Hi! You have reached the online home of Michael McCallister. I write about technology, software, and the Internet in a variety of venues. At this site, you can learn more about me and my life, buy my books, find where you can see me at any given moment, and read some thoughts on the writing life. My main blog, Notes from the Metaverse, continues on at WordPress.com.
This site is not-so-new anymore, but you’ll see changes in it from time to time, with a big one coming down the road. Watch this space! I built this site myself, with the incredible assistance of the global WordPress community. Any errors on this page are mine alone. Spot something? Contact me.
By the way, if you’re looking for the former CEO of Humana Health, that’s someone else. I’ll stop there.
Go check out my latest story for WPMU, with the self-explanatory headline: “Thinking About Getting a .blog Domain Name? Here’s What You Need to Know.“
Starting November 21, 2016, you can have a website with a *.blog address (instead of .com, or whatever). This story offers some ideas for why you might just want to get in line for this opportunity.
WordCamp Milwaukee is coming
While writing this story, I decided to send this topic as a possible presentation at WordCamp Milwaukee. If the talk is accepted, come bring your questions to the UW-Milwaukee School of Continuing Education on the weekend of September 17-18!
If you’ve got your own idea for a talk about anything WordPress, send it in by early morning Thursday, August 25. See this post for some ideas, this post to urge you — yes, you, and then fill out the form here.
Are you thinking about getting a .blog address? Why, or why not? Say so in the Comments. If you have questions about WordCamp Milwaukee, feel free to ask here too.
Happy to report that I’m back to writing more about WordPress. Today, the WPMUDev blog published a new story of mine on the security tradeoffs involved in using the XML-RPC support in WordPress core.
XML-RPC and Why It’s Time to Remove it for WordPress Security
What’s the problem with XML-RPC?
You’ll learn about the reasons for and history of Remote Process Calls in WordPress and other blogging platforms. You’ll also learn how to protect your site if you happen to like some of the tools that use XML-RPC.
It’s not a fear-mongering story, with some practical advice, and a look to the not-too-distant future when the WordPress REST Application Programming Interface fixes this problem. Go check out the story. Participate in the discussion. Share the link with your networks. Let me know what you think, too.
I hear from people all the time who think that WordPress is too hard to work with as a platform for their blog/website. If you’re one of those people, Medium could be an alternative.
Laura Hazard Owen of the Nieman Journalism Labs interviewed some top web publishers who moved their sites from an independent platform, with good results. Thanks to Andy Bull for pointing this article out.
I will say this: The platform is incredibly easy to work with, and the traffic on the site is heavy. The setup is pretty much this:
- Create an account
- Click Write a Story
Medium claims that its publishing tools work just as well for one-writer blogs as these larger players. While I maintain that it’s important for writers to have a place on the web to call their own, the site says your content remains in your control. That’s a plus. I have also been considering re-posting some of my writing there. Last year, I posted a news story on an Internet history panel with some good effects.
I’d love to hear more experiences with Medium. Let me know…