Richard Butterworth Digital Media Design

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The media form field in Joomla 2.5

Guaranteed to generate a bit of online ire on StackExchange is the Joomla media form field. It doesn't do what it says on the tin; it only allows you to select images from the media manager, not pdfs, audio or video files. That said it does say very clearly on the Joomla docs that it only allows the user to select images, not arbitrary media files. Maybe it should be called images form field or similar. It is however a perfectly reasonable to expect that there will be situations where the user will want to select any media file.

Richard Tomes

This is a tribute -- of sorts -- to a dear friend and possibility one of the greatest influences on my life: Richard Tomes.

Varnish and Joomla!

In the summer the BBC did a radio documentary about The Full English project. The interest in the site was such that the server couldn't cope, and was gummed up by the high volume of traffic for half an hour or so during and after the program.

Clearly not ideal.

Two months later the BBC repeated the documentary, and so we had to find a way to get the server to cope with the demand. We opted for Varnish -- a very highly spoken of HTTP cache -- which holds copies of popular pages in memory and serves them very efficiently from memory instead of getting them from databases and hard drives, which is much more inefficient.

Dear Internet… Really?

Dad used to listen to BBC Radio 3 in the car. This was, I'd guess, the late 70s, early 80s. To my fresh young ears it was awful. Turgid, dull and incomprehensible. I remember things came to a head on one journey when some endless piece of ear bending serialism was delivered into the car with no introduction or context that I can remember.

'Oh, for heaven's sake.' said Dad and switched the radio off. That was the last I heard of Radio 3 for a quarter of a century.

I did a PhD and did NOT go mad (2013 update)

In about 1997 I was asked to give a presentation in (what was then) the School of Computer Science at Middlesex University about my experience of doing a PhD. It was to be given as part of an induction day for to the PhD students just starting off in the school.

I'd just completed my PhD and felt somewhat jaundiced about the whole process, mixed with the startling feeling of exhilaration that lasts for several months after completion and decided that I should tell the new intake exactly what my experience had been -- warts, spots, disastrous relationships, and all.

This was probably somewhat unfair on the audience.