Today felt kind of productive


But a little bit long.

Today started off with an annoying headwind all the way into work.  It was the worst on Turners Crossroad, just like it always is.  It's at the end of my commute and the road comes up alongside the freeway with some huge sound abatement barriers, the wind gets caught and scooped up and focused right at you.  I was pretty steady at work but ran into a few problems / lack of data issues that put me on hold until I have more information.  I'm working on a form to sign up kids for a summer camp that has to integrate in with paypal and send off emails based on if the paypal is confirmed.  It's not really foolproof because the person might not come back to the website after making the payment, in which case we can never make the next step happen.  We're also not really sure what the next step is supposed to look like - what happens after the person comes back with a valid payment?  There are a myriad of different things that could happen, including them uploading an audition mp3 or avi to email and / or signing up for times to audition in person.  It sounds pretty complicated, I'm not entirely sure how to program it.  The site is running our old CMS that I'm kind of sketchy on programming with so it's kind of hard for me to do some of the basic stuff.  I've already spent 5 hours on this one simple thing.  Well, programming and syncing up the files.  Actually right now I'm syncing the files for tomorrow, it will take me several hours to transfer the data from my work computer to my home computer.

We also went live with our newest site today too, which was actually for the 1%.  It's supplied HTML/CSS and then I plugged in all the moving bits for concrete 5.  There's a lot of custom programming on the site, it's using our Hutman News and Hutman Events add ons.  I modified the events add on to use the RSVP code from with some pretty minor changes.  There's no 'maybe' option, for one.  I forget what else has changed, but it was nice to have code from a side project turn out to be very viable on a live site.  I'm trying to figure out ways that I could package up the RSVP functionality, Hutman Events is a nice add on but it's not really ready for the marketplace because it doesn't support recurring events or a calendar view.  It's just basically Hutman News with a few extra fields for controlling the date display for the event.  Then some RSVP functionality and a form on the page type that the dashboard page creates.

I've wanted to write a calendar add on for awhile but I'm really not sure how to do that, should be the focus of some research I think. 

Anyway, I ran into roadblocks and couldn't finish up anything at work, but it was OK because I had to take off a little bit early to get to Pizza Luce.  TLC was throwing a thank you party for the volunteers that took bicycle and pedestrian counts this year.  The numbers are in and they are up, that's all the more I can say.  They were really strict about saying that we couldn't announce any of the numbers online at all because there's going to be a press release tomorrow.  It was nice seeing the people from TLC again and meeting the other volunteers, about 50 people showed up.  I also met the new Bicycle and Ped person at MN Dot, but I forgot her name.  She was really nice, I hope she gets lots of good projects passed for us.

I had to duck out of the meeting right after they finished the presentation and before they took any comments to get home and log into an online meeting for Occupy MN.  They were having a visioning meeting for some of the technology ideas, I was happy that they seemed really open to trying out concrete 5 for an upcoming project called Occupy the Neighborhood.  The idea is to have cookie cutter sites for neighborhoods that people can update with content and have discussion forums and events.  I think concrete 5 sounds like the perfect platform for such a platform.  The meeting itself seemed kind of unfocused and not really all that well organized, the agenda was covered in about 10 minutes and then it was just open discussion but nobody really had much to talk about.  A person from the University asked a lot of questions I think for a class or for a newspaper, I'm not sure which.  Most people in the meeting also didn't have microphones or cameras and the conversation seemed to be dominated by the people that had the cameras and microphones, it was possible to weigh in via chat but for some reason very few people did.

Anyway, overall it was good, I also spent some time over on the Minneapolis General Assembly Ustream trying to figure out what's going on with the GA.  Mostly it seems to be fighting over how they're voting.  I'm not sure how productive I'd be in meetings like this but I think I can be productive programming up tools that coordinate local people.

Tomorrow I get to finish up the sign up form and I'm not sure what else at work, then I don't have anything to do.  I kind of hate Friday nights, I'm always alone and bored.  I guess that's my own fault.  Maybe I'll spend the time working on what a local neighborhood occupy site would look like.

You can sign up to volunteer to help with Occupy the Neighborhood here.