The following is generated purely by an AI Content Generator – all I’ve done here was input some parameters and format this post. Also, in the name of the theme, the feature image for this post is AI-Generated Art inserting “Artificial Intelligence Art” as the keyword.
As strange as it may sound, AI content writing is becoming more and more popular. And there are good reasons for that. Here are 5 benefits of using AI to write your content:
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One day last year, during the time that will go down in history… the time when we were all to be staying in our homes to avoid a virus, I got bored and decided to order an Oculus Quest 2, which is a Virtual Reality Headset for those who don’t know.
It allows you to enter the ‘Metaverse’, which is essentially the place that exists inside the headset. Your lobby, and anywhere you go, any game you play is the VR Metaverse… as far as I understand anyway.
It’s supposedly going to become second nature / second life. Maybe when it is a true second world to us, it won’t require such a heavy headset. Also, it will have actual social areas where you can learn and meet people with similar interests. The graphics could be a bit better too in all areas.
Initial negative thoughts aside, I do believe the future is Virtual and Augmented Reality. But we’re in the building phase. Facebook/Metaverse have a point to prove now, so it’s on… There are some amazing games coming which will help drive VR adoption, 100% – titles including GTA San Andreas, Ghostbusters, The Walking Dead, and Among Us (instead of the VR Chat version).
In a few years, I believe we will see the improvements that will enable it all. It’ll become more mainstream one day, and I’m glad to be getting more involved in what I feel is the middle stage.
I actually remember being around folks working on VR Oculus development in 2013 while spending time in the gaming industry as a Quality Assurance Engineer. I’m sure they were working on some underwater game where you encounter a big octopus’ and all that. In my opinion, underwater levels in games are just always the worst. Imagining a whole underwater game, even if it is in VR is not my bag.
Fast forward multiple years, during a work team day we went for a VR experience where we got to play a lot of popular games including the classics Beat Saber and Elven Assassins. It is so much fun for an hour of pure random action.
And nowadays, I use my VR Headset now and then. I’ve even got my daughter into a few games, which sparks the thought towards the crazy difference in technology eras we are experiencing during our upbringings. My 16-bit Sega Mega Drive at about 7 years old versus a VR Headset, colouring 3D worlds and taking care of virtual pets for my daughter. It’s cool and scary.
Here’s a video of my kid playing Bogo (free short game) for the first time, really impressed me how fast she’s picking things up.
Gaming used to be a big part of my life growing up, but not so much as I got older. The VR Headset is perfect to pick up for an hour for a random game; whether it’s relaxing or intense with movements. I’m glad I have it and we’re getting the value out of the purchase.
This is my first post in my Gaming Category. I hope you enjoyed it, my initial aim was to just show off the VR Video I uploaded to YouTube above!… I’ll update again soon with whatever is on my mind in this space.
The best way to describe this is to show it. If I want a new browser tab, I click on the Addon and select a Container.
I have selected AyePaddy in this case. When I open YouTube in this tab I am automatically logged into my AyePaddy YouTube User Account. In my existing tab to the left, I’m still logged into my Personal YouTube Account.
This is particularly useful if you are managing multiple websites, or if you are working with Cloud Software (Azure, AWS, GCP) and testing User Access.
Hope this random tip is useful – it’s a saviour for myself for both of the above reasons!
I live in Edinburgh, Scotland which is a really great City for local hill and wood area walks. If you live here, you are always nearby a good trail with elevation to get the required headspace.
I work from home, so getting out at least once a day is obviously important. It’s easy to let things slip on intense work days, which results in the body taking a hit. Whether it’s diet, exercise or even bad posture; if you’re doing something unsustainable and consistently for a period, it’ll creep up on you and you’ll feel it eventually.
The local hill linked above is the most local to my home, which takes about 15 minutes (rushed walk) to reach the top. I walk up through some alleyway between non-residential areas and then straight onto the path of the hill. It’s 158 meters high according to Wikipedia. Here are a few pics on the way up.
It’s an easy climb even for kids. You can see the surrounding golf course 1/3 of the way, then off to the top.
When I arrive at the top I have a spot I usually sit at for 15 minutes, if it’s not raining etc.
I often take a few photos when I’m up, as you can see. I’m getting a lot of sunset pictures, with most of Edinburgh City being in the opposite direction of the Sun. Here are a few good pictures of Edinburgh.
We had one night up here for Bonfire Night – the fireworks were all a bit distant but we had a lovely night. Any excuse to get up here I’ll do it since it’s so quick and easy.
I normally head down the opposite way to avoid the same scenery, and maybe head to Tesco on the way home for a lunchtime meal deal on the way back.
Anyway… a personal blog post has been published here. I hope you enjoyed it.
I have a duty to be on point and be a great parent. It’s your responsibility when you become one. Excelling in this role contains many failures and self-corrections as each challenge passes, like everything in else in life.
Several years ago when I started the journey into unplanned parenthood, I wasn’t ready, but who is ever ready eh? I was much heavier in weight and 26 years young when Anabelle was born. I have been on a journey to improve (more intensively) ever since, and I’m enjoying the many appreciations I’ve helped build, maintain and improve around me.
One of the aims I’ve had in my head for some time is that, I should be working as hard as I do in my career as I do as a parent. Both life pillars should be the same priority and kept on top of. Another ambition is to never feel regretful when looking back at photos, thinking you could have done more.
It is no easy feat to be a working parent, regardless of your status. Well, excluding ‘the 1%’ who will absolutely have it easier in many ways. But it truly is hard work, and some days as a parent you might feel like you’re waiting on a bus that’s never going to arrive… it’s worth it though, obviously! The rewards happen over the years, consistently with a snowball effect. Everything you teach them is a potential seed that can grow into unexpected conversations or experiences. Enjoy the ride, as it’s a long one.
Continue to reflect on situations and grow over time. Normalise the heavy requirement so it becomes easy. Look to change bad habits over time and try to be a little bit more self-aware each day. Keep motivated, and try to enjoy the journey. Also, have more adventures. Some more notes to self while it’s on the mind!
I don’t usually write about this sort of stuff – the norm is tech content. If my mind inspires it there will be more, but for now, hope you enjoyed my random perspective and thoughts here.
Hello, to nobody out there! Here goes my first, new post on here.
I’m finally starting to update this web space. I’ve been (tech) blogging under https://peter-whyte.com, a domain I secured 5 years ago to use as a personal platform for content. The reason I had the hyphen was due to this domain (https://peterwhyte.com) being £600-700 to buy. One day a few years after, I noticed it dropped down to about £40. I snapped it up right away.
Ever since, I’ve been playing around on here with various themes and some random blog posts, but things never really materialised into something I actually like, or enjoy looking at.
This time around I have different ambitions, and more years of experience behind me. I have a new aim to update this place to become a better portfolio to represent my firstnamesurname.com web space!
Updates are happening fast and I hope to get regular blog posts. It’s all for personal satisfaction in the end though so whatever will be will bee, aye.
I have been creating and managing websites for long enough now to have a backlog of cleaning tasks. Mostly consisting of deleting old blog posts and images from websites that have been in active blogging mode for more than a few years.
This is something we really need to keep on top of, clearing out the junk on your website. Things gather over the years, well… this really depends on the volume of content you upload to your website.
I’m very active, or, as active as I can be. I try my best to keep up the habit, believing consistency is key. Also, slow and steady will 100% win the race!
This blog post here is really just to upload and backup some old web pages I’ve deleted. All personal stuff this is, writing to myself of course.
This post here is a backup of an old timeline I had on another domain, as per RIP Old Web Content.
I used to have this hanging on a page with the Timeline Express Plugin. It gave me some good hands-on practice as I was getting up to speed with developing websites with WordPress.
This is how the Timeline looked for me, followed by the content of each post –
50 Published Posts
Published – August 25, 2018
A milestone to mark in the Timeline, having 50 published blog posts. This includes posts within all categories (Tech Blog, Journal, Timeline).
I’m enjoying writing & seeing some improvements over time. I believe one of the important parts going forward will be to continuously edit and refine previous posts, especially the tech stuff. I’m glad the web traffic on here is very low. It’s giving me plenty of time to practise and up my game.
I have a never-ending list of post ideas for my tech blog. I look forward to covering lots of different areas within SQL Server, and any other fixes and guides on things like WordPress & PowerShell.
I’ll always say the words, a long way to go. There’s no end goal really, so the end is never in sight!
Published – April 7, 2018
Okay, so, those other domain names I bought previously? They were rubbish. This is the one for me. Who even cares about hyphens anymore… Deciding on a domain name can make or break you!
I’m not surprised by the large number of mistakes I’ve made along the way. It takes a long time to get good at something, and every wrong turn is an opportunity to learn what could have been done better.
There is no way projects like this can be a success unless there’s a passion for it. It’s become a genuine hobby for me, which I’m happy about. All I have to show for my efforts so far is the knowledge I’ve gained, so here we go again, a clean slate for the 3rd time!
Second Domain Name Purchased
I had a lot of fun for 4-5 months getting familiar with the WordPress dashboard. Installing plug-in after plug-in and testing every change I could think of.
I wanted to start again. Get a nice clean WordPress install with a new theme (a paid one this time). And why not, get a new domain name at the same time… My domain name changed was then changed to WhytePete.com.
Registering My First Domain Name
Published – March 7, 2017
On this day registered my first blogging domain name, PeteSQL.com, and signed up for an annual hosting plan (CPanel model).
I toyed with the idea of having two domains. I’d use PeteSQL.com for my tech blog, and PetesLQ.com would serve as my personal area. But, why not combine them both??
I’ll insert a screenshot here of what it looked like at this time.
A New Year’s Resolution
Published – January 1, 2017
It was as the title suggests, a New Year’s resolution for me to create a website for the purpose of blogging. I’ve been behind a computer screen since my teenage years and always had a strong interest in tech. The urge to blog grew as I spent more and more time reading the blogs of others. When you end up reading other people’s stories like this one from Brent Ozar, you may also find yourself thinking more seriously about blogging. My mission set from the get-go was to learn as much as possible along the way and to try to make it look as best as I can.
Now, as I write these back-dated timeline posts, I can say I’ve truly learned to appreciate how much time it takes to convert a vision onto a website. I had little to no knowledge on the way into this journey, which of course had an impact on how long this has taken me. No regrets though, it’s a fun hobby!
I’ve managed to get a lot done in January. Spending a lot of hours working on this & studying during ‘free’ time. Lots to get done and a long way to go! There’s been a few changes on here to the front and back-end, so here’s a quick update post on whassapnin.
WordPress 5.0 Update
My website automatically updated to WordPress 5.0 during December. The first thing I did when I received the email was check if the front-end looked and functioned as it did before, which it did.
During recent weeks I’ve been able to fully test the all new Gutenberg editing experience. I wasn’t sure about it at first, but that was mostly due to having to get used to the new UI I think. I powered through with no desire to continue using the Classic Editor. Move forward with the software and all that.
As I continue to use the new WordPress editor I’m finding myself like it more and more. It is definitely an easier to manage editor and it’s opened up some options for my post template going forward.
One of the things I’m making a change to is how images on posts are displayed. Old posts have all images centred, and if you wanted it left aligned it would have the text in-line as shown below.
Both of the above are centred. It’s good to have the choice now! I’m sure there would have been a way to achieve this before, but I noob.
So, all good with the WordPress 5.0 update in the end… Although, format changes like above have to be consistent, so I’ll need another sweep through old posts. Converting classic posts to blocks can sometimes break a few things too, so this is another chunky task to add to the Fix List!
# Fix contact form messages. # Fix broken redirection links (broke after replacing pages with updates). # Hide the ‘Featured’ tag from Tag Cloud widget. # Add index pages. # Improve home page. # Reformat & touch-up all previous posts. # Add a CAPTCHA to site contact forms. # Test subscription (MailChimp) email sends summarising recent content. # Finish my Timeline. # Finalise structure of the Web Traffic page.
The New Fix List
Published – January 14, 2019
In my previous journal posts I would often add a set of issues I have on this website. Things I need to note down to fix when I get time to. I last did this in November.
It’s a never ending gig. New issues or ideas for improvement pop up at every step of the way. For example, I’ve received about 10 messages via my contact form in the last week or so. None of them contained an actual message…
I knew the first place to look would be within the Contact Form 7Form settings.
I then checked what was shown within Mail settings.
Would you have known what to do?
I quickly resolved the issue by copying the […textarea-496] code over to the output settings as shown below.
When I last amended my contact form I obviously didn’t change the mail output settings… More importantly than that though, why didn’t I test it? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
All previous messages were lost. I would have required an additional plugin (Flamingo) for that. Within days after the fix I realised they’d all be spam messages anyway. Here’s a few example messages.
So… a quick fix, that has led to a new addition to the list. I need a spam filtering system in-place on forms!
This here is my list gathered for 2019 so far:
# Fix contact form messages. # Fix broken redirection links (broke after replacing pages with updates). # Hide the ‘Featured’ tag from Tag Cloud widget. # Add a CAPTCHA to site contact forms. # Test subscription (MailChimp) email sends summarising recent content. # Finish my Timeline. # Finalise structure of the Web Traffic page.
I’ll continue to expand on different problems as I go. Hopefully it’ll provide insight into unforeseen considerations during the build of a website.
Here we go 2019!
Published – January 9, 2019
Happy New Year!
It’s a bit late. I’ve been lucky enough to have a decent break during the holiday period though!
I’ve been back to work for 3 days now and so far so good with that. I’m readying myself for the battle with the list we have in Jira after giving the systems a good health check.
It’s now time for me to start planning training, holidays and tech meet-ups for the year. There are a few potential exciting ideas, such as attending the SQL Saturday in Iceland where Brent Ozar is holding a pre-con. If not that, then there will certainly be a few trips for such events held within the UK – it’s a New Year’s goal to expand my tech meet-ups outside of my home town Edinburgh.
That’s one of the New Year’s goals mentioned! Another one of those is for me to continue working away on my blog. Last year, I switched over from whytepete.com (no longer alive) to this domain name. I more or less hit the reset button on content at the time, so this is where I’m at in terms of content as of April 2018:
It’s already been a long time since my last post, and I have a fair bit of work to do before my next tech post will be ready.
My goal for the year is to bump up that post count to 200. It’s an ambitious target but I think it’s achievable. I’ll be spending much less time hacking away at my website for one – I spent several weeks behind the WordPress dashboard rather than working on new tech blog content. I also don’t intend to have such long breaks between posts. Get a schedule going that I can really stick to.
I haven’t put much effort into driving traffic yet, with the exception of the small focus on SEO. I shared my website with a few friends during 2018 and think only once did I mention it online. Here’s a quick glance at traffic so far:
397 total users tracked on Google Analytics with 17,329 page views. The organic traffic started to kick in around September/October whereas it was non-existent at first.
It’s still early days on here, so the most interesting stats are still to come. It’ll be nice watching this as my web content grows, especially if I’m able to reach my target mentioned above.
So that’s where I’m at and what I’m currently up to! Here’s to a good and productive 2019… Cheers!
The Only Blog Updates
Published November 13, 2018
General Website/Blog Update
It’s been a wee while since I’ve posted within the tech blog, but the good news is I’m still making a habit of blogging by writing this eh? Even if these posts are terrible, containing nothing much of worth, I’m still happy to be continuously active with my writing in any form.
I’m finding myself making use of my website every day at work though. It’s serving me well as a script repository and a notepad which makes me happy. If it provides functional use for me, then there’s a better chance of it being useful for others.
Everything I write is aimed at no particular audience. Or shall I say, no audience! I still need to update my web stats section, but there’s still not much to look at really. It’s nice and quiet here, so there’s no pressure.
I do hope to ramp things up with respect to the tech blog. That’s always going to be the juicy stuff in my opinion. Until that happens, I can’t complain about the lack of organic traffic.
In other news, 3 weeks ago I posted about a new job prospect – An 8-week process including a technical test (SQL Server), a telephone interview and a longish face-to-face interview.
2.5 weeks after the face-to-face the recruiter gave me a call… It wasn’t to be!
My feedback was literally 3 words, “You came second”.
Hey-ho. It’s all positive in the end. An enjoyable experience from start to finish, it really was. I learned and was reminded of a few things too…
I found that one of the most exciting things about the job prospect was that I’d be working with other DBAs. I really want that in my next role.
I was reminded that I should be more selective with who I chose to represent me (recruiter-wise).
I was as calm as I have ever been during an interview, although there’s always room for improvement there.
Now it’s over, I’d say I’m now casually on the lookout for a new role. No rush. Aim to find the right place with some fellow SQL Server DBA’s!
I Fixed the Fix List
Published – November 5, 2018
I’ve gone through another sprint of website changes in the last week, the biggest one being the redesign of my homepage. I think it looks better than it did before. As long there are slight improvements between each pass when making design changes, that’s the goal. Things will eventually work out, in the end, the more you tweak at it.
The full highlights of my recent changes are;
# My homepage now contains all content and the navigation links jump to each area on there, with the exception of the Tech Blog though. I like having that link lead to a page that’s easier to navigate. # I added a subscription widget that works with Mailchimp. I’m still getting the hang of the configuration with that. Another fun thing to learn about. # I went through all older posts, tidying formatting/tags/SEO and re-adding images to some pages that I had linked from my old domain. I haven’t renewed it and pictures eventually stopped showing. # I reinstalled Disqus after trailing another comment system. I change my mind a lot but do feel like I get it right in the end, in some cases.
When I finished with the above, for the first time ever, I had nothing left on my fix list!
There are a few outstanding snags… small ones… not worthy of this list. For example, the homepage header image is proving a tough one for me to get right. But it’s perfectly acceptable just now though, and it’ll be tweaked at random until it sits well.
As my website hammers on with its continuous system & plugin updates, there are always going to be things that break. And there’s no doubt I’ll have more improvement ideas along the way. So I’m not saying goodbye to the Fix List, I’m going to start fresh from this point, just for a bit of organisation.
Fix List (April 2018 – November 2018)
# Move away from the Crayons code display plugin (or look into the updates of it). # Pictures don’t open in a new tab when clicked on blog post loop thumbnail images. # Add labels (tags) to all old tech posts (I’ve been adding them for new posts). # Add subscription functionality, exploring options for full customisation. # Go through older tech blog posts to check for formatting issues. A lot of WordPress changes have happened since they were published. # Get the Disqus comment system in line with post widths. # Text hover-over bug on the Journal & Web Stats blog filmstrip featured images. # Change social media icons. # Add exclusion filter to Tech Blog navigation. # Reduce Disqus width to fit within post width. # Add post navigation to footers. # Fix SiteOrigin plugin (Custom CSS site display after HTTPS change) # Some links differ in hover colour, amend from green to red # Convert to HTTPS. # Fix Google MAP API issue, mobile devices get an error. # Change highlighted text from green to red, or black, or to anything other than green. # Explore new themes of images on posts. # Remove self (all devices/networks) from Google Analytics. # Switch to using Crayons for code display. I’m not feeling GitHub.
How Social To Be
Published – October 27, 2018
I added a bunch of social links to my About Me page when gearing it up a while ago, but you’ll see that there’s little to no activity on any of them. I wonder why too… I love a lot of places like Reddit, Quora, MSDN, StackExchange and many others – I just never post on them!
It can’t be such a rare thing. In the technical world, the general rule for me is to try to understand the issue before asking about the Internet. Check the question hasn’t already been asked… try to figure it out for a while with the help of Google… think of a workaround… test it!
This is something I’m working on though. Running this website is helping me structure my favoured social platforms and I’m sure my various social media profiles will soon see some updates. This post is dedicated to informing you nobody of this.
Time to Suit Up
Published – October 22, 2018
5 weeks ago I decided to have a very quick look at the job market. I flicked through what S1Jobs had to offer under within the land of SQL Server and found something of interest. A job that ticked all the boxes!
But, I wasn’t really looking to switch jobs at this time. I closed that tab down. End of story…
Once every month or so, I do as many others do and have a look at what’s out there. Checking for things like, how frequently jobs within my skills area are posted and what kind of companies are hiring. Usually, there’s at least one job I’m interested in and would like to know more about. But I don’t probe any further if I’m not looking to move!
With that said though… I’m being truthful when I say, within 2 minutes of closing the Chrome tab, I had an In-Mail on LinkedIn from a recruiter asking me if I was interested in that role. I was confused and was immediately thinking if it could’ve been tracking cookies or something like it. I couldn’t believe it. But after speaking with the recruiter, she informed me that it was a manual send – just a massive coincidence then!
So, I sent along my CV and thought, let fate take the lead on this one. It’s a win-win situation. If I don’t get the job, then maybe I’ll know more about my weaknesses. Improve on interview skills? If I do get the job, then I hope the decision is an easy one!
During the time since this, all first came through, I’ve taken a technical test (SQL Server based) and had an hour-long telephone interview. It’s taken some time but gone very quick.
Tomorrow is the face-to-face!
Published – October 7, 2018
In the month since my last update, I’ve had a focus on tech blog content, with a 1-week blip of restructuring/expanding my About > Web Categories section. Still moving along slowly but surely, and I’m happy to see that I’m sticking to my word with the tech content – that being increasing the frequency of posts once I considered the design stage to be over with.
There are many areas that I plan on updating in between working on tech stuff too though. Such as; # Expand on Fix List below. # Update on Web Traffic. # Complete my Timeline. # Continue to add to my Random Area.
But there’s only so much that you can get done in the week!
I’ve successfully scored zero off the list! I haven’t added to them either, so it’s all good.
I’m glad I wrote them done though. The only 2 I’ve put thought into recently are the tags and formatting issues. I’d like to refresh the old tech posts soon… And after that, I think I’ll look at Subscription functionality. No rush though eh?
To be fixed #– Move away from the Crayons code display plugin (or look into the updates of it). #– Pictures don’t open in a new tab when clicked on blog post loop thumbnail images. #– Add labels (tags) to all old tech posts (I’ve been adding them for new posts). #– Add subscription functionality, exploring options for full customisation. #– Go through older tech blog posts to check for formatting issues. A lot of WordPress changes have happened since they were published.
Fixed #– Get the Disqus comment system in line with post widths. #– Text hover-over bug on the Journal & Web Stats blog filmstrip featured images. # Change social media icons. # Add exclusion filter to Tech Blog navigation. # Reduce Disqus width to fit within post width. # Add post navigation to footers. # Fix SiteOrigin plugin (Custom CSS site display after HTTPS change) # Some links differ in hover colour, amend from green to red # Convert to HTTPS. # Fix Google MAP API issue, mobile devices get an error. # Change highlighted text from green to red, or black, or to anything other than green. # Explore new themes of images on posts. # Remove self (all devices/networks) from Google Analytics. # Switch to using Crayons for code display. I’m not feeling GitHub.
On-going Website Maintenance
Published – September 3, 2018
It’s been a good week… here are the highlights!
I’ve done my regular plugin updates which I aim to do at least once a month. I’ve always said to myself, that as soon as I see issues with updates I’ll change my awful strategy. That strategy is, to select all plugins that need an update and hit go!
Today was that day. I was presented with the following when trying to load any page after trying to update my plugins.
After about 5 minutes I started having a quick google on this message. Luckily, when I checked back on my website again it was all good again.
I managed to get them updated individually without issues, but this certainly triggered the thought that I should improve on my plugin update process for next time. The thought of having to fix it via FTP makes it one to be avoided.
I’ve had the Wordfence security plugin installed from the get-go, although I had yet to run a scan on here. I had one issue flag when I ran it;
The Crayons syntax plugin hasn’t been updated since May 2016. Long enough to merit steering else-where I think, so I’ll add that to my fix list.
I’ve smashed a few off the list this week and changed a few things (again). I’ll expand on each of the below as I go. For now, that’s it!
To be fixed #– Move away from the Crayons code display plugin. #– Pictures don’t open in a new tab when clicked on blog post loop thumbnail images. #– Add labels (tags) to all old tech posts. #– Add subscription functionality, exploring options for full customisation. #– Go through older tech blog posts to check for formatting issues. A lot of WordPress changes have happened since they were published.
Fixed #– Get the Disqus comment system in line with post widths. #– Text hover-over bug on the Journal & Web Stats blog filmstrip featured images. #– Change social media icons. #– Add exclusion filter to Tech Blog navigation. #– Reduce Disqus width to fit within post width. #– Add post navigation to footers. #– Fix SiteOrigin plugin (Custom CSS site display after HTTPS change) #– Some links differ in hover colour, amend from green to red #– Convert to HTTPS. #– Fix Google MAP API issue, mobile devices get an error. #– Change highlighted text from green to red, or black, or to anything other than green. #– Explore new themes of images on posts. #– Remove self (all devices/networks) from Google Analytics. #– Switch to using Crayons for code display. I’m not feeling GitHub.