Tag Archives: blogging

Self-Centred Technology

“James Herbert is writing a blog entry.”

Does that interest you? In fact, since you are reading this entry, I can give you an update on that:

“James Herbert has now published a blog entry.”

Perhaps you would be more interested if I told you something you couldn’t work out for yourself:

“James Herbert is looking forward to enjoying the culinary skills of Ladan’s aunt this evening.”

I have always had the feeling that blogging one’s daily thoughts on a blog, tweeting one’s moves on twitter and updating one’s status on Facebook  is to presume one’s life to be fascinating to a significant number of Internet users.

For this reason the bulk of my blog posts, when I was more active as a blogger, leaned more toward being news stories about the Baha’i Faith, but then the number of people and sources providing such news increased and, again, I found myself asking why people should find my version to be worth reading when there are now several official versions available at the same time.

I want to start bogging again, about life, Ladan, the Baha’i Faith, and technology, but have a hesitance about being too presumptuous that I have a voice worth hearing,  that others will be interested in what I am interested in.  I also do not want to write things about circumstances I am in that upset other people for the wrong reasons, as has happened with my Ladan updates in the past. So, I am coming back, but this is why it has been a slow and sporadic journey.

From Blogger to WordPress

I have decided to make a few changes to my blogs.

Firstly, I have moved across from using the Blogger software to using WordPress, that is why everything suddenly looks different. I will probably be modifying the look quite a lot over the coming months, and some elements of the navigation too, I apologise if the blog should go off-line or become difficult to read while I am making such modifications.

I have also decided to merge my three main blogs into one, so my Baha’i related blog and my Branches blog are now part of the main warble blog. WordPress offers categories for each post and (at the time of writing) these can be found near the top right corner of the page, from here you can choose to only see posts relating to the Baha’i Faith or to Ladan. Because my Branches blog contained my more trivial postings and, naturally, some of these will be related to the Baha’i Faith or Ladan, it is probable that you will find posts in these categories which would not have otherwise made the Baha’i related blog, or the main warble blog.

Please let me know of any problems you encounter with the new site. Almost all of the old posts have been imported. The old posts are also available from these links: Warble (main), Bahai related and Branches.

Fingers crossed, I’m back again.

Somewhere at the end of December/start of January my laptop was balanced on Ladan’s bedside while I attended to something for her and one moment later it was on the floor and the screen had gone off. I tried to resuscitate it several times but it remains in a severely disabled state unsuitable for blogging.

Ladan’s kind and generous uncle Shahram said that I could have his old notebook computer and finally, as of a few days ago, I have it. It took a while to make it work well but… all staying good, I’m properly back in business.

I lost a lot of personal data including email and a huge mp3 collection, as well as some projects I had been working on, so if I haven’t replied to something for months then you will know why.

Among the lost data was some recorded material for a Baha’i podcast I was about to launch, I was excited about it having kept my Baha’i blog up to date for the best part of a year without fail, but, alas, the flaw of being a one man show hit me when my computer gave up.

Some of you may have noticed some Internet presence on my part, but it has been from numerous computers and I wanted a solid platform from which to get back into blogging. Now I have it, so, without further ado, I’m off to give a Ladan update on our main blog…

Blog Issues

This is a techy grumble. My blogs are still damaged by Google’s new beta version of blogger. If you read their blurb on progress you would think that everything was close to perfection. If you use he new blogger in the most simple of ways then there are indeed some nice new features available to you, but if you use FTP to host your own blog then the new blogger just introduces a few cosmetic changes, including the formatting of the atom XML feed. I had decided to transfer over to WordPress which would remain more under my control but the import feature of WordPress does not work with Blogger Beta. So, my site remains a little damaged for a while until I can find a work around for the cross-blog links to work again. I am concluding that while Blogger is an excellent entry vehicle into blogging, I have always felt it wins over Yahoo, MSN and MySpace in many ways, but at the end of the engine is still remotely-hosted, and somebody else controls your blog presence.

Google damaged my blogs

Anyone who uses blogger will be familiar with the way that Google have been encouraging us to switch over to their new beta version. Well, I finally gave in and now the links to my other blogs, in the left column of each page, do not work because the “atom feed” created by blogger has changed its format. That probably means nothing to most of you, but hopefully we will get around the problem soon.

Here come the updates…

You wait ages for an update then three come along at once! Actually its one big long update split into three parts, probably full of typing and grammatical errors as I have hurried it a little.

I know that many of you who check this blog for updates think of Ladan and pray for her and for her family regularly, I truly appreciate this and am touched that so many of you continue to do this after such a long time, I remain convinced that your prayers do have a positive influence upon Ladan and whilst remaining much the same may not sound like progress stability is very important and instability quite common for patients in Ladan’s condition.

Let the updates begin…

Blogging about Ladan

I often feel I would like to write more about Ladan here and some people encourage me to keep the blog more up to date, but in reality it is hard to keep a blog that reflects a balanced picture of how Ladan is doing if I update it with news about her daily.

Being by Ladan’s side every day is a rough ride, an emotional roller coaster, that has many more lows than highs but most of the lows are short lived worries and frustrations while, overall, Ladan very slowly continues to progress in the direction of recovery. I know that many people who care about Ladan check this blog regularly and their prayers and thoughts for Ladan are very much appreciated, I would not want to send the emotions of some of my blog readers onto the same roller-coaster that my emotions have to endure, that is a test for me and other members of Ladan’s family to face, just as the strength to engage with these circumstances and hold strong our hope and faith under these conditions is a blessing with which we have been endowed and one which is strengthened from many sources and I could not sufficiently relate the possitive attitude with which the rougher side of the ride becomes balanced such that concerned readers would also maintain such enthusiastic support for Ladan.

By taking a longer term approach I can assess which positive aspects are real enough to report and what other developments are of serious concern and should be mentioned.

I do however take on board that a few more updates would be appreciated.

Two infections have now been found which doctors feel may have been contributing to Ladan being a bit more poorly recently, I expect that even having two different antibiotics at t he same time will also zap Ladan quite a bit this coming week. As you can tell messages change daily, just a couple of days ago they were thinking that there probably wasn’t an infection after all, such complicated issues in diagnosis are unfortunately common for somebody in Ladan’s condition.

We have also received a letter of reply concerning the events of Christmas when Ladan suffered a serious seizure since which she has been unable to communicate with us, the letter implies that the failures to provide essential care to Ladan that night were not down to a plan gone wrong but rather a complete failure on the part of the staff on duty that night to communicate essential information to each other on several occasions. The reply does not really provide a complete explanation as to what happened and who was responsible but rather leaves open many further questions which I hope to clarify in another letter to the NHS Trust shortly.

Why warble?

The domain name warble.com was registered in thinking of my desire to hasten the day when the following promise of Baha’u’llah’s would be fulfilled:

The world is in travail, and its agitation waxeth day by day. Its face is turned towards waywardness and unbelief. Such shall be its plight, that to disclose it now would not be meet and seemly. Its perversity will long continue. And when the appointed hour is come, there shall suddenly appear that which shall cause the limbs of mankind to quake. Then, and only then, will the Divine Standard be unfurled, and the Nightingale of Paradise warble its melody.” (Baha’u’llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha’u’llah, p. 118)

Baha’u’llah is the prophet founder of the Baha’i Faith. The first pages held on warble.com were about this Faith, including an introduction to the basic teachings and links to the then scarce Internet resources around the world. Since then official sites have appeared around the globe but still warble.com has played host to web sites dedicated to Baha’i youth for many years.

Now warble.com is more a collection of old and disjointed pages. This is to change in the not too distant future. Currently I am in the process of getting married, after that I hope to use some of the teaching skills of my wife to develop a more interactive forum for discovering more about the Baha’i Faith.

When I stop for a moment to reflect on the word warble, which I see every day in my email address as well as my web sites, I see it as a call to live a Baha’i life and live it joyously. The Baha’i Faith promises that exciting and wonderful days are on the horizon for this troubled world that we live in, and by living a life informed by this knowledge and in accordance with the principles that the Baha’i religion enshrines, we are already making part of the contribution expected of us to help bring about a new world civilization.

Another quote that includes the word warble, this time from ‘Abdu’l-Baha, the son of Baha’u’llah:

It is incumbent upon thee to assemble continuously with the beloved of God and to meet with those whose faces are illumined with the light of the love of God. Verily, I supplicate to God to make thee sincere in this love, to illumine thee with the light of His Kingdom, and to destine unto thee the illumination by the light of His attributes, to make thee a sign of mercy, a bird warbling the verses of unity; that thou mayest be nurtured in the bosom of His providence, and become a growing tree bearing fruit in the Paradise of El-Abha.” (Abdu’l-Baha, Baha’i World Faith – Abdu’l-Baha Section, p. 361).

For me it’s a call for Baha’is to be Baha’is!

I’m not sure what bizarre array of unrelated articles may appear in this blog, but welcome to the show!