Thursday, February 14, 2008

My DIY Lenten penance

Apart from celebrating the midday Eucharist, and being ferried to and from the BBC in Llandaff to record an interview for BBC Wales 'Mousemat' technology broadcast on Sunday afternoon, I spent the day re-vamping the church website. Having admitted openly to myself recently that it needs an overhaul and a few extra pages, I finally sat down late last night and looked for a decent template to work with, and began what is turning out to be a lengthy task, because of the need to attend carefully to the detail of every page, and ensure a consistency of design and presentation of information. I'm better at the concept than the implementation. Sitting down and doing it step by step is not beyond me. It just tries my patience, my self discipline and my will to succeed. A perfect job for Lent.

The inability of computer programs to read my mind or warn me of mistakes I haven't yet made is enough to guarantee that I am reduced to hysteria every now and then, destroying pages accidentally that I've just perfectly created, because of a moment of inattention. It's a tough as a spell of
zazen , and I sleep badly afterwards as well. I must be daft. But, the task has to be done. The website's been there nearly five years, and like Topsy, has just grown. It gets searched for information be people all over the world. The easier I make that the better. Or at least, if I can set a more decent standard for whomsover will eventually take over this task, that will be a small achievement. At the moment however, I see no queue of volunteers for the job, only of people selling their services.

This evening, my daughter rang to say that her husband's office computer had just died, and they were having trouble getting the backup to function, which I'd begged them t0 buy and keep updating, after I'd set it up for them. Fortunately it was something simple to fix. Tomorrow they will have to rescue the hard drive with all their current data on it. Their livelihood depends upon it. Thankfully mine doesn't. For me it's a way of exploring from the inside the world of work so many people inhabit in this hi-tech age. Far more penance than fun, it seems to me.

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