Quotidian Quest

Playing with MultiMarkdown Composer

Category: misc
#misc

After a couple of months of not doing anything with it, I went back and got MultiMarkdown Composer beta to work on my system again.

MultiMarkdown Composer has a simple interface that allows you to type in markdown

Why create something everday?

Category: misc
#misc #creation challenge

So this post is more of a follow up to explain my logic for what I'm doing. Sometimes, it's just good to write out your thoughts.

I find myself putting more and more of my thoughts into mindmaps. I will have to come up with a way to put them into better drafts.

Why?

What would making something every day do for me? That was the question that I asked myself. I've been missing something for months if not years and it was the satisfaction that I was creating something meaningful outside of being a parent. I was feeling helpless and I was slowly seeing things not getting done.

I was losing control.

I feel that this will allow me a jump start into taking some control.

As opposed to learning to control my body via exercise and meditation1.

What Counts

The last two are things that I've never made before and I'd like to make it part of my challenge to get something in front of other people. Honestly, I don't know how many people read my blog anyway.

What doesn’t count

These are things that I was doing anyway and I don't want to make it part of the challenge.


  1. I'm also doing those things as well, but I'm not going to focus on those changes. 

Creation Challenge: Enable linked-list post

Category: misc
#misc #creation challenge

The first thing that I'd like to work on is getting the article header that I'm using to be more capable of handing meta data for individual entries. Currently, it points to the specific url for the article but I'd like it to take my current header.

title: Where to put the maybe-someday  
date: 2016-09-05 22:10:08  
category: personal  
tags: tech, notes, evernote  
status: published    

and add the link attribute

title: Where to put the maybe-someday  
date: 2016-09-05 22:10:08  
category: personal  
tags: tech, notes, evernote  
status: published    
link: some_other_place.com

I started off with the following jinja heading.

<h1>
<a rel="bookmark"
   href="{{ article.url }}"
   title="{{ article.title|striptags }} «{{ SITENAME }}»">
   {{ article.title}}
</a>
</h1>

To be honest, I don't do development on the blog that often so I used my own code to look up how to do an if statement in jinja and wrote a little test line to see if it worked.

{{ article.title}} {% if article.link %} {{ article.link}} {% endif %}

After editing the page a number of times and doing more research that I should have into which kind of rel tag I should use for book marks versus external links, I finished up with this.

{% if article.link %}
<a rel="external"
   title="{{ article.title|striptags }} «{{ SITENAME }}»"
   href="{{ article.link }}">
   {{ article.title}}
</a>
{% else %}
<a rel="bookmark"
   title="{{ article.title|striptags }} «{{ SITENAME }}»"
   href="{{ article.url }}">
   {{ article.title}}
</a>
{% endif %}

Where have I been?

Category: personal
#misc

Ok, it is time to get back into writing on my blog. I think I'm going to track my progress with learning swift 3 and my other tutorials that I come across.

Starting with Hazel

Category: productivity
#misc

Initial Creation of Hazel rule I write all of my blog post in markdown and store them in a folder in dropbox. From there, I use pelican to turn the files into a webpage. The steps would be...

  1. Open Byword or MultiMarkdown Composer
  2. Write the post
  3. Remember the textexpander snippet that I created for post headers because I don't post as often as I used to
  4. Save the file
  5. Copy the file to location where I have pelican looking1
  6. Generate the site
  7. Publish the site by copying the generated file to the proper git repository
  8. Push the repository
  9. Check that all the links work

Anyway, I decided that I've already bought tons of productivity tools and should use them for what they are for. I had a couple workflows in the past but not saving them while I switch between betas causes the system to falter.

It's not the complicated rule set, but it certainly a start and makes me happy that I'm actual using the things that I've bought.

Completed rule set for moving my posts to get processed


  1. This is my fault for not setting up pelican to auto publish. I just want to make sure that everything works locally before I send it out to my millions of fans. 

Tufte margin figure and column images

Category: blogging
#misc

There are a couple things that I still have to finish for the website theme plugin. They are margin images and images in the main column. It should be to hard and in fact this post that you are reading is an example of me using it.

In fact, I'm going to put a margin image here on the side followed by a small table of what I had for breakfast the last three days.

This is guy keeps getting better!
This is guy keeps getting better!

Day of week Breakfast
Sunday Eggs and fruit
Monday Protein Shake
Tuesday Leftover serial

Wow, wasn't that amazingAlthough this all looks nice, I think this might be the last update to the code for a while. . Now that we got that working we can get the column images working too.

Now to follow up with the column image. I hope that it looks cool in your browser of choice.

This example was lefted directly from the Tufte website. I hope that it works.

Well, until next time!

A small return

Category: blogging
#misc

I recently pushed the button to update my site and push my new theme to the world. It felt good to get it out there because it has been dormant for years now and I had thought about shutting it down sometimes. During the time that I had NOT updated, I had switched jobs and kind of doubted everything I was working on.

In a lot of ways, the doubt in my own abilities was part of the reason that it took so long to update because I just didn't think that it was good enough. In my mind, I thought "If it's not perfect than I won't show anything at all".

This is the wrong way of thinking about it.

It's almost childish in a way and reminds me of how I'd refuse to write the steps when I was doing my math homework1.

So now what?

Well, I've got a new redesign that loads really fast and looks pretty cool. The next steps outside of the technical details that I put in my previous post is to find my direction of the site again.

Currently, I'm using Day One for my journal entries and although this is my personal site I don't think I'll be putting entries from there here (more likely is that this entry will be an entry).

I think I'll probably put links to things that are really cool or some tutorials that I've been thinking about making.

We'll have to see.


  1. It was something that a couple of high school friends would do. We thought it was cool to get the answer completely in our head without writing all the steps of logic down on paper. It was stupid because the teacher would give you partial credit if you showed your work.  

Pushing the button

Category: blogging
#misc

category: blogging
tags: tufte, blog
status: published

Well, tonight is the night. I got the site design to where I'd like it to be. It's simple, easy to read and very fast. I tried looking at it in a couple of different view ports using Safari's Responsive Design Mode and it made me even more sure about what I'm doing here.

I understand that there are a lot of css/javascript frameworks out there and it would have been A LOT easier just to pick something like that and start posting. There is something to be said about just focusing on the actual words that go in the blog instead of how it looks like. I wanted my site to reflect me and what I'm about.

This is a message to me that I can complete the goals that I set out to do. It might take me a while but this has been so worth it.

Next up

Well, the initial design is done but there are a couple more things that I should probably finish up.

  1. Finish the rest of the tags (marginimage, columnimage)
  2. Add the analytics Not a real priority because I don
  3. Clean up the Archive page
  4. Create a 404 page
  5. Decrease the spacing between multiple footnotes1
  6. Clean up the regular expressions used to parse for the plugins During the process of trying to figure out how to do this theme, I spent a lot of time whether to do this in pelican as a plugin or the python markdown. I am happy that it is working but I am not happy with how fragile it is.
  7. Discuss Comments
  8. Create options to make it easier to go to categories and tags
  9. OpenGraph

I've done a couple comparisons with other pelican templates and I feel that I should have some of this ready for other users who want to try out the Tufte style without worry so much about how it fits with what a website is supposed to do2.

Well, it is getting kind of late for me here and I've got to push the button to make this public to the world.


  1. When I was first introduced to markdown, one of the things I thought was the coolest was the fact that you could have these little babies to put on the bottom of the page. If you look through my archieves you'll see that I use them off and on to do my writing. Some websites have them at the end or use a popup to show them when you click on them. I think I'll probably move to side and margin notes. Either way, when you get two or more they really start eating up space. 

  2. It took me a lot of time to pick a template when I first came to pelican and even then I found myself modifying it.  

Publishing incompletes

Category: blogging
#misc #goals

Today, I've decided that I was going to push my website out to the masses before the end of the week. This is a personal blog and just because it isn't perfect it is something that I created and I want to take pride in the fact that I'm willing to get out there and work on something and make it better.

Some of the things that I'd like to work on will be the handling of navigation at the top and figuring out how to get the tufte style to work properly with pelican. I attempted to get everything working with a liquid tag but the parser doesn't work well with blocklevel tags and wraps it in <p> so the expected css doesn't apply properly. This only applies to fullwidth figures but I'd like it all to be uniform.

Silver Bullets & Pedestals

Category: productivity
#misc

I follow a number of nerdy people on the internet. In my mind I put them on pedestals and marvel at how they make things look so easy.

I try to buy all the tools to emulate them.

Looking for that one silver bullet that will make it click for me as well.

Application Results thus far
TextExpander Saved .99 hours
Keyboard Maestro 36 Hours
Hyper Keyboard Works on my laptop but had trouble with the keyboard I was using at the time