December 29, 2007

Unplanned Outage

Sorry about the outage just now, and the couple of database hiccups we've had in the past week (which you may not have noticed, as I was able to fix things pretty quickly).

I thought we had a hardware problem with the new server, but it turns out instead to be a software problem - a bug is causing one of the applications on the server to use up all the memory.  All of it, including memory that other applications would like to use.  When that happens, Minx and/or MySQL can get shut down without warning.

I should have this fixed very soon.  In the meantime, now that I know what the problem is, the worst case will be a few minutes to reboot the server and check the database and we'll be up and running again.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:07 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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December 25, 2007

A Christmas Message From

Merry Christmas!

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 03:13 AM | Comments (4) | Add Comment
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December 21, 2007

Trouble Logging In?

We had a hiccup with the session management system, and it looks like it was dropping people's logins, so that you would see messages such as You are not authorised to access this page.  when a moment ago everthing was working fine.

A quick restart seems to have fixed the problem, but we're still checking to see what caused it in the first place.  If it happens to you, leave a comment here - you can still comment even if you can't log in - and we'll make sure it's fixed as soon as humany possible.

Update: Still happening, still working on it.

Update: I've temporarily disabled the code that cleans up expired sessions.  Let's see if that does the trick.

Update: It seems to be fixed now.  If you do still have problems, you can leave a comment here or email, and I'll take another look at it.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 04:04 AM | Comments (7) | Add Comment
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November 26, 2007


There's a new BBCode tag in town - two tags, in fact - and the name of the game is slideshows.

[slideshow {group=groupid} {size=expression|resize=expression} {title=text} {alt=text}]
[slide=path {group=groupid} {size=expression|resize=expression} {title=text} {alt=text}]

The [slide] tag works very much like the [img] tag.  The difference is that instead of simply embedding an image in your page, it creates a thumbnail for the image and a link that will bring up the full-size image as part of a slideshow.  (You'll need to update your blog to 1.1 to get the full effect, but the thumbnail and link will work on older sites.)

The [slideshow] tag lets you set up the default values for a slideshow.  The group can be used if you want to have two separate slideshows in a post; simple give them different ID's.  The size or resize value can be used to automatically make all your thumbnails the same size, sparing you from specifying this each time.


Posted by: Pixy Misa at 02:32 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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October 08, 2007

Darn You, Microsoft!

A couple of users have alerted me to the fact that the Style Images editor doesn't work quite as it should under Internet Explorer, with differing problems arising depending on whether you're using IE6 or IE7.

I'll be doing additional testing and fixing those problems very soon.  In the meantime, if you need to create Style Images, I highly recommend the Firefox browser.

A Note On Browser Support

Minx (the blogging application that runs is developed against Firefox and then tested under Internet Explorer, Opera and Safari.  Usually you only need to make sure that pages render correctly; however, active user interface pages require more testing and problems can slip through.

We intend to fully support all four major browsers on all platforms.  Currently, there are major issues with the WYSIWYG editor on both Opera and Safari; we will shortly be adding an alternative editor that supports all four browsers.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 03:03 AM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
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Request For Comments

Minx doesn't email you when new comments or private messages arrive.  It could - it would be easy to do - but I don't want to be sending out thousands (and eventually millions) of emails a day.  There are all sorts of problems with being a high-volume email source, and I'd rather simply not go there.

But it's very useful to be alerted to incoming comments (and private messages!) without having to visit your site every ten minutes.  So how else can this be achieved?

Well, there's RSS.  Minx already supports automatic RSS 2.0 and Atom feeds (and you can customise it to support other formats).  Why not add an RSS feed of comments?

Comments are public, so an RSS feed of them isn't an issue.  (Not true of private messages, but we'll get to that.)  But maybe you don't want everyone to see spam or unapproved comments.  Well, you can set up a hidden feed.  Or the system can do that automatically for you.  If your public comment feed is at, and your private comment feed is at, say,, you'd have to try an average of a billion combinations before getting access to someone's private comment feed. 

There would be a link in the editing interface so you could subscribe with one click, and easy-peasy, comment notification.

I could certainly do the same with private messages.  If you're sensitive about those and worried about that 1 in a billion chance, I can have an option where the RSS feed only shows the arrival of a new message, and not the sender or contents.

I could also do secured feeds, but that's more fiddly and many popular readers don't support them.

So, what do you think?

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 02:50 AM | Comments (9) | Add Comment
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October 03, 2007 1.1 101: An Introduction To Styles And Banners

So, you may have noticed that we have these wonderful new banners and layouts and stuff.  And you may be asking how do you use this?

Here's how!

Converting to 1.1

If you have an original style blog - if your banner doesn't look something like the above - the first thing you'll need to do is update your site to 1.1. 

This is very easy to do.  In your edit menu, got to Styles.  You will see an option Choose a theme... Update to 1.1.  All the themes are similar, varying only in the banner image and some colours.  You can see the basic images used to produce the banners here.  If you want to customise your starter banner, you can grab the images from that page.


Click the button, and your blog will be transformed!

(Note: You may need to do a forced reload of your site to pick up changes immediately when you are working with styles.  In most browsers, you can do this by holding down the shift key and clicking the reload (refresh) button.)


Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:31 AM | Comments (15) | Add Comment
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September 18, 2007

New 1.1 Update News!

Version 1.1 is live!

You should have two new options in your edit menu, under Manage: Styles and Images.  This is where you can play with styles (you can have more than one style, and switch between them), and styled images (banners and footers, plus things like lolcats, motivators, and captions).

It's now after after 11:50 PM here at Pixy Labs, so I'll leave posting all the details until the morning.

Oh, and registrations are back for those of you waiting patiently to join up.  New users automatically get the full 1.1 treatment.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 01:56 PM | Comments (13) | Add Comment
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September 17, 2007

1.1 Update News

Hi everyone.

We're currently in the process of activating the Minx 1.1 upgrade.  Registrations are temporarily disabled while we do this.  Registration should be back later today.

If you have an existing blog, you'll have a new button to update your blog to use the 1.1 theme system.  This backs up your existing templates before switching over, so you can always switch back if you have any problems.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 12:26 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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September 11, 2007

Time For A Change - Tuesday 11th September 4AM GMT

I'll be updating the software today - to version 1.1.  Officially this is a beta, though only the 1.1 functions are in beta; existing features shouldn't be affected.

After I've checked that all is well with the new style/layout and image wizards, I'll be enabling those for everyone. 


Shared applets are also in this update, with an initial set of applets ready for your sidebars: recent comments, recent posts, topic list, category list, archive list, search function and site statistics.

Applets work very much like included templates, with two exceptions: They don't change your template context (tags and variables), and you can share them with other users.  If I set up a nice applet on, you can use it with the code [applet].  With your own applets and the standard applet set, you don't need to specify the site.

Update: 1.1b is now live.  I'll be testing it tonight, and then I'll activate the features for everyone tomorrow morning.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 01:07 AM | Comments (5) | Add Comment
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