Yes, I know, my brain is twisted. But today it’s for a different reason. I’ve been trying to wrap my head around MySQL, PHP and CSS for the last two days. Work is a bit slow right now, so it’s giving me the opportunity to do a long-overdue overhaul of the TMA website.

My knowledge of website building is pretty sketchy. I kind of learn what I need to learn to get by. The TMA website was going to require more knowledge than I had in my head to get done, so there was a big hill to climb there. Although I want the site to be simple, I also want it to be easy to manage. So, I installed a blog for entering content that will appear throughout the site. No big deal there, because I’ve installed blogs before, and it’s basically a 2 click process. I didn’t want to use the blog to display the stories though. That would make it look like a blog, which it isn’t. I wanted the server to pull the stories out of the blog’s MySQL database and display them on a page that I designed. That meant I had to learn some MySQL. After 3 hours of hair-pulling trial and error and research, I had written some code to pull the stories out and sort them by category. It took me another hour to write a script to display the dates in more appealing format than 2004-11-24 00:23:15. 😛

Anyway, this is all pretty geeky stuff, which I don’t mind. I’m a geek. But I’m one of those geeks who is just good at using programs after they’ve been built, not making up my own. Programming puts me into a whole different frame of mind. I can’t say i exactly enjoy it, but it gives me a good mental workout, exercising brain muscles that I rarely use. It’s probably good for me in some way. Writing CSS code to do the page layout is good exercise too. It’s creative, but at the same time it’s very methodical and calculated.

If you want to see the home page in progress it’s here.