Patrick (patrickwonders) wrote,
Patrick
patrickwonders

Wordpress Dreams

I had a dream a few nights ago that deserves some elaboration. The technical details of the dream are consistent across a series of dreams. In these dreams, suddenly, things have started going wrong with my Wordpress-based site.

In these dreams, I have this user model of how Wordpress works.

Dream User Model

When I say, I have this user model, I literally mean that I have this image either on a printout or whiteboard or floating in the air near my head. The text in the above depiction is not the actual text in the dream. The actual text in the dream isn't legible.

In some instances of the dream, the blue boxen are sort of collapsing (pagecurl-effect style) out from underneath the green/yellow box.

The user model is that there is a bunch of source code represented by the blue boxen. That code is the Wordpress code that I download, untar, configure, sync with my site, etc. This is code that I can look at in a text editor. This is code that I can trace down through to see how things happen in Wordpress. I can find the bit where the Twitter Tools hook themselves into the Publish sequence.

Then, there's the green/yellow box. It is code that is pulled in via JavaScript on the browser end, pulled in from the database, sucked in at runtime from deep within Akismet or Wordpress, and/or fabricated like Hawking radiation (code and anti-code come into existence right near a Wordpress event horizon... one of the pair gets sucked into the Wordpress singularity and the other diddles with my data).

The code in this box is ephemeral. It is Heisenberg code. The act of trying to observe it destroys it or alters it. It is undetectable. It is undebuggable.

It always screws with my data or the presentation thereof. Usually, it just messes with the presentation. It changes the titles of things just as they hit the browser. It moves where things are on the screen. It stacks my articles in tiny square boxes each one offset slightly down and left of the one on top of it. It makes my tag cloud run outside of its container and makes some of the tags in the cloud appear rotated 90-degrees, in different languages, or occasionally in EBCEDIC.

In my dreams, WordPress really sucks. In reality, it's not too bad. Most of the trouble that I have had with it over the last year has been shortcomings of CSS (or various browser implementations thereof) rather than problems with WordPress itself. In reality, WordPress pulls its JavaScript from JavaScript source files in the blue box portion of the diagram. Some modules pull in tiny bits of CSS from the database, but almost all of the CSS is in the blue box portion of the diagram, too. There isn't really a green/yellow box (or at least, it doesn't mess with me visibly).

*shrug* There you have it. When androids dream, do they dream of electric sheep?

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