March 8, 2006

Wordherders in Action

Occasionally I like to showcase the work done by various members of the herd; this was a busy week for the Wordherders. MattK gave a talk at UT-Austin on his work on "Textual Forensics of Mystery_House.dsk". I've seen a few variations of this particular branch of his research over the years and it never fails to entertain. Speaking of entertainment, our Natalie (Critters and Spectacles) was the superstar of the week, showcasing her mug on NBCTV4 with West Wing's Bradley Whitford.

Two herders Chuck (The Chutry Experiment) and Marc (Things As They Are) presented at this year's SCMS, joining herd-friend KF (Planned Obsolescence). On this coast, herder CJ presented at NEMLA in Philadelphia.

Jason Jones (The Salt-Box) is hosting this month's Teaching Carnival, so be sure to check back soon and/or contribute to the Carnival.

A good luck to Non-Zombie, who retired his blog "thanks for not being a zombie" this month, after three years of blogging.

Finally, motions are in place to upgrade the Wordherders space. Plans include:

And don't forget the Wordherder (and friends!) outing to the Dada exhibit on March 18. Details here. Email or comment if you'd like to attend.

Posted by Jason at 6:19 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 18, 2005

Wordherders Down

We are currently experiencing technical difficulty.

Posted by Shepherd at 10:59 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

July 6, 2005

Wordherders - Comments Currently Disabled Until Upgrade

Hello readers and fellow wordherders -
Due to an avalanche of spam this weekend, our host had to disable our cgi scripts to prevent server overload. I have asked that they allow us to continue using our normal scripts, except for comments.cgi which runs our commenting features, until I upgrade to the newest version of MT later this week.

So, the herders can now post again, but comments will be disabled until I get a chance this week to upgrade the MT build. Meanwhile, since this will be an upgrade, and since by my nature I'm both suspicious and pessimistic, I ask that all herders back-up their data immediately (instructions in the link). I will also backup the mysql database. Obviously, I believe in redundancy.

Sorry for the confusion and frustration. Hopefully MT 3.17 will solve some of these problems and prevent this from happening again.

Posted by Jason at 2:06 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 5, 2005

New Herder!

Everyone please give a warm welcome our newest wordherder, Claire MacDonald, who will be blogging at Still Just Writing ( Be sure to add her to your blogroll!

Posted by Jason at 6:44 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

December 12, 2004


Seems not to have destroyed our blogs.

Please read the email I sent to all herders before attempting anything crazy (like random changes to your template).


Posted by Jason at 5:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Wordherders is upgrading to the newest version of Moveable Type around noon (eastern) today. There might be some delays, downtime, etc., so please be patient. Members of the herd, as per email request, please do not post after 12:00 Eastern until I post an all clear on the main Herd blog (that'd be this one). Thanks.

Posted by Jason at 11:06 AM | Comments (8) | TrackBack

June 4, 2004

Wordherders, Year One

Wordherders is one year old today. Two of the three first blogs were imported over from other installations (George's and mine) and the third, The Huffalump's Rump -turned- Injuring Eternity, was fresh-baked.

Wordherders developed over drinks in downtown College Park as we celebrated the graduation of George, Mike, and Lara. I had been investigating server space for my blog, started only a few months earlier, because I wanted to shift from a university-owned server to a private one, especially since I was switching jobs and leaving my computing community at the university (and lucky that I did, since the server where my first installation was housed crashed and was wiped only a few days after I moved). Others expressed interest in blogging, or in hosting elsewhere, or in participating in a community, so I offered to buy a domain, run a host for friends and friends-of-friends, all at a low-low cost of nearly free. Chip in on the server space cost, I said, and I'll set up a blog. A win-win situation for all.

Now, a year later, Wordherders is 15 strong and spread across a few different servers (for those who wanted to be included in the community but already had their own host). Bloggers vary from the prolific to the occasional (and, in a rare case or two, the nonexistent, but I won't mention *cough*Marc*cough* names).

Of the Herders housed on, George gets the award for most prolific, with 463 entries and 1048 comments. Chuck is a close second, with 413 entries and 867 comments. But blogging - and herding - is not simply about numbers. I have read with great pleasure over the past year wonderful reviews of films, insights about ekphrastic poetry, compositions on art and culture (digital and otherwise), adventures in writing about culinary delights, thoughts on autobiography, meditations on critters (loud, exploding, and simply cute and cuddly), stories about parents, grandparents and family history, thoughts on teaching, introductions of babies to the world (at least 4 herders have had - or are about to have - babies in the past year, and several others are parents), all against the backdrop of a developing community reflected in our comment sections, our trackbacks, and in our blogrolls.

And like all communities, changes must occur to keep them happy and healthy. While unable to complete it before this blogoversary, I am working towards a redesign of the long-stagnant Wordherder homepage, where I hope to house a working RSS feed of all herder blogs (basic prototype of the feed here). My hope is to change the main Wordherder page into a better center for the community, while allowing each blogger to maintain their own unique identities. I'd also like to solicit ideas from the community - what changes would you like to see and why?

Meanwhile, happy blogoversary to Wordherders! I look forward to another year of communal blogging.

Posted by Jason at 6:27 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

January 2, 2004

Welcome New Herders

The herd welcomes Brandon Barr, a freelance writer and new media critic, who blogs at his own domain:

Also welcomed is Marc Ruppel, a PhD student at UMD (as many of us are or were). His blog, Things as They Are?, has been set up for a while, but he hasn't written anything, so this introduction is just a way of saying: get to herding!

Yes. Pressure. Makes diamonds, you see.

Welcome Brandon and Marc!

Posted by Jason at 1:21 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

December 10, 2003

Herd Feed?

Ok, so how do I set things up so that the recent entries from all Herders shows up on the Wordherder main page in order (most recent posts first)? And nicely styled, too (just need to CSS the RSS?)?

If someone can show me how to do what I imagine is just a RSS feed (?), I'll set up a small redesign of the main wordherders page, which would have the latest entries from everyone...

I'd just like to see the main page function more as a bridge between the blogs rather than just the relatively lame, static portal that it currently is. It would be nice to get the collaborative blog feel (like they have at Crooked Timber, GTA, TerraNova, or Social Software) while still letting everyone run their own blog space.

Also, is there a way for people to choose when to include something in the feed and when not to?

I'd appreciate any and all advice (and if bored Herders want to look around, I'd appreciate it - thanks!).

[and to clarify - this is just a repost of this]

Posted by Jason at 12:17 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

November 11, 2003


MT-Blacklist is now installed for all wordherders. Please let me know if:

1. you continue to receive spam
2. you notice any system problems


Posted by Jason at 10:48 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

October 14, 2003

Possible Spam Solutions

Herders - since we're having trouble with spam, I'm posting a few options to consider for blocking it. I haven't had a chance to really look through the options (I will once I return from Toronto next week), but best to inform yourself as well - and offer opinions or desires.

MT-Blacklist was just released and I'll be curious to see how it works.

The other option is James Seng's solution, which operates something like ticketmaster (details on his website; try posting a comment there). The problem with this otherwise elegant solution is that people with screenreaders will have difficulty leaving comments.

Also, if there are other plug-ins you are interested in, please let me know.


Posted by Jason at 10:47 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 2, 2003

Welcome to The Salt-Box

Everyone please give a warm welcome to Jason Jones, herder at The Salt-Box. Welcome Jason!

Posted by Jason at 9:56 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

August 8, 2003


Happy Birthday to Natalie, author of Critters and Spectacles!

Posted by Jason at 7:11 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 4, 2003

New Herder

Welcome to a new Herder - Raining Cats and Dogma. Nothing there quite yet, but we expect some good herding shortly. Yee haw.

As per usual wordherder tradition (sure, we have some of those... according to whim), I'll let the author introduce him/her -self...

Posted by Jason at 4:53 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 4, 2003


The first blogs - George.H.Williams, Misc. is the Largest Category, and The Heffalump's Rump - are set up. More to come.

Preliminary intro paragraph offered for criticism. Likely to be removed shortly, after the coffee wears off.

Thanks for stopping by.

Posted by Jason at 1:09 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack