructure are key for us becoming more effective.

energy bulletin

Yes. I too would welcome a discussion of why Drupal--tho it looks great and promises to be a big improvement, I have never heard of Drupal.

I subscribe.

It would be good to have an "Add" feature instead of the marginally useful "Edit" feature. I mean there is little value in hastily editing submitted comment hoping to be faster then the first reply:).

The "Add" feature on the other hand could time-stamp all additions and mark them as such.

If there is a desire to edit submitted content, then it is possibly better to have it in a blog or an article format which is linked-to from the comment.

Just to say, at least for me there is no left column to the site.

Nothing I really miss, but I'll guess its not supposed to be like that.

Firefox on WinXP